By Holly Litchfield
Ah, autumn! It’s the time of year that simply bursts with colour and flavours from the autumn harvests. Our pick of the crop? That most versatile of veggies: the pumpkin! This is one vibrant, versatile squash that comes into season in winter and is packed full of body-benefitting vitamins and antioxidants that particularly protect your skin and eyes. Cheap and low in calories, it can serve as the main ingredient for dozens of recipes from chili to chia pudding.
After loads of research, we’ve found 38 mouth-watering recipes that follow Paleo, vegan and/or gluten-free guidelines and prove beyond a doubt that pumpkins aren’t just for carving scary faces!
1. Raw Pumpkin Tarts
Raw, vegan and paleo–could these be any healthier? Featuring a grain-free crust packed with a sweet, squashy filling, these are naturally sweet thanks to the dates. We like ours a little bit warm, just cos it’s a bit chilly out there!
2. Vegan Pumpkin Pie
This recipe is, of course, an inevitable addition to our list. There are plenty of options out there, but we like this recipe because it’s got the added protein kick of tofu–just make sure yours is organic, as most tofu is made from GMO soybeans 🙁
3. Paleo Pumpkin Pie
This nutritious recipe is the perfect holiday treat–plus it’s suitable for both Paleo and Vegan diets!
Recipe: Healy Eats Real
4. Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding
Chia is definitely having a moment, and why not? It’s a high protein, healthy food packed with good fats, and it’s also super versatile and easy to use in cooking. Add a few spoonfuls of canned pumpkin to your next batch of chia pudding and a few spices, and it will taste like a healthier version of pumpkin pie!
5. Pumpkin Zucchini Bread
This yummy loaf contains 2 of your 5 a day, and tastes amazing too! Fully Paleo, if you’re following that kind of diet, and easier to make than most muffins.
6. Gluten Free Pumpkin Donuts
You can ditch a bit of the sugar, because it’s the spice that makes these gluten free treats really nice!
Recipe: Gluten Free on a Shoestring
7. Honey-Nut Pumpkin Brittle
Wonder what to do with the seeds after you make a pumpkin soup? Just follow this recipe and voila! Your dessert is ready now, too!
8. Healthy Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
Pumpkin’s creamy texture makes for the perfect smoothie! Tastes more like a dessert than something super healthy…but it is actually packed with vitamins and minerals.
Recipe: Oh She Glows!
9. Pumpkin Butter
Ditch the jam and try this smooth spread for breakfast on toast, added to a smoothie, or dolloped onto a chia pudding. If you don’t want to use cane sugar, no problem: add some agave or coconut sugar instead.
Recipe: Serious Eats
10. Roasted Cauliflower Pumpkin Swirl Dip
This versatile dip can be served chilled, warm or baked with an array of different crackers, dipping vegetables, breads ect. Slightly sweet and infused with all the great autumn flavours, this dip is the perfect accompaniment to any social gathering.
Recipe: Lunchbox Bunch
11. Raw Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes
No flour. No sugar. No animal products. No problem to whip these up pretty quick. And no problem to scarf them down fast, either!
Recipe: My Whole Food Life
12. Pumpkin Tartlets
With the silky texture of pumpkin pie in an all-natural, health-conscious, no-bake, easy-to-make, individually portioned format, these amazing tartlets are definitely something to make over the weekend.
Recipe: Being The Secret Ingredient
13. Savory Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Add these babies to pumpkin soup, salads or just eat them as a snack. Personally, I love these mixed in with a batch of popcorn!
Recipe: Jamie Oliver
14. Pumpkin Spiced Ice Cream
Enjoy this lightly spiced and totally refreshing ice cream recipe from start to finish in just 20 minutes (ice cream maker dependent). It is of a soft serving consistency and full of comforting flavours like cinnamon and ginger to complete your evening snuggled up in front of the fire.
Recipe: My WholeFood Life
15. Pumpkin & Chickpea Chilli
This is a substantial main meal packed full of nutritious and slow releasing ingredients designed to leave you feeling satisfied for longer. You can add a little more heat depending on your taste preference and have a delicious, warming dinner served in less than 30 minutes.
Recipe: Healthy Slow Cooking
16. Gluten Free Pumpkin Creme Bars
They look super decadent, but these bars are actually dairy-free, gluten-free, and can be topped with anti-oxidizing dark chocolate to make them a wee bit healthier even.
Recipe: My Whole Food Life
17. Easy Pumpkin Soup
This is a great and incredibly simple recipe that leaves you with a vibrant, tasty winter-warming soup. Consisting of only 7 ingredients that you more than likely already have in your kitchen cupboards, this soup shows just how super healthy, vegan concoctions can make for the best in comfort foods.
Recipe: Minimalist Baker
18. Chai Protein Pumpkin Bars
If you’re looking for a scrumptious replacement for those ever tempting sweet treats then this raw dessert recipe is for you. There is no baking required and these nutritious bars serve as a great snack for children and adults alike regardless of dietary preferences.
Recipe: Blender Babes
19. Chocolate Chips & Pumpkin Muffins
Rich in flavour and fluffy in texture, these sweetly spiced muffins have discreet coconut undertones that compliment the main ingredients here. Even without the use of butter or cream-like components you are still able to devour a moist muffin with just the right amount of lightness.
Recipe: Averie Cooks
20. Pumpkin Chai Tea Latte
Ever noticed that most of the spices used for Chai are also used in pumpkin pie? This dairy free treat is way healthier than anything you’ll find in a coffee shop, but tastes just as good–if not better!
21. Pumpkin Pie Apple Muffins
Combining the two best things about the autumn harvest, these muffins are sweet and spicy as well as being fully vegan
Recipe: Minimalist Baker
22. Healthy Pumpkin Spiced Latte
When food coach Ilene at The Colourful Kitchen discovered Starbucks’ seasonal favourite contained tons of sugar and no actual trace of pumpkin whatsoever, she decided to create an honest vegan recipe for the popular beverage.
Recipe: The Colorful Kitchen
23. Pumpkin Chickpea Fritters
Lightly toasted on the outside, delicate and moist on the inside; these versatile fritters can be adapted to your taste preference. Breadcrumbs coat a mixture of warming ingredients such as mashed chickpeas, rich pumpkin, garlic, and hemp seeds with hints of maple for sweetness and a splash of cider vinegar for that acidic kick that creates the perfect balance. Fritters can be served alone with a side salad or sandwiched between fresh warm bread.
Recipe: The Lunchbox Kitchen
24. Dark Chocolate & Pumpkin Pie
Another yummy twist on the famous pumpkin pie! No baking required and so quick and easy to execute, a further dessert recipe to tantalise your taste buds and impress your friends with.
Recipe: One Green Planet
25. Spicy Honey Roasted Pumpkin
The perfect marriage: honey and pumpkin. That’s all you need for this simple, tasty recipe that acts as the perfect side dish to any autumn main…or just eat it alone with some brown rice for dinner!
Recipe: Mom Foodie
26. Steamed Pumpkin and Bok Choy with Ginger Sesame Sauce
We thought it was time to include a kind of detox recipe option here, and this one is pretty darn tasty, thanks to the spicy ginger and sesame-infused sauce that you can drizzle all over these slices…mmm!
Recipe: Gourmande in The Kitchen
27. Oven Baked Pumpkin Chipotle Frie
Yum..sweet and spicy! Make sure you have a good blend of spices for this one–it’s ALL about the spices! But so worth it for these healthy, low cal baked ‘fries’!
Recipe: The View from Great Island
28. Quick Pumpkin Curry
Who doesn’t love a good curry? And pumpkin makes this one a little bit creamy, without adding many calories.
29. Paleo Pumpkin Ice Cream
This ice cream recipe uses dates for sweetness and pumpkin for creaminess to add up to the perfect treat to dollop on top of vegan brownies, pumpkin pies, or just enjoy it all by itself.
Recipe: A Girl Worth Saving
30. Easy Pumpkin Flan
Think ‘flan’ and you normally think ‘eggs’ and yes, this recipe has ’em. But there is a vegan option, too!
Recipe: Whole New Mom
31. 5-Ingredient Pumpkin Pie Fudge
Unlike the crumbly fudge that will rot your teeth, this one has a creamy consistency and tastes identical to pumpkin pie. Sooo tempting to eat it all in one go!
Recipe: Blissful Basil
32. Spicy Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Dip
No electric blender thingies to make this one. Just a fork, some spices, and veg for a dip that goes perfectly with veggie or pita chips!
Recipe: The Big Man’s World
33. Gluten Free Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookies
Kids with a gluten allergy will love these soft, sweet cookies. Great for lunchboxes or for afternoon tea!
Recipe: Tessa The Domestic Diva
34. Vegan Pumpkin Muffins with ‘Cream Cheese’ Frosting
OMG. Just…OMG. (and yes, these are 100% vegan…)
35. Pumpkin Seed Energy Bars
Stay energetic on a hike, at work or school by packing in one of these protein-rich, nutty flavoured seed bars.
36. Pumpkin and Spinach Salad
This is a perfect pair! Sweet squash with nutty spinach and a zingy dressing make for a classic salad.
37. Paleo Pumpkin Coconut Smoothie
This dairy-free, sugar-free smoothie is so healthy, it makes for a great, low GI breakfast.
Recipe: Cook Eat Paleo
38. Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancakes
The recipe for these pancakes has an egg so it’s not really vegan, but it can be adapted with a flaxseed ‘egg’ and they are dairy-and-gluten free.
Recipe: Love and Lemons