Anyone who knows me knows that I’m OBSESSED with pumpkin… year round, I might add. I absolutely love all things pumpkin: pie, cake, bread, soup, you get the idea. If I hear about a pumpkin food, I wanna get my hands on it ASAP. I’ve even done my fair share of baking and cooking with pumpkin. Pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes (my favourite!), pumpkin Nutella muffins, and more recently, homemade pumpkin gnocchi. I seriously love pumpkin. I’m waiting for pumpkin’s PR team to call me to be an official spokesperson (please call me! I’ll do it!).
Every October, I go on a mission to find the best pumpkin foods in Edinburgh. Now, if you’re in North America, you might think, “How hard can that be?”. Well, I’ll have you know that while there is an abundance of pumpkin foods in North America (e.g. pumpkin spice Oreos, pumpkin Greek yoghurt, pumpkin and spice Triscuit crackers, pumpkin pie M&Ms, the list goes on), this is not the case in Scotland. Pumpkin is still finding a place in the food scene here and the Scottish population is slowly (but surely) discovering its greatness.
Back to my mission. Each autumn, I seek out pumpkin-based foods because (1) I love eating pumpkin, (2) I love trying new pumpkin treats, (3) it makes me feel at home. I trek across the city, looking far and wide for pumpkin foods in local cafés and shops. It’s a labour of love. Back in April, I did an Easter Eats in Edinburgh post in which I highlighted the best Easter-themed foods in the city. This time around, I present to you the best Pumpkin Eats in Edinburgh: all the glorious pumpkin foods you need to try to get a true sense of pumpkin’s versatility and deliciousness.
Casa Angelina is a tea room and patisserie in Edinburgh that holds a special place in my heart. The cakes are delicious, the scones and homemade jams are a match made in heaven, and the afternoon tea is unparalleled! The owner Marie Claire is half American and shares my deep love for all things pumpkin. As a result, you might be so lucky as to walk into the tea room when a decadent pumpkin cheesecake is gracing the table. When I see this dessert, I have tunnel vision: literally nothing else matters. NOTHING! Every autumn, I look forward to getting this goodness in my mouth. The digestive biscuit base is buttery and thick and the top layer of mascarpone gently waves hello to your taste buds. But the pumpkin cheesecake filling… oh that filling is seductive. It’s miraculously light and creamy with a steady stream of smooth spiced pumpkin flavour rolling over your tongue. If you see it, you MUST get a slice or two or three. Actually, don’t get any of it. Ignore everything I’ve just said. I want the whole damn thing for myself.
Without a doubt, my favourite place for gelato in Edinburgh is Mary’s Milk Bar. In my full post, I talk at length about why Mary’s Milk Bar earns the title of Best Gelato in Edinburgh. Well, Mary completely spoils me each year in October with her pumpkin gelato. I thank the gelato gods everyday for sending Mary to us. The pumpkin spice gelato is a thing of beauty: it’s smooth, creamy, spiced with cinnamon and clove, and skillfully laced with pumpkin. So far this season, I’ve had 3 scoops and I promise you I’ll have more. Mary is a gelato goddess. The end.
Pumpkin Pie Macarons
Lili and I both love macarons. In fact, we’ve written about them a few times. Lili recently wrote about the macarons at Pâtisserie Sadaharu AOKI in Paris and back in May I embarked on a macaron mission comparing La Durée and Pierre Hermé (you could say I enjoy food missions). I’ve also previously raved about Mademoiselle Macaron, my favourite maker of macarons in Edinburgh. The past few years, Mademoiselle Macaron has been kind enough to make pumpkin pie macarons and OH MY GOD I LOVE THEM. This is the third year that I’ve bought these beautifully delicious morsels and they have gotten better each year! In previous years, the macarons were filled with a light spiced filling, but this year, the pumpkin pie macarons are made with more of a cream cheese filling and they are incredible! Seriously so good! I bought 4 for myself and absolutely loved them. I need a lifetime supply of these beauties because they are amazing and I never want to run out of them!
I’ve mentioned The Marshmallow Lady before in my Easter food list, in a post about the brilliant marshmallow milkshakes, and on numerous occasions on Instagram. This time, the queen of mallows gets a nod for her pumpkin delights. Yes, she uses real pumpkin purée. Yes, they are delicious. And yes, you need them in your life. These pumpkin clouds melt in your mouth the way a marshmallow should! The pumpkin marshmallows are usually made in small batches so they can run out quickly. If you see them, don’t miss getting a bag of these fluffy morsels while you can! Oh and all the marshmallows are handmade and hand cut AND they are packaged by the staff. Everything is done in house! All the more reason to get your hands on this unique treat!
Pumpkin Cheesecake Doughnut
Twelve Triangles is one of my favourite bakeries in Edinburgh. The bread, the pastries, the doughnuts, and the coffees are ALL delicious (full post here). I generally have to resist most of the treats when I pass by because otherwise I’d be a zillion times heavier. I’m happy to report that Twelve Triangles are one of the finest purveyors of pumpkin treats in Edinburgh. They don’t just do one pumpkin treat, they do many. Last year they did pumpkin spice tablet, pumpkin cookies, and a pumpkin cinnamon dark chocolate sourdough loaf. And the masterpiece treat? The pumpkin cheesecake doughnut. I love this doughnut and its rich, creamy filling. It’s probably a good thing they don’t have it year round or I’d have some serious doughnut pinchables! Last year, I also indulged in the chocolate pumpkin doughnut. Equally as amazing! You can see how spoilt for choice we are! I, for one, am SO thankful for the pumpkin party at Twelve Triangles! A new addition to this year’s line up is a sourdough pumpkin chocolate chip bun with spices, cinnamon butter, chocolate chunks, cream cheese icing, and pumpkin seeds. This is top of my “to-eat” list right now and I can’t wait to try it!
Pumpkin Spiced Latte
No, not from Starbucks! I’ll have you know that I refuse the PSL from Starbucks. This month, I chanced across a pumpkin spiced latte at Pumpkin Brown, a raw, dairy- and gluten-free café in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket. I was intrigued and of course had to try the beverage. This latte is made with real pumpkin and be prepared, it doesn’t taste like your usual latte. The hazelnut milk gives it a nuttier flavour while cinnamon features strongly in every sip. It’s not overly sweet nor is it overly pumpkiny. It’s a taste that will likely have to grow on you, but it’s worth trying if you want to steer away from the sugary, syrupy lattes found at coffee chains!
Casa Amiga on Leith Walk is a Portuguese café most renowned for its pasteis de nata and coffee. The café stocks a small selection of products imported from Portugal and one of those products is pumpkin jam. The jam is quite sweet, so be prepared for a hit of sugary pumpkin flavour. The jam is great on toast, especially on less savoury breads, like the currant, oat, hazelnut, pumpkin seed loaf you’ll find at Twelve Triangles. Top the jam with a soft goat’s cheese and you have yourself a damn good snack.
A few places in Edinburgh carry pumpkin products that I can vouch for. Real Foods stocks pumpkin and ginger brown rice noodles, gnocchetti with pumpkin, and raw pumpkin bars. If you seek canned pumpkin for your baking needs, you can find Libby’s at Real Foods and Lupe Pintos, and as luck would have it, Tesco even carries pumpkin purée in their American section.
And there you have it: all my favourite pumpkin foods in Edinburgh! I am so grateful that so many business owners in Edinburgh are keeping the pumpkin dream alive. You are the real stars here! I’ll continue to seek out your treats each October. And if you have any other pumpkin finds in Edinburgh, please let me know! As a self-proclaimed pumpkin connoisseur, I’m always looking for more! Happy pumpkin eating!