Homemade Pumpkin Pie

by Alice Currah on November 15, 2010. Updated November 7, 2012

I vaguely remember the first time I made my first pumpkin pie.  My father, a diabetic, commissioned me to bake him a sugar-free version so he wouldn’t be tempted by all the sugary desserts during Thanksgiving dinner.  I was 11 years old without a mixer, pie plate, or a cookbook to guide me.  What I decided to do was follow the pie recipe on the back of a Libby’s pumpkin can and use a frozen pre-made pie shell.   I followed the instructions exactly as written and was excited when I saw there no were cracks on the baked custard surface and that my pumpkin pie actually looked just as I hoped it would.  My excitement only lasted a brief moment and turned to disgust rather quickly.  I took a bite and had to spit it out into a napkin.  Pumpkin pie without any sweetener is so bland tasting I thought I was eating store-bought baby food in a jar -yuck!

Over the years I’ve experimented with different recipes and sweeteners in search of the perfect pumpkin pie.  I know people have different qualifiers in what makes a good pie.  For me, I like homemade pies to be dense with a tad bit more spices than the Costco pie variety.  I also like my pumpkin pies not to be too sweet, otherwise I can only eat a sliver of a slice because the pie is so sweet it distracts the flavor of the spiced pumpkin custard.

What I have for you is a pumpkin pie worthy of being your primary Thanksgiving Day dessert.  You can never go wrong with a homemade pie considering so many people are used to eating store bought/Costco ones. Friends and family always appreciate scratch baking and this pumpkin pie is the perfect ending to your holiday dinner.  Don’t forget to serve each slice with a dollop of whipped cream and a cup of coffee. Enjoy.


Homemade Pumpkin Pie
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
My favorite Pumpkin Pie Recipe
  • 1-15 ounce can pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ cup evaporated milk
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 -9 inch unbaked pie crust (I use a no-roll pie crust)
  • Sweetened Whipped Cream:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Set a rimmed baking sheet on the center rack in the oven.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix pumpkin, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves until well combined.
  4. Add eggs, evaporated milk, and heavy cream.
  5. Mix everything until completely smooth (about 3 minutes in my KitchenAid mixer on medium speed).
  6. Pour pie filling into an unbaked deep dish pie shell.
  7. Bake the pie for 15 minutes then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
  8. Bake for an additional 50-55 minutes until the center of the pie does not jiggle (loosely).
  9. In my opinion, it’s best to allow the pie to cool on the counter and then chill it in the refrigerator before serving.
  10. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream.
  11. **The pie can be made up to 2 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator covered.
  12. Whipped Cream:
  13. Beat heavy cream until soft peaks form.
  14. Add powdered sugar and vanilla and continue to whip until medium peaks form.
  15. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator.
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{ 44 comments… read them below or add one }

Estela @ Weekly Bite November 15, 2010 at 4:37 pm

Pumpkin pie is my favorite next to pecan pie! Every year I bake a different pumpkin pie recipe. I’m excited to try yours :)


Jessica @ How Sweet November 15, 2010 at 4:43 pm

I have never tried making my own pumpkin pie. I’m so fearful it will never compare to my grandmothers!


Heather (Heather's Dish) November 15, 2010 at 4:46 pm

i am such the pumpkin pie snob these days…only homemade will do!


merry jennifer November 15, 2010 at 5:00 pm

Your pumpkin pie recipe looks wonderful – and the photos of it turned out great. Pumpkin pie is the only pie I routinely make – I keep saying I’m going to branch out, but for the holidays, this is the one my family requests. Thanks for sharing your recipe!


Cookin' Canuck November 15, 2010 at 5:48 pm

I loved the peek into the life of an 11-year old Alice. Seriously – you were making pies at that age? I’m impressed! The no-roll pie crust is particularly appealing to a crust-phobic like me.


Amanda November 15, 2010 at 5:55 pm

This is GORGEOUS!!! I totally trust you and would be willing to make this for our Thanksgiving this year!!!


Fromagette November 15, 2010 at 6:10 pm

Daughters baking for Dads is the best!!


Karen at Globetrotter Diaries November 15, 2010 at 9:45 pm

I don’t remember the last time I made a pumpkin pie– this recipe sounds delicious! You’ve inspired me to make one this year :)


Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets November 15, 2010 at 10:48 pm

Wow good for you. Looks gorgeous and smooth too.


the blissful baker November 15, 2010 at 11:12 pm

yum, pumpkin pie is my favorite! yours looks fantastic!


MJ November 16, 2010 at 12:17 am

That looks so perfect and yummy! I want a slice!


Susan November 16, 2010 at 9:38 am

Pumpkin pie is my favorite Thanksgiving dessert and this looks delicious. I’m in charge of it this year and I will try your recipe for sure.

Your cookies (chocolate chip – best ever and sugar cookies) are the best I have ever tried, and you have never let me down! :) Alice or bust! :)


Alicia November 16, 2010 at 10:15 am

Aww, I love the story about your dad…. so cute! The pumpkin pie looks like perfection!


Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction November 16, 2010 at 11:17 am

This is a stunning pie… And I love the story about the sugar-free pie!


Rachel @ The Avid Appetite November 16, 2010 at 3:57 pm

This looks absolutely divine. My favorite part of Thanksgiving is the pumpkin pie and I haven’t yet made my own! It will need to happen this year!


Aimee @ Simple Bites November 16, 2010 at 8:08 pm

Alice, this was torture for me to read tonight, post-dinner, no dessert to speak of, and a coffee in hand! It looks just perfect.

This year for our Thanksgiving, I did a Chocolate Pumpkin Pie. Oh MY! I may never be able to eat plain pumpkin again…


Mariko November 17, 2010 at 1:22 am

I think brown sugar is the way to go in pumpkin pie. That molasses flavor does so well with pumpkin.
Your crust edge is so nice! Mine always looks haphazard.


alison November 19, 2010 at 1:01 pm

I’m so excited that you posted this! I have a daughter who LOVES pumpkin pie, and requested it in lieu of cake today for her birthday. I’m going to try this out with our home-grown pumpkin. :)


Jess November 19, 2010 at 1:37 pm

I am excited to say this will be my pumpkin pie recipe for Thanksgiving this year! One question… I want to use the frozen pumpkin pulp I saved from cooking a pumpkin a couple weeks ago. Once it’s defrosted, should I just make sure it’s really smooth with a blender? Do you think I need to press extra liquid out of it? I don’t want it to mess up the recipe, and I know that canned puree tends to be thicker than home cooked.
Any advice would be much appreciated!
Oh, and also thank you for that pie crust recipe. I am one of those people who are inexplicably afraid of making a pie crust.


alice November 19, 2010 at 5:08 pm

Hi Jess: I’ve never made pumpkin pie using fresh pumpkin. I imagine you would want to squeeze out any excess water. As for blending it, you should make sure it is as smooth as possible so you don’t get any chunks of pumpkin, unless you are wanting that texture. I know some people do make their pumpkin pie batter and strain it before filling the pie shell to make it smooth as possible. Just depends on what you’re going for. Hope this helps. Happy Thanksgiving.


Tricia @ Saving room for dessert November 19, 2010 at 2:54 pm

My sister-in-law swears by those Costco pumpkin pies. But I didn’t let it sway me last year, I made mine homemade anyway :)


Rebecca November 19, 2010 at 11:07 pm

Did you eventually make a sugar-free one? I’m thinking about making this with the stevia that I’d bought a bit back.


Monica November 20, 2010 at 11:41 pm

Just made 5 of your pumpkin pies…It was as easy as “pie” to make. I love pumpkin pie and I can’t wait until one cools down so that I can try it!!! My house smells absolutely delicious and ready for Thanksgiving. Thank you for the recipe!


Jess November 21, 2010 at 2:28 pm

Alice, thanks so much for your quick reply! I went ahead and bought some canned stuff while at the store yesterday. I’ve decided to save the home cooked pumpkin for muffins or bread, where it’s not a big deal if it’s a little chunky.
Happy Thanksgiving to you too!


Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} November 21, 2010 at 3:49 pm

Looks so great, I can’t wait for Thanksgiving! Nice to see your pie on PW’s website, my pie is there too :)


LimeCake November 21, 2010 at 6:09 pm

that is an absolutely gorgeous pumpkin pie! the hue of orange is just beautiful!


JennEJenn November 21, 2010 at 8:09 pm

This recipe came in the nick of time! My nephew loves pumpkin pie and this year I plan to make him a pumpkin pie yet since I don’t like pumpkin I did not have a real clue. Can’ t wait to try out this recipe!


Monica November 22, 2010 at 3:21 pm

After making the 5 pumpkin pies, I was able to try one. It was completely delicious! Even my oldest son -who is not very fond of pumpkin pie- loved it!


Bonnie November 22, 2010 at 10:40 pm

Do you put the filled pie dish on top of the baking pan inside the oven?



alice November 22, 2010 at 11:05 pm

Hi Bonnie: I set the pie on the baking sheet and then put them both in the oven. Hope this helps.


Kari November 24, 2010 at 8:42 am

This looks so YUMMY, I’m trying this out for our Thanksgiving this year!! Thank you SO much for sharing!!!


Meg November 25, 2010 at 7:48 pm

Hey Alice! I tried out your pumpkin pie recipe and no-roll crust (the first pie I’ve made from scratch), and it got rave reviews! Everyone thought your crust was perfectly flaky and that the pumpkin mixture was very smooth and melted in your mouth. :) I will definitely make this again! Thanks SO much for sharing.

I wanted to respond to another’s post about using fresh pumpkin. I used some pumpkin I had cooked in the oven, puréed in a blender, and stuck in the freezer (no doctoring whatsoever). I thawed it in the microwave, pausing once to drain off a little water from melted ice, then used a cup and a half of this puréed pumpkin to substitute for the canned pumpkin. It worked perfectly! I think the trick was to make sure I had puréed the pumpkin really well in my blender… there were no chunks in the pie. The only thing I noticed was that, after the pie had been in the fridge, a little bit of water was sitting on the top. I simply took a paper towel and laid it lightly on the pie to soak up the water. Worked like a charm. I won’t hesitate to use puréed pumpkin again next time. Just wanted to share! Thanks again!


alice November 26, 2010 at 2:00 am

Hey Meg and Tabitha: Thanks for your sweet comments. Hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving Day.


Michelle November 26, 2010 at 5:14 pm

Sheer perfection. I think pumpkin pie must be my absolute favorite kind of pie. I love how you can eat it out of hand, straight from the fridge. : )


Momma McCall November 30, 2010 at 11:51 pm

My family made this (well two of these actually) for Thanksgiving and it was great! I posted a link to your recipe on my blog. Thanks so much!


Sharon Lavelle December 1, 2010 at 11:33 pm

How do I cook a fresh pumpkin??? My local Central Market was giving away organic pumpkins, so I am excited to make your Pumpkin Pie with my straight from the patch pumpkin!


alice December 2, 2010 at 2:15 am

Hi Sharon: I’ve never cooked with fresh pumpkin so I can’t answer your question.


HomemadeMother November 24, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Here’s how I prepare fresh pumpkin. It is super easy.



HomemadeMother November 24, 2011 at 10:58 pm

Made this today with pureed fresh pumpkin and it was delicious!


Sarah December 13, 2011 at 1:28 am

This pumpkin pie is always good, thank you so mucho.


Vicki March 15, 2012 at 9:37 am

Did you ever come up with a good diabetic pumpkin pie? Sweets are so difficult for a diabetic! Thanks.


Sweet Love Quotes April 28, 2013 at 11:39 pm

Hello, I enjoy reading all of your article. I like to write a little comment to support you.


Saidy November 15, 2013 at 10:36 pm

I see some complimenting you on your recipe for the crust but I don’t see it on there. Do you have it on a separate post? I’d love to make my crust from scratch rather than buy it ready made from the store. Thanks! So excited to try your recipe!


Alice Currah November 15, 2013 at 11:34 pm

Hi Saidy! The crust I love to use with this recipe is my no roll pie crust. It can be found here. http://savorysweetlife.com/2010/05/no-roll-pie-crust/ The reason I love it is because you make it using a food processor or your fingers and then pat the crust in. I explain everything in the post. Hope this helps.



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