Transforming a plain old pumpkin into a jack-o’-lantern is one of the highlights of Hallowe’en. But there are many other ways to make use of the orange gourd after the holiday has passed.
Some of these ideas help you extend the life of your used jack-o’-lantern, while others require you to utilize a fresh pumpkin. All of them will put you in a festive fall mood.
Following are some ways to use your pumpkin this autumn that go well beyond carving.
1. Make pumpkin purée
Remove the seeds and pulp from the center of your pumpkin and scoop out the flesh for fresh pumpkin puree. We recommend you keep it in your freezer in approximately one-cup quantities. Aside from the obvious use in pumpkin pie, it comes in handy for pumpkin bread, muffins, dip, cookies, and butter.
2. Roast the seeds
Few fall treats are more delectable than roasted pumpkin seeds. Homemade roasted pumpkin seeds are a guilt-free treat since they are full of health benefits. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids which have benefits to the skin, hair, and nails. These healthy fats have also been linked to improving cholesterol, as well as artery and brain health.
3. Create pumpkin flaxseed dog biscuits
Your already love Hallowe’en, so why not introduce your pup to the joys of this fun holiday? Use the purée you created in Step 1 to whip up pumpkin flaxseed dog biscuits. Worried about feeding pumpkin to your pooch? Don’t be. In fact, it’s among the best “people foods” you can give your canine companion. According to PetMD, the nutritious fruit can help support urinary and digestive health as well as weight management. (And, yes, pumpkin is a fruit!)
4. Use pumpkin as a beauty treatment
Pumpkin facials, anyone? The humble pumpkin is packed with skin-loving nutrients like antioxidants, zinc, vitamins A and C, fruit enzymes and alpha hydroxy acids. Pumpkin flesh can help to nourish, brighten and smooth skin, as well as boost collagen and help tame the signs of aging, according to the International Dermal Institute. Squish some squash on that body!