Let’s talk about how to make pumpkin puree.
In the fall, I love baking with pumpkin (if you haven’t already noticed)! I love making pumpkin cookies (my kids’ favorites), pumpkin bread, even pumpkin pancakes. Pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin. 😉 Needless to say, I have to buy a lot of canned pumpkin at the store.
I have been seeing a lot of tutorials for how to make pumpkin puree on Pinterest, so I wanted to give it a try myself. I mean, with all of my pumpkin baking, how cool would it be to just reach in my freezer and grab some pumpkin puree?
I made my own pumpkin puree for the first time and I have to tell you, it was SO easy!! Really, I asked myself how come I haven’t been doing this all along. There aren’t a lot of tools or fancy equipment you need. The only thing I would suggest is a food processor. I have a food processor similar to this one, and I love it! I have used it for years and it is still going strong. My food processor holds about 10 cups, so it is a great size for this recipe.
Are you ready to learn how to make pumpkin puree? This is so easy, you may never buy canned pumpkin again. I’m not kidding.
How to make Pumpkin Puree:
Find a pumpkin. It doesn’t matter whether you grew one in your garden, found one in the patch or picked one up from the store. Any pumpkin will do.
Cut your pumpkin in half. I used a small knife to remove the stem and then a large knife to cut it in half. This did take a little strength, but it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it was going to be.
Remove all of the seeds. If your family likes pumpkin seeds, you can save them and bake them up later.
Place pumpkin halves face down on a large cookie sheet. Bake in a 350 F oven for 50 minutes to an hour. When you can pierce the outside of the pumpkin easily with a fork, you know your pumpkin is done.
Let the pumpkin cool slightly and then begin removing the skin. Don’t let it cool too much otherwise the skin will get harder to remove. I used a fork and my fingers to remove the skin.
I was surprised at how easily the skin came off. It maybe took me 5 minutes to remove the skin from both halves of my pumpkin.
Once all of the skin is removed, cut the pumpkin into chunks and place them in your food processor. I had a small to medium sized pumpkin so i was able to fit about a fourth of my pumpkin in the food processor at one time. I probably could have put more, but I don’t like to overfill it.
Blend until you have a nice smooth puree. I turned my food processor on 2 for about 20 seconds and 1 for another 10 seconds or so. The pumpkin is so soft, it becomes nice and smooth very quickly.
I placed my pumpkin puree into freezer bags in 1 cup increments. This will make my life easier when I am baking something with pumpkin because it will already be measured out for me. I just have to remove the pumpkin puree from the freezer about 30 minutes before I need it and I’ll be all set!
With my pumpkin I was able to get 10 cups of pumpkin puree! That’s more than 5 cans of pumpkin! This pumpkin cost me $2.99 at the store. A can of pumpkin starts at about $1 in the store (name brand will cost you more), so this is a nice savings.
This was SO easy to do, I am really surprised I have not tried this before. I don’t think I will ever go back to buying store canned pumpkin again!
- 1 pumpkin
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Cut pumpkin in half and remove all of the seeds.
- Place pumpkin halves face down on a large cookie sheet.
- Bake at 350 F for 50 minutes to an hour. When you poke the outside of the skin with a fork and it is tender, the pumpkin is done.
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly.
- With a fork and your fingers, remove the skin of the pumpkin. It should come off easily. If you let the pumpkin cool too much it may be more difficult.
- Cut pumpkin into chunks and place in the food processor. Blend until you have a nice smooth puree.
- Place 1 cup each into freezer bags. Remove from the freezer about 30 minutes before you are ready to use.
Just a side note – I wanted to try my hand at canning the pumpkin because I thought that would be easier. The FDA highly recommends against NOT canning your own pumpkin! This is a very low acidic food and can very easily become poisonous. I wasn’t going to risk it. Putting the pumpkin in freezer bags was super easy (and safe)! 🙂