This recipe was developed by CorePerform dietitian Norah Candito. To learn more about CorePerform coaching and Norah, contact us HERE

You might be just knocking the dust off of your beach chair or digging your flip flops from the back of your closet, with autumn’s bounty a far cry from the first thing on your summer picnic menu. But while you are blending your summer fruit smoothies or slicing your beautiful homegrown tomatoes, consider adding this healthy pumpkin recipe to your summer diet rotation.

 

Comforting pumpkin custard can be served all year round.

Not convinced? We understand. But hear us out.

If restoring or maintaining gut health is important to you, consider why pumpkin is a digestive and nutritional superstar, and one you can find ways to enjoy even in the dog days of summer.

Fiber

You likely know that maintaining our fiber intake is important, but do you know why? Fiber is crucial to bowel health, both aiding in the maintenance of regular and more complete bowel movements and in turn helping lower the incidence of bowel disorders like hemorrhoids and diverticulitis. Daily recommended intake of dietary fiber ranges between 25-35 grams per day, depending on gender and life stage. Canned pumpkin contains around 7 grams per cup of fiber, making it a fiber phenom.

Hydration

Naturally, water intake, especially in the balmy summer months, is critical to overall health. But what does this have to do with pumpkin and our gut motility? Like most fruits and veggies, pumpkin is high in water content, at about 90% water. High water intake helps our keep digestive material moving through the gut. This translates to less bloat, less constipation and more regular, healthy bowel movements. More time on the beach or the ball field and less in the bathroom? We’d say that’s a summer win.

Nutrients

Pumpkin contains significant amounts of vitamin A and C, as well as a healthy dose of magnesium.

Vitamin A is synthesized from the beta-carotene abundant in pumpkin. Vitamin A boosts immunity and aids in eye health.

Pumpkin boosts an impressive vitamin C value as well. This also contributes to overall immunity and helps heal wounds quickly.

Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in the human body and is vital in many enzymatic processes, including the processes that convert our food into energy. It also has a role in muscle contraction, including the contractile movement of the bowel that keeps digestion running smoothly and prevents constipation.

The nutrition benefits of pumpkin are far too robust to reserve for pumpkin spice latte season, so how can we reap it’s benefits throughout the year? Pumpkin can be used to thicken soups and sauces while simultaneously boosting nutrition and reducing fat, or blended into cold, refreshing smoothies. It can even be used on bagels and toast in the form of pumpkin butter for a flavorful and nutrient-dense breakfast option. Try this recipe for pumpkin custard (which can be served cold or warm!) for all the benefits and flavor pumpkin has to offer while carrying you right into traditional pumpkin season.

CorePerform enlists the power of delicious and nutrient-dense foods like pumpkin to help calm the gut while ensuring optimal nutrient intake through personalized attention to your unique gut health picture. To enlist a CorePerform coach for your optimal gut health and nutrition, join CorePerform or CorePerform Lite.

 

Pumpkin Custard

Ingredients:

1 3/4 15oz canned pumpkin (26.25 oz), make sure unsweetened organic and BPA free!

15oz canned coconut milk (I like Native Forest Simple because it has no guar gum)

3 eggs

3 Tablespoons of maple syrup

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground cardamom

1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. In a small bowl, whisk eggs
  3. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix
  4. Fill a deep-dish 13×9 pan with 1 inch of water (this allows the custard consistency, so while they are in the oven they maintain the desired texture)
  5. Fill 6 small, glass dishes with pumpkin filling and place in the deep-dish pan
  6. Bake for 1 hour, or until the custards do not jiggle 😉
  7. Cool in the fridge and serve!

Serve with coconut whipped cream for dessert, or with some nuts and berries for breakfast. Can add a few drops of liquid stevia if you prefer additional sweetness.

For more gut-healthy recipes, visit our Recipes page.