Editor’s Note: This blog post is part of our team’s “Kitchen Tricks & Slips” series, where we offer suggestions on recipe modifications, helpful tips, and real-life challenges so you can avoid similar messes in your cooking experiments. As any recipe offers only guidance, not guaranteed results, we encourage you to play with these recipes, too, and find what works best for you. We’d love to hear what you cook up!
A colleague once told me, “No one likes pumpkin — they just like the sugar and spices that accompany it.” I nearly feel off my chair at the injustice bestowed upon my most favorite fall food.
I’m not talking about canned pumpkin. You can’t compare canned green beans with fresh and tell me they taste the same either. Fresh roasted pie pumpkins are sweet, creamy gourd goodness. Here’s how to make your own, and taste the difference for yourself!
1. Pick out a pie or sugar pumpkin (roughly 1 to 4 pounds). Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Remove the stem (above). With a sharp chef knife cut the pumpkin in half (below).
3. Scrape out the seeds (discard, or save and roast for a bonus treat!)
4. Rub the exposed pumpkin flesh with 1 to 2 tablespoons coconut or olive oil.
5. Place the halves flesh-side down on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
6. Cook the pumpkin halves in a preheated oven for 25 to 35 minutes, depending on size. Once they are soft when poked, they’re done.
Spoon out the flesh and you’re ready to enjoy! For an easy side dish, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and a sprinkle of goat cheese, if you’d like. You can also refrigerate your roasted pumpkin, and later add a scoop or two to shakes and smoothies. Or, if you’d like to use in place of canned pumpkin, purée the pumpkin flesh in a food processor and run through a strainer lined with a cheesecloth to remove the extra liquid (or wrapping and squeezing out the liquid with a paper towel will work, too).
Roasted pumpkins will keep for up to a week in your refrigerator.
For another recipe that calls for roasted pumpkin, check out Elana Amsterdam’s Paleo Pumpkin Bread.
See Rebecca Katz’s Toasty Spiced Pumpkin Seeds recipe for leftover seeds.
Laura Fogelberg is Experience Life’s marketing specialist.