Fall is officially here again, and for most people that means one thing: PUMPKIN season!  Personally, I’m not a fan of the ever-popular PSL, but that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy plenty of pumpkin-flavored eats.  Pumpkin pie is my absolute favorite and I usually make several variations (like pumpkin pecan) for the holidays.  But there are so many things besides pie that you can use pumpkin for!  Here are my top 5 favorites…

1. Oatmeal.  This is a staple fall/winter breakfast for me.  I mix 1/2 cup of oats with 1/2 cup pumpkin puree, 1 tsp cinnamon and 1 Tbsp chia seed! So simple and so tasty.20130926-143922.jpg

2. Smoothies.  Anne, a fellow RD and healthy living blogger (www.fannetasticfood.com ) just posted this recipe for her Pumpkin Pie Smoothie using vanilla Almond milk, which sounds so good.  I’ll be trying that out ASAP.20130926-144619.jpg

3. Sauces.  Last fall I made a delicious pasta with Creamy Goat Cheese Pumpkin Sauce.  Pumpkin can also be used in risottos and casseroles!

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4. Pancakes. This is one of my favorite things to make on weekends, especially after long runs!  I keep them simple and combine 1 cup whole wheat flour, 1 egg, 3/4 cup milk, 1/2 cup canned pumpkin, 2 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp cinnamon for a fluffy and delicious pancake batter!  I like to drizzle with honey or agave and add fresh fruit on the side.  20130926-145413.jpg

5. Dessert.  Pumpkin is easily incorporated into so many sweet treats, other than pie. There are recipes for puddings, breads, cakes, muffins, etc.  On my radar right now is this Pumpkin Spice Cake Ball recipe from Back to Her Roots! Yum!

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There you have it…5 super easy and delicious ways to enjoy pumpkin, in addition to pumpkin pie and your PSL! ;)

Pumpkin:  Love it or hate it?  What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?  Are you on the PSL bandwagon?  Tell me about it!