Turn Leftover Pumpkin Puree Into The Perfect Pancake Topping

Whether you prefer to whip it from scratch or enjoy the convenience of a store-bought can, pumpkin puree has many kitchen uses. From classic pumpkin pie to savory pumpkin soup, blended pumpkin is as versatile as it is tasty and nutrient-dense. The only downside to this creamy, squashy ingredient? Aside from dishes meant to feed a crowd, many recipes only call for a small amount of pumpkin puree, which means leftovers aren't uncommon. However, don't just throw out your leftover pumpkin puree; use it as a pancake topping!

Pumpkin puree adds a rich, earthy flavor to pancakes, complementing the desert-like sweetness of the batter and syrup. Although pancakes are already a comforting breakfast dish, the autumnal warmth of pumpkin gives it an ultra-cozy feel. Plus, pancakes marry well with many other common pancake provisions, ensuring you never have to compromise on or omit your favorite griddle cake fixings.

It's not just the flavor of the pancakes that's improved by pumpkin puree; it's the texture, too. With its lush, creamy consistency, pumpkin puree gives each bite of your fluffy breakfast stack a rich, decadent mouthfeel. Delicious and luxurious while simultaneously reducing food waste — what's not to love?

Boost the flavor of a pumpkin pancake topper

Pancakes topped with a spread of leftover pumpkin puree is a crave-curbing dish on its own. However, you can create a stack of pumpkin-kissed pancakes with a more dynamic tapestry of flavors by incorporating additional, complementary ingredients to the plate. And no, we're not just talking about maple syrup, which is a must.

To give the pumpkin puree-topped pancakes an added dimension of flavor, dust them with fall spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or brown sugar to give them a comforting bravado. Take things one step further by making cinnamon-nutmeg compound butter that melts into the pumpkin puree and imparts a silky, warming touch that oozes an irresistibly autumnal appeal.

Mix the pumpkin puree with cream cheese to boost its richness by giving it a fatty, dairy-forward richness that's satiating and satisfying in equal parts. For something lighter, a dollop of vanilla Greek yogurt adds to the luxurious texture of the puree while adding probiotics and a sweet, familiar flavor to the plate.

Keep things simple by topping the pumpkin puree pancakes with fresh fruit like bananas, apricots, or chopped dates. If you're feeling sweet, a palmful of chocolate chips will add a decadently sweet crunch to the smooth consistency of the dish.

Adding leftover pumpkin puree to pancakes

Making pancakes is far more tedious than lathering the final product with leftover pumpkin puree. However, there are a few tips to remember when adding leftover whipped pumpkin to your stack of pancakes.

The idea is to smear the puree across the surface of the pancakes. However, if the leftover pumpkin puree has been stored in the fridge, it's much harder to spread. Cover the container and let the puree sit at room temperature to soften and develop a more spreadable texture. Careful, though — it shouldn't be left out for more than two hours.

Instead of topping the pumpkin puree with additional fixings, you can infuse them by mixing the provisions into the puree for a more uniform distribution of flavors. If this is your intention, use a food processor, stand mixer, or potato masher to blend the ingredients evenly.

Finally, know when it's time to ditch the leftovers. Nobody likes food waste, but it's just as important to practice food safety as it is to develop sustainable kitchen habits. Leftover pumpkin puree stays fresh for up to four days. Beyond that time, it's unsafe to consume, so make your leftover pumpkin puree pancakes before it's too late.