Punkin’ Lovin’ Yummin’: Recipes for All Things Pumpkin

I used to not be a pumpkin fan at all. I would make an exception for my mom’s famous pumpkin roll during the holidays, but I think I like that because the abundance of cream cheese drowns out most of the pumpkin. I have never tasted pumpkin pie (I think it’s a texture issue). And the smell of pumpkins during carving makes me positively ill, so the thought of eating pumpkin seeds?! Blech. But…

Two years ago I decided that I could totally make a homemade cheesecake. I found a pumpkin cheesecake recipe and it was amazing. People were impressed, and I was impressed at how simple it was. Last year I received a recipe from a friend for pumpkin chili. Sounds bizarro, right? Well, I made it once, and then made it again…it’s pretty fabulous. In the spirit of cooler temps and the Bluegrass & Chili Festival recently, it seems a good time to gather up some pumpkin recipes.

First up, my friend Amanda Johnson Pettit’s award-winning pumpkin chili.

Pumpkin Chili

This chili is thick and rich because of the addition of pumpkin and has a smoky-sweet flavor from the chipotle, lots of garlic, brown sugar and spices. It’s unusual, but very delicious.

2 pounds lean ground beef

1 large onion, diced

10 cloves garlic, minced

1 15-oz can black beans

1 15-oz can pinto beans

1 46-ounce can tomato juice

1 28-ounce can stewed tomatoes in juice

1 cup canned pumpkin puree

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon minced canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Cornbread or warm tortillas (optional)

In a Dutch oven (I’ve made this in a crockpot and on the stove), over medium heat, brown meat and drain. Stir in onion and garlic, then cook 5 minutes longer. Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer for 1 hour. Serve with cornbread or warm tortillas.

I ran out of pumpkin pie spice two weeks ago when I made pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes. I was going to buy some at the grocery store, but I couldn’t bring myself to pay $6 for a tiny, tiny container, especially when I only use it seasonally. Then I ran across this little gem on Pinterest yesterday.

How to Make Pumpkin Pie Spice

It’s only five ingredients, four of which are currently in my cabinet. I knew there was a better way. You’re welcome.

Next up on the journey to pumpkin gluttony: Pumpkin Mac & Cheese with Bacon. I haven’t been brave enough to try this one yet. But I will.

Pumpkin Mac n’ Cheese with Bacon 

yield: 6 SERVINGS

1 lb. short cut pasta, such as rotini

8 slices bacon, sliced

1 cup diced onion

1 large clove garlic, minced

1 cup pumpkin

1/4 teaspoon thyme

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch nutmeg

salt & pepper, to taste

1- 15 oz. jar prepared Alfredo Sauce

3/4 cup milk

1/2 pound grated fontina cheese (or gouda or mozzarella)

1/3 pound grated sharp cheddar cheese

plain ruffles chips, for garnish {optional}

Bring large pot of water to boil. Salt the water and cook pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside. Place hot pot back on heat and cook bacon until browned and crispy {or cook how you like it}. Remove bacon from pot and drain onto paper towels. In the bacon grease, sauté onions and garlic until softened, 5 minutes. Stir in pumpkin, spices and alfredo sauce. Pour milk into dirty alfredo sauce jar, replace lid, shake and pour into pot. Stir until combined. Sprinkle in cheeses and stir slowly to melt. Stir in cooked pasta and half the cooked bacon. Spoon into dishes and top with remaining bacon and crumble chips over top and serve immediately. –Recipe & photo courtesy laurenslatest.com

Everyone loves Rice Krispies treats, right? Well, with Halloween right around the corner (I’m assuming, since Halloween candy has been out for six weeks now), it’s the perfect time to make these Easy Pumpkin Krispies Treats that I found on yummyhealthyeasy.com. They’re super cute. Oh, and easy!

Yum, pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! This recipe comes from my absolute favorite baking bloggess, Sally’s Baking Addiction. I’ve made several of Sally’s recipes, and she’s never let me down. Also, I have her cookbook, and it’s beautiful. And the best part is, her recipes are designed so that anyone can make them. Yes, even you.

This should get you through your pumpkin fix for the next few days, at least. If anyone has any other perfect pumpkin ideas, please feel free to send them to us at info@moreclaremore.com!

-MCM Staffer Ashley,
lover of pumpkin when it’s disguised
in other deliciousness. And bacon.


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