Bake Your Own Pumpkin
For as far as I can remember I have loved everything pumpkin (pumpkin bread, muffins, bars, pie…) yet I have never cooked my own pumpkin until today. I usually just buy a can of organic pumpkin puree in the BPA free can at Target. But I have heard that baking your own is so much better so I decided to give it a try. My mother-in-law requested pumpkin bread for Thanksgiving. I figured this would be the perfect time to try out my favorite pumpkin bread recipe with freshly baked pumpkin. I bought a baking pumpkin from Trader Joes as a decoration and now I get to bake it!
Here is how I did it. It’s really quite simple.
I preheated my oven to 350 degrees.
I broke the stem off of my pumpkin then sliced it in half.
I then scooped out the middle ‘gook” with a spoon and put the seeds into a colander (to wash and cook later with the pumpkin.
Then I place my pumpkin face down on a cookie sheet.
I cooked my little pumpkin for 50 minutes (until I could easily pierce it with a fork).
I then scooped out the remainder of the insides and put them in my food processor.
I processed until the pumpkin puree was nice and smooth.
Then I scooped out my puree and put it in a strainer lined with a coffee filter and set it in a bowl to drain overnight in the fridge. This gets out the excess water to make it more of the consistency of canned pumpkin.
Voila! Couldn’t be much easier. I now have fresh pumpkin puree for pumpkin bread this Thanksgiving!
I also cooked my pumpkin seeds. I coated them in coconut oil and a little sea salt and baked them with the pumpkin. They only needed to bake for 20 minutes.
Here is the pumpkin bread recipe…
- 2 cups oat flour (I use my blender to blend up some oats)
- 1 tsp baking powder (aluminum free… or make your own: see notes below**)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TBS cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- a dash ground cloves
- a dash of ginger
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (you can use a 1/2 can of canned pumpkin puree if you didn’t bake your own pumpkin. Do NOT use pumpkin pie filling, just plain pumpkin) I like to use the canned organic pumpkin Target sells in the BPA free cans
- 1 cup over ripe mashed bananas (about 2 bananas)
- 2 farm fresh eggs
- 5-6 dates for blending
- Optional: Raisins or extra chopped dates (about 1/2 cup is plenty- I made one loaf with raisins and one without for Thanksgiving and I preferred the loaf without)
- 1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
- 1 TBS coconut oil plus extra coconut oil for greasing pan
I buy Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil from Tropical Traditions. However, if you are trying coconut oil for the first time and are looking for a less expensive brand you may want to try this brand from amazon.com. Tropical Traditions is by far my favorite brand though.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Make your oat flour in the blender or food processor (by blending some old fashioned or quick oats) if you haven’t already.
3. Place 5 pitted dates into the food processor (<—this is the one I have) and process until it becomes a paste.
4. Add bananas, eggs, pumpkin puree, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and bananas and blend thoroughly.
5. In a large mixing bowl add all your dry ingredients and mix (oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and ginger).
6. Add the liquid mix from the food processor into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until there are no dry clumps.
7. If adding raisins or more date (chopped up with a knife) do so now and stir.
8. Scoop your mixture into a greased bread pan. I love these Pyrex glass bread pans. I have 5 just like this.
9. Place bread pan into the oven and cook for 45-60 minutes (until you can put a toothpick in the middle and it comes out clean). Don’t cook for too long or it wont be as good.
10. Take out your bread and allow to cool a bit before slicing.
Here is my finished pumpkin bread.
I ate a ginormous slice with homemade almond butter and homemade chocolate chip chunks for Thanksgiving dessert.
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**I make my own baking powder and it’s super easy. Just mix 2 parts cream of tartar to 1 part baking soda (for example 2 TBS cream of tartar with 1 TBS baking soda). I usually make a cup of it and store for later.