What Does Pumpkin Taste Like?

In this article, we're going to cover what pumpkin tastes like, the texture along with a few other factoids that you'll be interested in knowing...

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What Does Pumpkin Taste Like?

When most people try to think about what pumpkin tastes like, they end up thinking about pumpkin pie spice, which is not the same thing.

By itself, pumpkin tastes like most other winter squashes, although there are some varieties that are sweeter than others, and, therefore, more commonly used for cooking. Fresh pumpkin will have a bright flavor, while canned pumpkin will be a little more muted in flavor.

When pumpkin is roasted, it is easy to coax out some of the natural sugars, which will make it sweeter.

Some of the best pumpkins for cooking include:

  • Peanut pumpkin
  • Pie pumpkin
  • Lumina pumpkin
  • Cinderella pumpkin

Pumpkin Texture

Canned pumpkin tends to have a texture that is like a thick cottage cheese, but fresh pumpkin is very different. Fresh baked or roasted pumpkin has a texture that is much more like velvet.

Cubed fresh pumpkin is very hard, just like other winter squashes, and needs to be cooked before eating. Once cooked, the pumpkin tends to be smooth, but doesn’t generally get stringy.

Does Pumpkin Taste Like Sweet Potato?

While there are some cooks who will substitute pumpkin and sweet potato in recipes, they actually have different flavor profiles. Pumpkin tends to taste more savory and like a winter squash.

Sweet potato, on the other hand, is generally sweeter.

Are Pumpkins Sweet?

There are some pumpkins that are much sweeter than others. The best way to encourage the sweet flavor in any pumpkin is to roast it.

Even the sweeter varieties of pumpkins aren’t going to taste very sweet if you try to eat them raw.

Difference Between 100% Canned Pumpkin and Pumpkin Puree

Many people think that pumpkin puree and 100% canned pumpkin are the same thing, but a quick glance at the ingredient list may surprise you. That’s because some brands of pumpkin puree are actually made up of different types of winter squashes.

It’s not uncommon to find butternut, Golden Delicious, or Hubbard squash in a can of pumpkin puree.

Ways to Use Pumpkin

Just like there are many different varieties of pumpkins, there are many different ways that you can cook with them.

This delicious pumpkin cheesecake is vegan and is a great addition to any menu. It relies on pecans, dates, soaked cashews, pumpkin puree, and coconut milk to make a creamy and delicious dessert.

For a baked good that is ideal at tea time or to share with others, this pumpkin spice bread is delicious and tastes just like fall.

Finally, enjoy a creamy pumpkin pasta that is the ultimate comfort food.

Wrap up

Pumpkin is an incredibly versatile ingredient that is great for both savory and sweet applications. When fresh pumpkin is in season, cooking one yourself is a great way to enjoy the incredible flavor that pumpkin has to offer.

Canned pumpkin is great in a pinch and will allow you to cook delicious pumpkin treats when you can’t easily buy a pumpkin at the store, which is why so many home cooks love to keep a few cans in the pantry all year long.

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