Look for a firm pumpkin that still has a 1 to 2 inch strong sturdy stem attached. A strong firm pumpkin will last longer than those with thin steams and soft spots. Choose pumpkins without cracks, small holes, or blemishes.
Don’t be fooled! The orange-est pumpkin is not always the ripest. Many varieties come in varying shades and colors!
Pumpkins for cooking are usually smaller than the typical Jack-O-Lantern variety. They contain a sweeter flesh that is less water and will work better for your favorite recipes.
Pumpkins can be baked, roasted, steamed, boiled, or made into your favorite sweet treats! Pumpkins are low in calories but high in healthy fibers, Vitamin A, and potassium. Don’t forget about those savory pumpkin seeds! Try the Kakai Pumpkin variety, Snack Jack, Baby Bear next time you make roasted pumpkin seeds. You can figure that one pound of raw, untrimmed pumpkin will yield around one cup of finished pumpkin puree. A 5 pound pumpkin will make roughly two 9 inch pies.
If you plan to store your pumpkin, heavier is better! Pick pumpkins that feel heavy for their size, ensuring a good amount of flesh inside. A fatter pumpkin will sweeten over a few months of storage.