I didn’t grow up with chutneys so this feels like an exotic food adventure. I like the idea of a spicy and savory sweet since, in our household, we are doing our best to avoid sugary foods. I also like yet another way to use pumpkin. These chutneys can be made after the harvest bustle has slowed and the weather has cooled, just in time for gift-giving.

Coconut sugar gives a deep, rich taste without the insulin hit of many other sweeteners. I used it for my Christmas chutney gifts since a few of my tribe don’t enjoy stevia. I’m not sure how long this preserve would keep without sugar, and I certainly wouldn’t try to can it for pantry storage, but I wonder if stevia could be used for small batches that will be refrigerated and used up quickly. It would be worth a try. Or maybe monkfruit?

Pumpkin Chutney
  • 1 kilogram pumpkin, raw, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • 1 teaspoon pickling salt or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seed
  • 250 ml cider vinegar
  • 250 ml filtered water
  • 1 cup coconut sugar, or more to taste
  1. In a large heavy-bottomed pan, add all of the ingredients except the sugar and simmer over a medium heat for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the sugar to the pan and stir until dissolved. Simmer for a further 30 to 60 minutes, stirring often. If you want the chutney to be less chunky, mash or puree it. Ladle into sterilized jars and cool. Keep refrigerated.

Recipe Notes

I first made this with two cups of coconut sugar and found it far too sweet.

The flavour gets even better after a week or two.

This recipe will fill two 500 ml jars or four 250 ml jam jars. Translation – 16-ounce and 8-ounce. 


Spiced Pumpkin Apple Chutney

I especially enjoy the complex taste of this one. So many health-giving spices.

  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • ½ tsp dried ginger
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 kg butternut squash or pumpkin, raw, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 3 cooking apples, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces pieces
  • 250 ml water
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 300 ml cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot, then fry the onions with the ginger, chilli, cardamom, cinnamon, mustard seeds and cumin for five minutes until the spices are aromatic.

  2. Stir in the garlic, squash and apples and cook for 10-15 minutes more. 

    Still over the heat, stir in the turmeric and sugar. Mix well.

  3. Add the vinegar, water and salt, and bring the chutney back to a simmer. Cook, stirring often for 20-30 minutes more.

  4. Spoon the hot chutney into sterilized jars, screw on the lids and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate.

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