Ever want to truly make a pumpkin pie out of scratch but have been scared off by the thought of making your own pumpkin puree? It is easy and so much more appealing than digging pumpkin out of a can….here’s how make DIY pumpkin puree.
You will need a few things:
- Cookie sheet
- Sharp big knife (suitable of cutting a sugar pumpkin in half)
- Food processor or blender
- Melon baller, grape fruit spoon or just a regular spoon
- Small bowl for seeds
- Measuring cup
- One sugar pumpkin for every 2cups/lbs of puree you want
I started out with about 18lbs of pumpkins (6) and ended up with almost 14 cups of puree. I harvested my pumpkins almost two months ago, cured them (will post how to later) and stored them in the garage in a fruit box.
Step 1: Turn on oven to 400 degrees.
Step 2: Wash the pumpkins and determine how you want to cut them in half. Horizontal will mean you need more cookie sheets, vertical works as well you just have to remove the dried vine. The vine should snap off pretty easy with a little pressure. I cut mine a mix of ways because I had to fit all of them on 3 cookie sheets.
Step 3: Cut the pumpkins in half and gut them. Gutting is easiest with a melon baller or grapefruit spoon. A regular spoon will work but you will need a little more time. Make sure all the seeds are scooped out, set aside for later to clean and roast.
Step 4: Place the pumpkins face down on the cookie sheet(s). Put in oven, check after 30 min and then every 10 min after until done. You want to bake them until you can easily pierce them with a fork and their skin is a little wrinkled. The key is the wrinkle if you want to have a really easy time removing the skin….it will basically fall off which will save you loads of time (vs scooping it out).
Step 5: Take the pumpkins out of the oven, flip them over- careful they are hot! Allow the pumpkins to cool enough that you can separate them from the skin. I like to let them cool til they are the temperature of food you would eat. That way you can immediately start processing them. You don’t want to put scalding hot pumpkin into a food processor.
Step 6: Puree the pumpkin in a food processor or blender until smooth…when you think it is smooth continue for 2 more minutes just to be safe. No one wants lumpy pumpkin pie!
Step 7: Measure out pumpkin into batch size you need. Pies call out for a 15oz can of Libby- use 16 oz of your puree instead. Cookies use 8oz (1 cup). Pumpkin bread calls out a 15oz can again so use 16oz again.
Step 8: Freeze what batches you won’t use right away. I have a deep freeze (chest freezer) that I can get away with storing my extra pumpkin puree and shredded zucchini year round. (If you freeze in ziploc bags always thaw out the bag in a bowl in case it leaks!)
Step 9: Bake bake bake. Here are my top three Pumpkin recipes at the moment:
- Pumpkin Cookies
- Pumpkin Bread or Cupcakes (my recipe)
- Pumpkin Pie (& DIY whipped cream in a mason jar)
What is your favorite Pumpkin recipe?