This week something wonderful returned to my life: Synergy’s Kombucha. Some of you might remember my previous post, b*tching about its disappearance from the shelves of Whole Foods and Vitamin Cottage. Well, apparently the powers that be took care of whatever nonsense needed to be taken care of, and approved its return to stores everywhere. I have probably enjoyed five of these healthy beverages since its return on Monday. Hooray.

On another note, we’re halfway through October and Halloween is creeping up. I don’t know about you, but I am in love with any and all things pumpkin.

My mother thinks I’m crazy for eating it straight out of the can with a little sprinkle of Truvia to sweeten the taste. Dee-lish-us. There are, however, many, more civilized ways of enjoying this healthy and flavorful vegetable. Here are a few of my favorite pumpkin recipes, all of them super easy and quick:  Enjoy!

Protein-packed Pumpkin Oats (courtesy of pbfingers.com)

  • 1/2 c. old fashioned oats
  • 1 scoop All the Whey cup cake batter protein powder
  • 1/2 c. canned pumpkin
  • Several shakes of pumpkin pie spice

Combine all ingredients with 2 cups of water and microwave for 90  seconds, stirring every 20 seconds or so.

Pumpkin Date Nut Bars (courtesy of carrotsncake.com)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup chopped dates
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350*F degrees. Spray 8-inch square baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients until smooth.
  • Spread batter in prepared baking pan, and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes.
  • Let bars cool completely in pan before cutting.

Pumpkin Chia Spelt Scuffins (courtesy of ohsheglows.com)

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups whole grain spelt flour
  • 1 t baking powder (I use aluminum-free)
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t nutmeg
  • 1/2 t ground cloves (I skipped this as I didn’t have any)
  • 1/2 t fine grain sea salt
  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance vegan buttery spread (Or use non-hydrogenated margarine)
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar (you might be able to use maple syrup)
  • 1/2 cup organic cane sugar (or regular sugar)
  • 1 cup canned or fresh pumpkin
  • 1 flax egg (1 T ground flax + 3 T warm water, mixed)
  • 1 t vanilla

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk flax egg in a small bowl and set aside. In a medium sized bowl, combine the dry ingredients (spelt, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves). Set aside. In a different bowl mix the butter, sugar and agave until smooth. Melt the butter a bit in the microwave for 15 seconds first as the Earth Balance is easier to work with when melted slightly. Add pumpkin, flax egg, and vanilla. Beat well. Carefully mix in dry ingredients being sure not to overmix. Spelt is broken down very quickly when mixed and you can end up with a tough batter if you overmix it.  The batter will be very moist and sticky, but don’t worry. Drop the batter onto the baking sheet. Wet fingers to slightly shape the scuffins. Pop a stick in the end if preferred to have your scuffin on a stick! Sprinkle with chia seeds for a spooky, yet nutritious, effect for Halloween! Bake for 17 minutes or until the scuffins slightly bounce back when touched. Handle the scuffins on a stick very carefully because they are delicate. Enjoy!

Now I just need to finalize my Halloween costume. Happy Friday, kids!

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