Healthy and yummy AND packed with delicious pumpkin flavor? Sign us up. These pumpkin recipes check all the boxes and are perfect to share with the kids. From smoothies and pancakes to pasta and cookies, there are so many options to try!
During the fall, I like many of you get so into the flavors of pumpkin. And since the veggie is full of Vitamin A and fiber, and pairs so well with warm spices like cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice, it’s a fun ingredient to share with the kids. Sure, they may not be quite ready for a PSL just yet, but these are great ways to serve up the flavor.
I love using pumpkin in all sorts of recipes since it’s loaded with Vitamin A and has that creamy consistency. It works well in baked goods, oatmeal, smoothies, and pasta, and many times, you can punch up or tone down the flavor according to how many spices and other flavors you add.
There’s a range of recipes here since I know not all of them will work for every family—scroll through and see what looks good to you!
Share a batch of flourless chocolate baked donuts for breakfast, snack time or dessert. They’re easy enough that the kids can help make the batter!
You can make this in about 15 minutes on any morning, or make the whole recipe ahead and simply warm right before serving. See the Notes for variations to make it with other types of oats.
This smoothie makes two toddler-size servings, or a smoothie to share for a parent and toddler. You can freeze any leftovers into a freezer pop!
These store well in the fridge so you can make them a day or two ahead if you prefer—or bake and serve warm from the oven. These taste like a cross between baked oatmeal and a traditional pumpkin muffin (they don’t have any flour, so they’re a little denser than a traditional muffin, but still super moist!).
These bars are tender when warm out of the oven, so do be sure to let them cool completely before slicing.
We like to have these granola bars as a snack or toddler breakfast with milk or a smoothie—and they’re an excellent lunch box component too. You can make them plain or choose a flavor to add!
These fluffy cookies are not super sweet, so you can add 1-2 tablespoons granulated sugar to the batter if desired. (We like them just fine as is with the chocolate chips for sweetness!)
I like to frost these soon before serving. You can make the frosting ahead, transfer it to a zip top bag, and store in the fridge until ready to add to the cupcakes.
The amount of puree you wind up with will vary according to the size of the pumpkin you start with.
Look for a pumpkin labeled “pie” or “sugar” for the best flavor. I used a Winter Density Squash, which is an heirloom variety. The amount of puree you’ll wind up with will depend on the size of your pumpkin.
These easy quesadillas can be made with pumpkin puree, sweet potato puree, or butternut squash puree. You can also skip it and just go with beans and cheese! I make these as half moon shapes since it helps contain the mess a little when feeding these to kids.
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What’s your family’s favorite healthy pumpkin recipe? I’d love to know!
This post was first published September 2019.