Making your own pumpkin puree is a real game changer. Follow these easy steps to add the fresh flavor of real, natural pumpkin to all of your baked goods and more!
It’s super easy to make your own pumpkin puree! It is also, in my opinion, vastly better than the canned versions, which, depending on the brand may actually contain other types of squash.
Obviously, using fresh ingredients whenever possible will give you a total flavor upgrade. The taste of fresh pumpkin is sweeter and bright. It is also drastically different in color compared to canned pumpkin. I actually had some trouble photographing & editing because the orange color was so fluorescently orange.
There’s no secret to making your own pumpkin puree. Simply prep, roast and puree.
How to make pumpkin puree
Here’s the basic rundown:
- Make sure to not use just any pumpkin. You’ll need sugar pumpkins (sometimes called pie pumpkins). Why? Sugar pumpkins are sweeter and much less stringy than other varieties. The flesh of the larger jack-o-lantern pumpkins is not really meant to be eaten.
- You should be able to find sugar pumpkins at your grocery store or local garden center starting in September. Oddly enough, they really aren’t around in the late fall (at least in my experience!) so I usually pick a few up when I see them at the store. They last a good while on your shelf. I’ve had them over a month and they were still fine.
- Wash your pumpkin with warm water and dry it off with a paper towel.
- Slice in half.
- Scoop out the seeds and stringy things (be sure to save those seeds!! Perfect for roasting & snacking)
- Place flesh side down in a roasting pan, filled with one inch of water.
- Roast at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes or until fork tender.
- Allow to cool
- Remove the skin and puree in a food processor.
- Use in recipes like Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin Spice Latte Cookies or Absolutely Perfect Pumpkin Pie. You can also freeze for later and enjoy fresh pumpkin throughout the year.
How much puree does one pumpkin make?
Generally you can get about 15 oz of puree from one pumpkin.
Can you freeze pumpkin puree
Yes! Pumpkin puree freezes very well. After making the puree, measure out 15oz portions using a digital scale. I suggest 15oz as most baking recipes call for that amount (equivalent to a can of pumpkin). Place puree in a freezer bag and remove all air from the bag. Freeze for 3-6 months.
When you’re ready to use your pumpkin, thaw in the fridge and use according to your recipe.
Making Fresh Pumpkin Puree
- sugar pumpkins (sometimes called pie pumpkins)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Wash the outside of the pumpkin well.
- Halve pumpkin with a large serrated knife.
- Scoop out the seeds with a large spoon, into a strainer.
- Once all the seeds are removed, place the pumpkin halves (flesh side down) into a large baking dish filled with about ½ inch of water.
- Roast for about 45minutes to 1 hour, or until the flesh is fork tender.
- Once cooked, allow to fully cool in pan.
- Peel off the skin or scoop flesh and place into a food processor.
- Puree until perfectly smooth, scraping the sides and bottom between pulses.
- If freezing, use a food scale and put desired amount into a zipper freezer bag (I usually go with 15oz, equivalent to a can of pumpkin)
- Look for sugar pumpkins. They are sweeter and much less stringy than other varieties. You should be able to find them at your grocery store or local garden center starting in September. Oddly enough, they really aren’t around in the late fall (at least in my experience!) so I usually pick a few up when I see them at the store. They last a good while on your shelf.
- Just like when carving pumpkins, save those seeds!! Perfect for snacking. 🙂
- Puree for today, or freeze for later! Enjoy fresh pumpkin up to 6 months frozen.