Wondering how to cook pumpkin the easy way? Cooking pumpkin is much simpler than you think and very versatile. You can easily do it with the following two methods.
Pumpkin is a popular autumnal ingredient that can be used for both sweet and savory dishes. It’s good for you and loaded with antioxidants, but its ease of use is what makes it so popular. When preparing for the holidays, it’s hard to know what to make for your family. We’ll show you how to cook pumpkin in two different ways and how to make some fantastic recipes with this hearty winter squash.
Preparing the Pumpkin
Pumpkin is a fruit that can be boiled, baked, or steamed – but did you know you can also eat pumpkin raw? Cooking pumpkin is a great way to add texture and flavor to the dish. Here we’ll cover the basic steps for preparing pumpkins easily. In order to cook a pumpkin, you need the following:
- A knife
- Cutting board
- Large Spoon
- With a sharp knife, lay the pumpkin on the board and from the stem around the length of the pumpkin.
- When you reach the other side, you should be able to break it apart with your hand without going through the stem.
- Separate the stem.
- Scoop out the seeds with the spoon.
The skin on the pumpkin is hard to remove before cooking, and you don’t have to remove it at all if you don’t want to – pumpkin skin is edible! If you want to boil the pumpkin, then leave the pumpkin in big chunks, so it’s easier to peel. If you’re roasting, you can probably get away with smaller pieces when peeling afterward.
Tip – keep the pumpkin seeds as a healthy snack
Making Pumpkin Purée
Boiling pumpkin is a great way to make pumpkin purée, which is useful if you’re planning to make dessert, sweet dishes, or even pumpkin gnocchi.
- Sharp knife
- Cutting board
- Large pot
- Place the pumpkin pieces in a pot of water and bring them to a boil.
- Simmer down and allow to cook until tender — usually about 30 minutes.
- Strain your pumpkin and allow it to cool.
- Use a peeler or your hand to peel the skin.
- Cut into smaller pieces if needed.
Roasted pumpkin is ideal for savory dishes. It’s an excellent option for a healthy, low-calorie dinner. The pumpkin has a lot of vitamin A, which is good for your vision, and potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure. It also has fiber, which can help lower cholesterol and prevent heart disease. If you want to make this dish even healthier, try adding some herbs and hearty spices to the mix.
- Roasting oil of your choice
- Baking tray
- (Optional) seasoning of your choice – salt, thyme, and rosemary work well
- Chop the pumpkin into medium-sized chunks.
- Optional: Parboil the pumpkin for 15 minutes, strain, and dry.
- Spread the pumpkin pieces out on the baking tray.
- Drizzle with oil and sprinkle seasoning.
- Cook in the oven at 400F until tender, roughly 30 minutes (less if parboiled).
Recipes and Takeaways
Now you’ve learned how to cook pumpkin, what can you do with it? Pumpkin pie, vegan pumpkin cheesecake, and homemade pumpkin spice lattes are some of the many ways to prepare pumpkin for the season. For a healthy twist on pumpkin, try making a pumpkin smoothie. Simply blend your puréed pumpkin with some almond milk, frozen berries, and cinnamon. We’ll provide all these recipes below and some savory ideas to get dinner started:
Dinners & Snacks
- Pumpkin Chai Latte Recipe: Easy & Sustainable
- Vegan Iced Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe
- Homemade Pumpkin Spice Syrup Recipe for Lattes & More
Pumpkin is so versatile it fits in with many recipes and is a great way to get creative with seasonal ingredients.
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