Home Healthy Food Facts Pumpkin, the fruit of autumn

Pumpkin, the fruit of autumn


Pumpkin is a fruit that tastes like autumn, possibly because it is the time when its consumption is most common. However, given the different varieties that exist now, it is a vegetable that we can enjoy all year round.

Pumpkin is a sweeter vegetable than most , and although it is true that this is due to a higher sugar content , we should not consider that it is a food rich in sugar. Pumpkin is a great food that can come in handy for those who are somewhat averse to green leafy vegetables.

It is reputed to be sweeter, more caloric and more sugary than other vegetables but in small quantities. For example, 100 grams of pumpkin provides :

  • 30 Kcal: similar to the energy provided by the same amount of red pepper, mushroom or white onion.
  • 3.5 g of sugar : which means 1 g more than the sugar contained in 100 g of green beans or aubergine and less than half the sugar contained in the typical sachet of the bar, which is usually 8 g.

Nutritional value of pumpkin

  • Water
  • Fiber
  • Potassium
  • Vitamin A
  • Carotenoids

Ideas for eating pumpkin

Pumpkin, having that sweet spot, can be used both in savory and sweet dishes, in main dishes or in desserts and pastries:

  • A classic is the pumpkin cream , which can be made only with pumpkin and olive oil or by adding sautéed or fried onion or leek. You can also make pumpkin c rema with potatoes or mixed with many other vegetables.
  • Another option is to cut it into small cubes and fry it or sauté it together with other vegetables , it can be used as an accompaniment to a meat, or as part of a salad or make multiple recipes with it, a risotto, a lasagna, a hummus and let’s not talk anymore of pumpkin stuffed pasta … And it can be made stuffed!
  • In its sweet version we can make cream with pear, pumpkin jam, different types of pumpkin pie , the typical Canary Island pumpkin tortillas with cinnamon …
  • Let’s not forget that seeds are also consumed , which we can add to a yogurt, a salad or any other dish, in addition to preparing delicious breads with them.

Pumpkin oil

In Slovenia, the use of pumpkin seed oil is typical, it has a mild flavor and a dark color that turns what it touches green. It can be used to dress any type of dish , just as we use the olive one here.

Who is it good for and who is not?

It is recommended for:

  • Easily digestible diets : pumpkin pulp is rich in mucilage which is attributed a protective role for the gastroduodenal mucosa and anti-ulcer properties, which is why it is considered suitable for people suffering from ailments such as gastroenteritis.
  • People (adults or children) with aversion to vegetables : their color, aroma and flavor make them quite different from all vegetables, at least from green ones, which are sometimes rejected. It is a good way to eat vegetables and, in addition, in a thousand ways.
  • Athletes : potassium is one of the minerals that intervenes in muscle contraction and maintains the electrolyte balance of our body.
  • In episodes of vomiting or diarrhea or other situations of increased potassium needs: in these cases we can help replace the loss of potassium caused by these episodes with the intake of foods rich in potassium such as pumpkin.

They are not suitable in case:

  • Tendency to suffer from flatulence : in some cases, especially undercooked, pumpkin has been linked to flatulence. It all depends on the way of cooking and personal sensitivity. For example, a well-cooked butternut squash will cause less flatulence than whole, undercooked pumpkin.
  • Kidney problems or other potassium limitations : kidney patients who have to limit their potassium intake should control their consumption of pumpkin because of its high potassium content.

Buying and conservation advice

  • Whether we choose a winter or summer squash , it is advisable to acquire firm specimens with intact skin .
  • On the other hand, it is preferable that they keep the tail or peduncle because, if they do not have it, the pumpkin will lose moisture. Now, if we choose a summer squash, we must choose a medium-sized one , the largest ones usually have the most bitter flesh.
  • The pumpkin must be tender but firm, with shiny skin, very soft and not excessively hard. Dullness or tough or rough skin are signs that your meat is dry.
  • When acquiring a winter squash , it is recommended to choose very mature specimens with a thick rind (a soft skin indicates that it is not yet ripe). Also, winter squash should be heavy relative to its volume.

What you should know:

  • Season: the most consumed are usually autumn and winter but there are different varieties throughout the year, as there are summer squash, and winter squash.
  • Benefits : it is attributed protective properties of the gastric mucosa, it is rich in antioxidants, carotenoids, and a great source of potassium.
  • Ideal in : easily digestible diets, and for children or adults with an aversion to green vegetables.


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