It’s that time of year….PUMPKIN EVERYTHING!!!
You either love the obsession of pumpkins or the immediate eye roll ensues. Either way, my hope is to make you love it even more or convert some of you anti-pumpkin peeps!
Using REAL pumpkin! Yes, “real” pumpkin is conveniently packaged in a can for us, BUT using freshly carved pumpkin is not only going to UP your pumpkin everything game, but you might also change the minds of those who tend to turn away those yummy pumpkin deserts.
It is super simple to get pumpkin….out of a pumpkin!
I am by no means a great cook, but I love to bake and this process is easy even for beginners.
You can find pie pumpkins relatively cheap right now since most stores are trying to get rid of them. Buy a few! They will last in the house for several weeks. I have some I bought at the beginning of October that are still good!
How do I make pumpkin puree?
Follow these easy steps to get pumpkin puree that you can use in any of your favorite pumpkin recipes!
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Homemade Pumpkin Puree
- 1-2 Pie Pumpkins
Baked Pumpkin Seeds
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Rinse pie pumpkin. The stem can be tricky to break off the pumpkin, I usually just hit it on the end of the countertop.
- Cut the pumpkin in half.
- Remove all seeds and stringy parts (like carving a pumpkin for Halloween!)Note: Save the seeds.
- Microwave for about 8 minutes (1100 Watt microwave)Note: Additional time may be needed for larger or thicker pumpkins. You’ll want the pumpkin to be soft when you press on it.
- Remove from microwave and remove plastic wrap.BE CAREFUL!! IT WILL BE HOT!!
- Let cool, remove pumpkin from pan, repeat microwaving instructions for other half of pumpkin.
- Scoop the pumpkin out of the pumpkin skin into the food processor and puree. Note: You are looking for a smooth consistency like baby food or smooth mashed potatoes.
- Use the puree you made in any pumpkin recipe - pies, cookies, cakes, etc.
Baked Pumpkin Seeds
- Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
- Rinse seeds in a colander and let the excess water drain.
- Spray baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
- Evenly spread the seeds on the baking sheet.
- Sprinkle with salt or your favorite seasoning!
- Bake for about 30-45 minutes. This depends on the size and amount of the seeds. Do a taste test to make sure that they are done!
- Sometimes the pumpkin can absorb too much of the water used in the microwave process. If this happens, remove the pumpkin from the microwave and glass pan, poke some holes in the skin of the pumpkin, set on a cooling rack, and allow the extra water to drip out while it cools off.
- Pumpkin puree will usually last in the fridge for about 3-5 days.
- You can put leftover pumpkin puree in a plastic container and keep in the freezer! Use it at Christmas time when real pumpkins are usually not available!
- To save some time….microwave one half of the pumpkin while you carve the other half OR if you have a large enough microwave and glass dish, put both halves in at the same time (cooking time, of course, will increase).
I am a Virginia girl living and embracing Texas life! I am one of “those moms” that makes all the decorations for birthday parties and gatherings at our house—but in my defense, crafting is synonymous with relaxing.