I absolutely love warming spices- those cinnamons and nutmegs warm my belly and my heart. So any food I can introduce them into is just thrilling. An obvious pairing, of course, is pumpkin, due to its legendary famosity with pie. They are a power-duo to such extent that the assortment of spices has even been named "pumpkin spice". But there is a lot of crap added to pumpkin pie that's really unnecessary, so I wanted to make a pumpkin-pie-filling-like dessert (or meal!) that spares us unnecessary calories and chemicals. Enter, Super Healthy Pumpkin Spice Pudding. The flax acts as a thickener and gives the texture of pumpkin pie while being full of fiber and healthy oils. Pumpkin itself is also high in fiber, as well as vitamin A and potassium. The spices are wonderfully warming and drying for these cool, wet autumn days we're having. Round it out with some protein to make a balanced meal/dessert: perfection!
Super Healthy Pumpkin Spice Pudding
4 cups baked pumpkin, pureed */ **
1 thumb of ginger, sliced (optional, and/or sub with ground ginger)
3-4 tbsp. flax, ground (or chia) ***
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp cardamom (optional)
1/2 tsp vanilla (add more to taste, since protein powders will vary in vanillaness)
2 scoops of vanilla protein powder
Using a mixing tool (blender, hand blender, food processor, etc.), puree the baked pumpkin with the ginger, and then add the remaining ingredients. Enjoy warm or cool!
Very Optional Additions:
- Honey or pureed dates, if not sweet enough (the protein powder will vary widely in sweetness- I didn't need any sweetener).
- Coconut milk. Is. Divine.
- Coconut flakes- topping or throughout.
- Coconut whipped cream, from #8 on my Sweet Satisfaction blog.
- 4 tbsp.cacao nibs.
- 3 tbsp. ground maca root
- Nuts such as pecans, walnuts.
* How to bake a pumpkin: Cut pumpkin in half, remove the stringy bits and save the seeds for roasting. Place open side down on a pan (with parchment paper if you so desire). Roast for 45-60 minutes (until its skin is soft) at 350 degrees. Let cool, then scrape out smooth, delicious insides.
** Canned pumpkin will also suffice, but in the autumn, when pumpkins are rampant, I urge you to buy a local pumpkin and bake it- not only is it WAY cheaper and SUPER simple, but you're sparing the world one more piece of garbage, supporting local produce, and you're avoiding the chemicals/BPA used in canning.
*** Freshly grind the flax to avoid rancidity of its delicate oils. Alternatively, keep freshly ground flax in the freezer for up to 1-2 weeks. Do NOT buy ground flax- it is most likely rancid by the time you eat it. Grind with coffee grinder, mortar and pestle (that would be hardcore), or blender/hand blender (watch for flying seeds!).
Let me know how it goes!! Enjoy!