By Cassie Johnston
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I’m a big fan of moderation in all areas of my life. But I especially like to practice moderation in my cooking and eating. I think life is too short to eat kale and flaxseed for every meal and conversely, life is (hopefully) too long to eat deep-fried Twinkies every day.
So I try to make the majority of my recipes fall somewhere between the kale and the Twinkies. It means sometimes I eat crazy decadent pizzas and also that a lot of the times I take a “normal” recipe and clean it up a bit by reducing the sugar, using whole grains, or adding something to boost the nutrition factor.
The all-or-nothing concept with it comes to life (but especially our food) can be so damaging. You can be a “healthy eater” and still enjoy beer and pizza and pie. You can nourish your body while still nourishing your soul—I promise. You won’t find me passing up my Mama’s chocolate chip cookies this holiday season in order to stay “on track.” No, no, no. Healthy eating is about nourishing your body and your soul!
And sometimes, I think it’s possible to do both at the same time—like taking the classic pumpkin pie recipe and making it a bit lighter and healthier. Soul=nourished. Body=nourished. Me=happy Cass.
So maybe this isn’t the cleanest pumpkin pie ever. Okay, it totally isn’t. There is still butter, there is still sugar, and it still tastes like a totally decadent dessert. But it’s not your run-of-the-mill pumpkin pie either. It’s made with a 100% whole wheat crust, egg whites, and a heck of a lot less sugar than your normal store-bought pie.
And that’s enough for me. Especially around the holidays. Every little decision you can make to try to be a bit healthier should be celebrated! So I’m going to celebrate this lightened-up pie and celebrate the holidays with the ones I love. That’s what “healthy eating” is really all about in my book! Enjoy.
This Lighter Pumpkin Pie still tastes indulgent, especially with the Cinnamon Walnut Streusel on top!
For extra flavor, brown the butter for the streusel. Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until chestnut brown bits appear in the bottom of the pan (the butter will sputter noisily and then quiet down once it’s browned). Use in place of regular melted butter, being sure to include all the browned bits.
Keywords: dessert, pie, Thanksgiving, holidays, pumpkin
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Rate this recipe
Yum yum. I’ll have to try your recipe next week!
I agree with your philosophy on foods. I’m not going to beat myself up for eating tasty treats, especially if I have made them at home with ingredients I can pronounce. Like you said, everything in moderation. Can you imagine a life without PIE? Never.
This looks so great! I LOVE pumpkin pie. Can’t wait to try it.
Yum! I want to try this. I am trying very hard to get back to using more real ingredients as well as eat healthier in general!
Yum! I love streusel on my apple pie but I’ve never had it on my pumpkin pie! Gotta try that – I just looove streusel :D
i love pies with streusel! this is a delicious pie.
OMG this looks AMAZING! Way more up my alley than the traditional pumpkin pie! Love the streusel topping! :)
I’m so happy I’ve stumbled across your website. Your recipes and food prep ideas are so motivational, just what I needed to get started with cleaner eating (not to mention how much I love how you photograph/present your posts).
With this recipe, can I ask if you can substitute canned pumpkin purée with real pumpkin (mashed/barmixed)? I live in Australia and Pumpkin Pie is not made here, so I’ve never seen puréed pumpkin in a tin. Do I added any butter/herbs/seasoning to the pumpkin?
Hiya! Yes, just real cooked and mashed pumpkin is the same thing (we are just lazy and buy ours in a can!). :)
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