Pumpkin treats abound during the autumn season. Make your own pumpkin purée in the comfort of you home. Learning how to make homemade pumpkin purée is so easy and much cheaper than what you will find at the store. The best part? It tastes better too!
How to Make Your Own Homemade Pumpkin Puree
Although pumpkin purée is a bit messy to make, you get a whole lot more pumpkin for a much lower price. Because it’s fresh, the flavor is also better. Learning to make your own pumpkin purée is a great way to have delicious pumpkin treats at a budget friendly price, it just takes a bit more work.
Start With a Pie Pumpkin
Pie pumpkins (also known as sugar pumpkins) are much smaller than the larger pumpkins you find that are used for carving. They tend to also bit a little bit more expensive. However, the reason you use a pie pumpkin is that the flesh of the pumpkin is sweet. Large carving pumpkins are edible, but they have more a squash flavor to them than a pie pumpkin.
Getting Your Pumpkin Prepped
Start with a clean pie pumpkin. Clean and dry your pumpkin before cutting.
The second step to making pumpkin purée is the cut your pumpkin up into 4 pieces. Since pie pumpkins are smaller, they are a bit easier to carve up. However, it may still take a bit of strength to chop up your pumpkin.
After you have chopped them, remove all the seeds and pulp from the inside of the pumpkin. If your pumpkin seeds are large enough, feel free to salt and roast them for a tasty snack.
Cooking Your Pumpkin
The flesh of the pumpkin needs to be soft in order to be puréed. Cooking the pumpkin until soft is the best way to get your pumpkin flesh soft enough to blend. There are two ways to make pumpkin purée, in the oven or, in your pressure cooker or Instant Pot.
Making Pumpkin Purée In the Oven
Preheat your oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit.
Place your pumpkin into large casserole dishes, flesh up, and pour about a half an inch of water into the bottom of the dish. This provides humidity which prevents the pumpkin from getting too dry in the oven.
Bake the pumpkin for about 40 minutes, or until your pumpkin is fork tender. It may take longer at high altitude.
Making Pumpkin Purée In the Instant Pot
Add 1 1/2 cups of water to your Instant Pot. Set the wire rack.
Place the 4 pieces of your pumpkin, flesh side up, into the instant pot and onto the wire rack.
Set the cook time for 15-20 minutes (depending on the size of your pumpkin), on high pressure.
When the cook time has finished, allow your instant pot to naturally release for at least 5 minutes. Release the rest of the pressure and open your instant pot. Poke the skin of the pumpkin with a fork. The pumpkin should be fork tender.
If your pumpkin is not fork tender, cook again, on high pressure for 5 minutes, until fork tender.
Strain Your Cooked Pumpkin
One your pumpkin has cooked through, allow your pumpkin to cool enough to be handled.
Place your pumpkin on a cutting board and gently cut away the rind of the pumpkin leaving only the flesh. Put that flesh into a strainer and gently press down on the pumpkin with a large spoon or spatula.
This removes the extra water inside the flesh that would otherwise make your purée watery and ruin your pumpkin recipes.
Puréeing Your Pumpkin
After you have cooked and strained the pumpkin flesh, it’s time to purée!
Place the pumpkin into your blender or food processor and purée the cooked pumpkin until smooth.
I like to store the pumpkin purée in two cup increments. Whatever I don’t use I end up labeling and freezing. You can freeze them in mason jars with plastic screw on tops. Or, you can freeze them in zip lock bags.
Using Your Pumpkin Puree
Pumpkin Puree has many uses, feel free to check out these great options:
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