Pumpkin – A Nutritional Powerhouse

Taste Autumn with this Delicious Pumpkin Pie Recipe.

It’s time to hit the pumpkin patch, then head to the kitchen to make this lighter, but delicious version of a fall classic…Pumpkin Pie!  Our version is simple enough that you can use fresh pumpkin or canned pumpkin puree, both are nutritional powerhouses!

Pumpkin is actually a vegetable and a rich source of vitamin-A.  One-half cup of canned pumpkin represents 350 percent of the vitamin A you need each day. Pumpkin, fresh or canned is also rich in beta-carotene, a deep orange pigment that allows vitamin A to be produced in your body. Vitamin A promotes the health of your eyes, skin and connective tissues. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant compound that may protect you against the cellular damage that leads to cancer, heart disease and early aging. The fiber in canned pumpkin promotes the health of your digestive tract and may lower your risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

This recipe proves pumpkins are more than just a fall decoration!

 

The Best Light Pumpkin Pie

This pumpkin pie saves 100 calories per slice from the traditional version and it tastes identical!

1 cup crushed ginger snaps (about 16 cookies)
16 oz. can pumpkin puree
1/2 cup egg whites (about 4)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or 1.25 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp cloves)
12 oz. can evaporated skim milk

Preheat the oven to 350°. Grind the cookies in a food processor, or bag and crush with a rolling pin. Lightly spray a 9″ glass pie pan with vegetable cooking spray. Pat the cookie crumbs into the bottom of the pan evenly. Mix the rest of the ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Pour into the crust and bake until knife inserted in center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Allow to cool and slice in 8 wedges. Store in the refrigerator.

Optional: serve each wedge with fat free whipped cream.

Serves 8. Each slice: 165 calories, 1.5 g fat, .5 g saturated fat, 1.5 mg cholesterol, 170 mg sodium, 32 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 6 g protein. Diabetic exchange: 2 bread.

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