It couldn’t be easier to cook a whole pumpkin. No prep. Just pop in the oven. Then fill with soup, cheesy strata or warm apple bread pudding.
It’s Healthy Kitchen Hacks Wednesday – the day we share our favorite time-saving kitchen tricks and cooking shortcuts to help you make healthy and delicious meals.
Now…onto today’s featured Healthy Kitchen Hack:
How to Cook a Whole Pumpkin
What do you think might happen if you popped a whole pumpkin – stem and all – into the oven? An explosion of pumpkin seeds all over your oven? That’s what I thought. But I was willing to give it a try, in the name of kitchen research of course.
Guess what? After only about an hour, my cute little 6-inch sugar pumpkin emerged from the oven beautifully. It was shiny and soft (but not sunken in). The seeds were much actually easier to remove after being cooked. And I’ve discovered…
Pumpkins are the perfect vessel in which to serve:
- Soup – Pumpkin soup, squash soup, creamy tomato soup (even from a can)
- Cheesy strata or gratin – Like this Whole Pumpkin Cheddar Gratin
- Fall veggies – Such as Roasted Carrots & Parsnips or Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
- Apple Bread Pudding
Here are the ridiculously easy steps:
1. Place the whole pumpkin on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Cover loosely with foil.
Once the baking sheet is in the oven, pour 2 cups of water onto the sheet. You can cook two 6-inch pumpkins on one baking sheet. One 6-inch pumpkin holds enough soup or strata for about four servings. Serve soup or cheesy strata in a whole pumpkin! How To Cook A Whole Pumpkin #HealthyKitchenHacks via @TspCurry Click To Tweet
2. Bake in a 375°F oven for 1 hour. (It’s done when a knife slips in easily.) Cool slightly.
3. Slice off the top. Scoop out the seeds and make Easy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in 15 Minutes.
Keep pumpkin warm in an oven set to about 200°F. Or microwave briefly before filling with warm soup or veggies.
4. Fill with your favorite soup, strata or bread pudding – and make everyone smile big pumpkin grins. (:
If you bake pumpkins ahead of time, refrigerate until ready to serve. On the day of serving, fill the cold pumpkin with roasted veggies, gratin, or bread pudding. Cover pumpkin opening with foil.
- If cold pumpkin is filled with warm filling, bake for about 20-25 minutes in a 350°F oven to warm throughout.
- If cold pumpkin is filled with cold filling, bake for about 35-45 minutes in a 350°F oven to warm throughout.
Have you ever just thrown a whole squash or pumpkin in the oven, stem and all? What will you fill your cooked pumpkin with?