Dinner in a Pumpkin-- a delicious, hearty rice casserole baked inside a delicious pumpkin!
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5 from 1 vote

Dinner in a Pumpkin

Dinner in a pumpkin with wild rice, beef and vegetables cooked in a yummy sauce - a fun way to celebrate Halloween.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time55 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 5
Calories: 606kcal
Author: Lauren Allen


  • 1 medium pumpkin (or 2 smaller pumpkin pie pumpkins)
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion , finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 cup carrot , diced
  • 1 cup green bell pepper , diced
  • 1/2 cup celery , diced
  • 2 cups wild rice , cooked (or use brown rice or quinoa)

For the Sauce:

  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • crushed red pepper flakes to taste


  • Cut the top off of the pumpkin--cutting an opening about 5-7 inches wide. 
  • Clean out the seeds and insides of the pumpkin until the inner walls of the pumpkin are smooth. 
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Season the ground beef with salt and pepper. Brown it in a large skillet over medium heat. 
  • Remove grease. Add onion, garlic, carrots, bell pepper and celery and saute for 2-3 minutes. 
  • Pour mixture into a large bowl. Add cooked rice and toss to combine.

For the Sauce:

  • Sdd the beef broth to the same skillet over medium heat. 
  • Add onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper, parsley, paprika and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer.
  • Whisk in the flour until smooth. Add the milk and cook, stirring, until thickened, 2-3 minutes. 
  • Pour sauce over the rice/beef mixture and toss to combine. Season with crushed red pepper, to taste.
  • Lightly salt and pepper the inside of the pumpkin. 
  • Spoon mixture into the pumpkin and place the lid/stem back on top. 
  • Place the pumpkin on a tinfoil lined baking sheet and place it on the lowest rack of your oven (or whatever rack will allow the pumpkin to fit in the center of the oven). 
  • Bake for 45 min -65 minutes, depending on the size.
  • When serving, don't forget to scoop the delicious cooked pumpkin from the sides of the pumpkin as you spoon the mixture out. Enjoy!



Calories: 606kcal | Carbohydrates: 66g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 246mg | Potassium: 923mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 4550IU | Vitamin C: 27.3mg | Calcium: 106mg | Iron: 3.8mg