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I wait for pumpkin season ALL. YEAR. LONG. And finally it’s here, and I can enjoy all the pumpkin drinks, desserts and scents I want. The best of the best though is pumpkin pie. Did you know that it’s actually super easy to make? And super delicious when you make your own pumpkin puree from scratch, which is actually super easy too. I can tell you, in my experience, I love cheating and taking shortcuts in the kitchen, but I’ve been more happy with the outcome of my pumpkin dishes when I use this homemade pumpkin puree. But hey, if you are a die-hard pumpkin puree from-a-can fan, then prove me wrong, try it for yourself!

 

How To: Make Your Own Pumpkin Puree

STEP-1

Select 2 small-ish pumpkins. The larger they are, like jack-o-lantern pumpkins, the more you’ll run into weird tastes and textures

step-1-cut

Lob off the top…

half-pumpkin

Then cut them in half.

scoop

You’ll want to scoop out the seeds and pulp. BUT DON’T THROW THEM AWAY! Check out this delicious roasted pumpkin seed recipe.

chunk

Chunk up your pumpkin pieces and place them on a baking sheet. No need to drizzle with olive oil, the pumpkin will roast without it and your puree will be more pure when all is said and done.

roast

Roast your pumpkin in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes or until it’s fork tender.

skin

Now it’s time to skin your pumpkin, it’s super easy to remove once your pieces have been roasted. You can also use your knife to scrape the remaining pumpkin off of the skin if you need to.

skinned-pumps

Once your pumpkin is skinned, chunk it up even more.

food-processor

puree

If you have a food processor or blender, throw a few chunks in at a time and blend until smooth. Other options would be mashing it up with a potato masher, pressing it through a ricer or processing it through a food mill.

bowl-puree

Feel free to add a few tablespoons of water if your puree is too thick, or if it is too watery, you can strain it through a cheesecloth.

plastic-bag

You can definitely use your puree immediately, but I like to store mine in a big freezer bag. I usually spoon about 1 cupful into each bag, that way I know exactly how much is in each bag.

flatten

Press out all the air and flatten your bags so you can store them flat in your freezer. Your pumpkin (when frozen) will keep for 6 to 8 months.

Source: The Pioneer Woman

Now you’re probably thinking, “what will I do with this pumpkin puree?” Here are a few ideas you can try out.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie

pumpkin-pie
Get the recipe here.

 

Pumpkin “Butter”

pumpkin-butter
Get the recipe here.

 

Pumpkin Cheesecake

pumpkin-cheesecake
Get the recipe here.

 

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

pumpkin-bread-pudding
Get the recipe here.