Pumpkin Pie Polenta


The past few days here in Massachusetts have been frigid. We’ve had a mild winter – for New England standards – thus far this season, but I have a feeling this is not the end of the cold weather… which means more indoor time, inevitably leading to the spread of germs and the pesky common cold.

Although I very rarely get sick, I do like to nurture my body with an arsenal of cold-fighting foods to ward off any lingering bacteria or viruses. Luckily for me, one of my very favorite foods – pumpkin – has the nutritional power to boost the immune system!

Packed with beta carotene, a nutrient that breaks down to make vitamin A, the orange squash is a powerful antioxidant.

That’s where this warm, comforting, and cold-fighting breakfast comes in.

A welcomed departure from stovetop oatmeal, (my go-to winter breakfast), polenta can be a delicious and healthy way to start the day. In this recipe, the creamy cooked polenta is joined by earthy pumpkin puree, warm spices, a touch of brown sugar, sweet maple syrup, and crunchy pecans.

Healthy, easy, warm, and delicious? I’d say that’s a perfect way to start a winter morning.

Pumpkin Pie Polenta

2 servings

  • 1 Tbsp salted butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup 1% milk, preferably organic
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup stone-ground corn grits/polenta, such as Bob’s Red Mill
  • 1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • maple syrup, for serving
  • chopped toasted pecans, for serving, optional


  1. Melt butter in a medium-sized saucepan set over medium heat. Swirl butter in saucepan until lightly browned and fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add in the water and milk; bring to a low boil. Stir in the grits and salt; reduce heat to simmer. Cook grits over low heat until thick and creamy, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir the pumpkin puree into the grits until well-combined and warmed through. Stir in pumpkin pie spice, vanilla extract, and brown sugar.
  4. Serve hot, drizzled with maple syrup and topped with chopped toasted nuts, if using.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (without maple syrup & pecans):

281.9 calories, 7.7 grams fat, 4.4 grams saturated fat, 4.5 grams fiber, 17.6 grams sugar, 8.2 grams protein

Recipe by Lauren Zembron www.healthyfoodforliving.com


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