Making homemade pumpkin puree is honestly, not that difficult. Personally, I find the hardest part to be slicing open the pumpkin. If you’ve ever cut open a spaghetti squash, you know.
The first time I made homemade pumpkin puree I was shocked that the color was so vibrant compared to canned. It’s a beautiful bright light orangey yellow color compared to the darker orange color of canned pumpkin. The consistency is much more loose as well.
If you are going to make your own homemade pumpkin puree, you have to make sure you buy the right kind of pumpkin. You don’t want a big carving pumpkin you buy for your porch. Even a small one, will not taste the same. What you want is a sugar pumpkin or pie pumpkin. My grocery stores usually have them near the squash or in a display for holiday baking in the produce section. Sugar pumpkins, in addition to being smaller, are also sweeter than traditional pumpkins making them perfect for baking with.
I usually try to find one about the size of a cantaloupe, but you can find smaller ones that are only a little bigger than a softball to ones the size of a bowling ball. I think the medium sized ones yield just the right amount of puree for what you might need for a pie or bread recipe.
Fresh pumpkin puree DOES have a higher water content than canned, so you will want to take note of that and either slightly reduce the liquids in the recipe or it might need a slightly longer baking time unless the recipe you are using stipulates using fresh pumpkin puree.
Homemade pumpkin puree
- 1 Medium sugar pumpkin
- Preheat your oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Cut off the stem, and slice your pumpkin in half. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits.
- Place your pumpkin halves face down on the baking sheet and roast for 45-60 minutes (depending on size) until they are fork-tender.
- Allow the pumpkin to cool, scoop out the pumpkin into a blender or food processor and blend.
- Store in a covered bowl or jar in the refrigerator until ready to use, or freeze for up to 6 months.