Who enjoys pumpkins besides using them for Halloween decorations!?
Here are some great recipes to make the most of this yummy autumn fruit!
Pumpkin, particularly cooked and raw, have a wealth of health benefits. One cup boiled and mashed pumpkin contains 408% recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin A (as beta-carotene). It also contains all B vitamins (except B12) and 13% RDA each of vitamins C and E.
As for minerals, pumpkin is especially rich in copper (25% RDA in 1 cup). It’s also a good source of iron, manganese, phosphorus and potassium.
In addition to beta-carotene, which is known to promote eye health, pumpkin contains several antioxidants that may provide a protective effect against certain cancers, diabetes, and inflammatory diseases.
To make these smoothies, add the liquid to your blender first (I use a Vitamix). Then add the soft fruit followed by the remaining ingredients, adding the leafy greens last. Blend on high for 30-45 seconds or until smooth.
Pumpkin-Apple Green Smoothie with Cinnamon
– 1 cup pumpkin (cooked, canned, or raw) – 1 apple, cored – 1 banana, peeled – dash of cinnamon (to taste) – 2 cups or handfuls fresh baby spinach (optional, but recommended) – 8 ounces of fresh water or pumpkin seed milk (or try coconut water)
Calories: 262 | Fat: 1g (gram) | Protein: 5g | Carbs: 66g | Calcium: 9% | Iron: 3.5mg | Vitamin A: 601% | Vitamin C: 52%
Pumpkin-Carrot with Pear Green Smoothie
– 1 cup pumpkin (cooked, canned, or raw) – 1 fully ripe pear, cored – 1 whole carrot or 4-6 ounces of carrot juice – 2 cups or handfuls fresh baby spinach (optional, but recommended)
Calories: 191 | Fat: 0.8g (gram) | Protein: 4g | Carbs: 47g | Calcium: 11% | Iron: 3.5mg | Vitamin A: 936% | Vitamin C: 44%