05 Nov How to use up Those Extra Pumpkins
You did it.
You made it.
You survived all the Halloween chaos–volunteering at school class parties, late night trick-or-treating, the sugar-induced comas, the last minute-runs for costumes, and decorating your house with all those pumpkins. Now…what to do with all those pumpkins…
A pumpkin’s nutrition
Don’t let them go to waste! Pumpkins are actually very nutritious and low in calories (with only about 50 calories per cup). They’re packed with Vitamin A which helps with eyesight and boosts your immune system (we all need that during flu season…). The potassium and Vitamin C in pumpkins are linked to cardiovascular benefits, promoting good skin health, and helping your wounds heal faster.
In addition, this vegetables is a good source of fiber–helping you feel fuller longer. Let’s not forget about those pumpkin seeds–which are an excellent source of protein. And last, the pumpkin’s high antioxidant content may even help reduce risks of chronic diseases, including cancer.
Unfortunately in the US, most pumpkins that are grown are used to decorate and carve, and then are tossed. In 2014, the US Department of Agriculture estimated that 1.91 billion pounds of pumpkins were grown–but most of those ended up in the landfill. When they end up in landfills, they can generate greenhouse gas emissions.
So how can you you use those extra pumpkins, and not waste them? Glad you asked!
Using your pumpkins
Because pumpkins are almost 90% water and contain key nutrients, they can make excellent compost for your soil and gardens. If you can’t use them for compost, try dropping your pumpkins off at a composting collection site. It can be used as soil or even changed to biofuels.
Pumpkins are a great supplemental protein source for your livestock and cattle. Horses, sheep, cows, goats, and other livestock will enjoy your unwanted pumpkins. Try contacting a local farmer to see if they would like your pumpkins.
Livestock aren’t the only animals who can eat pumpkins. Pumpkins are perfectly edible for people, too. If you have any uncarved pumpkins (carved pumpkins left outside could be more susceptible to insects and smoke), consider trying these tasty pumpkin recipes:
1. Pumpkin Soup
There’s nothing quite as good as a hot bowl of homemade soup on a chilly, fall day. This recipe from Recipe Tin Eats is simple, calling for only a handful of ingredients, and is sure to please the fam. Dip some warm, crusty buttered bread into a big bowl of this pumpkin soup and you’ve got yourself a delicious, filling dinner in just 15 minutes!
2. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Did you get invited to a party and forget to make a treat? No need to worry–you can whip these cookies up in a flash. This recipe is so simple even your toddler could make it! Using a boxed cake mix, pumpkin puree, and chocolate chips, you’ll have warm, moist, ooey-gooey chocolatey goodness in a matter of minutes!
3. The Perfect Pumpkin Seeds
Don’t throw those pumpkin seeds away after carving your Halloween jack-o-lantern! Instead, save them to roast for a perfect after school snack! This post shares how you can make a deliciously healthy batch of this salty and crunchy snack.
4. Pumpkin Alfredo
If you’re a pasta and pumpkin lover, you’ll love this meal! It’s velvety and smooth, and loaded with flavor. What’s better–it uses less cream and butter than a typical alfredo recipe–meaning you can enjoy it even more!
5. Smoky Chipotle Pumpkin Hummus
You think you liked dipping your veggies before in hummus, but wait until you try this spicy blend! It’s simple to throw together (taking a whopping 5 minutes!), comforting, and even healthy (packed full of protein, fiber, and antioxidants)! It’s almost too good to be true. This smoky hummus makes for the perfect snack for a large gathering.
6.. Roasted Pumpkin, Arugala, and Cranberry Salad
Looking for a lighter, healthier alternative?Then you need to try this salad! If you haven’t tried roasting pumpkin yet, prepare to be hooked on a new roasted vegetable. It’s the perfect flavorful topping for a to a fresh salad recipe of arugula and dried fruit.
7.. Pumpkin Bread
Is there anyone who doesn’t love the smell of pumpkin spice permeating their home? After baking for just one hour, you’ll have a house smelling of sweet autumn spices and two scrumptious, pumpkiny loaves of bread.
8. Pumpkin French Toast
Pumpkin recipes can be enjoyed at breakfast, too! This pumpkin french toast with whipped pumpkin butter is ideal for those chilly fall mornings! It’s easy to make, calls for only a few ingredients, and will be devoured in minutes!
Now you’re officially a pro at not wasting your a healthy delicious food. But you know what else is good for you and shouldn’t be wasted? A tasty treat waiting for you in your freezer–a delightful and refreshing Jolly Llama Sorbet Cream Pop. Click here to find the flavor that best fits your mood now.