3 Easy Pumpkin Recipes That Have Us Super Excited About Fall

Step away from the watermelon and put down that glass of rosé. We may not be ready for it, but the harsh truth remains summer is coming to an end. It's time to get out of swimsuits and into sweaters. And get ready to start eating pumpkin everything.

Even though autumn's food mascot actually turned out to be something of an imposter, the recipe world is not anywhere close to giving up the canned baking gold (and frankly, neither are we). So, dust off last year's pantry leftovers, or scoop up a few fresh cans of pumpkin, squash, or whatever you want to call them.

To get us back in the swing of all-things pumpkin, we enlisted a little help from DeeDee Stovel's The Pumpkin Cookbook. Ahead find three delicious recipes that demonstrate just how easy it is to incorporate a little pumpkin into your life — for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

Photographed by Clare Barboza.
Mango Pumpkin Smoothie
Serves 2

Ingredients
1 cup mango juice or other 100 percent fruit juice
1 cup vanilla yogurt
1/3 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin
1 ripe mango, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks, or 1 cup frozen mango pieces
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
4 ice cubes

Instructions
1. Place all the ingredients in the jar of a blender and purée until smooth.

2. Taste and adjust the flavorings.

3. Serve icy cold.

Excerpted from The Pumpkin Cookbook, © by Edith Stovel, photography by © Clare Barboza, used with permission from Storey Publishing.
Photographed by Clare Barboza.
Northern Italian Pumpkin Lasagna
Serves 8

Ingredients
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
2 lbs fresh pumpkin, seeds and fibers removed, peeled and chopped (about 4 cups)
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 lb bulk sweet Italian chicken sausage
1 large clove garlic, minced

Béchamel Sauce
5 tbsp butter
6 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
5 cups milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3 cups grated part-skim mozzarella
11/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan
12 oven-ready/no boil lasagna noodles

Instructions
1. Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, or until wilted.

2. Stir in the pumpkin and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with the oregano, salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Add the sausage and cook until it loses its color, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Set aside.

3. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour. Cook for 1 minute, until bubbly. Whisk in the milk and cook, stirring, until the mixture thickens and bubbles, about 5 minutes. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and set aside.

4. Combine the two cheeses in a medium bowl.

5. Heat the oven to 375ºF.

6. To assemble the lasagna, spray a 9- by 13- by 2-in. baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Ladle 3/4 cup of sauce on the bottom of the pan and top with 3 noodles, placed crosswise.

7. Pour another 3/4 cup of sauce over the noodles, then one-third of the pumpkin filling. Sprinkle 1 cup of the cheese mixture over the filling. Repeat the layers of sauce, noodles, filling, and cheese twice. Top this with the remaining noodles, pour over the remaining sauce, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. The lasagna should look soupy.

8. Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with nonstick spray and cover the top of the pan, with the oiled side facing down. Bake for 45 minutes, uncover, and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let the lasagna sit for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.

Excerpted from The Pumpkin Cookbook, © by Edith Stovel, photography by © Clare Barboza, used with permission from Storey Publishing.
Photographed by Clare Barboza.
Pumpkin Fudge
Makes 1 pound

Ingredients
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk
3 tbsp canned unsweetened pumpkin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions
1. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan with butter.

2. Combine the sugar, milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, and cornstarch in a large saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture boils. Still stirring, continue to cook until the mixture reaches 236ºF (113ºC) on a candy thermometer.

3. Remove from the heat, add the vanilla, and beat with an electric mixer until the mixture is smooth. Scrape into the prepared pan and let cool.

4. When it is completely cooled, cut into squares and enjoy, or wrap carefully and store in the refrigerator for later.

Variation
For an added treat, melt 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips in a microwave on high for 30 seconds. Drizzle the melted chocolate on top of the fudge in an irregular pattern.

Excerpted from The Pumpkin Cookbook, © by Edith Stovel, photography by © Clare Barboza, used with permission from Storey Publishing.
Photographed by Clare Barboza.
The Pumpkin Cookbook by Edith Stovel, $11.52, available at Amazon.