Wellness | Four Healthy & Delicious Ways to Use Leftover Pumpkin

By: Christina Rico, Health Coach & Personal Trainer

Whether you are carving Jack-O-Lanterns for Halloween or baking pumpkin spiced desserts for Thanksgiving, you are always faced with one problem—what to do with the leftover pumpkin.

Most pumpkin recipes do not call for a full can of pumpkin, and if you are the kind of person that loves baking, you probably hate the thought of wasting the leftover spoonfuls. Likewise, carving Jack-O-Lanterns leaves you with perfectly delicious pumpkin flesh, and any cooking connoisseur would think it is a crime to toss it out.

Next time you find yourself with a few tablespoons of leftover pumpkin, you can use one of these delicious solutions to solve the problem. The best part is that all of these recipes are packed full of nutritious ingredients that will provide you with sustained energy throughout your chaotic day. Plus, pumpkin alone is an extremely nutrient dense food that is full of vitamins, yet low in calories, so there is no reason why it should ever go to waste!




Pumpkin Spiced Oatmeal


1/2 cup rolled oats

2 tablespoons pumpkin puree

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie Spice

1/2 cup water

Stevia or Sweetener (honey, maple syrup) to taste

Toppings (cacao nibs, pecans, dried cranberry, walnuts, cinnamon)



1. Combine all dry ingredients (except toppings) in a medium, microwave-safe bowl.
2. Slowly add water until desired consistency is reached. If you like “porridge-like” oatmeal, add a little less than 1/2 cup water. For thinner oatmeal, increase water by 1-2 tablespoons.
3. Mix all of the ingredients thoroughly to combine.
4. Microwave the oatmeal mixture for 60-90 seconds, depending on the power of your microwave.
5. Add toppings of your choice, and a dash of cinnamon for garnish.
6. Allow oatmeal to absorb the water and thicken for one minute before eating.
7. Enjoy!

*For an added boost of protein, stir 1 scoop of protein powder into your oatmeal. You may need to add a bit more water.


Pumpkin Spice Latte


3/4 cup freshly brewed black coffee

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 tablespoon pumpkin puree

1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Dash of cinnamon

Stevia or Sweetener of choice (to taste)



1. Combine almond milk, sweetener, pumpkin and spices in a small pot over medium heat.

2. Stir continuously until the mixture is warm.

3. Add the milk mixture into your cup of hot coffee.

4. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon and enjoy!

* For frothy milk, carefully process the warmed milk in a blender until frothy. Make sure to hold down the lid tightly!




Pumpkin Protein Shake


1 scoop protein

1/4 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/2 cup ice cubes

1 cup water

Dash of cinnamon

Sweetener, to taste (stevia, pure maple syrup, honey)



1. Add all of the ingredients to a high power blender, beginning with the ice cubes.

2. Blend for 30-60 seconds, or until the ice chunks are gone.

3. Pour into a tall glass and top with another dash of cinnamon for garnish!

4. Enjoy as a quick breakfast or post exercise shake.




Protein-Packed Pumpkin Spice Waffles / Pancakes 



1 scoop protein

1/2 cup oats

1/4 cup pumpkin puree

1 egg (flax/chia egg works)

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Sweetener, to taste (honey, stevia, pure maple sugar)

1/2 - 3/4 cup water



1. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender or magic bullet. Process for 15-30 seconds, or until the mixture is completely smooth.

2. Add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time if the mixture is too thick. Depending on the protein powder you use, the batter may require more liquid. Casein protein is thicker, so the batter will need more water, while whey protein powder may not require as much liquid.

3. Heat a non-stick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat.

4. Slowly pour the mixture into the skillet, until desired pancake size is reached (about 1/4 cup of batter per pancake).

5. Flip the pancakes when the tops are bubbly and the edges look cooked.

6. Serve warm topped with your choice of: cacao nibs, carob chips, coconut, honey, nut butter.




So there you have it—four tasty recipes that use up your leftover pumpkin and are perfect for fall! Now you will never have to feel stumped because you have no idea how to use the last few spoonfuls of pumpkin. Instead, you will be scraping the can clean and wishing you had more!

In the unlikely event that you don’t enjoy the delicious flavors of fall or you don’t have leftover pumpkin because you like to eat spoonfuls from the can, then these recipes might be right up your alley!