Buttoned Up Expert: Put Your Pumpkin To Good Use

By Buttoned Up’s cooking experts Michelle Jenkins and Susan Aprahamian of YouveGotSupper.com.

Pumpkins aren’t just for carving jack-o-lanterns.

They are a powerhouse of nutrients – a great source of beta carotene and vitamin C with only a trace of fat and no cholesterol. On top of being good for your health, they taste great. This season, we want you to enjoy more than just pie. Put your gourd to good use and try something new.

From a savory soup to desserts, we pulled together a few of our favorite pumpkin recipes. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Dip
Pumpkin Soup with Cinnamon Croutons
Mixed Greens w/ Candied Pumpkin Seeds
Super Moist Pumpkin Bread
Pumpkin Praline Pie
Decadent Pumpkin Cheesecake

Pumpkin Dip


• 3/4 cup(s) cream cheese
• 1/2 cup(s) brown sugar
• 1/2 cup(s) pumpkin (canned)
• 2 tsp maple syrup
• 1/2 tsp cinnamon
• 2 large apple(s), sliced
• 24 ginger snaps


1. Beat together cream cheese, brown sugar and canned pumpkin at medium speed until well blended.
2. Add syrup and cinnamon. Beat until smooth.
3. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes. Serve with sliced apples and ginger snaps.

Pumpkin Soup Image2

Pumpkin Soup with Cinnamon Croutons

Servings: 8 Prep Time: 15 min. Cook Time: 50 min.
This is a perfect first course for your Christmas dinner. Finish steps 1 through 4 a day ahead and then warm it up with the cream and milk before serving.


6 slice(s) Texas toast
• 6 tbsp butter, with salt , divided
• 2 tbsp brown sugar
• 3/4 tsp cinnamon, divided
• 1 large yellow onion, chopped
• 28 oz chicken broth, low sodium, divided
• 1 lb pumpkin (canned)
• 1 tsp salt
• 1/4 tsp nutmeg
• 1/8 tsp ginger
• 1/8 tsp pepper
• 1 cup(s) milk
• 1/2 cup(s) heavy whipping cream


1. Cinnamon Croutons: blend 4 tbsp butter (softened), 2 tbsp brown sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon in a small bowl. Spread on bread slices. Bake on cookie sheet at 400 degrees for 8 – 10 minutes or until toast is crisp and topping is bubbly. Cut into small squares. Store in a ziplock bag.
2. Heat 2 tbsp butter in large saucepan. Add onion and sauté until tender (about 8 – 10 minutes). Add one can (14 oz.) chicken broth; bring to boil and let simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.
3. Pour chicken broth and onion liquid into blender. Blend for 1 minute or until smooth. Pour back into saucepan.
4. Add remaining chicken broth, pumpkin, salt, 1/4 tsp. cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and pepper. Stir until smooth. Bring to boil, lower heat and cover. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring often.
5. Stir in milk and cream; heat until almost boiling (but do not boil). Season to taste.
6. Serve with cinnamon croutons.
Note: Option – you can add more milk and/or cream if needed.

Mixed Greens w/Candied Pumpkin Seeds

Great seasonal salad with a light citrus-cumin dressing. We found roasted pumpkin seeds in the organic section of our grocery store but you can substitute pecans.


• 1/4 cup(s) orange juice (fresh), divided
• 2 tbsp lemon juice (fresh)
• 1/2 tsp sugar
• 1/2 tsp cumin
• 1/4 cup(s) olive oil
• 2 cup(s) pumpkin seeds (roasted)
• 1/4 cup(s) sugar
• 1/4 cup(s) light brown sugar, firmly packed
• 2 tsp paprika
• 10 oz mixed baby greens
• 2 pears, peeled and chopped
• 1 cup(s) goat cheese, crumbled


1. Whisk together 3 Tbsp orange juice and the next three ingredients. Season with salt and pepper. Add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking until smooth. Cover and chill.
2. Toss pumpkin seeds with remaining 1 Tbsp orange juice. Mix 1/4 cup sugar, light brown sugar, paprika and a dash of salt in a separate bowl. Toss with pumpkin seeds to coat.
3. Spread seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet covered with non-stick aluminum foil or parchment paper.
4. Bake seeds at 350 degrees for 6 minutes, stirring once. Remove from oven and let cool. Store in air-tight container.
5. Toss greens with dressing and pears and sprinkle with goat cheese and pumpkin seeds.

pumkin bread image2

Super Moist Pumpkin Bread

Servings: 2 loaves Prep Time: 15 min. Cook Time: 1 hour 15 min.


• 15 oz pumpkin (canned)
• 3 egg(s)
• 3/4 cup(s) vegetable oil
• 2 1/2 cup(s) flour
• 2 1/4 cup(s) sugar
• 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
• 1 tsp salt
• 3/4 tsp cinnamon
• 3/4 tsp cloves
• 3/4 tsp nutmeg


1.Grease and flour 2 9″ X 5″ loaf pans. Combine and beat pumpkin, 1/2 cup water, eggs, and oil.
2. Measure dry ingredients into a separate bowl; combine and mix with pumpkin, water, egg, and oil mixture.
3. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour (or until knife inserted comes out clean).
Note: You can drizzle with a mixture of confectionary sugar and water.

Rigatoni with Dreamy Creamy Pumpkin Sauce

Servings: 6 Prep Time: 15 min. Cook Time: 20 min.
Pumpkin puree gives this sauce a creamy flavor without much cream. Try this pumpkin sauce over any short tube pasta topped with crispy rosemary.


• 12 oz rigatoni, dry
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp rosemary (fresh)
• 15 oz pumpkin (canned)
• 1 clove(s) garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup(s) half n half
• 1/2 cup(s) parmesan cheese, grated
• 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper


1.Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions, reserving 2 cups pasta water.
2. Swirl olive oil in bottom of empty pasta pot. Cook rosemary (about 2 sprigs) for 1 – 2 minutes over medium heat. Transfer rosemary, using a slotted spoon, to a paper towel.
3. Add pumpkin, garlic, half and half, parmesan, vinegar, red pepper flakes and 1 cup pasta water. Stir until heated through.
4. Add pasta to sauce and toss to coat, adding more pasta water about 1/4 cup at a time until desired consistency. Add a little nutmeg and cinnamon, if desired, to taste. Season generously with salt and crispy rosemary (and more parmesan and red pepper flakes).
Note: The half and half only adds 2 grams of fat per serving.
Suggested Side: Big tossed salad and breadsticks

Pumpkin Praline Pie

Servings: 12 Prep Time: 20 min. Cook Time: 55 min.
The crunchy praline topping makes this pumpkin pie extra special. This recipe makes a really big pie so try to use a 10 inch pie plate.


• 1 pie crusts (unroll), 9″
• 30 oz pumpkin pie filling
• 1 egg(s)
• 1 can(s) condensed, sweetened milk
• 1/2 cup(s) brown sugar
• 1 tsp cinnamon
• 1/4 cup(s) butter, with salt
• 1/4 cup(s) pecans, chopped
• 1/4 cup(s) flour


1. Roll out pie crust and fit into a 10 inch pie plate (the 9 inch Pillsbury roll out crust should fit).
2. Blend pumpkin pie filling, egg, and condensed, sweetened milk. Place in pie crust.
3. Mix brown sugar, cinnamon, firm butter, chopped pecans and flour with hands until crumbly. Put over top of pie filling.
4. Bake at 375 degrees for 50 – 55 minutes.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Image2

Decadent Pumpkin Cheesecake

Servings: 12 Prep Time: 45 min. Cook Time: 1 hour and a half
Fall wouldn’t be Fall without pumpkins. Add some pumpkin to your breads, lattes, scones, soups and this decadent cheesecake!


• 1 3/4 cup(s) graham cracker crumbs
• 3 tbsp light brown sugar
• 1 tsp cinnamon
• 1 stick(s) butter, with salt, melted
• 24 oz cream cheese, softened
• 1 cup(s) sugar
• 15 oz pumpkin (canned)
• 3 egg(s)
• 2 tbsp lemon juice (fresh)
• 1 tsp vanilla
• 1/2 tsp ginger
• 1/4 tsp nutmeg
• 1/4 tsp cloves
• 1 1/2 cup(s) sour cream, light
• 1/4 cup(s) confectioners sugar, sifted


1. Preheat oven to 325°
2. In medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon. Add melted butter. Press down flat into a 9-inch springform pan (sprayed with nonstick spray). Set aside.
3. Using a hand mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese and sugar in a bowl on medium until fluffy. Add pumpkin, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and other spices. Beat until smooth and pour into crust. Bake for about 50 minutes, until sides are set but center is still a little wiggly. Remove.
4. Whisk together sour cream and powdered sugar in a bowl. Spread topping over cheesecake. Return cheesecake to the oven; bake until it’s set, 15 minutes more. Turn off oven and crack open the door; leave cheesecake in the oven for 20 minutes more.
5. Remove cheesecake from oven. Let cool, cover and refrigerate overnight.
5. Remove ring from the springform pan. Slice cheesecake with a sharp knife dipped in hot water. (Option: Garnish individual servings with whipped cream and/or sugared pecans).
Note: This is a 1 day make ahead recipe.

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