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Pumpkin In The Morning

Last night I wrote this whole post on 2012 and my feelings about all of the change and struggle that myself and everyone around me seem to be going through. I definitely questioned whether or not I really wanted to publish it because y’all know I have a hard time with the “putting myself out there” type of stuff sometimes. Then I hit publish and WordPress deleted my entire post and just published the title, “The Storm.” I quickly deleted the empty post, breathed a sigh of relief and took it as a sign from the universe that it wasn’t meant to be.

This should give you the general gist of the but truthfully I think I’m still in the middle of the storm and not ready to process it all. And I feel that so many around me have been in this storm with me fighting their own battle…sickness, breakups, career change, loss of pets, family struggles, etc. It’s overwhelming, really.

Moving on…in a totally different and less serious direction. My breakfast every single morning this week has featured pumpkin so I thought it would be nice to do a round up of my favorite pumpkin breakfast recipes.


Pumpkin Banana Oatmeal

1/2 cup old fashioned oats or 1/4 cup quick cooking steel cut oats or any oat base you want (this bowl was a mix of oat bran and quick cooking steel cut oats)
1/2 banana, sliced thinly
1/4 cup canned pumpkin
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon cinammon or pumpkin pie spice
Pinch salt
Dried cranberries, raisins or golden raisins
1/2 cup milk of your choice (I like almond)
1/2 cup water (sometimes I do 3/4 cup milk and 1/4 water if I want creamier)

Optional toppings: nut butters like almond or peanut butter, jam like Crofter’s superfruit spread, pumpkin or apple butter

Mix together all ingredients in a small saucepan and cook over medium low heat, stirring frequently until mixture has thickened. It should take 5-8 minutes to cook. Make sure you don’t crank the heat to high and boil the mixture because it won’t cook properly and will stick to the bottom of the pan.

Pumpkin Overnight Oats

1/3 cup old fashioned oats or museli (I like Bob’s Red Mill Museli and you can soak it for 15-30 minutes and be ready to go!)
1/3-1/2 cup greek yogurt
1/4 cup milk of your choice (I like almond)
1/2 banana, diced
1/4 apple, diced
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
1 tablespoon chia seeds
Dried cranberries, golden raisins, etc.

Optional toppings: nut butters like almond or peanut butter, pumpkin or apple butter

Mix everything together in a bowl and leave in fridge overnight. I can usually get away with leaving them for 30 minutes to an hour if I make it in the morning. I use plain Greek yogurt and find that the banana and pumpkin butter on top sweeten enough for me but use vanilla yogurt or add honey if it’s too much for you.



Pumpkin Spice Waffles
(adapted from this recipe)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (a little more if you really love the spice)
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
7/8 cup milk (1/2 a cup + 1/3 cup)
1 tablespoon butter, melted and cooled a bit

In a medium bowl, mix together flours, baking powder, baking soda, spices, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, milk, pumpkin and butter. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until just combined.

Cook according to your waffle makers directions. My tip for perfect waffles is to let them cook until they stop steaming. This made two big Belgian waffles.

Pumpkin Apple Muffins
(Recipe heavily adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook)


1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Very small pinch of cloves (1/8 teaspoon)
1/2 (of a 15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup applesauce
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped
Extra brown sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle over the muffins before baking


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 12-cup muffin tin with liners (or cooking spray).

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. In a separate medium bowl, mix together pumpkin, oil, applesauce, sugar and eggs. Add wet mixture to flour mixture and stir until combined. Fold in apples.

Divide batter between muffin tins, filling about 3/4 (or a tad more) full. Sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon over the tops of muffins. Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. Muffins will keep for 3-5 days out or freeze well for a couple of months.

Yield: 12 muffins

Healthier Banana Pumpkin Bread
(Recipe adapted from Nancy Creative)


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (or go up to a tablespoon if you really want it spiced)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 very ripe medium banana, mashed with a fork
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
2 eggs
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon milk
1 tablespoon pumpkin puree


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 5 loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.

In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt.

In large bowl, mix together pumpkin, banana, yogurt, oil, eggs and brown sugar. Add in half of the flour mixture and mix well before adding in the other half. Continue to stir gently until everything is well combined.

Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let the bread cool for about 10-15 minutes in the pan before removing it to cool completely on a wire wrack.

For the glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, milk and pumpkin and spoon over loaf once cool.

Yield: 8 servings

Enjoy!!! Let me know if you try any of the recipes!

{ 18 comments… add one }
  • Heather November 15, 2012, 2:38 pm

    I made your pumpkin-apple muffins a few weeks ago & they were a HUGE hit! Those waffles look amazing though. I may have to dust off my waffle maker this weekend!

  • Linda November 15, 2012, 2:51 pm

    All your pumpkin recipes look delicious! I definitely need to try your overnight oats. Can I use the Coach’s Oats for that?

  • Nikkie November 15, 2012, 3:04 pm

    2012 really was a stormy year. I’d even say it was the stormiest year I’ve ever been through, and totally unforeseeable so. I made a big decision careerwise which more or less directely led to my marriage falling apart. At first I was very tentatively blogging about what was happening and it did feel good to share and learn so much about what other people were going through and to experience compassion from people I didn’t even know personally. But then, one day I woke up and felt that I didn’t want to have a blog that included even remote parts of those feelings I was trying to leave behind, which is why I just shut the whole thing down.
    I guess, what I am trying to say is, that it may help to share those things publicly, but it may as well also be nice to have a safe place free of that shit. A good place – just like your wonderful blog.

  • Lisa November 15, 2012, 3:15 pm

    I’m dying over all the pumpkin in this post. It’s my absolute favorite this time of year! I always love pumpkin in overnight oats, especially with a little banana too, for some added natural sweetness. I need to try out those waffles!

  • Pam November 15, 2012, 3:35 pm

    Don’t you just LOVE sure signs from the universe?!?
    Oh, and PUMPKIN!
    I do!

  • Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes November 15, 2012, 3:36 pm

    Mmmm, all the food looks fabulous!

  • Jeremy November 15, 2012, 3:53 pm

    Hang tough through the storm, little lady. You are in my thoughts.

  • Laura November 15, 2012, 4:09 pm

    I’ve seen that quote before and totally love it. it speaks volumes, doesn’t it?! I’m sure writing the post was therapeutic, even if no one will ever read it. I did that a lot when I was going through some tough times. Wrote honest letters to people without ever having the intention of them seeing it. Hang in there, lady. You are stronger than you know.

  • Julianna @ Julianna Bananna November 15, 2012, 5:23 pm

    all of these recipes look so good! definitely bookmarking that bread recipe to make when i’m home for thanksgiving!

  • Paige @ The Balancing Act November 15, 2012, 5:49 pm

    I experience similar difficult decisions about what to post on my blog…On one hand, I want to be able to share struggles and fears and tough times with my readers, but on the other hand, one it’s “out there,” it’s difficult to go back to not discussing it if you don’t feel like it…If that makes any sense! So I appreciate what you do share and respect what you choose to keep private.

    Thanks for all the pumpkin-y goodness…Thanks to your suggestions on previous posts, I have tried both pumpkin oatmeal and pumpkin overnight oats (w/ slight modifications to work with what I had on hand). For some reason, I’m totally down with the pumpkin in hot oatmeal but not so much in cold overnight oats! I’ve also been using fresh pumpkin puree, so it will be interesting to see how canned pumpkin compares when I inevitably run out. Can’t wait to try the pumpkin muffins and bread as well!

  • Addy @ Six-Kick Switch November 15, 2012, 6:32 pm

    Ah pumpkin. One thing I will never get tired of, especially at this time of year. I hope that whatever you’re going through resolves itself, but I also hope that once this storm passes, you find yourself a better version of the person who walked in 🙂 Hang in there!

  • Matt @ The Athlete's Plate November 15, 2012, 7:07 pm

    That waffle looks delicious!

  • Anonymous November 15, 2012, 11:29 pm

    Thanks for your blog- it’s fun to read and it has a very human quality. I sense that your “storm” is similar to my own at the moment. It’s very hard, I know. Some days and weeks are real ball busters. Wishing you much strength!

  • Courtney Filipiak November 16, 2012, 12:05 pm

    Chin up girl !! A good meal, a good project, a good sweat, a good talking-to in the mirror .. whatever it takes .. you’ll weather it all with class !!

  • MC November 16, 2012, 9:13 pm

    Just thinking about you! I LOVE your blog — whether it includes recipes and samples of delicious foods, awesome workouts, training ideas, or personal stuff — happy, sad, fun, difficult, etc!

    It’s hard when these storms hit, but I know you will come out stronger, healthier, happier, and whole. It takes time to process, heal, and change, but as long as you’re taking care of yourself and listening to your needs and body, you can’t go wrong! This is your blog — you should do whatever helps you the most and makes you feel most comfortable!

    Just remember that you aren’t alone, and that it’s normal to have storms every now and then 🙂

    Have a fantastic weekend and happy early Thanksgiving!!

  • Clara November 17, 2012, 12:10 pm

    I can really relate to what you went through with the post, Jen. Well… I think I can! I guess what came to mind is something I have a tendency to do in blogging. If I’m going through something tough, I’ll feel myself wanting to blog about it to try to force it to all be okay. I think I try to convince myself that if I write about it, explain how I got through it and how I’m better now- that I’ll feel completely better. It’s like thinking I can force an end point to a period or process. Sometimes the hardest part for me is accepting I still have stuff to get through. Anyway, seems like your taking all the right steps. I hope you have a wonderful weekend with sweet Sullie! xx

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