Fruity Fridays…The Pumpkin and yes it is a fruit…

Hands up who thought the pumpkin was only for Halloween decorations and to make pumpkin pie???
 It is also a fruit…Did you know that?? That plump round, this nutritious orange ball is, in fact, a fruit…

A highly nutrient-dense food. It is rich in vitamins and minerals but low in calories. Pumpkin seeds, leaves, and juices all pack a powerful nutritional punch.

There are many ways pumpkin can be incorporated into desserts, soups, salads, preserves, and even as a substitute for butter.

It still makes a great Halloween decoration though, doesn’t it??


Healthwise the potassium contained within pumpkins can have a positive effect on blood pressure and the antioxidants in pumpkin could help prevent degenerative damage to the eyes. Pumpkins are also a fantastic source of fibre.

Fresh is best though so please avoid canned pumpkin pie mix, as it typically contains added sugars and syrups so check the label and look for that 100% sign…Then that’s good, isn’t it? Actually, it isn’t …Many tins of canned pumpkin puree are actually squash.

Here is a little article from Snopes which is interesting as the Pumpkins you carve are not the ones used for pumpkin pie…

Any uncut pumpkins should be stored in a cool, dark place for up to 2 months.

Pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin can be used as a replacement for butter or oil in baking recipes. I myself have not tried this as I don’t bake often but Weight Watchers recommends using pumpkin puree for one-third of the amount of butter; so if the recipe calls for one cup of butter, plan to use 1/3 cup of pumpkin puree and 2/3 cup of butter. The proportions may vary with what you are making. You may have to experiment with the exact amount of pumpkin to use until you get the exact consistency you want.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? If anyone has tried this please let us know.

My recipe for pumpkin or squash soup …

squash-pumpkin- soup

The squash I always make into a vegetable soup and freeze in portions. When I reheat the soup, I then add chilli (of course) and a little coconut milk and gently warm through.

Soup ingredients:

  • 1 small squash/ pumpkin, peeled and deseeded. Cut into pieces.
  • 1 brown onion, peeled and cut up
  • 1 carrot washed and cut
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • Piece fresh ginger finely chopped
  • 3 Broccoli stalks, peeled and cubed (I always save the broccoli stalks) for when I make soup. Waste not, want not and I think ideal for soups for flavour.
  • 1-1½ litres of fresh chicken stock or stock cubes.

Let’s Cook!

Heat a glug of olive oil and gently cook garlic ginger and onion to just soften and not colour.
Add other vegetables gradually and cook while stirring for about 5 minutes, then add stock and seasoning.
Simmer gently for about an hour or until vegetables are lovely and soft and remove from heat. I let it cool down before I blend.
This makes a lovely vegetable soup but I also use it as a base and freeze in portions.
When I reheat I add little-dried chilli flakes and 1 or 2 tbsp of coconut milk.
It just gives it a creamy flavour.
Sometimes I add crushed lemongrass stalk and a little fish sauce, it depends on how I feel, it is a versatile soup base so play with it, have fun.
Add some curry powder, a squeeze or 2 of lime juice or coriander, whatever you fancy. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Seeds...Raw are roasted are classed as one of the worlds healthiest foods with many health benefits.


For more information on the health benefits of Pumpkin seeds here is a very good article from Sally over @ Smorgasbord Magazine…

Pumpkin Pie Muffins:



  • 1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 5 tsp of pumpkin spice mix ( see recipe below to make own spice)
  • 2 tsp Baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 30 ounces of pumpkin puree
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1 cup of sultanas or chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup of coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 4 large eggs

Let’s Cook!

Set the oven to preheat on 330 F or 166 C

Mix the dry goods together sieving the flours and whisk the wet ingredients together and then add the dry ingredients a little at a time gently stirring to combine.

Fill muffin tins to just below the top and bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a muffin comes out clean.

Allow to cool down on a wire rack.


Pumpkin Spice Mix.

  • 4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

Mix all the spices together and keep in a lidded pot and use as required for muffins, pies or a nice spiced latte..

Thank you for reading if you loved this post please share on your favourite social media…x


About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology:

Connect to Carol



Thank you for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend 🙂 xx

26 thoughts on “Fruity Fridays…The Pumpkin and yes it is a fruit…

  1. Pingback: Fang…Tastic Friday’s …Pumpkin spice and carving … | Retired? No one told me!

  2. Pingback: Retired No One Told Me! A roundup of posts…Cabbage, Pumpkins, Bananas and a tour around the culinary Alphabet…H. | Retired? No one told me!

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      No they don’t do they but yes a lovely taste 🙂 I haven’t tried gluten free but good to know 🙂 Maybe you could let me have recipe and I can add to my blog I will credit you of course 🙂 xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Darlene

    I love pumpkin. I didn’t carve my Halloween pumpkin buy drew a face on it. Then after Halloween, I cut it up and made soup, stew or pumpkin bread or muffins. If it was a big one, I would freeze some of the cubes for baking or cooking later.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Smorgasbord - Variety is the Spice of Life.

    Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    If you are wondering what to cook the family this weekend… or in the coming weeks as autumn takes hold… then let Carol Taylor tempt you with recipes using the healthy and versatile pumpkin… Pumpkin soup perhaps the delicious sounding Pumpkin Pie muffins.. and thanks to Carol for sharing the link to the post on health benefits of pumpkin seeds.. Take your appetite…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Fruity Fridays…The Pumpkin and yes it is a fruit… — Retired? No one told me! | tabletkitabesi

  6. Victoria Zigler (@VictoriaZigler)

    I always use my pumpkin for baking as well as decoration. I’ve got a recipe on my website for pumpkin sage sauce, which can easily become any other kind of pumpkin based sauce by changing the herbs and spices used in it (I’ve tried, so I know it can). I have some other pumpkin based recipes on there too.

    Liked by 2 people


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