EASY step-by-step instructions on how to make pumpkin puree from fresh pumpkins! You can use any type of pumpkin to make homemade puree using a food processor or food strainer.
How to Make Pumpkin Puree From Scratch
If you have pumpkins leftover from Fall decorations, don’t let them go to waste. Bake them and turn them into puree! It doesn’t matter if it’s pumpkins you grew yourself (hi giant pumpkins!), or ones you bought from the local grocery store or farmers market.
There is delicious pumpkin puree and roasted pumpkin seeds waiting for you inside of every single pumpkin wishing you would cut it open and scoop it out to bake with it!
To show you how easy it is to make homemade pumpkin puree, I made a quick video that walks you through how to do it!
What Type Of Pumpkin Is Best to Eat?
Honestly, almost all pumpkins can be baked and turned into pumpkin puree. Some will say to only use sugar or pie pumpkins due to their taste and ease with desserts. But I have found that practically any pumpkin makes good puree.
I often make homemade pumpkin puree with our larger garden grown pumpkins (that can fit into my oven) and I don’t find there is a big difference in flavor. When choosing your pumpkin, do look for a pumpkin that is bright in color and has very little green spots or blemishes.
Try them all and see if you prefer one type of pumpkin over another. Have fun!
How much pumpkin puree is in a pumpkin?
A 4 pound pumpkin should give you approximately 2 cups of fresh puree.
Methods to Make Puree
There are 2 ways to make homemade pumpkin puree, either with a food strainer or a food processor/blender. I understand that most people don’t have a food strainer, so I wanted to provide both options.
How to Make Pumpkin Puree With a Food Processor
Cut the pumpkin in half. When you cut them in half you’ll see lots of seeds and strings. Grab a spoon and scoop all of the strings and seeds out. Set the seeds aside for later if you are going to make roasted pumpkin seeds (yum).
Place the pumpkin halves face down in a shallow pan. If you are using multiple pumpkins, rearrange them so they can all fit. You might have to use more than one pan.
Fill up the pan with about ¼-inch of water. Put the pumpkins into your oven at 325 degrees F to cook for one hour.
The pumpkins will be soft when you remove them from the oven. Sometimes they even cave in, that’s ok! The pumpkins and water will be very hot, so let them sit until they cool down enough to touch.
Remove the pumpkin flesh from the skin, using a spoon or a knife (careful!).
Place the pumpkin into a food processor or blender. Depending on the amount of pumpkin you have you might have to do a few batches of this. Turn the food processor on and pulse until you have smooth pumpkin puree.
High five! You just made homemade pumpkin puree. Wasn’t that easy? Now make some recipes, or freeze for later (directions below). Hope you enjoy!
How to Make Pumpkin With a Food Strainer
I have a Weston food strainer and I love it. For this specific post I am using the pumpkin/squash attachment. I ended up buying the whole set of attachments because I decided I needed them all in my life.
If you are into making sauces, purees, baby foods, jellies, salsas, mashed potatoes, juices etc you will love a food strainer. Seriously. It just makes everything smoother.
- Cut your pumpkin in half. When you cut through the pumpkin, you will notice lots of seeds and strings. If you’re using a food strainer, you don’t have to do anything with them (that’s the magic of a food strainer).
- Now, take the pumpkin halves and put them face down in a pan. If you are doing multiple pumpkins, rearrange so they can all fit. You might have to use more than one pan as well.
- Fill up the pan with about ¼-inch of water. Place them into your oven at 325 degrees F to cook for one hour.
When they come out of the oven, you will see they appear soft, sometimes the pumpkins even get indented and “fall in”. This is totally okay. The pumpkins and the water in the pan will be very hot, so be careful. When you flip the pumpkins over you will see the insides are very soft.
- Cut the pumpkins up into smaller pieces that will fit into your strainer chute and then start to crank the handle for the pumpkin to go down into the strainer. What comes out one side is the most beautiful, perfect pumpkin puree. Keep cranking until you have no more pumpkin pieces left.
- And then what comes out the other side is the strings and seeds. The strainer does the hard work for you! This is my favorite part because one of my least favorite kitchen duties is to spoon seeds and strings out of pumpkin, it takes forever. But the strainer takes that hard work away!
- When all the strings and seeds come out, I will run this through the strainer about 2-3 more times just to make sure there’s no pumpkin hiding in there. In the end you’ll be left with a bowl of seeds, which I sure hope you are going to roast because they are one of my favorite snacks ever!
And just like that you have the most the most fresh pumpkin puree you’ll ever taste! Canned pumpkin has NOTHING over this.
How to Freeze Pumpkin Puree
Place pumpkin puree into freezer bags, measuring out 1 cup and 2 cup servings. Most recipes will usually call for these measurements, so I like to have them both ready to go.
Pumpkin Puree will freeze for up to one year, just in time for you to have new pumpkins and repeat the process.
What Can Pumpkin Puree Be Used For?
I make lots of recipes with pumpkin! From savory to sweet, I got you covered. Check out all my pumpkin recipes here, but listed below are my favorites.
- Easy Pumpkin Pie Recipe
- Pumpkin Roll With Cream Cheese Filling
- Homemade Pumpkin Scones (Starbucks Recipe)
- Pumpkin Dump Cake
- Baked Pumpkin Donuts
- Pumpkin Whoopie Pies With Marshmallow filling
- Fluffy Pumpkin Pancakes
- Pumpkin Jalapeno Mac and Cheese
- Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili
Is Pumpkin Puree and Canned Pumpkin The Same Thing?
Yes, if a recipe calls for canned pumpkin you can use pumpkin puree and vice versa. They are the same thing, people just use different names.
Pin for later:
Pumpkin Puree RecipePrint
- Pumpkins (you can use any type of pumpkin but sugar pumpkins are best for baking)
How to Make With Food Processor or Blender
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Cut the pumpkin in half. Scoop the guts and seeds out. Disregard the guts, save the seeds to make roasted pumpkin seeds later on if you'd like. Put pumpkin face down in a shallow baking pan. Fill pan with 1/4 inch water.
- Bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool to touch. Cut the skin away from pumpkin, it should almost pull right off. Disregard skin. Cut pumpkin into chunks.
- Place in food processor or blender and pulse until smooth. Use in recipes or freeze for later usage.
How to Make With Food Strainer
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Cut the pumpkin in half. Put pumpkin face down in a shallow baking pan. Fill pan with 1/4 inch water. Bake for 1 hour. Let cool.
- Cut the skin away from pumpkin, it should almost pull right off. Disregard skin. Cut pumpkin into chunks.
- Run pumpkin through food strainer a couple of times, making sure to get all the pumpkin. What you're left with is incredibly smooth pumpkin puree! Out the other side will come all the seeds and strings that you can compost or use the seeds for roasting later on.
- Use for recipes or freeze for later usage.
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