homemade pumpkin puree Tips

how to make your own pumpkin puree

Is it fall where you are? Are you dreaming only of thick scarves, rust-colored crackly leaves, hayrides and hot apple cider with a cinnamon stick? Are pumpkin dishes on your agenda? Wouldn’t it be great if you knew how to turn those adorable pumpkins at the market into the puree that most baking recipes call for? Well, look no further!

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet. Halve a sugar pumpkin and scoop out the seeds. Place the pumpkin halves cut side down your baking sheet and roast the pumpkin until it is completely tender inside, about 45 to 50 minutes. Scrape the pumpkin flesh off the skin with a large spoon (metal is great here, because of the sharper edges) and puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Let cool and use as needed.

1 15-ounce can of pumpkin puree holds about 1 3/4 cups of puree.

Don’t have a sugar pumpkin? Sweet potato, butternut squash and red kuri squash are all great substitutes for pumpkin puree in recipes. Sweet potatoes will roast faster and so will smaller squash, but the method is the same: halve, roast facedown, scrape the flesh off the skin and puree it until smooth.

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19 comments on how to make your own pumpkin puree

  1. JMe

    Can I ask why you remove the seeds first? Personally, I have found them much easier to remove after they’re cooked. Just wondering if there’s something I’m missing.

  2. Aron

    JMe: The seeds are liable to burn, but more likely because when you scoop them out, you can give them a rinse, some salt, and roast them separately for a delicious snack.

  3. Expat Eric

    I personally find that just roasting and pureeing the pumpkin flesh yields an excessively wet product, even in a fan oven. The closest I’ve come to canned pumpkin is to do that, then to cook off the moisture in a saucepan. Careful, it acts like lava, bubbling and splattering! This also seems to most closely recreate the taste as well.

  4. Blair

    If you’re living in the UAE or anywhere in or near Oman, you’ll have the best of luck with Red Pumpkin from Oman (it’s also the cheapest option, score!). I also roast mine open side up with a little oil rubbed in (and brown sugar and soy sauce).

  5. Elaine

    I bake my pumpkins whole (stab them a few times to let the steam out) and break them open and remove the seeds after they are cooked. Run through the food mill and then strain the puree through a cheesecloth to reduce the moisture. I do weight the puree to make sure the excess water is removed. Since I grow my own pumpkins, I do these 6 at a time. I freeze the puree in 1 cup quantities for easy use later. Pie, pumpkin cranberry bread, cake . . .

  6. h van den Dool

    Used be a rural kid with excess pumpkins/squash.
    always, always cook or drain off (cheese cloth) excess moisture from pumpkins for baking. If draining, save the liquid for soups.

  7. I think the real key here is not to use your jack=o=lantern pumpkins! Into the compost for them after halloween, no exceptions. Sugar ( or also known as pie pumpkin) is the key. Quite a short window to purchase but they make that dry, very dense roasted pumpkin flavour you’re looking for. Hands down you will not find a drop of liquid. I scoop the flesh and freeze in 3 cup portioned freezer bags (flattened) then puree later when needed. Red Kuri and Kabocha equally as dry. ps…..slices of fresh sugar pumpkin also make the BEST tempura you ever had!

  8. Claire

    I have given up on pumpkins for cooking altogether, and use a good squash, either Lower Salmon River, or some kind of hubbard. Of course cooking a blue hubbard is a weekend event in and of itself, but nothing beats the nutty sweet flavor, and it is so sweet!

  9. It’s the season for pumpinks all you need is a good recipe and time. I have been looking for different recipes on internet I have found a few different blogs but I love this smittenkitchen.com blog. I love the recipes here. I recently opened up a restaurant in city and I wanted to add my restaurant to directory sites but there are not many good one, however, I found this site http://www.restavista.com it’s a professional restaurant listing website in USA. I loved the fact that it’s ADs Free, no clutter or pop ups. It is very simple and professional restaurant directory website. I highly recommend people who own restaurant. It’s free doesn’t cost anything unless you want more exposure.

  10. Hey James, thank you for the tip. I too own a restaurant I needed a good restaurant directory webiste. I just checked out http://www.restavista.com I think it is very professional restaurant listing website yet it is free. I am going to create a listing for my restaurant. Thanks for smittenkitchen.com it helps people to communucate here. I love this blog.

  11. I find that just roasting and pureeing the pumpkin flesh yields an excessively wet http://www.restavista.com Restaurant Directory in US . product, even in a fan oven. The closest I’ve come to canned pumpkin is to do that, then to cook off the moisture in a saucepan. Careful, it acts like lava, bubbling and splattering! This also seems to most closely recreate the taste as wel

  12. Deb, you’re a star! I live in Melbourne, Australia and it’s certainly starting to feel like autumn now! And all of a sudden I’m craving home-baked goods and spend way too much time drooling over your blog! I can’t wait to make your Cinnamon-Pumpkin Scrolls but being in Australia means no pumpkin puree, but now I can make my own!
    Thank you!!! (Now I really can’t wait to get home and start baking!)

  13. MJ Miller

    I was making spiced pecans, and added the whole egg, yolk and all, without even thinking about the recipe saying egg white. I have them in the oven and they seem OK. Is there any problem I will encounter because of my mistake? Will it effect the nuts or will they be OK? I’m planning to give them as gifts!