365 Days of Healthful Pursuit… And A Bit Of Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal

Today marks the 1st blogiversary of Healthful Pursuit!

The past 365 days have been filled with great food, inspiration, friendship, self care, triumph, frustration, and a whole lot a love.

The craziest part?

Healthful Pursuit was never intended to be a food blog.

It began as a website for my private practice. I envisioned it as being a place where I could acquire new clients, share some of my favorite recipes, and write a couple of health articles here and there.

I wasn’t expecting to fall in love with food photography, and I can certainly say I had no plan to delve as deeply as I have into… this. It kinda just, happened.

In January 2011, I switched from a website to a blog, slapped on a new template, and fired up my recipe creation thinking cap.

And the rest; as they say, is history!

My very first post had pumpkin, it’s Halloween, I like pumpkin, you like pumpkin, so what better way to celebrate than with Oatmeal cooked IN a pumpkin?

Ya, that’s what I thought!

zomg. Best invention ever.

Also, I’m happy that I decided to add raisins to it so I don’t have to share any with Kevin.

Oop. Did I say that?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the last 365 days, it’s that I kinda like keeping all some food to myself.


Caring equals sharing, Leanne. Caring equals sharing.

Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal

Vegan (option), Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar free, Yeast free, Corn free

Oatmeal baked in a pumpkin with a crunchy almond flour topping… and then you EAT the bowl!

Lightly adapted from Cooking with My Kid

Yield: ~6 cups baked oatmeal

Servings: 6


  • 1 medium sized sugar pumpkin


  • 2 1/4 cup uncontaminated rolled oats
  • 1 1/3 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/3 cup chia seeds
  • 1/3 cup egg whites *see note
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1 large banana, chopped
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Cinnamon topping

  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 2 tablespoon regular rolled oats or unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven 375F.
  2. Combine all topping ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Cut the top off the pumpkin and remove guts.
  4. Combine all remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Stir until all ingredients are incorporated. Drop batter into the prepared pumpkin and spread cinnamon topping over the top.
  5. Place pumpkin on a cookie sheet and bake with the top off for 20 minutes and another 30 minutes with the lid completely removed. You’ll know the pumpkin is ready when the skin begins to wrinkle slightly.
  6. Remove from the oven and serve! Be sure to scrape the sides as you’re serving :)

note: to make vegan, replace egg whites with 3 tablespoon water + 1 tablespoon freshly ground flax.

calories: 306 | fat: 7.6g | carbohydrates: 53g | fiber: 10g | sugars: 19g | protein: 9g

If you’re serving a big crowd, you could put a couple of additional toppings to the side like raisins, maple flax, and chopped nuts.

Or, do what I did and pack it up for lunches for the rest of the week. It freezes and defrosts incredibly well, too!

As I was going through my old posts this morning, I was reminded of a couple of our favorite recipes from the early days…

I completely forgot about snow cookies!

Thanks all for sticking close by me every step of the way. It’s been a fantastic year and I’m just so appreciative of each and every one of you <3

Happy Halloween, be safe tonight!

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. Congratulations on your blogiversary! I’ve been following your blog for a couple months now and I just love how creative you are with your recipes. I look forward to see more in the future! :)

  2. Happy Blogiversary!!!

    “I wasn’t expecting to fall in love with food photography, and I can certainly say I had no plan to delve as deeply as I have into… this. It kinda just, happened.” <– me too. Except it took me like 18 mos longer to finally realize that. You realized it like in a month. It took me another couple years to get on board with that. lol

    Your food, recipes, photography have always impressed me, Leanne. So happy to have met you!

    • <3 exactly the same, right back at you! I've looked up to you since the very beginning and was completely star stuck when we first began talking! It's great that us ladies have found the things we're passionate about. It really does make us shine :D

  3. OMG Leanne, I can’t believe it’s only your first blogiversary!! Your blog looks so professional and gorgeous, I would have thought you’d been doing it for years! Since I haven’t been reading for that long, I’m going to go back and check out some of the posts you highlighted. I hope you have a wonderful day – and eat plenty of that oatmeal because it looks delicious and you deserve it!

  4. It’s only been a year????!!! Ohmygoodness, I feel like you’ve been blogging for so much longer than that! Anyway, Happy Blogiversary and Happy Halloween!!!

    You just stole my original breakfast idea for today with this pumpkin….and that is definitely a good thing!

  5. Happy Anniversary!!! I can’t believe you’ve only been at this for a year – you seem like a seasoned professional. I’m totally impressed. :)

    I wish I had a pumpkin right now because this looks like the most amazing breakfast ever.

  6. Congratulations on your blogiversary!

    That baked oatmeal looks lovely – wonderful photography, as usual. I wonder if I could make it inside apples instead of pumpkins as we seem to have cut big holes in the pumpkins we had in the house yesterday. As a bonus, the cut-out pieces from two jack-o-lanterns cook up to make just enough mashed pumpkin for a pumpkin smoothie for today’s breakfast!

    • You’re brilliant! I bet apples would totally work. I’d love to know how it turns out when you give it a try :)

      • Well, a search of the kitchen led me in a completely different direction as I was low on oatmeal and had zucchini to use up, so I made zucchini muffin filled apples. The apples burst and the muffin all oozed out the top and it all looked a mess. But it tasted absolutely fantastic! I would definitely bake in apples again, but maybe look up the proper method first…

        • oh my, sounds like a nice kitchen disaster! Some of the best messes taste absolutely unbelievable, don’t they? Good to know it tasted good though :)

  7. Happy one year anniversary! I’m glad you did fall in love with food blogging + photography because your blog has quickly became one of my favorites to look at.

  8. Congrats!! Happy on year! What an incredible first year, too! I absolutely LOVE your blog and I am so happy to make it a part of my morning, every day now! Your site and your recipes are a major inspiration! BTW I absolutely love any recipe that you can display/serve inside of a pumpkin. It’s always so adorable.

  9. Happy First Year and best wishes for many more to come…so that we can all benefit from your great recipes, fitness plans and other generally fabulous information! Your blog really does look like you’ve been doing this for years – kudos!

  10. Happy Blogoversary, Leanne!

    I’ve been reading your past posts about photography and have a plan to get my own setup soon. I’ve also had to admit that I’m only going to be able to cook/photograph on the weekends now that it gets dark so early due to the fact I have HORRIBLE lighting in my house!

    Like Angela said, I’m surprised you’ve only been doing this a year? Any tips for a newbie like me? ;)

    • I did the very same thing on the weekends last winter. I think this year I’ll play around with strobes and lighting and such so I don’t have to pack my weekends SO tight.
      Tips… hmmm… keep on keepin’ on seems to have been the theme this year. There were days where I was so discouraged, but I just kept at it. Believing in yourself and the message you have for the world is the most profound thing you can do for your own progress. Heck, I need to make that into a bumper sticker ;)

      • Keep on keepin’ on! Now all I can see in my mind’s eye is the Brady Bunch singing that song! *dies laughing*

        I’m still trying to find my own message, but I suppose if I knew that already, I wouldn’t be needing to go on this personal journey, right? ;)

  11. Happy bloggiversary! I can’t believe you’ve only been blogging for a year, your site is so professional and well-established. And even the early recipes are fantastic :-) Thanks for sharing your knowledge and love of food with the blog world.
    Loving the pumpkin, such a cute way to spice up breakfast!

  12. Evan said exactly what I was thinking – so happy you found this interest, because I love to visit and you are definitely one of my favorite reads.

    I am happy to call you a friend, and look forward to much more! Happy one year!

  13. Happy blogiversary Leanne! You know I love you, your blog, and your pictures so much!!
    This idea of baking oatmeal in a pumpkin is genius!! I’m so excited to do this =)
    Pinned it!
    Happy Halloween =)

  14. Happpppy blogiversary. Time. Flies. This recipe is so cool, I never thought of roasting a pumpkin as is, I always cut mine up into cubes but this seems to work really well!

  15. Congrats! I had no idea about the history of your blog – that’s awesome :D I’m certainly glad it happened and you fell in love with it, I enjoy your blog and your recipes so much.
    I love baked oatmeal, I have no idea why I like it better than stovetop but anyways… Love the baking it in a pumpkin idea :D

  16. Congratulations on 365 days of blogging :) Like everyone else has said, it’s hard to believe you’ve only been at it for one year! Your blog looks so professional, and your recipes are brilliant, including today’s! I love everything oatmeal and everything pumpkin so combining the two is the best idea ever. Now to just go get more pumpkins… :)

  17. Holy oatmeal-awesomeness Batman! This is the best idea ever for making a big ‘ole pot of oatmeal. I can’t wait to try this out for the next brunch I either host or attend… or when I crave a 6 person portion of oatmeal. It has been done before, I assure you. The fiber-induced aftermath is not very pleasant, though, so I don’t recommend trying that too often. TMI? Yeah, probably.
    I hope you have a great Halloween Leanne! What are you dressing up as? I think I’m going as a super hero this year and officially retiring my taco costume. 5 years as a dang piece of Mexican food is enough for this guy.

    • haha I didn’t dress up this year! I know, lame. I think a super hero costume would look fantastic on ya!

  18. Congatulation Leanne! I have been following your blog for a long time (although Im not the best at commenting.. sorry), and Im so glad I found it! Its one of my favorits for food and health inspiration! Thank you for sharing everything!

  19. Hi Leanne! I so enjoy your site and your creativity. I am wondering about the recipe above. Applesauce is listed twice and I am wondering if one should have been apple juice? I so want to try this as it looks delcious and is packed with healthy ingredients. Let me know, breakfast is calling! Oh, and happy anniversary, you are doing a great job! (Youtube channel is a nice addition too).


    • Hi Kathy! Thanks for pointing that out. Just went through my notes and fixed the recipe. Must have been tired when I was writing it. Enjoy!

  20. Happy Blogiversary :) I have been trying to figure out for a little about how long you have been doing this, and my estimate came in at started somewhere in 2009, your Blog is amazing and the photography stellar! When I get my book together, I might have to ask you to do the photography…
    As for the pumpkin baked oat meal, looks wicked good! I could probably eat myself into a food coma! Can’t wait to try it!

  21. Happy Blogiversary! Can I just say I love your blog for the amazing recipes, superb presentation and the awesome upbeat attitude! Never fails to put a smile on my face.

    Well done! Here’s to year two!

  22. I am in total shock! I can’t believe you’ve only been doing this for a year! I thought for sure that you had been at it for YEARS! Your blog is so professional and so inspirational! I might not comment often, but I read every single one of your posts.

    And how strange is it that we both started our blogs on the same day… What is it with Halloween that inspires people to start blogging on that day!?

    Congrats on an awesome job. Keep it up, Leanne, you truly are an inspiration, to me, and to many others!

    • Wow, there are so many of us that celebrated our blogiversaries yesterday! Too cool. Happy blogiversary to you :D
      Thank you for all you kind words. I feel the exact same about your blog as well! Your photography is breathtaking and your recipes are delicious to boot :D

  23. Happy blogiversary!! I would have thought your blog was several years old since it’s that wonderful. I look forward to 365 more days! :)

  24. blogaversary to you! I’m so glad I discovered you n your blog / website!
    This looks fun.
    I’m making my 3rd batch of the quinoa brekkie Bake for lunch – my day & son-in law LOVE it! Adding coconut & crasins to this batch!

    • Oh yum! I’ve always wanted to add coconut to it. I bet it will be sooo good :) Have a fantastic weekend, Nadya!

  25. I just made this for breakfast! I made it in ramekins with canned organic pumpkin since I couldn’t get my hands on a whole pumpkin…. BUT IT TURNED OUT PERFECT! Super delicious! (:

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