Made-From-Scratch (for real) Pumpkin Pie

It’s that time of year again that I LOVE!!!  Fall–Halloween, Thanksgiving–and the days leading up to the kick of the Holidays (though, the “Holidays” for me start at the kickoff of the first College football game.  Go ahead. Laugh.  It’s okay.)

So a few years ago, right before my eldest daughter turned one, I decided to make a real Pumpkin Pie.  I wanted to really use every part of our Halloween pumpkins that weren’t carved (therefore not all buggy).  I *love* roasted pumpkin seeds, but hated the idea of throwing away a perfectly good pumpkin.  I felt a challenge.  So I did my homework.

I spent some time researching how to do a homemade pumpkin pie.  Although that Fall the research was hard to come by, making a real pie wasn’t as hard as I had thought.  So, I took the recipe found on a website and made it.  This year, I did it again, and tweaked the recipe.  And I’m going to share them.

Make it.  Trust me when I say you won’t regret it!

So, the first year,  I used a carving pumpkin.  This year, I used some baking pumpkins, because supposedly they’re sweeter.  I think you can use either.  I also reconfigured some ingredients and measurements and it was *so* much better this year.  

Just in time for Thanksgiving, I wanted to share my recipe with you.  Makes me want to write a cookbook.

Baking pumpkins (one will give about 3 cups of smashed pumpkin, which will make either two shallow pies, or one deep dish pie.)

Dutch oven with steamer basket

Potato masher

Ground ginger, nutmeg, and cloves (you can use pumpkin pie spice, but using separate ingredients like this will up the Wow Factor.  Trust me.)


Sugar, salt, eggs, evaporated milk

Brandy extract (Yes–this is the Epic Ingredient.  Trust me.)

So, I cut up the pumpkins, (the spiders are my shout-out for Halloween…because this was supposed to go up sooner…yeah, oops.)  cut out the seeds (roast them–you’ll thank me for that, too!), and then I took pictures of my pretty, hollow pumpkins.

Cut them up, leaving the rinds on, like you are going to make mashed potatoes.  Put them in your steamer basket and fill the dutch oven with water underneath.  Cover and bring to a boil.

Let them boil until they are easy to pierce with a fork, once again like mashed potatoes.  Mine took about an hour and a half (but, I had a lot of pumpkin and had to split it into two batches).

When they are done, scoop the pumpkin off the rinds with a metal spoon or ice cream scoop. 

Mash with a potato masher.  If you are lucky, you have cute and happy helper to assist with the mashing.  After this, you can either split it up into three-cup batches and freeze, or continue with the recipe.  Told you it was easy.  And totally makes you feel all awesome and Pioneer-ish.

(So these instructions are for one shallow dish pie.  If you want to make a deep dish, double the recipe.  I just prefer shallow.  Not that I am shallow…anyway, moving on.)

1 and 1/2 cups of mashed pumpkin
3/4 cup sugar
1 (can be heaping) teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 rounded teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt (I don’t use any, so this is totally optional)
1/4 (slightly heaping) teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 (again, can be slightly heaping) ground cloves
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup evaporated milk
1 teaspoon Brandy extract
Graham cracker pie crust (makes it taste so awesome)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Mix pie ingredients in mixer, adding in order listed above.  Bake 15 minutes (less if you are using a pre-made crust–more like five to ten minutes), then reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean (I start checking at 35 to 40 minutes).  Cool completely.

Enjoy.  And Happy Thanksgiving!!!

(A special thanks to my husband for helping prep the pumpkin and doing the majority of the clean up, because he’s awesome like that, and to my mom who helped configure measurements in exchange for being part of the taste-test crew.)  

Leave a comment if you end up making it–I’d love to hear how it turned out! 

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