Better Than Pumpkin Pie

pumpkins

Last September, during the busiest part of harvest, I had several smaller pie pumpkins left over.  I hated to just throw them away  but I didn’t have much time to mess with them either, so after a little research, cubed the pumpkin into chunks and stuck them raw into 1 gallon freezer bags.

Fast forward to December.

I decided to make a pumpkin pie out of  the fresh pumpkin. There was more pie filling left over than could fit into my pie crust.  Hated to just throw it away so I baked the excess filling in some little oven safe bowls.

When it came time to eating the extra, I put a spot of cool whip on it, and honestly, it tasted just as good w/o the pie crust.

Fast forward a week.

On a lark, I pulled another gallon bag of  cubed pumpkin out of the freezer,  this time, skipped the pie crust all together…just baked it in oven safe containers.

It disappeared in 2 days.

Fast forward another week.

Made another batch of fresh pumpkin pie custard, (which I decided to name it)  this time dumped the whole 6 cups of pie filling into a 9 by 13 pan.

It is to die for.

It is a completely different animal than your store-bought pumpkin pie filling from a can.

10 times more tasty and has a unique texture that has really grown on me.

Here’s the deal.  I am all about saving time and keeping it simple.

Blanch the pumpkin if you want at harvest time before freezing. (I’ve done both and have not noticed any difference in the finished product.)

Thought I would post this easy, made from scratch, fresh pumpkin pie custard (pie) recipe and share it with you.

Side note- Before I bagged  the fresh cubed pumpkin, I  froze the cubes on a cookie sheet over night, so they were not all clumped together when it came time to use it, in case I didn’t want to use the whole gallon at the same time.   (In my case, I am using the whole gallon bag at a time.  1 gallon bag =  about 6 cups once it is cooked and mashed down)

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Fresh Pumpkin Pie filling

(or custard)

Remove frozen pumpkin from freezer, place in a large pot of water and cook it on low to medium heat. (covered)  Normally, it starts to boil about an hour into the process.  The goal is to let it come to a  low boil for about 30 minutes.  Total time from taking it out of the freezer to done boiling approx. 1 and 1/2 hours.

Drain off water..be careful, might want to let it sit for a little bit to cool off so you don’t get a face full of steam….

After water is drained off, you should have cooked pumpkin cubes 😉

I have just been leaving the pumpkin in the large pot after I drain off the water,  adding all the ingredients (which I will list in a second) then beat it with a beater for a couple of minutes on high.  Totally a preference thing here in terms of texture.  If you have a food processor and want to puree the pumpkin more, that is up to you. I am just telling you what I am doing (remember, I’m all about keeping it simple) 😉

Add 4 eggs

1.75 cup of milk (I’ve experimented with whole milk, condensed milk, 1% milk,etc.  At this point, I just use whatever I have in the frig that is opened.

1 cup of brown sugar (again, I’ve experimented, with various sweeteners.  currently using some Demerara Cane Sugar crystals only because I had a lot of it in the cupboard and wanted to use it up)   side note-  this is about 1/2 the amount of sweeter the regular made from scratch pumpkin pie recipe’s call for.  Trying to watch my sugar intake and it still tastes delicious w/1/2 the sugar content.

1.5 to 2  teaspoons of vanilla

Once all the ingredients are in the pot, I mix it w/my little hand mixer for a couple of minutes.

Pour into 9 by 13 pan. Forget about the pie crust. Who needs pie crust 😉

Cook (uncovered) in preheated oven , 15 minutes @ 425 F.

Turn down oven to 350 and cook approx. another hour. (test like a normal pumpkin pie filling…cook until knife comes out clean)

Top with cool whip and you are done. 🙂

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I originally wrote this post last Winter on my farm blog…we are again in the middle of harvest season, and plan to start laying up the pumpkin cubes later this afternoon.. DM

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10 thoughts on “Better Than Pumpkin Pie

  1. I tucked this into my files last year. It’s nice to see it surface again — it’s a reminder that autumn will come. Someday. I think. We’re back to the nineties for another week. I’m just a wee bit grumpy about it, but I’ll think pumpkiny thoughts and be happy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can’t picture you being “a wee bit grumpy” 🙂 really I can’t! I froze 3 and 1/2 gallons of raw pumkin tonight…(I think last year I may have put up 10 gallons..going to double or triple it this year. It is SO addicting.

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  2. We will have to try it out. Honestly, I had never tried the pumpkin filling, as nobody in my family like pumpkin pies. But this may just work. My kids love pumpkin scones though, we make them almost weekly, using canned pumpkin off season, and then fresh one in the fall. Sometimes we switch out pumpkin for mashed potatoes, sometimes for squash. Last week made them with some fresh squash and it was to die for. 🙂
    Wow, 10 gallons of frozen pumpkin sounds a lot, but I am sure it would go fast. Best of luck with the harvest!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Can’t wait to hear what your family thinks about it..we started with little servings in those custard bowl…also, feel free to run it through a blender before you cook it…the way I do it, has an “earthy” texture about it that I have grown to love…normal pumpkin out of a can has been pureed (I think) so it is a lot smoother. I like simple so less I have to do, the better. 1 gallon = one 9 by 13 pan’s worth.

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  3. Thanks for sharing your pumpkin wisdom – we have been enjoying your crust-free pumpkin custard since you first suggested it to me. Normally I make the pie filling/custard with spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, clove) and then freeze. But I think I will try freezing the cubes too – for muffins, and breads (pumpkin is so versatile!)

    I wish more people appreciated the humble pumpkin – so packed with phytonutrients and nutrients!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Now that has a ring to it….”pumpkin wisdom” 😉 I think I would LOVE for you to share a short (or long/ as you see fit) bit of information on the humble pumpkin…w/ your background in nutrition and wisdom in terms of plants I think it would be a good read and tie in rather nicely to this pumpkin post.. (don’t want to add more to your “to do” list/ only as you would have time and be so inclined) DM

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