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Cooking With Pumpkin

Updated on September 5, 2014

Pumpkin Recipes Aplenty!

Fall is in the air! Time for cooking with pumpkin! Here are some of my favorite recipes!

Fall is the best time to cook with fresh pumpkin. Farmers markets and roadside stands abound with the large orange vegetable. Your children may think only of carving jack-o-lanterns, but you know fresh pumpkin is one of the most nutritious foods they can eat!

Pumpkins are packed with carotenes, fighting both cancer and heart disease. It delivers about the same amount of beta-carotene as cooked carrots and canteloupe, and contains two times more alpha-carotene than any other vegetable or fruit.

Feeding your family pumpkin, in its many forms, whether fresh or canned, is one of the best ways to take care of them! It tastes delicious and is economical.

So fill your kitchen with the wonder smells this veggie brings, like fresh pumpkin bread, pumpkin cookies, even pumpkin soup!

I am gathering the best pumpkin recipes and posting them here! Check back often as I will be adding more delicious recipes for pumpkins in the coming days and weeks!

Photo credit

Pumpkin, A Super Food for All 12 Months of the Year

You are going to love this super cookbook, packed with the most delicious pumpkin recipes your family ever tasted! You will be amazed at all the things you can do with a pumpkin!

Pumpkin, a Super Food for All 12 Months of the Year
Pumpkin, a Super Food for All 12 Months of the Year

Click here to check the outstanding reviews of this delightful cookbook!

Choosing a pumpkin for cooking at farmers' market.
Choosing a pumpkin for cooking at farmers' market.

Selecting a Pumpkin for Cooking

A good place to buy a pumpkin for cooking is a fruit market, farmers' market or roadside stand. Look for a small, bright-orange pumpkin of the type sold for carving jack-o-lanterns. If you can find a small, flat reddish orange pumpkin, it will be sweeter.

The big pumpkins are not good for cooking. Besides being large and unwieldy, these big guys tend to get stringy and have a tough texture. Better leave the huge pumpkins to the kids for Halloween carving.

Regardless of variety, bring home a pumpkin that smells fresh, has no blemishes and is nicely shaped. It will be the best pumpkin for eating.

Use a sharp knife to prepare the pumpkin for cooking.
Use a sharp knife to prepare the pumpkin for cooking.

How to Cook a Pumpkin

Now that you have the perfect pumpkin, how do you cook it?

First, wash off all of the dirt, then put your pumpkin on a sturdy cutting board. You will want to use a large, sharp knife to safely cut the pumpkin in half. Scoop out all of seeds and set them aside to toast later.

Cut your pumpkin into chunks and decide if you want to bake them or cook them on top of the stove.

To bake: Put the pumpkin chunks on a greased baking sheet and bake at 325 degrees until the pulp is soft (about an hour). Remove the pulp from the shell, and then puree in a food processor.

To steam: Peel the chunks, then simmer them in a covered saucepan with about 1/2 cup of water about 25 minutes until tender.

How to Cook With Pumpkin

Cooking With Pumpkin - Quick Tips!

Quick and easy recipes for cooking with fresh pumpkin!

  1. To make mashed pumpkin, heat your pureed pumpkin with some margarine or butter, a little ground cinnamon and some skim milk.
  2. Make a pumpkin sauce to serve with meat by simply seasoning pureed pumpkin with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Serve your chunks by reheating them in the microwave, then sprinkle them with a little
  4. Add pumpkin chunks to canned soup to boost both the flavor and nutritional value.

Chopped pumpkin and other vegetables for soup.
Chopped pumpkin and other vegetables for soup.

Chop pumpkin and add to soup with other vegetables. It is delicious and packs a nutritional wallop!

Delicious pumpkin bread piping hot from the oven!
Delicious pumpkin bread piping hot from the oven!

Pumpkin Bread Recipe

My daughter and I love this pumpkin bread recipe! It is very easy, and you can add in your favorite ingredients for a bit of variety.

I found this in an old church cookbook published by Christ Church, United Methodist in Louisville, Kentucky in 1982.


  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 can pumpkin
  • 3 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmet
  • 1 cup oil
  • 2/3 cup orange juice


  1. Mix together the eggs and sugar, then add the pumpkin. To this mixture add the flour and spices. Gradually add in the oil and orange juice, mixing well after each addition.
  2. Pour mixture into greased and floured loaf pans or a bundt pan.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.
  4. Optional add ins: 1 cup each raisins, dates or chopped nuts.
Cast your vote for Pumpkin Bread Recipe

*Spicy Pumpkin Sauce*

You need:

- canned pumpkin

- ground ginger

- raisins or dried cherries


1. Stir together.

2. Warm in microwave.

3. Delicious served with chicken or pork.

A plate of yummy pumpkin spice cookies
A plate of yummy pumpkin spice cookies

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Pumpkin spice cookies are fun and easy to make.

These pumpkin cookies taste great alongside a bowl of vanilla ice cream and a cup of hot coffee. What a treat!

I have had this recipe in my collection for about 30 years. It came in a newsletter from the apartment complex where I lived when I was in graduate school. I do not know the origin. All I know is it has become a yummy tradition to make these in the fall!


  • 3 1/2 cups of sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup of softened shortening
  • 2 cups of firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons of grated orange peel
  • 1 cup of cooked or canned pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup of milk
  • 1/2 cup of chopped nuts


  1. 1 . Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and grease two or more cookie sheets.
  2. 2 . Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg.
  3. 3 . Cream together thoroughly the shortening and the brown sugar.
  4. 4. Add the eggs to the sugar and shortening mixture and beat with electric mixer until creamy.
  5. 5 . Stir in the grated orange peel, the pumpkin and the milk. Blend well.
  6. 6 . Add the flour mixture and blend well.
  7. 7. Stir in the nuts. Do not over mix.
  8. 8 . Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto the greased cookie sheets. Leave about two inches between each cookie to allow for spreading.
  9. 9. Bake for eight to ten minutes at 400 degrees.
  10. 10. Remove cookies to a baking rack to cool.
  11. 11.Allow the cookie sheets to cool before adding more cookies. This recipe makes about six dozen pumpkin spice cookies.

Pumpkin Dump Cake - An Easy Pumpkin Recipe

This Pumpkin Dump Cake is an easy dessert recipe to make for Thanksgiving, Christmas or anytime. It is especially good for the holidays or during the autumn months.

This is one of those recipes that is good to have the ingredients on hand during the holidays in case you get a call that unexpected company is on its way. It is fast to make and easy to clean up.

This is a very easy and quick recipe that is delicious and good for feeding a crowd. If you are looking for something different to take to an office party around the holidays, this recipe is an easy choice.

Surprise everyone with a delicious alternative to pumpkin pie!


  • one 28-ounce can of pumpkin
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup of evaporated milk
  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 1 stick of melted butter or margarine
  • 1 cup of chopped pecans


  1. 1 . Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 9 by 13 inch cake pan very well.
  2. 2. Dump the canned pumpkin, the pumpkin pie spice and the evaporated milk into a large bowl. Stir to mix well.
  3. 3. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the well-greased cake pan.
  4. 4. Sprinkle the dry yellow cake mix over the top of the pumpkin mixture. Do not add any other ingredients to the cake mix.
  5. 5. Drizzle melted butter over the top of the dry cake mix, then sprinkle the chopped nuts over the top.
  6. 6. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. The dessert is ready when the top is golden and crispy.

The Great Little Pumpkin Cookbook

The Great Little Pumpkin Cookbook
The Great Little Pumpkin Cookbook

An unassuming paperback cookbook packed wall to wall with nothing but pumpkin recipes.


Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream Shake

Join Amy as she shows how to make a delicious milkshake using canned pumpkin!

The Perfect Pumpkin

The Perfect Pumpkin: Growing/Cooking/Carving
The Perfect Pumpkin: Growing/Cooking/Carving

Think you might want to try growing your own pumpkins? This book has everything from seeds to harvest to recipes.


Farmstand Favorites

Pumpkins: Farmstand Favorites: Over 75 Farm-Fresh Recipes
Pumpkins: Farmstand Favorites: Over 75 Farm-Fresh Recipes

What to do with all those pumpkins piled high at your local farmer's market!


Cooking With Pumpkin Poll

Do you cook with pumpkin?

See results

What is Your Favorite Pumpkin Recipe?

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Saved to my bookmarks - so many yummies, so little time! Blessed~~~

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I like Pumpkin Bread... will have to try it with real pumpkin

    • Stazjia profile image

      Carol Fisher 

      6 years ago from Warminster, Wiltshire, UK

      I've very seldom cooked pumpkin and then in a boring way - just cubing it and baking it in the oven with butternut squash and parsnips to serve as baked vegetables. This autumn I intend to try your pumpkin bread, spice cookies and dump cake.

    • BlueObsidian profile image


      6 years ago from California

      My favorite way to use pumpkin is by making pumpkin raviolis. Pumpkin with lots of black pepper and parmesan cheese in fresh pasta, served with a brown butter sauce... well now I've made myself hungry!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I do need to learn how to cook with fresh pumpkin.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 

      6 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I would NEVER have thought of using fresh pumpkin meat to add to vegetables in homemade soup. That is a fabulous idea; thank you! :)

    • lilblackdress lm profile image

      lilblackdress lm 

      6 years ago

      Love this pumpkin lens! The difference in fresh pumpkin and canned pumpkin is substantial. Huge taste difference.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Pumpkin Pie! FOR SURE!

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      6 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Pumpkin pie! Thanks for adding this to my Recipes, Reviews and Food Collection lens.

    • Sara Krentz profile image

      Sara Krentz 

      6 years ago from USA

      Turkey pumpkin chili

    • GramaBarb profile image


      6 years ago from Vancouver

      My weakness is good old fashioned pumpkin pie. Blessed

    • Othercatt profile image


      6 years ago

      Last year I cooked with fresh pumpkin for the first time. My pie didn't turn out so good, but the pumpkin butter was delicious!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Nice lens, this is what we will do on Thanksgiving

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 

      6 years ago from Colorado

      Thanks for all of these great ideas and recipes for cooking pumpkin. I love pumpkin and should be eating more of it. *Blessed*

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      nice lens and superb work

    • RaintreeAnnie profile image


      6 years ago from UK

      I haven't done a lot of cooking with pumpkins and this has given me new ideas thank you!

    • scaguy profile image


      6 years ago

      I like pumpkin cooked and seasoned like squash. its a nice change.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      i wish that pumpkin wasn't just a seasonal item...bc i love pumpkin, muffins, etc

    • Gayle Dowell profile image

      Gayle Dowell 

      6 years ago from Kansas

      Great lens. I usually use the canned pumpkin. Maybe I'll try fresh.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      very informative lens!!!!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Really good informative post - ideal for this time of year!

    • Ritaclinton profile image


      6 years ago

      Cook pumpkin is a art. I like sweet tooth!!HO HO, i can learn it by steps and videos. Thanks to share.

    • iQwestArticles profile image


      6 years ago

      I'm definitely a pushover for pumpkin pie. Your pumpkin spice cookies recipe looked good and so did the pumpkin pie ice cream shake. Yes, I have a sweet tooth!!!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I have never cooked with pumpkin, but have considered it.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Thanks for a great lens on pumpkins. I do feel it is a shame just to carve them so it is nice to see them being used for other things. Also I like your featured book that they can be used for 12 months. Thanks.

    • joanhall profile image

      Joan Hall 

      6 years ago from Los Angeles

      I've done a stuffed pumpkin recipe -- put rice and other things inside the cavity, then bake. Yummy!

    • Stacy Birch profile image

      Stacy Birch 

      6 years ago

      Nice lens!

    • LittleLindaPinda profile image

      Little Linda Pinda 

      6 years ago from Florida

      I remember my mom's friend wondering why her pumpkin pie didn't turn out. She used the inside junk we usually scoop out and throw away. I need to try baking with fresh pumpkin. I've only used canned. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • anne mohanraj profile image

      anne mohanraj 

      6 years ago

      Great lens! A lot of information on pumpkins! Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Pumpkin soup! The best you ever tasted!

      Nice lens, I am sure the other recipies are good, too, but since I love pumpkin soup so much I hardly ever make anything else of a pumpkin.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I've made a pumpkin pie before but I used canned pumpkin :( I will have to try fresh one day!

    • MCB2011 profile image


      6 years ago

      I love pumpkin, seeds and all. I'd love to try some of these great recipes, pumpkin pie is my very favorite. I love pumpkin cooked any way. Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      So glad to see this lens on the front page today - congrats! Your recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cookies and Pumpkin Dump Cake sounds delicious. Think I'll start with the cookies and work my way up. :) Great lens!

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      Congrats on getting featured on Squidoo's home page today.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I'm going to get my wife to try making pumpkin pie. It's well worth a try!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I don't really live pumpkins because of its taste but your lens make me rethink about this food, it looks delicious from here.

    • Isabellas-cabin profile image


      6 years ago

      One thing I learned is to line your cookie sheet with aluminum foil ramped up to contain the pumpkin. If you do not do this it can easily burn onto your sheet and ruin it leaving it only good for pumpkin.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I once made a pumpkin cheesecake from scratch - did the whole boiling and all, what work!! But the most delicious cake ever tasted. these I must admit I use canned pumpkin, really it's come a long way.

    • WildWilliams profile image


      6 years ago

      Roasted and Salted Pumpkin Seeds.

    • LoyalRobot profile image


      6 years ago

      I LOVE that "how to choose a pumpkin that will last button you made. How did you do that??

    • siserou profile image


      6 years ago

      I like to cook with pumpkin. I'll go to the farm after Halloween and buy several to bake then freeze the pumpkin in smaller portions so that I can use for baking, as a side dish for supper, and soups. One thing that really bothers me, though, is that a lot farms throw the excess in the garbage. Plus, many people waste pumpkins instead of using them productively for the nutritional value.

    • MariaMontgomery profile image


      6 years ago from Central Florida, USA

      Thank you so much for this information. I have never cooked pumpkin, fresh or canned. I think now I will try it.

    • ICanCook profile image


      6 years ago

      I just steam the pumpkin and eat it. I made this for a side dish tonight.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I just made pumpkin pancakes a couple weeks ago for the first time. I topped them with fried apples. After eating those I may never make regular pancakes with syrup again. The pumpkin pancakes were so moist and delicious, and the apples on top just made them better.

    • modernchakra profile image


      6 years ago

      Thank you for sharing these pumpkin eating tips and recipes. They all look delicious and will be on the lookout for the flatter reddish pumpkins to try and get a sweeter taste. I did not know there was a difference. Take care!

    • profile image

      jseven lm 

      6 years ago

      Congrats on front page!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      wonderful lens...and yummy yummy pumpkin......

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      enjoyed your lens, neat cooking ideas for pumpkins, 'thumbs up' from this reader.

    • jaredsgirl profile image


      7 years ago

      Pumpkin is so delicious! I love cooking with it! Thanks for sharing these yummy pumpkin dishes.

    • Coffeebreak9am profile image


      7 years ago

      Pumpkin muffins are my favorite. great lens.

    • Julia Morais profile image

      Julia Morais 

      7 years ago

      I love pumpkin. Seeing all these pumpkin dishes is making me hungry. Great lens!

    • Coreena Jolene profile image

      Coreena Jolene 

      7 years ago

      Lots of good recipes. Great lens, I bookmarked it for my recipe bookmarks.

    • privresearch profile image


      7 years ago

      love your lens!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      your recipes with pumpkin are really admirable I will definitely try one in my kitchen. I am impressed by pumpkin's nutritional value especially the disease fighting factor.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      It is interesting to see a delicious recipe with pumpkin .happy to know about the nutritional value of pumpkin .i will certainly try your dish in my kitchen.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I like to bake with fresh pumpkin. I use to cut clean and peal the pumpkin then boil it like potatoes. Now I bake it until the skin is burnt, it peals right off.

    • food monkey profile image

      food monkey 

      7 years ago

      nice lens!

    • Amoonlighter2011 profile image


      7 years ago

      Wow, I didnt realize there are so many options! Thanks for the recipes I look forward to trying some!

    • lasertek lm profile image

      lasertek lm 

      7 years ago

      I would love to try the recipes. My favorite is pumpkin soup.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      My favorite pumpkin recipe is for pumpkin bars. I have the recipe on my lens - please stop by. Thank you for all of your delicious pumpkin treats.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Pumpkin muffins are one of my favorites! Thanks for putting this lovely lens together. Thumbs up and an Angel blessing for you!

    • Mickie Gee profile image

      Mickie Goad 

      7 years ago

      I have had such fun using jack-o-lanterns for making pumpkin muffins. I had never known how to choose a fresh pumpkin until I read this lens. Blessed.

    • marigoldina profile image

      Heather B 

      7 years ago

      Pumpkin can be used for so many things, and the seeds when roasted and salted are simply divine! I hope that this year, I can try making a pumpkin pie. :)

    • profile image

      jseven lm 

      7 years ago

      I love pumpkin as you can tell my my pumpkin lens. :) Good one!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      We eat pumpkin soup often and I like it very much.

    • Diane Cass profile image

      Diane Cass 

      7 years ago from New York

      I have to admit, that I'm not a fan of pumpkin pie, but it is a favorite of my boys. I do love pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin spice coffee, pumpkin...well you get the picture. : ) Great lens.

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 

      7 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I like your Pumpkin Cookies...never thought of that, and they sound yummy!! I'm printing the recipe and will be using it this year. Great lens, great food, good for you!

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      7 years ago from Central Florida

      I like pumpkin roasted and eaten as a vegetable the way one cooks squash. We often ate it like that in Australia and it was quite tasty.

    • Monika Weise profile image

      Monika Weise 

      7 years ago from Indianapolis, IN USA

      I'm seriously thinking about making the mashed pumpkin. Great lens!


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