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How to choose and store pumpkins

Learn how to know if a pumpkin is good, and how to choose a pumpkin for cooking. Find out how to store pumpkins, including uncarved and uncut pumpkins. Once you've chosen a great pumpkin, cook it using one of our delicious recipes.

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How to choose a good pumpkin and how to store it

Choosing a good pumpkin for cooking is easy with these simple tips. This guide works for all the different types of pumpkins. Once you've picked out a stash of great pumpkins, find out how to make your pumpkins last as long as possible - up to 12 months! And finally, check out our recipes to find lots of ways to use pumpkin in a delicious meal. 

How to choose a good pumpkin

  • Pick a pumpkin with firm, hard skin all over. Bruised, soft skin my lead to rotting. Visual imperfections are usually fine so long as the skin is firm, as pumpkin skin is hard and protects the flesh.
  • The stem should still be attached and feel firm and dry.
  • Choose a pumpkin that is heavy for its size, this indicates plenty of good quality flesh.

How to store whole, uncarved pumpkins

  • Store pumpkins at room temperature in a dark, dry place. Don’t allow them to become wet or frosty.
  • Store pumpkins on their side. This ensures any moisture will run off the pumpkin instead of collecting and causing it to rot.
  • Place pumpkins on a piece of cardboard. The cardboard will protect the pumpkin from bruising, and will also protect your floor if the pumpkin does decay.
  • Depending on the variety, pumpkins can be stored for anywhere between 2 months to 12 months. Queensland blue, Jarrahdale and thick-skinned varieties store very well. Butternut pumpkins don’t store for as long, so should be eaten sooner.
  • If you’re storing multiple pumpkins for a long time, leave space between them for airflow and to reduce the chances of rot spreading between them.

Now you know how to choose a good pumpkin and how to store them so you can keep eating them long after pumpkin season! Pumpkins are delicious in a variety of sweet and savoury dishes. Find out about the different types of pumpkins and what recipes they're best in, and discover different ways to cook pumpkin below.

GET THE RECIPE: Egg, Bacon and Veggie Pie

This delicious pie is full of pumpkin and hearty vegetables and high-protein eggs for a great family meal.

GET THE RECIPE: Roast Pumpkin and Spinach Risotto

Risotto is such a great comfort food. This recipe with roasted pumpkin is delicous and filling, a perfect cosy vegetarian meal.

GET THE RECIPE: Pumpkin, Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Stuffed pasta shells are the perfect wintery comfort food, get the oven on and warm up the house with this pasta bake.

Spicy chestnut, pumpkin and pancetta soup

Vegetable lasagne

Roast Pumpkin and Spinach Risotto

Butternut Pumpkin Spice Cake with Sunflower Almond Toffee

Pumpkin, Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Quiche Four Ways

Roasted Pumpkin, Brussel Sprouts and Prosciutto with Egg

Beef Korma with Pumpkin and Beans

Vegetable Fritters with Poached Egg

Giant Arancini Balls

Bubble and squeak turkey fritters with poached eggs

Egg Buddha Bowls