The Healthy Table: Canned pumpkin adds nutrition to baked goods and breakfast | Detroit Free Press | freep.com

The Healthy Table: Canned pumpkin adds nutrition to baked goods and breakfast November 10, 2013

By Darlene Zimmerman

Canned pumpkin, the quintessential fall baking staple, can be used in everything from pancakes for breakfast to risotto for dinner. Not only is it convenient and inexpensive, pumpkin puree is a nutritional powerhouse.

Pumpkin’s big claim to nutrient fame is carotenoids, such as beta-carotene and lutein, the pigments that make them orange. Carotenoids may protect against chronic diseases, such as heart disease and cancer, as well as help ward off age-related vision loss, such as macular degeneration. Pumpkin also provides a healthy dose of fiber, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin E and iron.

After years of collecting and creating pumpkin recipes, I’ve noticed that many never use the entire can of puree. And today’s Maple-Glazed Pumpkin Cookie recipe is no exception. The leftovers sit in the refrigerator until you find them a week later, when it’s too late. After searching my favorite food and cooking websites for ways to use leftover canned pumpkin, I found a slew of ideas.

Five of my favorites follow:

■ Add a few dollops to a warm bowl of oatmeal, with a dash of pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar and toasted pecans.

■ Mix with reduced-fat cream cheese and a pinch of cinnamon for a bagel spread.

■ Stir into low-fat vanilla yogurt and layer with granola for a pumpkin parfait.

■ When making macaroni and cheese, add a few tablespoons to the cheese sauce. The flavor is so mild, no one will notice.

■ Combine equal parts of pumpkin, Dijon mustard, and honey for a sweet and savory spread for leftover turkey sandwiches this Thanksgiving.

via The Healthy Table: Canned pumpkin adds nutrition to baked goods and breakfast | Detroit Free Press | freep.com.