7 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Autumn/Fall

7 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Autumn/Fall

Photo by Jasmine Coro on Unsplash

 

Today I’m sharing 7 of my favourite, healthy pumpkin recipes with you to keep you inspired this pumpkin season!

Pumpkins are traditionally harvested in Autumn through to early winter. In the U.S. and Canada this coincides with Halloween and Thanksgiving which means pumpkin season is often associated with jack-o-lanterns, pumpkin pie, and all things pumpkin spice!

Here in NZ we have a number of different varieties of pumpkin, many of which are available all year round. But we do tend to eat pumpkins mainly in the colder months which means lots of warming soups, vegetable bakes and pumpkin pie lattes.

Despite finding pumpkins in the vegetable section of the supermarket, these winter squash are in fact classified as a fruit because they contain seeds in their centre. But unlike most common fruits, pumpkins are nowhere near as sweet because they contain barely any fructose at all.

Pumpkins are considered a fibre-rich carbohyrdate made up mostly of water, as such they only contain a minimal amount of protein and fat.

Their nutritional value mainly comes from their high vitamin A content in the form of beta-carotene, a carotenoid that gives them their orange colour. Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the body and helps maintain healthy skin and eyes. Beta-carotene is also an important disease preventing antioxidant that aids in the repair of oxidative stress. Pumpkins are also abundant in vitamins C and E, potassium, riboflavin, copper, and manganese.

So without further ado, here are my top 7 pumpkin recipes that you need to make this pumpkin season:

 

Pumpkin & Kumara Soup with Crunchy Cauliflower & Popped Lentils

 

Pumpkin & Kumara Soup with Spiced Cauliflower & Popped Lentils

Starting off this pumpkin recipe round up is this beautifully thick and creamy Pumpkin & Kumara Soup. This soup is full of amazing spices such as turmeric, ginger, cinnamon and garlic, which mean it’s deliciously warming while also providing some powerful anti-inflammatory, calming and restorative qualities.

The secret to the amazing texture of this soup is all in the cooking. By using roasted pumpkin and kumara (sweet potato) you create the perfect base for a super smooth, thick soup. It also means it’s very filling while still very light on the digestion because it’s made simply of blended vegetables.

Oven roasted, crunchy, spiced cauliflower and popped lentil toppings provide a delicious contrast in texture, as well as an element of plant protein to this vegan, grain, and sugar free recipe, which also happens to be 10 Day Sugar Cleanse approved.

 

Pumpkin Pancakes

Caramelised Pumpkin Pancakes

If you’re a pumpkin pie lover then you’ll adore these Pumpkin Pancakes! They have such a lovely soft texture with a sweet caramelised, pumpkin pie flavour. Best of all, you’d never guess they’re sweetened solely with pumpkin!

The secret to their natural caramel flavour is cooking them in coconut oil which gives the pumpkin a caramel-like quality. Add a little ginger and cinnamon to the mix and you have some seriously addictive pumpkin pie pancakes that will fast become a favourite.

I like using butternut squash for this recipe because it has a lovely light flavour and can be much easier to cut than some of the larger varieties of pumpkin. But there really isn’t much difference between a squash and a pumpkin so these pancakes can easily be made with either.

When I created these pumpkin pancakes I wanted a Sugar Cleanse approved recipe, so these pancakes are dairy, grain and sugar free. They’re also perfect for anyone who doesn’t like bananas or can’t eat other kinds of fruit sweetened pancakes.

 

7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall

 

Roast Pumpkin & Lentil Spinach Salad with a Lemon Chilli Dressing

This was one of the first recipes I created after going completely plant based. Changing my diet inspired me to get more creative in the kitchen, particularly at dinner time, and this Pumpkin and Lentil Salad was the first of my creations that got the thumbs up from my not-so-plant based husband!

This salad combines sweet caramelized pumpkin with nutty brown lentils and a zesty chilli dressing. Best of all, it’s unbelievably easy to whip up! The hardest part is cutting open the pumpkin, from there all you need to do is roast the pumpkin, make the dressing and toss it all together.

You can serve this pumpkin and lentil salad warm or chilled, and it makes the most delicious leftovers. I love prepping a batch at the start of the week so we have lunch/dinner sorted for a couple days, because it’s so great being able to reach into the fridge and find something delicious all ready to eat.

 

7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall

 

Pumpkin Pie Granola

Pumpkin season definitely can’t go past without a jar full of this wholesome Pumpkin Pie Granola on the breakfast table! A delicious combination of oats, cashews and pecans, combined with pumpkin pie spices, pure maple syrup and golden roasted pumpkin.

Because pumpkin is the main sweetener in this granola it’s a lot lower in sugars than regular granolas, and is naturally packed full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fibre. If you can’t tolerate oats simply swap them for another grain or pseudo grain such as quinoa flakes or buckwheat groats.

Serve this crunchy granola with a dash of milk and dollop of your favourite yogurt, sprinkle it over smoothie bowls or ice cream, or simply eat it by the handful like a trail mix.

 

Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry

 

Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry

This Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry is still one of my go-to, made from scratch weeknight meals. You can whip it up in under 30 minutes and it makes fabulous leftovers for lunch the next day.

It’s completely plant based, gluten/grain, dairy & sugar free, and also just happens to be one of the recipes from the Plant Based Menu in the 10 Day Sugar Cleanse program.

Even though this curry only takes 30 minutes to make, it doesn’t call for any curry paste or store bought sauces. Instead it’s simply a clever combination of fresh vegetables, herbs and spices, and the red lentils make it deliciously thick and creamy while providing a source of plant based protein.

You can adapt this curry to be as spicy or mild as you like with the amount of fresh chillies you add, and likewise, feel free to adapt the vegetables to whatever you have in season or to hand.

 

7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall

 

Pumpkin Pie Spice Peanut Butter Fudge

A pumpkin recipe roundup wouldn’t be complete without a velvety smooth, no bake fudge recipe!

This moreish Pumpkin Pie Spice Peanut Butter Fudge is packed full of warming pumpkin pie spices with subtle hints of peanut butter, and you’d never guess it’s sweetened solely with pumpkin and rice syrup.

It might just be the easiest fudge you’ll ever make, once you’ve made (or bought) the pumpkin puree, it’s simply a case of combining the remaining ingredients in a blender, pouring it into a tin and then into the fridge to set.

This low sugar fudge recipe is vegan and gluten free, making it the perfect Autumn/Fall treat.

 

7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall

 

Pumpkin Pie Custard Squares

When the creamy custard filling of a pumpkin pie meets a blondie, this is the result!

A silky smooth custard slice with just a hint of pumpkin spice, it’s hard to believe these treats are sweetened only with pumpkin puree with no additional sweeteners. They’re also gluten and grain free, and vegan.

Find the recipe for these sugar free pumpkin pie custard squares in my Inspired Desserts e-book – Whole Food Sweeteners Edition, which you can download for FREE here.

 

That sums up my round up of the 7 best healthy pumpkin recipes you need to make this Autumn or Fall. I hope you enjoy them and be sure to leave me a comment below and tell me which of these 7 low sugar pumpkin recipes you’ll be making first!

Enjoy!

Inspired Desserts E-Book

Whole Food Sweeteners Edition

F R E E   D O W N L O A D

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

 

These sticky date chocolate brownies are the love child of my ultimate sticky date pudding and my decadent dark chocolate brownies!

They’re super decadent and sticky, deliciously fudgey, rich and chocolatey. Delicious when eaten hot, straight from the oven, where they’ll remind you of a hot chocolate pudding, and when they sit at room temperature they take on a sticky quality which just gets better as time goes on!

When you bite into these sticky date chocolate brownies your tastebuds will do a little happy dance. Your mind will then ask “what is this luscious treat you’ve given me?! Is it a sticky date pudding or … chocolate brownie?!”. It will then force you to take another bite to try and figure it out…. or at least that’s what went on in my head.

 

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

 

Besides being the best love child brownies you’ll ever eat, these sticky date chocolate brownies are also dairy, grain and refined sugar free. They’re sweetened mainly with dates with a little rice syrup for good measure. They get their rich chocolate flavour from raw cacao powder, ground almonds replace conventional flour, and coconut oil replaces butter

They’re a breeze to make as most of it is done in a food processor. This is mainly to blend the soaked dates into a smooth paste, but if you don’t have a food processor or blender, or you prefer your dates chunky, then by all means simply use a bowl and stirring spoon.

Because these brownies are beautifully moist, they’re lovely eaten on their own. But, of course, feel free to add a dollop of your favourite yoghurt or ice cream, berries, caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, or whatever takes your fancy! Enjoy!

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

 

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

Makes: small 18 x 30cm brownie pan or approximately 12 generous pieces
Prep time: 15 minutes   Bake time: 35 minutes

1 cup (160g) dates, pitted
1 tsp baking soda
275ml boiling water
1/3 cup (70g) coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup (100g) rice syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
2 eggs
1 cup (100g) raw cacao powder
180g ground almonds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking powder

Preheat the oven to 160ºC fan bake. Line a small brownie pan (18cm x 30cm or 20cm x 20cm) with baking paper.

Place the dates in a bowl with the baking soda and boiling water and leave to soak for 10 minutes.

Melt the coconut oil. Measure the dry ingredients (cacao, almonds, cinnamon and baking powder) into a bowl and stir to combine.

Place the date mixture into a food processor and blend until well combined and smooth. Add the melted coconut oil, rice syrup, vanilla, salt and eggs and pulse to combine. Add the dry ingredients and pulse until just combined.

Pour the brownie mixture into the lined pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Place the brownie into the centre of the oven to bake for approximately 25 to 30 minutes. The brownie is done when the top is set and a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool before removing from the tin and cutting into squares. Store the brownie in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.

This brownie is delicious eaten hot straight from the oven when it’s almost like a pudding. It’s also delicious at room temperature and gets stickier with time.

 

Sticky Date Chocolate Brownies

Super Fudgey Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies

Super Fudgey Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownie

 

Sweet potato chocolate brownies have been around for a little while, the most famous being Deliciously Ella’s version. There are now numerous variations ranging from completely vegan and sweetened with dates, to versions with eggs sweetened with coconut sugar or rice syrup.

Sweet potatoes are abundant in vitamins, minerals and nutrients, and are especially known for their carotenoids beta-carotene and lycopene which have some powerful anti-cancerous properties. Sweet potatoes are also phytoestrogenic which means they help remove unwanted environmental oestrogens, and they also promote productive bacteria in the gut. Even though they’re sweet tasting, the main sugar in sweet potatoes is sucrose which is made up of half fructose and half glucose. Glucose is essential for many important functions in our bodies, and while fructose is best avoided, sweet potatoes only contain around 0.7g of fructose per 100g. This equates to 3.5g in total in this recipe and is considered to be far outweighed by all the sweet potatoes other health promoting properties.

My ultimate goal with this recipe was to create a sublime tasting chocolate brownie that’s completely sugar free and ideally sweetened solely with sweet potatoes (or kumara as we call them in NZ). I’ve been playing around with sweet potato brownie recipes on and off for quite a while, and so far this recipe which has half a cup of rice syrup is the closest I’ve come to a brownie that tastes amazing AND is acceptable on the low fructose scale.

As covered in my previous post for nutty chocolate truffles here, rice syrup is a fructose free sweetener that has a very low GI, which means it can often be a well tolerated choice for people on low or no sugar diets.

 

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownie

 

These sweet potato chocolate brownies are dense and fudgey, and have a rich chocolate flavour thanks to a full cup of raw cacao powder. They’re dairy and grain free, containing coconut oil and ground almonds, however they do contain eggs as a binding agent which also act as a raising agent. I’ve added a little spice by way of cinnamon and cardamon, but feel free to omit these if they’re not to your liking.

As usual these brownies are super easy to make. Literally throw a couple of whole sweet potatos into the oven to bake for 30 minutes or so, then it’s simply a case of combining all the ingredients in a food processor and pouring into a brownie pan. They only take about half an hour to bake in the oven and the hardest part is waiting for them to cool! Enjoy!

 

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownie

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies

Makes: small 18 x 30cm brownie pan or approximately 12 generous pieces
Prep time: 15 minutes   Bake time: 35 minutes + 30-45 minutes to bake the sweet potato

2 cups (500g) cooked orange sweet potato (approximately 2)
1 cup (95g) raw cacao powder
3/4 cup (150g) coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup (125g) almond milk
1/2 cup (150g) rice syrup
2 eggs
4 Tbsp ground almonds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cardamon
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch Himalayan pink salt

To cook the sweet potato, preheat the oven to 200ºC fan bake. Wash the sweet potatoes to remove any surface dirt, prick a few times with a fork and place on a lined oven tray in the centre of the oven. Bake for approximately 30-45 minutes depending on size. When you can easily slide a knife into their centres, they’re done. Remove them from the oven and allow to cool. The skins will literally steam themselves off and when cool enough to handle you should be able to easily peel the skins off with your hands.

Turn the oven down to 180ºC fan bake. Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until well combined and smooth.

Line a small brownie pan (18cm x 30cm or 20cm x 20cm) with baking paper and pour the brownie mixture in. Smooth the top with a spatula then place in the centre of the oven to bake for approximately 35 minutes. The brownie is done when a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool before removing from the tin and cutting into squares. Store the brownie in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months. This brownie is delicious eaten straight from the fridge, at room temperature or heated with a dollop of your favourite yoghurt or ice cream.

 

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownie

 

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

 

We don’t usually celebrate Valentine’s Day. Not because we don’t like the idea of a day celebrating love, but because it seems crazy to spend triple the amount on flowers, or dine in an overflowing restaurant from a set menu we wouldn’t otherwise choose.

So instead we made a pact to celebrate Valentine’s day whenever we feel like it which means I get beautiful flowers throughout the year… (erm….) and go on lots of date nights to new restaurants… (ok we do that part).

That said, this year I decided it might be fun to have a picnic on Valentine’s, day so I ordered one from our favourite local raw food cafe, Little Bird Organics. Because sometimes even the most capable like to have food prepared for them – especially on Valentine’s day!

As it happened, the desserts in the picnic I ordered were these raw chocolate and raspberry lava cakes, which have been on my “to create” list for ages!

Of course I have no idea what their actual recipe is, but it probably involves activating nuts and organic ingredients, which isn’t always possible for the home cook. So here’s my simplified version which I’ve also made very low in unrefined sugars, it’s also dairy and gluten free, and very quick easy to make!

 

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

 

The chocolate cake is essentially a raw chocolate brownie. Brazil nuts, which are a great source of selenium and magnesium, act as the “flour” along with desiccated coconut. Raw cacao powder provides the chocolate element and is packed with essential antioxidants. Dates are a fantastic source of fibre, iron, potassium and magnesium, and provide the sweetness along with a little rice syrup which is a very low glycemic sweetener. Lastly, avocado acts as the glue holding it all together, and is a great source of omega 6 fatty acids. For a more in depth explanation about why these ingredients and nutrients are so good for you, check out this similar raw chocolate mousse cake recipe here.

The red lava centre is a raw raspberry chia sauce which is simply raspberries blended with chia seeds and a little rice syrup. Raspberries are very rich in antioxidants which are key in preventing the ageing process. They’re also an excellent source of iron, magnesium, selenium, zinc, molybdenum, potassium, chromium, and calcium.

These little lava cakes are amazing served simply on their own. But if you want to dress them up you could serve them with a sprinkling of freeze dried raspberries, a swirl of leftover raspberry chia sauce, fresh berries and a dollop of your favourite coconut yoghurt or nice cream.

I hope you enjoy this nutrient dense sweet treat, and would love to hear any questions or comments – simply leave me a message in the section down below and I’ll get back to you asap. Enjoy!

 

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

 

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Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

Makes: 6 cakes
Prep time: 30 minutes

Raw Chocolate Cake
1 cup (150g) brazil nuts
1/2 cup (60g) desiccated coconut
1 ripe avocado
3/4 cup (70g) raw cacao powder
6 medjool dates, pits removed
1 Tbsp rice syrup
1 tsp vanilla powder
pinch Himalayan pink salt

Raw Raspberry Chia Sauce
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries (defrosted)
1 Tbsp white chia seeds
1 Tbsp rice syrup

To Serve (optional)
Freeze dried raspberries
Fresh berries
Coconut yoghurt or Nice cream

To make the raspberry chia sauce place all the ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Set aside while making the raw chocolate cake.

Line 6 holes of a standard muffin pan with a double layer of cling film. This prevents the cakes from sticking and allows you to lift them out easily at the end.

Place the brazil nuts in a food processor and blend until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs. Transfer them to a bowl, then add the desiccated coconut to the food processor and blend until it just starts to break down. Transfer the coconut to the bowl with the brazil nuts and set aside.

Combine the avocado, cacao powder, dates (pits removed!), rice syrup, sea salt and vanilla in the food processor and blend to a smooth chocolate paste. Add the brazil nuts and coconut and pulse until just combined.

Press tablespoonfuls of raw chocolate cake mixture into the lined muffin hole and press it up the sides, forming an approximately 8mm thick shell. When you have all 6 holes lined you should still have enough mixture leftover to create 6 circular “lids” of the same thickness.

Pour the raspberry chia sauce into the centre of each chocolate cake shell and fill to just under the rim. They should hold approximately 2 tablespoons of sauce.

Place the chocolate lids onto each cake and press the edges down to form a tight seal ensuring the raspberry chia sauce won’t escape.

Place the chocolate lava cakes in the fridge to chill for at least half an hour before serving. To serve, lift the lava cakes out of the tin, place on a plate and peel off the cling film. Serve sprinkled with freeze dried raspberries, fresh berries and/or your favourite coconut yoghurt or nice cream.

These lava cakes will keep in a sealed container for up to 5 days in the fridge or 1 month in the freeze.

 

Raw Chocolate and Raspberry Lava Cakes

 

 

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake with Dark Cherries

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake with Dark Cherries

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake - gf/vegan

 

One of my all time favourite recipes to demonstrate at workshops is my raw chocolate avocado mousse. Everyone’s always so surprised how easy the recipe is and even more so at how amazing it tastes, despite being made from avocados!

I don’t make this mousse very often because, frankly, it tastes too good and I eat it way too fast. I’m still working on a sugar free/low fructose version, but I did create this sweet potato chocolate mousse last year which I think tastes pretty damn amazing considering it’s completely sugar free!

This recipe came about when I had the inspired idea to pair my epic chocolate mousse recipe with a raw chocolate brownie base. Even though the cake has two layers it’s quick to make as they’re both made entirely in a blender. If you want to save further on washing up you could just wipe out the food processor bowl between layers as they’re essentially all the same ingredients.

The raw chocolate brownie base is held together and sweetened by Medjool dates and I’ve given four options for the sweetener in the raw chocolate mousse topping. Coconut nectar or rice syrup are the lowest fructose options, followed by pure maple syrup and lastly raw honey. All work equally well, but will give slightly different flavours. If you don’t have a preference about the seetener then I think pure maple syrup has the best flavour.

I topped this chocolate mousse cake with fresh cherries because they’re in full season at the moment, but you could easily top it with fresh berries of your choosing. If fresh fruit isn’t available to you, you could try drizzling it with a berry coulis or simply serve it naked in it’s full chocolate glory.

 

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake

 

Most raw desserts are so nutrient dense you often only need a small slice to satisfy, and this one is definitely no exception.

Avocados are the main component in both the mousse and brownie base and are a brilliant plant based source of omega-6 fatty acids which are vital for the nervous system and brain. They’re amazing for your skin, reducing dryness and thereby providing anti-aging qualities. And not so well known are their anti-inflammatory properties which are amazing for soothing the gut.

Brazil nuts provide the texture for the brownie base and are one of the best sources of selenium which is essential for thyroid hormone synthesis. They’re also a great source of magnesium which is required by all the muscles in the body including the heart.

Dates glue the base together, and while they do contain a fair amount of fructose (the least desirable form of sugar), they also contain a high amount of fibre which slows down it’s absorption. They’re also a great source of potassium, iron, calcium, phosphorus, vitamins A and B6.

Raw cacao powder provides the intense chocolate flavour in this cake and is extremely high in antioxidants – even more so than your standard blueberry! Anti-oxidants are essential for reducing the harmful effects of free radicals which cause cell and tissue damage. Raw cacao is also one of the richest plant based sources of magnesium, a great source of calcium, and is full of mood enhancing neurotransmitters.

Last but not least, the fresh cherries that decorate the top are an amazing liver tonic, cleanser and rejuvenator, and a great source of iron and zinc. When choosing cherries look for ones with the darkest colour as these are the most potent.

As you can see this cake is full of amazing nutrients, but let’s not forget the taste! Smooth rich chocolate mousse atop a moist dense brownie base, finished off perfectly by the tart cherries. This cake is pretty damn amazing.

 

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake

Makes: 1 x 15cm cake (serves 8-10 people)
Prep time: 30 minutes

Brownie Base

1 cup brazil nuts
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
1 ripe avocado
7 medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
pinch sea salt
1 Tbsp coconut oil, gently melted

Chocolate Avocado Mousse

1 large ripe avocado
5 Tbsp raw cacao powder
5 Tbsp pure maple syrup, rice syrup, coconut nectar or raw honey
2 Tbsp almond milk (or milk of your choice)
1 tsp vanilla powder
2 pinches of himalayan pink salt
3 Tbsp raw cacao butter (or cold pressed extra virgin coconut oil)
1 punnet fresh cherries (raspberries or strawberries)

Line a small 15cm cake tin with baking paper.

To make the brownie layer, place the brazil nuts in a food processor and blend until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs. Combine with the desiccated coconut, place into a bowl and set aside.

Gently melt the coconut oil by placing in a small heat proof bowl set over a pan of steaming water with the heat turned off. Combine the chopped dates, avocado, cacao powder, vanilla and salt in the food processor and blend to a smooth chocolately paste (this tastes amazing!). Add the melted coconut oil and blend to combine. Lastly add the brazil nuts and coconut oil and pulse until just combined.

Press the brownie mixture evenly into your lined tin and place in the fridge to chill while making the chocolate mousse layer.

To make the mousse gently melt the cacao butter by placing in a heatproof bowl set over a small pan of steaming water with the heat turned off. This ensures the temperature of the cacao butter doesn’t go above 46ºC and all it’s antioxidants are preserved.

Place the avocado (peeled and stone removed) in a food processor along with the cacao powder, pure maple syrup, almond milk, vanilla and salt and blend until smooth. Slowly add the melted cacao butter with the motor running until it is all incorporated. Spread the mousse over the brownie layer and return to the fridge to chill.

Prepare the cherries by washing well and allowing all the water to drain off, then giving them a light dry with a tea towel. This ensures when you place them on the cake they don’t drip creating water marks down the cake. Remove the cake from it’s tin, place on a serving plate and top with cherries (or fruit of choice).

This raw chocolate mousse brownie cake will keep chilled for up to 5 days or 1 month in the freeze when sealed well.

 

Raw Chocolate Brownie Mousse Cake

Pumpkin Pie Brownies – Sugar Free

Pumpkin Pie Brownies – Sugar Free

Pumpkin Pie Brownies

 

I created these pumpkin pie brownies because I needed a “sweet treat” that contained absolutely no sugar. And by no sugar I mean not even unrefined sugars such as coconut sugar or rice syrup. No dates, no fruit, nothing.

The reason for this crazy idea is I’m doing a cleanse to improve my gut health which requires me to cut out all sugar for 6 weeks. For someone who loves their desserts this has been pretty hard. But it’s also been really interesting too. When you start looking at ingredients and thinking about how you cook, you realise just how much extra sugar is hidden in your diet.

Being a big dessert person I knew I wouldn’t be able to do this cleanse without any sort of sweet treats. So I racked my brains to think of what I could make that would meet the “no sugar” criteria.

First off I tried using stevia in my raw chocolate avocado mousse recipe. This mousse is usually pretty amazing (if I say so myself), but tragically when I swapped the maple syrup for stevia the resulting mousse was inedible!

Stevia has a very sweet flavour but because it’s not a sugar, it doesn’t mix with the rest of the flavours in the same way that pure maple syrup does. When I had a spoonful of my stevia mousse creation I was immediately overpowered by the bitter cacao flavour. A few seconds later I started to taste the super sweet stevia flavour which continued to linger long after. Not pleasant at all. From this experience I think stevia might be best left to sweetening things like hot drinks and smoothies.

Since stevia was out, that pretty much left me with vegetables.

Sweet potatoes, beetroot, carrots and pumpkin are all very sweet tasting vegetables and when cooked, they have a great workable texture. Pumpkin pie immediately sprung to mind so I started experimenting with a butternut squash as it has the sweetest flavour.

Squash and pumpkins contain quite a lot of water so by roasting them in the oven instead of steaming, you avoid creating a soggy cake or brownie. Once the butternut was cooked and cool enough to handle, I mixed it with pumpkin pie spices, ground pecans (because their caramel flavour goes so well with pumpkin pie!), coconut milk and eggs. I poured the batter into into a brownie pan, baked it in the oven for 20 minutes and the result was pretty damn amazing according to my sugar deprived tastebuds!!

The best way to describe these pumpkin pie brownies is the filling from a pumpkin pie. It’s the right amount of sweet and spicy and has a lovely soft, custard-like texture. So if you’re a spiced pumpkin pie fan, I think you’ll love this brownie.

I do need to say, however, this pumpkin pie brownie is not a super sweet treat. It’s definitely not savoury (I wouldn’t do that to you), but it’s just not sickly sweet as some brownies or pumpkin pies can be.

So if you’re a person who really likes your desserts sugary sweet, and you’re not in the middle of a sugar cleanse, then this recipe may not be for you. I did take this pumpkon pie brownie to a dinner party and 5 out of 6 of guests loved it. The 6th guest didn’t say anything and still politely ate their piece but you could tell they wouldn’t be coming back for seconds. Perhaps they just weren’t a pumpkin fan or, as I said above, it may not be for everyone!

As this miraculous dairy, grain and sugar free brownie is sweetened only with pumpkin it’s a great treat to feed your little ones too. Depending on their tastebuds, you may just want to adjust the amount of spices you add. Likewise, anyone on a low or sugar free diet, or anyone following a full paleo diet, this pumpkin pie brownie is for you! It’s delicious straight out of the oven and even better chilled the next day.

 

I hope you give these pumpkin pie brownies a try and I would LOVE to hear your feedback. Did you like the recipe?

Have you tried anything like this before?! Leave me a comment down below.

 

Pumpkin Pie Brownies

 

Sugar Free Pumpkin Pie Brownies

Servings: Approximately 18-20
Prep time: 20 minutes Cook time: 45minutes + 20 minutes

1 medium butternut squash to yield approximately 1 1/2 cups cooked puree
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
pinch Himalayan pink salt
1 cup/ 250ml coconut milk
3 eggs
1/2 cup/ 70g pecan nuts, finely ground

Preheat the oven to 160ºC fan bake. Cut the butternut squash into quarters, leave the skin on and seeds. These can be scooped out later and prevent it from drying out too much while cooking. Smear a little coconut oil on the cut flesh and place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven. Roast for approximately 30-45 minutes, until you can easily cut the butternut with a butter knife. Remove from the oven, place in a bowl and cover. The steam will make the skin easier to remove.

While the butternut is roasting grind the pecans into crumbs using a food processor, and set aside. Line a small brownie tray approximately 15 cm x 25 cm with baking paper.

When the butternut is cool enough to handle, remove the skin and seeds and mash the remaining flesh. Measure out 1 1/2 cups of butternut mash and place in a mixing bowl. Add the spices, vanilla, salt and coconut milk and stir well to combine. Add the eggs and mix in well. Lastly add the pecan nuts and stir to ensure evenly mixed.

Pour the pumpkin pie brownie mix into the prepared baking tray and place in the centre of the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes. When its ready, the brownie will have puffed up a little and a knife inserted into the middle should come out clean. Removed the brownie from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Cut into slices and serve warm with a dollop of coconut yoghurt and a sprinkle of cinnamon. This pumpkin pie brownie also tastes amazing chilled the next day and can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days. Enjoy!