Labor Day is over, the first day of Autumn is nigh upon us and that means….PUMPKIN! All things pumpkin – you can find pumpkin in cereal, coffee, cookies, chips, teas, breads, candles and scents and a variety of other products meant to please the senses.
When it comes to pleasing the palate, of course, be sure you have spent time brushing your teeth and cleaning your tongue with your TUNG Brush and Gel so you can savor every drop or crumb!
So, what is a pumpkin, anyway?
Contrary to popular belief, pumpkins are not vegetables! They are fruit, like all other members of the squash family, but often treated and cooked like vegetables. And they are rich in beta-carotene and Vitamin A, and pumpkin seeds are a good source of protein, magnesium, copper and zinc. Pumpkin can be cooked in many ways, and is readily available year round in cans, so although we associate this fruit with fall, Halloween (get your carving sets ready) and Thanksgiving, don’t limit your enjoyment to just then – keep pumpkins as a part of your year-round pantry!
What’s in ‘Pumpkin Spice” then?
Simply put, this is a combination of specific spices that are added to pumpkin to get a sweet and savory and very distinct flavor, and a scent that will take you right to a visual image of falling leaves and apple cider! To make your own, here is a simple recipe:
- 1 ½ tsp. Ground Allspice
- 2 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
- 1 ½ tsp. Ground Cloves
- 3 Tbsp. Ground Cinnamon
- 2 tsp. Ground Ginger
You can also get “Pumpkin Spice” pre-mixed in the right proportions in the baking and spices aisle of your grocery store.
Sounds pretty good! So how do I make the Smoothie?
Not only is it good, it is easy!
- ½ cup pumpkin (you can use canned or freshly cooked)
- ½ frozen banana
- ¾ cup almond milk
- Approximately 2 Tbsp. vanilla protein powder (1/2 scoop)
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice (we told you about this earlier)
- Pinch of ground ginger
Put all of the ingredients in a blender, blend until smooth, pour and enjoy! It doesn’t get much easier than that! If you like a creamier smoothie, you can add a little plain or vanilla Greek yogurt when you blend it.
Whether you drink this as you run out the door for work, as you settle in with a good book, or if you just need a yummy and healthy mid-day snack, why not try this easy smoothie to welcome Fall! Oh, and by they way, be sure to light up that Pumpkin Spice candle to fill your home with the scent now that you have satisfied your taste buds with the flavor!