If you had a hankering (like my clients) to sacrifice a formerly decorative pumpkin to your Thanksgiving feast, you’re in luck. Try our Curried Pumpkin Soup, Pumpkin & Veggie Roast, Pumpkin Puree (think sweet potato casserole), Pumpkin Muffins or unforgettable, Pumpkin Pie recipes at your big meal today or, well whenever! As always, these recipes are gluten-free, reduced sugar and typically reduced calorie. So join me – indulge tomorrow with minimal caloric guilt.
PUMPKIN & VEGGIE ROAST
Remove pumpkin from oven early as soon as you can easily remove the skin – about 20 minutes. Try to remove the skin cleanly so you have large flat pieces. Cut those into 1-2 inch cubes. In large zipper bag, place 2 cups of pumpkin cubes and 3-4 cups of your other favorite veggies chopped into large pieces, which will ensure firmness of the veggies. I suggest: 1 medium red onion, 1 red pepper, 1 yellow squash, sundried tomato, bunch of asparagus and a few stalks of diced celery. In a small bowl mix 2-3tbsp of olive oil, ¼ cup lemon juice, 2 cloves garlic and 1tbsp fresh rosemary. Those with a palate for fire can add a tsp sriracha sauce. Pour marinade over veggies, seal bag and shake to distribute flavor. Spread veggies over a lightly greased roasting tin. Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes until tender. Turn vegetables once halfway through baking. Place in a serving dish. Option: serve with a sprinkle of crumbled low-fat feta cheese and/or toasted pumpkin seeds.
TOASTED PUMPKIN SEEDS
You choose, wash the strings and juice off the seeds or for an au naturel version, don’t . (More natural pumpkin flavor will remain). Place a single layer on a cookie sheet, the less they lay on each other, the better they can bake.
Sprinkle lightly with fresh ground sea salt or let your inner spice girl (or dude) take the wheel…For spicy seeds: cayenne, cumin and fresh ground pepper. Sweet seeds: cinnamon, nutmeg, a dash of brown sugar and even a dash of yellow curry powder. (About 15 to 30 minutes, or until the start to turn light gold). Eat seeds solo, toss onto salads, roasted veggies, or mix with other unsalted nuts, seeds and/or raisins for homemade trail mix.
Mash 4 cups of the baked pumpkin with a potato masher or stand mixer. Add 2tbsp olive oil, 2tbsp almond or vanilla extract, 1 tbsp each: ginger (fresh or wet stuff in jar), nutmeg & cinnamon. Top with diced pecans, and a healthier whipped cream: ½ – 1 cup fat-free greek yogurt sweetened w/ 1 tsp vanilla and 1 tbsp stevia powder.
For More Healthy Holiday Recipes, see our