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Pumpkin Flavors

Pure Pumpkin Perfection

When the weather starts to cool and the leaves start to change, you can bet that pumpkin season is here. It’s around this time that you’ll start seeing pumpkin flavors everywhere, from pumpkin spice lattes and coffee creamers, to pies, lotions, candles—even potato chips! Keep reading for a quick history of this fabulous fruit (yes it is a fruit), plus our tips, tricks and favorite pumpkin recipes.

As American as Pumpkin Pie
Pumpkins are native to North America and are one of the oldest domesticated plants. Though we know them as “pumpkins” they are known scientifically as a variety of squash and belong to the gourd family alongside cucumber and melons. The word “pumpkin” developed over time from the Greek word “pepon” or “large melon.” And since pumpkins contain seeds, they are a fruit, putting them in the tomato-club of produce we all thought were vegetables until recently.

Jack Be Nimble
After pumpkin pies, the Jack-o'-lantern is the creation most closely associated with pumpkins. But believe it or not, Jack-o’lanterns did not start out as pumpkins. In 19th century Ireland they were carved from radishes and turnips to ward off “Stingy Jack,” the star of an Irish legend about a man doomed by Satan to roam the earth with a hollowed-out turnip lantern. Once the tradition came to North America, pumpkins were found to be much easier to carve and the Jack-o'-lanterns we know and love were born — much to Stingy Jack’s dismay.

Pumpkin Picking

  • To Eat
    If you want to cook with pumpkin, a ready-made canned puree is usually the way to go. If you’re feeling ambitious and want to go straight to the source, you’ll want to look for pumpkins specifically labeled for eating, usually called “sugar pumpkins” or “pie pumpkins.” Choose a pumpkin between four to eight pounds, without any big bruises or soft spots, and you’ll be on your way to the perfect pumpkin pie in no time.
  • To Carve
    The most important part of picking a pumpkin to carve is to select one that’s plump and pretty. Go for pumpkins with the stem still attached with a sturdy, flat bottom. Light-colored pumpkins are generally easier to carve because they have thinner skin, but will not last as long — or look as traditional — so decide carefully. To make your pumpkin last even longer, line the insides with petroleum jelly after carving. It’s gooey, but works.

Perfect Pairings
One cup of canned pumpkin generally contains around only 80 calories, 7 grams of fiber, 3 grams of protein and 1 gram of fat, making it an incredibly nutritious superfood. Wondering what goes with pumpkin? Because of how easy it is to make sweet pumpkin dishes or savory pumpkin dishes, there are an infinite amount of ways you can pair a pumpkin drink or dish.


  • Pumpkin ravioli with a glass of dry, crisp champagne
  • Pumpkin goddess dressing over a kale, apple, acorn squash & walnut salad
  • Pumpkin pie with a dark, french roast coffee
  • Pumpkin beer with chicken and waffles
  • Pumpkin soup with a hard cheddar grilled cheese

Check out some of our favorite pumpkin recipes you can make at home:

Crispy Coconut Chicken with Pumpkin Curry

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Spooky Sriracha Spiced Pumpkin and Buffalo Chicken Party Dip

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Pumpkin Shandy

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Roasted, Seasoned Pumpkin Seeds

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Finding The Perfect Carving Pumpkin

Pumpkin Picks

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