Why go to the store and buy canned pumpkin when you can make your own pumpkin puree? I mean after all, didn’t you just go and buy pumpkins to sit on your front porch, that normally get tossed in a month? And don’t you think the stores charge way too much for a tiny can of that orange stuff?
It’s really easy to make your own pumpkin puree and about the only way I can justify buying one of those big orange fruits. They make for cheery fall decor and later on they make amazing pumpkin puree for pies!
These are the pumpkins I bought and pureed last winter.
Note: Not all pumpkins are created equal. The pie pumpkins work the absolute best, but I buy the big ones because… Well, because like big ones! Anyway on with what I was saying…
How to Make Your Own Pumpkin Puree:
I started with a big yellow beauty that took up residence on our front porch for awhile. And using my biggest sharpest knife, I managed to cut that baby in half and scoop out all the seeds. If you like pumpkin seeds, then by all means save them for roasting later.
I laid each half with the cut side down on a cookie sheet and baked them for an hour and a half at 350. Depending on the size of your pumpkin you may want to adjust the time a bit. Basically you want your pumpkin to be fork-tender. Once your pumpkin is done. Let it cool a bit and then peel off the the skin.
Cut your pumpkin into smaller pieces and use a food processor to puree. Some pumpkins are much more watery than others. If you think your pumpkin is too watery, put cheesecloth in a strainer and let the pieces drain there a bit before you puree them.
Once my puree cooled I poured it into glass jars and then used my vacuum sealer (amazon affiliate link) to seal them; then I put them into the freezer. I ran out of jars and used freezer bags for the rest of my pumpkin puree. I highly recommend the jars though. The bags banged around a bit and ended up with holes.
You may notice that your pumpkin puree is not as orange as what you buy in the store. There is a reason for this. What you buy in the store is actually butternut squash. However if you want more color for your pumpkin pies, just cook and puree a few carrots and mix in. Or add in a bit of natural red food coloring. I don’t mind the pale color so I don’t add in anything.
Do you make your own pumpkin puree in the fall?