Canned pumpkin is an unnecessary Fall staple since making fresh pumpkin is easy, BPA free, preservative free, fun, and you get to roast the seeds! (Unlike my husband, I love love love scooping out the seeds from a pumpkin haha!). Especially in November, pumpkin is used in so many recipes from pumpkin pies to bread and pasta dishes, which is why this no-can pumpkin puree recipe is perfect for our No-Can-Ber month! Do you have any recipes for using your pumpkin puree? Please share!
Choose your organic pumpkin:
For a pie, look for sweet pumpkin varieties like Sugar Pie, Long Pie, or Cinderella pumpkins. Or, your local grocery store may have pumpkins labeled "Pie Pumpkins." If you use a regular carving pumpkin, the flesh will be too watery and flavorless. As for size, choose a pumpkin no more than 3-4 pounds. Smaller pumpkins tend to be a little sweeter.
Roast your pumpkin:
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Cut pumpkin in half vertically.
- Scoop out the seeds (save them for roasting!).
- Place pumpkin halves cut side down on an oiled or parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- Bake pumpkin in the oven until it is tender throughout. This may take anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour. I had a 7" diameter pumpkin which took exactly 45 minutes.
- Remove pumpkin from oven and let cool so you can easily scoop out the flesh from the peel.
- If you want to make pumpkin puree (which I did below), simply puree the flesh in a blender or food processor or mash it with a spoon or potato masher. If you want chunks of pumpkin, you can cut it instead of blending.
- Store pumpkin puree (or pieces) in glass mason jars. My pumpkin made about 3 cups of pumpkin puree. I divided them into two mason jars and froze one. The other I put in the fridge (going to make a pie soon!), where it will keep for 5 days.
Roasting pumpkin seeds:
- Preheat oven to 325F.
- Rinse seeds in water and remove any of the flesh sticking to the seeds.
- Toss seeds with a little salt if you wish.
- Lay seeds in a single layer on a lightly greased baking sheet.
- Bake for 25 minutes in the oven. After 15 minutes, stir seeds.