Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How To Make Pumpkin Puree

Having problem's finding canned pumpkin on your shelves? Make your own, it's easy!

I'm not sure if there is a pumpkin shortage this year, but I've been having problems finding canned pumpkin on the store shelves. No worries because making it from scratch is easy and what can be better than homemade!

The best pumpkins for pumpkin puree are the smaller pie pumpkins or cheese pumpkins rather than the larger jack-o-lantern type pumpkins because they tend to be too watery. If you can't find pie pumpkins, you can use butternut squash instead.

How To Make Pumpkin Puree

  • 2 organic pie pumpkins, about 1.8 oz each

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Cut the top of the pumpkin as you would if you were carving a jack-o-lantern.

Cut the pumpkins in half.

Then in quarters.

Scoop out the seeds, and if you wish to make roasted pumpkin seeds, rinse and lay them out on a baking dish overnight to dry out.

Place pumpkin quarters on a baking dish and bake in the oven for about 45 - 50 minutes, until pumpkin flesh is soft if you pierce it with a knife.

Remove from the oven, and when cool enough to handle, remove the skin. This will come off easily. Discard the skin and place pumpkin in a food processor. Puree until smooth, adding water by the tablespoon if needed. (I used 3 tbsp)

This makes about 2 cups of pumpkin puree which you can refrigerate or freeze to use in any recipe where canned pumpkin is called for.


Michelle Irinyi said...

I was just thinking last night I could substitute butternut squash for pumpkin. Thanks for confirming!

Lauri said...

I have done this and it is so much better than canned pumpkin! After using canned pumpkin for years, then doing it this way, I thought "so this is what pumpkin is supposed to taste like"! Yum! I appreciate all your recipes and helpful hints - thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

There is a pumpkin shortage this year due to the very wet spring/summer. (At least here in the northeast) Just read an article in the paper that farm markets are even trying to go outside their growing area just to find some. I went to 5 stores the other day trying to find some! Finally scored 5 cans. Thanks for posting this!!!

Jennifer said...

Is a "pie pumpkin" the same as a sugar pumpkin? I am hoping to make some pumpkin items soon - I appreciate the info!

SazzyMCH said...

Good to know - when I go back to the UK next year it'll be next to impossible to get canned pumpkin so this is perfect (although, if I'd thought about it for half a second I prob would've figured it out!) Thanks!

NancyD said...

Thank you so much, Gina, for posting this and your wonderful photos that make it so easy to follow! It's been impossible finding canned pumpkin in the stores!!

Anonymous said...

Never purchased pumpkins, except for jack-o-lanterns but 2 1.8 OZ pumpkins? Not pounds?

Stephen said...

Just a note for those who don't know. if you are planning to can your pumpkin. Make sure you only cube it after cooking (Don't puree). The reason is that puree pumpkin when canned may trap air which can cause botulism - Puree it before use.

Tammy_Skipper said...

I was wondering the same as anonymous...1.8 oz?? LOL, I'm guessing it wouldn't really matter what size when following the procedure, but those would be the tiniest pumpkins evah ;)

vicious82 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

There is a shortage of canned pumpkin right now! I went to 3 stores trying to find some, and finally someone knew why it took so much effort to track some down: Apparently they only can it once a year, and LAST year's crop was small for some reason, so they're running short before canning starts for THIS year. Folks should start seeing it on the shelf again in early- to mid-October!

Thanks for the millionth recipe from your site added to my list of things to try - can't get over how wonderful this blog is!

Anonymous said...

Can't believe you would have to tell people how to puree pumpkin. The American diet is doomed

Anonymous said...

Gina, I would like to THANK you for this post, from someome who is working hard to feed my family as much healthy and non-processed food as possible. It is not always easy due to our hectic schedule, but this simple post is a great reminder that we don't HAVE to use canned products.


Gina @ Skinnytaste said...

Maybe that should have been pounds not oz, but it really doesn't matter how much they weigh.

I've heard about botulism in canned pumpkin purée, thanks for mentioning that.

Sugar pumpkins should work, any pumpkin you would use for pie.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Gina! I would love to save this, but can't find the print/save option. Can you please add?

Pamela said...

FWIW, you can use jack-o-lanterns for puree and it still creates a pretty delicious pumpkin roll. :)

Heather said...

Gina, I don't have a food processor. Would a blender work as well? Thanks for all your wonderful posts!

Gina @ Skinnytaste said...

Sure, that should work.

Yes, I'll add the print button soon.

Rosalind said...

Thanks for posting this. I went to 3 stores looking for the can!! I spoke with a manager at Stop & Shop. He told me he got a shipment last week and it was gone by the end of the day. They will not be getting anymore. He has no idea why. I was scared they wouldn't have any They are going in my oven in two minutes!! Can't wait to make Pumpkin Spice cupcakes today. I'll be sure to share this on my facebook page.

Anonymous said...

Pumpkin shortage . . . you bet. Our local pumpkin farmers in PA have had their entire crops wiped out by recent flooding. If you like pumpkin pie, I'd recommend making and freezing as much puree as you can when you can find the pumpkins. Thanks for the instructions. Happy cooking!

Kim said...

Can I freeze in zip lock bags and how long will it freeze for?

Gina @ Skinnytaste said...

Yes, you can freeze this for up to 6 months.

Diane said...

Thanks for this post - I just made the most wonderful pumpkin soup ever following your directions. I will freeze the remaining pumpkin for other nummy recipes.

Kim said...

How long will it keep in fridge?

Gina @ Skinnytaste said...

3-4 days in the fridge.

Tabby said...

I have also froze my pumpkin puree. I just freeze them in 2 cup freezer bags. Really can use pretty much any pumpkin just not realy big ones. The only different is it is milder in taste and a little more watery. Made Ginas pumpkin buter this weekend. YUmmy tastes like pumpkin pie.

Anonymous said...

Could you tell me the difference between the "canned Pumpkin" and Pumpkin Puree? Is it the same? I couldn't find Pumpkin Puree @ the grocery store and the guy said it's the "canned" pumpkin. HELP! ... awaiting delicious cupcakes... but I can't make them until i find this distinction! :)

Mother Rimmy said...

I just roasted my first pumpkin last week and loved the fresh flavor! Even better, I got to roast the seeds. Good instructions. Thanks!

Shirl said...

I've always used my Jack-o-lanterns. I steam them in my juicer. I made pumpkin jelly out of the juice, and pureed the pumpkin flesh. Noone has ever known that I used my own puree instead of canned in my pies!

Anonymous said...

Can I make this for baby food?

Gina @ Skinnytaste said...

Canned pumpkin and purée is the same thing. Fresh homemade is so much better than canned!!

Absolutely this is perfect for babies! You can make all your babies squashes this way!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Gina!

You really need to have a baby food section on here. All our little ones would love you forever.

Anonymous said...

Love this idea, haven't roasted my own for years and tomorrow is the day. One tip I'd like to add is if you want to roast the seeds, you do NOT need to rinse them, just remove the large pieces of pulp/strings and then roast them on a lightly oiled pan as directed above. The pumpkin pulp left on the seeds almost disappears and the taste is so much better as it sort of caramelizes the seed with extra goodness.

Anonymous said...

I've oven roasted and pureed my own pumpkin before, and it's wondeful that way. I'd just caution that to get the same thickness as canned, it's good to strain the puree in paper towels or a coffee filter, over a colander. You will be surprised at how much liquid is in the roasted, pureed pumpkin, and this could affect your recipe.

Ruth said...

SazzyMCH in the UK you can buy libbys canned pumpkin in Waitrose!

Thanks for this though Gina, bought some pumpkin really cheap and it's just been sitting here, look pretty :)

Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen said...

Great idea! Way better than buying a can of pumpkin, even if you could find it. I just did a post on how to do the same thing but without having to fight through cutting a pumpkin in half before roasting it.

number1deb said...

if you bake it till it's soft, you can mash it with a pototo masher - very easily! no need to put it through a blender or food processor!

Carole said...

How much of the puree do you need to make a pie?

Anonymous said...

You can also cut the shell into chunks and steam them over the stove until skin peels off easily.

Anonymous said...

As a person who has made her own pumpkin puree for 20 years I would advise against adding the water as this will affect the setting of any custard style pies you may use it in. And to Carole (Nov '11) who was asking about how many cups to use to make pumpkin pies, the recipe I've used for years suggests 2 cups.

Anonymous said...

why can't i save this to my recipe box?? I don't see the save button!

Anonymous said...

Gina, I sure wish you had a separate blog for baby food recipes. With that said, I do blend up most of your recipes to feed my son. He loves them as much as my husband and I do!

Anonymous said...

Can you put in a crock pot overnight instead of the oven?

Anonymous said...

I read in another recipe on your site something about making pumpkin puree in a slow cooker. I can't seem to find that one, I just started using slow cookers and would love to know how to do that. I don't know enough about slow cookers to try that on my own. I would like any tips I can get.

Unknown said...

My newest favorite thing to eat is pumpkin or squash puree mixed with vanilla yogurt and pumpkin pie spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice)! I could eat this allll day! So far my favorite have been using sugar pie pumpkin, delicata squash, red kuri squash, and butternut squash! Oh, and I usually leave the skin on when blending the puree... extra fibre and nutrients, and since it is all blended, you can't really tell.... but then I eat the peel on most winter squash even if I am not making puree.

Emmy said...

What oven temperature did you use to bake it? I don't see that anywhere, and that would definitely have a correlation on the length of time it bakes....

Mary Beth Guba said...

When I cook my pumpkin after I puree it, I put it in a colinder with some coffee filters lining th bottom. It needs to drain. It still has a lot of liquid and if you don't drain it off (I put it in the fridge overnight) the moisture level can throw off your recipes.

Mary Beth Guba said...

When I cook my pumpkin after I puree it, I put it in a colinder with some coffee filters lining th bottom. It needs to drain. It still has a lot of liquid and if you don't drain it off (I put it in the fridge overnight) the moisture level can throw off your recipes.

retiredfister said...

You can also microwave the pieces for 8 to 10 minutes instead of baking

retiredfister said...

You can also microwave the pieces for 8 to 10 minutes instead of baking

Crystal said...

Emmy, just after the two pumpkins are listed, it says to preheat the oven to 350 degrees. :) HTH

Anonymous said...

Hello. And Bye. Thank you very much.

Gena Matilda said...

I love roasting mine with cinnamon sticks for sweets and chili and garlic for savory soups etc. It adds a great depth of flavor!

Ronnie said...

You mentioned in another recipe cooking the pumpkin in a crock pot ... how do you do that instead of baking it?

Michele Conard said...

Thanks for sharing. This is my first time trying fresh pumpkin vs. canned as I am trying to eliminate processed foods from our diet. Sometimes using fresh is just as quick as packaged and taste so much better :-).

Anonymous said...

You can do this quicker in the microwave. Same idea. Just place your quarters flesh side down in a baking dish with 1/2 cup water and microwave on HIGH until tender, usually about 15 minutes.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone had trouble cutting up the pie pumpkins? Mine are hard as a rock. Not sure what is wrong.

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