Pumpkin Recipes Perfect for Halloween!

Here are some Spooktacular pumpkin recipes I found and wanted to share with you! They would be great for Halloween!


For the topping:

  • 2 cups low fat vanilla yogurt
  • 1 cup raisins

For the pancakes:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup 1% low fat milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup low fat vanilla yogurt

In a small mixing bowl, briskly combine vanilla yogurt and raisins until yogurt becomes looser texture. Reserve. For the pancakes, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine milk, butter, egg, pumpkin, and yogurt, mixing well.

Add wet ingredients to flour mixture and stir until just moist. Do not overmix. Batter may be lumpy. For thinner batter, add milk. Lightly coat a griddle or skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium. Using a quarter-cup measure, pour batter onto hot griddle. Cook until bubbles begin to burst, then flip pancakes and cook until golden.

Serve warm, topped with yogurt-raisin mixture and dusting of cinnamon.

  • 1 (15-ounce) can pure pumpkin
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 (30-ounce) bag frozen cheese ravioli
  • 1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese

Place a large saucepan of water over high heat. Cover and bring to a boil. While the water is coming to a boil, combine the pumpkin, broth, sugar, butter, garlic powder, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium saucepan and stir to combine. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the butter melts and the mixture is heated through, about 10 minutes.

When the water comes to a boil, add the ravioli and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside. Just before serving, stir in the sour cream as desired. Serve the ravioli on individual plates, top with pumpkin sauce and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.


  • 1 can (14 ounces) pumpkin, chilled
  • 3 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1 container (6 ounces) lowfat vanilla yogurt
  • 2 cups lowfat milk
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 6 teaspoons graham cracker crumbs, optional

Place all ingredients (except graham cracker crumbs) in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and top each serving with a teaspoon of graham cracker crumbs, if desired.

Howling for a Healthy Halloween

Halloween brings out the kid in all of us. It’s fun to get dressed up in a costume and parade around the neighborhood or go to a party. Treats are a part of the fun. However, treats don’t have to be sticky, gooey candy. The words “healthy” and “Halloween” don’t appear to fit together in the same sentence but can! If you are the type of mom who is concerned that Halloween isn’t the most nutritionally healthy night for your children, there are some steps you can take to help minimize the “candy craze”.

Have a Healthy, Happy Halloween!


1.)Exercise During Halloween? Trick or Treating is exercise! Make sure children get enough physical activity to burn off excess calories. Trick-or-treating can be a fun way to incorporate walking. Plan a few extra loops around the neighborhood. This can tire out kids and prepare them to hit the sack when they get home.

2.)Boundaries. Set limits with your child on how many pieces of candy they’re allowed to eat on Halloween night. The ‘come home, dump out all the candy and have at it’ method is not the best. Allow your children to make their own selections, but tell them they can only pick a few pieces.

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Milk Myths

You deserve to hear the real story about dairy production from those who know it best…America’s dairy farmers. With less than 2 percent of the U.S. population involved in farming today, many people don’t have the opportunity to visit a dairy farm.

Add the fact that most people are three to four generations removed from the farm, and you find a pretty big information gap. The below information from hard-working dairy men and women will help bring dairy farm practices to life.

Myth: All milk contains antibiotics, except organic.

Fact: All milk is carefully tested for antibiotics. Any milk that tests positive is disposed of immediately, and does not enter into the food supply.

  • Sometimes it’s necessary for farmers to treat cows with antibiotics when they are ill, just as humans sometimes need medication when they are sick.
  • All milk is strictly tested for antibiotics on the farm and processing plant. Any milk that tests positive is disposed of immediately and does not get into the food supply.
  • The U.S. dairy industry conducts more than 3.3 million tests each year on all milk entering dairy plants to ensure that antibiotics are kept out of the milk supply. According to the most recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) data, less than one tanker in 3,000 tests positive for any animal drug residues, including antibiotics. In those rare cases, any milk that tests positive is disposed of immediately and does not get into the food supply.
  • The milk testing system provides dairy farmers strong incentives to keep their milk free of antibiotics. Any milk that tests positive for antibiotics is immediately dumped. In such cases, the farmer responsible for the milk is required to pay for the full tanker of milk.
  • Milk and dairy products are among the most stringently regulated foods in this country.

Myth: Today’s dairy cow is treated like nothing more than a milk machine.

Fact: Dairy cows must be healthy and well cared for in order to produce pure, wholesome milk.

  • Farmers employ professional nutritionists to develop a scientifically formulated, balanced and nutritious diet for their cows. Diets include hay, grains, protein sources, and vitamins and minerals.
  • Dairy cows receive regular veterinary care, including periodic check-ups, preventative vaccinations and prompt treatment of illness.
  • The dairy industry has in place a number of initiatives that demonstrate commitment to animal well-being. The National Dairy FARM Program™ is a nationwide, verifiable program that addresses animal well-being. Third-party verification ensures the validity and the integrity of the program to our customers and consumers.
  • Dairy farmers depend on healthy cows for their livelihood.

Myth: The reason the price of milk is going up in the grocery store is so dairy farmers can get rich.

Fact: Price increases for dairy, and all foods, beverages and other goods, are tied to dramatic increases in energy/fuel, distribution, transportation, feed, and supply costs.

  • Dairy farmers only receive about 30 cents of every dollar.
  • Market forces, like demand, impact the price of milk at the grocery store,
  • Farmers are seeing a lot of cost increases in producing milk, including feed and transportation. These cost increases have left slim margins for dairy farmers in recent years.
  • Want to learn more? Click here to view our fact sheets about life on the farm.


Food Fun!

Make fun food!

Can healthy food be fun? Of course it can! As a parent, I am sure you are concerned about making sure your kids get enough calcium and other vitamins and minerals that are found in dairy foods. It might be difficult if you have finicky eaters, so you may need to think of some creative ways to get them to eat and drink the three daily servings of dairy they need. Here are some creative ideas:

Add some excitement to regular milk. Add a touch of flavoring–strawberry or chocolate syrups are a couple of ideas. (These don’t add a significant amount of sugar or calories.)  Even try adding a garnish to the glass like a strawberry on the rim to make it more interesting. You can add some excitement to cereal by adding chocolate or strawberry milk to it for a change of pace as well. Graham crackers or a cookie served with a glass of milk is also a favorite sweet treat.

More cheese please!

Cheese is a great source of calcium and makes food taste great. Put some cheddar in an omelet or on a sandwich. Some other “cheesy” ideas are:

  • Create mini-pizzas by topping whole-wheat English muffins or bagels with pizza sauce, low-fat mozzarella cheese, and toppings like mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes, or chunks of grilled chicken.  Kids love to have their hand at being a chef, so let them make their pizza with the toppings you provide them.
  • Cut cheese into fun little shapes by using cooking cutters. You can serve it by itself or with whole-grain crackers.  Do the same with a grilled cheese sandwiches by cutting it into a heart or other fun shape.
  • Top vegetables (usually ones that your kids turn their nose up at) with melted low-fat cheese or serve up raw veggies with cream cheese as a snack
  • Use whole-grain tortillas to make wraps. Fill them with eggs and cheese for breakfast; turkey, cheese, choice of vegetables for lunch; and beans, salsa, taco sauce, and cheese for dinner.

Put a cherry on top – or any other fruit!

Serve cottage cheese with fresh fruit or applesauce or try frozen yogurt topped with fruit.  Create parfaits with layers of plain yogurt, fruit, and whole-grain cereal.  

Other ways to zest up of your food. You may not even have to do anything special to the food you are serving to make it exciting. Change how you serve it. Use a colorful or oddly shaped dish. Make fun names for everyday foods. For example, a treat for Halloween could be “Frankenstein’s Fruit Parfait” or “Witches Stew.” 

 Remember that kids love to make their food and have choices in what they eat.

Throw an Indoor Picnic

By DeDe Hausmann

It’s that time of year when we never know what the weather will bring.  Sure it’s October but this is Indiana and anything goes!!!  Let’s say you haven’t had your fill of picnics over the spring/summer and you’d love another one but a thunder-boomer or chilly weather is what you have.  Don’t worry–throw an INDOOR PICNIC!!!

With the kitchen close at hand, meal prep/transportation is a cinch.  Here are some easy but nutritious and tasty recipes to try.

1)      Pita Pockets: Take whole grain pitas, cut in half, spread a thin layer of plain yogurt/dill weed mixture on the interior and stuff each pocket with thin slices of left-over chicken or other meats, thin slices of cucumbers or zucchini, shredded carrots, grape tomatoes halves and shredded Cheddar or Colby cheese.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  To make the flavors come alive, heat for just a little in the microwave before serving.

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Don’t Trick Your Bones, Treat Them!

By Diane Ruyack

A big problem in our country is back pain, as well as arthritis, osteoporosis, broken bones, trauma (caused by sports injuries or automobile accidents for example), and other spinal disorders, hip, knee and foot pain, cerebral palsy, and congenital problems like clubfoot.

The medical costs for these musculoskeletal conditions in the United States is estimated at $849 billion annually.

Every October 12-20 the Bone and Joint Decade celebrates National Action Week to educate the public about prevention activities.

Worldwide, musculoskeletal conditions are the most common causes of severe long-term pain and physical disability. Aging populations throughout the developed world will result in significant increases in musculoskeletal conditions, with attendant increases in costs to those countries.

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World Food Day

By Michelle Plummer

While food can be a luxury to some, it is a necessity for others. Established in 1981 by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, World Food Day hopes that all people recognize that food is a need and not a want.

The FAO aims to raise levels of nutrition across the globe, improve agricultural productivity at all levels, enhance the lives of rural populations and contribute to the growth of the world economy. It also provides assistance to countries changing their agricultural policy, to aid regions out of famine situations, to help implement appropriate technology and facilitate a neutral environment to discuss issues around food production.

Indiana is not immune to hunger issues. According to Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, one in ten Hoosiers are food insecure. It is hard to believe in a state our size that so many people still have to seek out food means.

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