easy pumpkin puree and a recipe for pumpkin pie spice

This is a really easy way to make pumpkin puree, so you’ll either be impressed by my genius after reading this or think I am extremely lazy. But before you go the lazy route, know also that I just finished folding 12 loads of laundry (it’s been a week or two since I folded laundry), cooked and canned applesauce and made pumpkin pie spice. All of which was easy too, but it added up to a few hours spent in the kitchen. I did manage to catch up on a few lost episodes of Criminal Minds on the laptop while folding laundry, so my day off had some downtime. And there was coffee. And a few thin mint Girl Guide cookies.

I’m not a fan of pumpkin goo; in fact I am never involved in the cleaning out of the Hallowe’en jack-o-lantern. The slimy feel of it makes me shiver. This is a much more civilized way to make pumpkin puree. It skips the gross stage altogether.

Just roast them whole. Find one or two small pie pumpkins (mine is straight out of the garden), wash them off, heat the oven to 350F and roast them for an hour to an hour and a half, until a knife goes right through the skin like butter. First though, you need to go a little Norman Bates on the pumpkin, stabbing it 5 or 6 times to let some steam escape while it’s roasting. When the knife test shows that it’s done, let it cool for 20 minutes or so, slice it in half and the goo and seeds will scoop out with one of two spoonfuls, effortlessly and without mess. You can keep the seeds for roasting or just toss the whole mess in the compost.

All that you have to do at that point is scoop the flesh out of the skin, pop it into a blender or food processor and process it until it’s smooth. My small pumpkin yielded 4 cups of puree. It’ll keep for a week in the fridge or you can freeze it in recipe size amounts and store it in the freezer. I have plans for mine later this weekend.

While I was in the kitchen, I made up a small container of pumpkin pie spice to use with my puree.

Pumpkin Pie Spice

  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves

Measure spices into a small jar, screw lid back on and shake.

If, like us, you have a few pumpkins from the garden that you would like to store, click here to find storage tips. Later this weekend I will show you what I make with the puree and the spice, but for now I need to clean the kitchen. Once the girls get home from school, we’ll meet up with their dad in town and go out for dinner and then off to see Hotel Transylvania. It’s the closest I could get to convincing the dad to watch a zombie movie with me.

Linked to Cheerios and Lattes, Six Sister’s Stuff, A Pinch of Joy, Frugally Sustainable, The Chicken Chick, Mind Body and Sole, Gastronomical Sovereinty, GNOWFGLINS, Foy Update

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53 thoughts on “easy pumpkin puree and a recipe for pumpkin pie spice

  1. have fun tonight – and I do not think you are lazy–I think you are smart–you are in my blog post today btw

  2. between you and me I liked yours the best but I am not going to tell anyone else – only way I will be discovered is if we have the same readers which could be my Waterloo,or my Kingston or whatever

  3. You have the most helpful and interesting posts. I am SO glad I get your feed!

  4. Tamara says:

    oooo! I have never done them whole. I’ve always waited until after hallowe’en and then hacked those carved heads into large pieces and baked. I guess it’s the same thing, but with more hacking and less stabbing. (in re-reading, this comment is kinda disturbing….)

  5. Alia says:

    This is a great way to handle a pumpkin! Thanks!

  6. What a great idea for cooking pumpkins Heidi. And you gave me a good laugh first thing in the morning with the Norman Bates comment (It’s not quite 6am here). I love pumpkin so I’m looking forward to reading more. Hope you enjoyed the night out. Have a good weekend.

  7. amelie says:

    An easier way to cook fall produce AND I get to stab a pumpkin? I’ll go with genius! And I hate those laundry marathons too. Catching up on tv episodes during is a great idea.

  8. I don’t think you are lazy, smart would be a better description. I so have to do mine this way. I’ll confiscate the use of my daughter-in-laws oven. As for the pumpkin spice THANKS. I never have pumpkin spice when I want it, but I have those ingredients. Enjoy the rest of the day.

  9. I love this! I’ve been staring at my pumpkins for a good week thinking that I wanted to get them cooked but didn’t want to tackle cutting it open and cleaning it out to cook it….now I know I just need to stab it! Perfect! Thank you.

  10. We love the goo inside the pumpkins and roast pumpkin seeds. Okay, truth be told, I let my husband handle that part 🙂
    Thanks for the pumpkin pie spice recipe. I never buy it at the store but simply improvise at home. Good to know there’s a recipe around!

  11. shoes says:

    Yummy! I have never made pumpkin puree (I am ashamed to say that I buy the canned pumpkin) but after reading this I think I will give it a try. I bet my mini pumpkin muffins would taste even better with fresh pumpkin!

    Hope you have a great night tonight!

  12. You amaze me with what you get done in a day…glad you’re taking time for the movies..p.s. I’m a ‘Criminal Minds’ addict also…don’t like the scary parts but love the rest of it…Diane

  13. ceciliag says:

    Don’t tell anyone but i hate pumpkin pie.. see horrible admission, all my pumpkins go to daisy and we get fantastic rich creamy milk in the morning, I LOVE that shot of the knife buried to the hilt in the pumpkin though! that is a great shot, as is the one of the kids and the bus, i meant to tell you.. c

  14. Laura says:

    First, remind me never to piss you off! 😉 Second, I was standing in the garden this morning, staring at my pie pumpkins, realizing that I had never made pumpkin pie from scratch and needed a starting off point for the ratio of the spices…thank you for reading my mind.

  15. naimavanswol says:

    i love the pumpkin slime! i don’t know why, i just do. i love to make toasted pumpkin seeds.

  16. thefoodery says:

    I am a) impressed with your genius, Heidi! Any clever shortcut is worth sharing, thanks for the great tip. 🙂

  17. Later this week I will be trying out a recipe that adds pumpkin puree to mac & cheese – I figure if pumpkin ravioli works, why not that? I’ll give my pumpkin a few extra stabs for you.

  18. Heidi, THANKYOU for writing the spice ‘recipe’ out for me. I hate buying it at the store and keep saying that I’m sure it’s just a mix of what I already have!! LOL – love the pumpkin tutorial as well.

  19. MrsYub says:

    Ha! I read your blog, I thought, oh what fun! And then as I read down the comments everything that I was going to say has already been said and I am devoid of original and witty and new comments! Oh dear. This comment I guess now is more just to let you know I wuz ‘ere >X<
    hehehe, and I am squirreling your recipe away for futur use, I hope you don't mind! I think its awesome 🙂

  20. Allison says:

    Nice! That is definitely an easier way to roast a pumpkin. Thanks for the tips! : )

    I just made pumpkin soup yesterday with a Japanese pumpkin, which doesn’t really require pre-roasting to cut up, cook, and puree, but I will definitely try out your method for the orange pie pumpkins that are next on my list!

  21. Jennifer says:

    My husband adores pumpkin pie. After reading how easy this is, I might just surprise him this Thanksgiving and actually make my own. Wouldn’t he be impressed? I had no idea you could just cook the entire thing. I learn so much from you, woman! Thanks Heidi!!

    • Heidi @ lightlycrunchy says:

      🙂 you’re welcome. Good luck with the pie. I’m terrible at pie crust, so my husband is the pie maker in the family.

  22. Sarah says:

    Oh I love this. I have three recipes that use pumpkin puree I want to try this fall, so this is great Heidi! I had no idea it was this easy. I need to get out more 🙂

    Thank you so much!

    • Heidi @ lightlycrunchy says:

      I need to get out more too. 🙂 Perhaps thats why I enjoyed stabbing the pumpking a bit too much.

  23. Rose says:

    Heidi I don’t for 1 second think you are lazy, I think you are a genius! Also you saved me a scavenge around the internet because figuring out how to turn my very first little home grown pumpkins into a useful puree was on the list of things to do today. Now I will scoot into the kitchen and pop them into the oven! Thanks! 🙂

  24. Somer says:

    Heidi! I love this method! I always get orange goo everywhere when I’m cleaning out pumpkins, and it doesn’t wash off very well and my hands are always orange for a few days. Thanks for the pumpkin spice recipe as well, the commercial blend is pricey and I all ready have everything in my spice pantry.

  25. kathythechickenchick says:

    Thank you for sharing this technique with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week and I hope we see you back again next time!

    Cheers,
    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick

  26. […] I’m feeling extra fall-ish due to our sudden chilly temps… Check out Heidi’s homemade pumpkin purée tutorial (an easy version, no kidding!!) and recipe for pumpkin pie spice. Fall made easy, I […]

  27. […] can add whatever spices you like – I will try it with Pumpkin Pie Spice or Apple Pie Spice […]

  28. […] pumpkin, check out the “Lightly Crunchy” blog. You’ll find instructions on how to make pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice. Heidi talks about how she’s lazy when cooking pumpkin – she’s my […]

  29. […] the garden produce wall, I wrote instructions for making and canning some easy applesauce and an easy way to roast and puree pumpkins, plus some pumpkin pie spice to use with the […]

  30. […] to a genius tip from Heidi of Lightly Crunchy (roast your pumpkins whole!), homemade pumpkin puree just got even easier to make. Especially if […]

  31. […] spice instead of the cinnamon and nutmeg.  My pumpkin spice recipe comes directly from Heidi at Lightly Crunchy.  It’s a great little recipe that includes cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, and cloves. […]

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