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Pumpkin Puree

It's pumpkin season, and homemade pumpkin puree is a must for all your fall baking needs. Whether you prefer oven-roasted or Instant Pot pumpkin puree, you can find both methods in this guide.

Fall always brings up mixed emotions for me.

On one hand, it's the beginning of hearty food season, which means delicious, flavorful, stick to your ribs soups, carb-dense dinners, and comfort foods.

On the other hand, I'm rarely ever ready to say goodbye to my Birkenstocks and trade-in shorts for actual pants. I never want to see less sunshine. I always want warm weather.

But you know what helps me get over it?

Pumpkin.Everything.

This homemade pumpkin puree recipe is dedicated to getting over it.

Homemade pumpkin puree in a small mason jar.

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Tips + Tricks

No. 1 --> Don't toss the seeds! Oh my gosh, please don't toss your seeds! Take them, and turn them into smoked pumpkin seeds, which is one of my most popular fall recipes!

No. 2 --> Don't toss the goo or the skins either! That stuff is GREAT for your kitchen compost. It's gooey and wet and will break down super good.

Bagged and labelled pumpkin puree.

Key Ingredients

Pumpkin: Now, I know what you're thinking a pumpkin is a pumpkin is a pumpkin. You're wrong! Use ripe, unblemished small baking pumpkins, which can also be called sugar or pie pumpkins. These are smaller, sweeter and bred specifically for this purpose. Jack-O-Lantern/ carving pumpkins will work, but they lack flavor and sweetness.

Check to see if your pumpkin is ripe:

  • Look at the color - ripe pumpkins are a rich, uniform orange color.
  • Touch the skin - it should be firm, leathery and tough to puncture, while the stem should be hard and woody.
  • Listen to the sound - a knock on a ripe pumpkin should sound hollow.
Two small pie pumpkins.

Oven Roasted Vs Instant Pot

I was extremely into this question when I wrote this guide. I had a lot of questions. And no definitive answers.

Oven Roasted:

  • fewer dishes
  • slightly longer cook time
  • more complex flavor

Instant Pot:

  • slightly shorter cook time
  • the oven is free for other cooking
  • takes longer to drain
Homemade pumpkin puree in a mason jar.

How To Make Homemade Pumpkin Puree

Prepare:

  1. If roasting in the oven, preheat the oven to 350f and line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. If cooking in the Instant Pot, add water according to the manufacturer's directions and set it aside.
  2. Holding the pumpkin steady, plunge a large knife perpendicular to the stem and cut straight down to the bottom. Remove the knife, turn the pumpkin 180 degrees and cut down the side directly across from the first cut.
  3. Turn the pumpkin onto its side and carefully cut the pumpkin to connect the cuts on each side. Set the knife aside.
  4. Hold the pumpkin upside down and grab both halves of the pumpkin and pull it apart until it splits. This will crack the pumpkin right around the stem. You may have to grab the stem and pull it off, or it may come off on its own.
  5. Scoop all of the seeds and membranes from the inside of the pumpkin halves and place them in a bowl off to the side. Save them!
  6. Once the pumpkins are scraped clean, sprinkle them with a pinch of coarse kosher salt.

Oven roasting:

  1. If oven roasting: place them face down on the prepared baking sheet and roast at 350f for 35 minutes.

Instant Pot:

  1. If pressure cooking: place the pumpkin halves in the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes with a natural release.

Puree:

  1. Allow cooked pumpkins to cool before peeling the skin and placing the roasted flesh in a blender or food processor.
  2. Blend the pumpkin flesh until smooth before preparing for storage.

Batch + Storage Information

Batch:

Each small pie pumpkin should yield between 4 and 5 cups of puree. I cooked two pumpkins for these photos and ended up with just a hair over 10 cups!

Storage:

If you're going to use your pumpkin puree within a couple of days, keep it in an airtight container in the fridge.

If you're not going to use the puree in the very near future, it must be transferred to an airtight freezer container and frozen for up to 3 months. You can also vacuum seal your puree in 1 or 2 cup portions. Vacuum sealed pumpkin puree can be kept for up to 8 months.

You cannot safely can pumpkin puree.

How to Use Homemade Pumpkin Puree

There are so many great ways to use pumpkin puree, here are a few of my favorites!

Blender: I have and love a VITAMIX BLENDER. It's a decade old and hasn't skipped a beat once. Not to mention the incredible Vitamix customer service. I am so happy with my purchase!

Instant Pot: Spoiler, I don't actually have an "Instant Pot" brand instapot. I have a BREVILLE FASTSLOW PRO and I love it! That said, my mom and sister both own Instant Pots and love them too!

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📖 Printable Recipe

Homemade pumpkin puree in a small mason jar.
Yield: 5 cups

Homemade Pumpkin Puree

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Making pumpkin puree is a great way to get in the fall spirit. Whether you prefer oven-roasted pumpkin or pressure-cooked in the Instant Pot, we have both methods covered in this guide! You'll find all the information you need about pumpkin puree and how to make it yourself. It's so easy and tastes so much better than store-bought pumpkin puree!

Ingredients

  • 1 small sugar pumpkin
  • pinch of coarse kosher salt

Instructions

    Prepare:

    1. If roasting in the oven, preheat the oven to 350f and line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. If cooking in the Instant Pot, add water according to the manufacturer's directions and set it aside.
    2. Holding the pumpkin steady, plunge a large knife perpendicular to the stem and cut straight down to the bottom. Remove the knife, turn the pumpkin 180 degrees and cut down the side directly across from the first cut.
    3. Turn the pumpkin onto its side and carefully cut the pumpkin to connect the cuts on each side. Set the knife aside.
    4. Hold the pumpkin upside down and grab both halves of the pumpkin and pull it apart until it splits. This will crack the pumpkin right around the stem. You may have to grab the stem and pull it off, or it may come off on its own.
    5. Scoop all of the seeds and membranes from the inside of the pumpkin halves and place them in a bowl off to the side. Save them!
    6. Once the pumpkins are scraped clean, sprinkle them with a pinch of coarse kosher salt.

    Oven roasting:

    1. If oven roasting: place them face down on the prepared baking sheet and roast at 350f for 35 minutes.

    Instant Pot:

    1. If pressure cooking: place the pumpkin halves in the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes with a natural release. If the halves won't fit chop them into large pieces. The trivet is not needed.

    Puree:

    1. Allow cooked pumpkins to cool before peeling the skin and placing the roasted flesh in a blender or food processor.
    2. Blend the pumpkin flesh until smooth before preparing for storage.

    Notes

    Batch:

    Each small pie pumpkin should yield between 4 and 5 cups of puree. I cooked two pumpkins for these photos and ended up with just a hair over 10 cups!

    Storage:

    If you're going to use your pumpkin puree within a couple of days, keep it in an airtight container in the fridge.

    If you're not going to use the puree in the very near future, it must be transferred to an airtight freezer container and frozen for up to 3 months. You can also vacuum seal your puree in 1 or 2 cup portions. Vacuum sealed pumpkin puree can be kept for up to 8 months.

    You cannot safely can pumpkin puree.

    Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    10

    Serving Size:

    1

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 7Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 8mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 0g

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