- Category: Eat Right Featured Articles
by Angela Aladjem RD, LD
October ushers in the holiday season, and with that holiday treats. We brace ourselves every year for the inundation of chocolates, candies, fall flavored coffee drinks, and homemade goodies. Pumpkin, in particular, seems to be made into many different treats. It is one of the many flavors I think people look forward to the most. Rather than focusing on all the treats you “should not” be having, today, I am going to give you some recipes that can satisfy your sweet tooth while still giving you some nutrition.
First, lets explore all the great nutrients that pumpkins contain. Pumpkin is a starchy vegetable that is lower in calories, yet rich in fiber and many antioxidants. It contains, per serving, high levels of vitamins A, C, and E. The flesh of the pumpkin is also rich in b vitamins such as folate, niacin, thiamin, and pantothenic acid. It also contains copper, calcium, and potassium. Since the flesh is naturally fat and cholesterol free, it is an excellent addition to diets, especially those watching their weight and heart health. If you do happen to roast a pumpkin yourself for the flesh, be sure to save the seeds for future use. They make a great snack rich in protein, zinc and iron.
These pumpkin muffins were inspired by a recipe on Health Magazine’s website, www.health.com. I changed up some of the ingredients to extra nutrition. They would make a great afternoon snack or even a quick breakfast with your morning coffee.
2 3/4 cups Oat flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup canned pumpkin
3/4 cup greek yogurt
1/3 cup lowfat milk (can sub dairy free)
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg white
Preheat oven to 375°.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and the dry ingredients into a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture.
Combine pumpkin and next 6 ingredients; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Spoon the batter into 18 muffin cups coated with cooking spray or lined with paper baking cups.
Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pans immediately; cool on a wire rack.
You can add in some chopped nuts or even a few dark chocolate chips to this recipe. Don’t be afraid to be creative.
Enjoy the fall! In health, Angela
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