Green pumpkins have evolved over time due to both natural and manmade factors. While their color is usually based off of their genetic makeup, other elements, such as harvesting methods, can have a hand in producing green pumpkins.
While pumpkins come in a wide range of colors, green pumpkins specifically can be dark green, light green, or multicolored. Some varieties of green pumpkin include acorn squash, kabocha squash, 'Marina di Chioggia', 'Green Hubbard', and 'Bonbon'.
Green pumpkins come in different shapes and sizes. Many are spherical, with deep ridges and hard, smooth outer skin. However, others may be oblong, have speckled stripes, or be covered in bumpy warts.
The inside of a green pumpkin is almost always some variation of yellow or orange with large, flat, white seeds. Its texture is starchy and potato-like.
'Marina di Chioggia' is an Italian heirloom. This small, dark green pumpkin is known for its distinctive, highly-warted outer rind. Kabocha, on the other hand, is a sweet-tasting Asian pumpkin variety that is commonly referred to as a Japanese pumpkin. It has a hard rind with spots or thin, light green stripes.
Meanwhile, the pear-shaped Lakota squash and the green, acorn-like varieties of carnival squash are known to be mottled with orange and yellow patches. They have a nutty, understated flavor.
Weighing up to 12 pounds (5 kg), green pumpkins are antioxidant-rich, high in water, and low in calories. They have shelf lives of upwards of one month.
Grocery stores, farmers' markets, pumpkin patches, and pumpkin festivals are among the best places to purchase green pumpkins. Because some green varieties are less commercially sought after, however, it is best to conduct prior research. Green pumpkin seeds are also available from specialized seed vendors, as well as some garden and home improvement stores. They can be purchased at about a dollar or two per pound, while regular pumpkin seeds usually go for less than four dollars per pack.
Cooking green pumpkin is quite similar to preparing other types of winter squash. Green pumpkins can be prepared by roasting or steaming them - or even baking them with other sweet or savory ingredients stuffed inside. The roasted seeds of green pumpkins are also just as delicious as those of traditional jack-o'-lantern varieties. Besides its culinary use, a small green pumpkin also makes for an excellent indoor decoration piece in harvest baskets or other fall-themed displays.