Pumpkins aren’t just for Halloween and during thanksgiving week, I am seeing them everywhere. If you’re like me and love pumpkin or bought so many for the Fall, that you feel like you are living in a pumpkin patch, then have no fear. Pumpkin can be used in a plethora of ways. Not only is this magical squash incredibly effective on the skin it is also delicious and can be incorporated into a many everyday recipes.

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Pumpkin contains fruit enzymes and AHA which brighten, smooth and aid in cell turnover. High levels of vitamin A and vitamin C boost collagen and zinc helps with acne by controlling oil production. A DIY pumpkin mask is a perfect and easy way to try pumpkin on your skin. All you need is 1/4 cup of plain yogurt, tablespoon of honey and 1/2 cup of pureed pumpkin(canned is fine-preferably organic). Mix together in a bowl and apply a thick coating to the face for 20 mins. rinse with warm water. Bring on the glow!

Eating pumpkin also proves to be very healthy as it contains very high levels of potassium, vitamin A and vitamin C.

Pumpkin Butter:

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups pumpkin puree, or 1 (29 ounce) can (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup apple cider or juice
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2-3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1-2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (to taste)

Directions:

Combine pureed pumpkin, vanilla, apple juice, spices, cinnamon sticks and sugar in a large saucepan; stir well. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 – 40 minutes or until thickened. Stir frequently. Adjust spices to your taste. Makes 3 3/4 cups.

Pumpkin and Black Bean Burgers:

for the patties:

1/2 cup pumpkin puree (or sweet potato puree)

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp chili powder

1/4 tsp garlic powder (or 2 garlic cloves)

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp coriander

3/4 tsp sea salt

1 cup cooked and cooled brown rice

1-15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained (or about 2 cups cooked black beans)

2 tbsp flaxmeal

about 1/3 cup oat flour

coconut oil to cook the patties

Combine the pumpkin, oil, spices, and salt in a food processor and process until smooth.  Add the brown rice, flax-meal, oat flour, and half of the beans and pulse until the mixture is thick and chunky (not smooth).  Add the rest of the beans and pulse a few times just to break them up.  The mixture should be tacky with some texture to it, not smooth.  Divide the mixture into 4 or 5 patties about 1/2 inch thick.  Place the patties in the freezer for no more than 5 minutes just to firm them up a bit.  Heat a thin layer of coconut oil in a skillet over medium.  Cook the patties for about 2 to 3 minutes on each side until a golden crust forms.  Wrap and refrigerate (or freeze) leftovers.  Makes 4 or 5 patties.

Screen Shot 2014-11-28 at 1.06.08 PMPhoto via ICrashedTheWeb

Whether you wear it or eat it pumpkin can be delicious, nutritious and beneficial for a holiday glow.

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