Seasonal Cooking: What the heck to do with a whole pumpkin

‘Tis the season when the most abundant food adjective is “pumpkin” or “pumpkin-spiced”, but most recipes you (or at least I) come across use pre-made pumpkin puree or pumpkin pie filling. So what’s a girl (or guy) to do with a whole cooking pumpkin?

Inspired by a friend’s request for help (I’ll include her name here if she’s game!), I’ve compiled five of the most delicious-looking whole-pumpkin recipes from around the internet. Many of these look like they’d be great crowd pleasers, too, so I’m hoping to snag a pumpkin or two from the market shelves before the season is over. (All images belong to the owners of their respective links, unless otherwise noted.)

1. Baked whole pumpkin

The “hardest” part of this recipe appears to be scooping out the seeds (who hasn’t done that?).
Bonus: you can also roast the seeds tossed with salt (if you like them plain), or with cinnamon, sugar, and nutmeg for a seasonal treat that packs a punch of zinc (suggested to reduce stress).

2. Pumpkin puree
Unlike the first recipe, you can roast your pumpkin whole, without the worry of tough-to-cut pumpkin combined with potentially-slick-sharp-knives. Once the pumpkin’s roasted, you can cut it and puree the flesh. Use it like you would any other pumpkin puree (although, guaranteed, it’ll taste better and be healthier for you).

3. Pumpkin Hummus
This post also contains recipes for baby food, pumpkin bread, and dehydrated pumpkin-skin chips (all of which sound like excellent things to try)!

4. Whole Pumpkin Pie Soup
pumpkin pie soup
This recipe from Alton Brown looks ridiculously good– if anyone ends up trying it out, please let us know over here at The Little Red Kitchen! I plan on making it in the next week or so…

And last but not least, my favorite:
5. Whole Pumpkin Cheddar Gratin
Whole roast pumpkin plus a cheesy, seasonally appropriate “stuffing”?? Yes, please. This is yet another I plan on trying sometime soon– especially when we’re having guests!

I know this post deviates a bit from the standard around here at The Little Red Kitchen, but hopefully this recipe roundup was helpful and/or inspiring to you! I know looking around for all of these great ideas certainly was for me.

Thanks for reading!

– Kaitlin

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