Food & Drink

Great pumpkin recipes for autumn meals

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Pile of pumpkins
Pumpkins are a delicious addition to your autumn menu
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Pumpkin isn't just for Halloween and pumpkin pies!

The leaves are changing, the temperatures are getting cooler, and there’s a hint of wood smoke in the air.  It must be autumn!  And that means it’s time to start thinking about bringing those great autumn flavors to the table. 

Pumpkin is one of the best parts of the autumn harvest.  This abundant, inexpensive vegetable is loaded with nutrients.  Are you looking for ways to bring pumpkins to your table? 

Here are some great pumpkin recipes that will add an autumn flavor to your meals from breakfast to dinner. 

Start the day with rich pumpkin pancakes

These tasty pancakes are sure to be a hit on a chilly autumn morning.


1 medium egg
1 c milk (Not skim…your pancakes will be flat and dry)
¾ c unbleached white flour
¾ c whole wheat flour
½ c cooked pumpkin
1 tbls brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
½  tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch powdered ginger
Canola oil or cooking spray for the pan

  • Blend egg, pumpkin and sugar in a small bowl until well blended.
  • Combine all dry ingredients in a larger mixing bowl. 
  • Add the pumpkin mixture, mix quickly with a fork. Do not overmix, or your pancakes won’t be fluffy.
  • Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a heavy skillet or griddle over medium heat (or spray pan with cooking spray.)
  • Make each pancake with ¼ cup pancake batter. 
  • Allow pancakes to cook until bubbles form and break on the surface.  Flip and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until light golden.  Do not overcook, and add additional oil or cooking spray as needed to keep them from sticking.
  • Serve with warm maple syrup.  Add chopped pecans to the top for an extra tasty treat. 

Warm up at lunch with vegetarian pumpkin chili

Spicy chili peppers and fresh vegetable combine with pumpkin to bring an autumn flavor to this meatless chili.


2 tbls extra virgin olive oil
1 c onion, sliced thin
1 c each green and red bell pepper, chopped
1 c chopped Serrano chili pepper (or spicier peppers, to taste)
1 tbls chipotle chili powder
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or minced garlic
1 tsp ground cumin
1 c uncooked Bulgar wheat (available in rice aisle in most grocery stores)
4 c water
1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes with their juice
1 (15-ounce) dark red kidney beans, drained
1 (15-ounce) can solid pack pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 tsp salt

  • Place oil, spices, onions and peppers in a large pot with a heavy bottom. 
  • Saute over medium heat for five minutes, until spices release their scent.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients to combine, and bring to a boil over high heat.  
  • Immediately reduce to medium-low and simmer, covered, 35 minutes. 
  • Serve over rice, noodles or couscous.

Wow guests with beef stew cooked in a pumpkin

Your guests won't forget this rich and tasty autumn beef stew cooked inside a fat pumpkin.


1 round pumpkin, about 10-12 pound size
2 pounds stew meat, cubed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 large onion,  cut in half then sliced
4 medium potatoes , cubed
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
3 stalks of celery, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 cloves of garlic, pressed or finely chopped
1 15oz. can diced tomatoes with juice
2-3 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste

  • Wash and dry the outside of the pumpkin
  • Cut around the top of the pumpkin creating a hole at least 5 inches across.  Set the top aside
  • Remove the seeds (set these aside to roast for a snack). Remove the stringy parts of the inside with the side of a large spoon
  • Rinse out the pumpkin and set it aside
  • In a heavy pot, brown the meat in oil, then add the vegetables, garlic and canned tomato
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste
  • Add the water, and allow stew to simmer in pot for one hour
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  • Place pumpkin in shallow baking pan, and ladle the stew into pumpkin
  • Brush or spray the outside of the pumpkin with a light coating of oil, cover the lid with foil, and place it back on the pumpkin.
  • Bake the filled pumpkin for 2 hours, or until the pumpkin is tender
  • Be sure to get chunks of the cooked pumpkin in your stew as you scoop it out

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