14 Uses for Your Post-Halloween Pumpkins

You are probably noshing on candy and wondering what to do with your Halloween pumpkins right about now. Here are a few ideas for carved and uncarved pumpkins.

 

Carved Pumpkins

 

Stay safe. Don’t eat a pumpkin you have carved and that’s been sitting out for more than a day. Before you do anything with it, scrape out the charred parts and remove any candle wax.

  1. Put it in your compost pile. Cut it in half horizontally and place it on top of the compost pile flesh side up. The birds will have easy access to its yummy and healthy goodness.
  2. Bury the whole thing in your garden. It will break down over winter and add nutrients directly to your beds.
  3.  Make a puree out of the flesh to use as a healthy, organic facial mask.
  4. You’ll need a lot of room for a Punkin Chunkin, but it’s a great opportunity to teach kids physics and how to build a catapult.
  5. Feed your carved pumpkins to your chickens or pigs or add it to your worm bin. If you don’t have any of those items, give your pumpkins to someone who does, or take it to your municipal composting facility.

 

Witch holding a carved pumpkin

Uncarved Pumpkins

 

If you bought pumpkins that you didn’t carve, save them for decorating through the rest of the fall. There are also a myriad of ways to cook them! Fresh, healthy pumpkins should last two months if stored at 50-55 degrees.

  1. Make planters out of them. Cut off the stem end to make a big enough opening. Remove the seeds and stringy bits, and save them for cooking. Line the cavity with newspaper, fill with potting soil, and plant mums for a beautiful fall porch decoration.
  2. Roast the seeds. Rinse them well, coat with oil and seasonings, and spread on a cookie sheet in a single layer. Roast at 300 degrees for about 45 minutes.
  3. Use the stringy innards to make soup stock. Boil for about 30 minutes, let cool, remove the pumpkin, and refrigerate or freeze the broth.
  4. Cook the flesh and puree it for bread, pie, soup, and muffins. Puree freezes well for use all winter.
  5. Make chips and fries with dip.
  6. Make pumpkin butter.
  7. Make a bird feeder by carving an opening on one side. Put a dowel into the opening and through the back wall, hang from the stem. You could do this with a carved pumpkin by putting on a surface since the stem has been cut off.
  8. Use a small pumpkin as a serving bowl. Cut off the top and remove the seeds and stringy parts. To serve cold foods (juice, applesauce), just add them to the raw cleaned out pumpkin. Roast the pumpkin until barely soft at 350 degrees for serving soups and stews. Compost the pumpkin when done, in either case.
  9. And finally, serve up your very own homemade, organic, pumpkin spice latte.

Don’t throw out your pumpkins! There are dozens of uses for them!

 

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