It’s not always easy to find pumpkin purée in the shops so why not make it yourself? It’s cheap and easy to make and you know exactly what’s gone into it – just pumpkin!
PLUS – 20+ ideas for using pumpkin purée in your cooking.
Skip to the recipe | Ways to Use Pumpkin Purée | Recipe FAQs
I’ve had a bit of a change of heart about Autumn. To be honest I was never really been a huge fan, the weather gets chilly and damp and I know that I’ve got months more of it to come. I do like Christmas, but there’s too long to wait for that to be feeling excited in October.
Anyway, I’ve started to feel a bit different…
At the end of September my Instagram feed gets full of excitement about the crisp autumn leaves starting to fall from the trees and I feel a bit grumpy as I love the weather we had in summer and could have happily had that carry on.
Then I look at my boys, all eager, they love kicking the leaves, watching squirrels collecting nuts and getting excited about Halloween.
Then I find myself getting quite excited about the whole thing too.
In all of my embracing Autumn and Halloween I thought it would be useful to figure out what to do with a pumpkin rather than carving it and then wasting the edible bit inside.
I decided to perfect my pumpkin pie recipe and the first step was to make my own pumpkin purée.
Ways to Use Pumpkin Purée
Pumpkin puree is incredibly versatile – it is used in everything from delicious cupcakes, smoothies and pies to waffles, hummus and even bread.
I use this puree in two of my recipes:
I’ve shared a selection of recipes from across the internet which use pumpkin purée below.
Lots of pumpkin based recipes also call for a pumpkin spice mix – if you can’t find any in the shops or prefer to make your own, make sure to look at my Homemade Pumpkin Spice post.
Pumpkin Cakes & Bakes
- Easy Pumpkin Spice Dump Cake from Fuss Free Flavours
- Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting from Curly’s Cooking
- Pumpkin & Ginger Scones from Something Sweet Something Savoury
- Pumpkin Spice Macarons from Cambrea Bakes
- Pumpkin Magic Bars from Flavor Mosaic
- Pumpkin Gingerbread Cake with Sticky Whisky Glaze from Kitchen Sanctuary
- Pumpkin Chiffon Pie from House of Nash Eats
- Mini Pumpkin Trifles from A Cooking Journey Blog
Pumpkin for Breakfast or Brunch
- Pumpkin Pancakes with Almond Maple Syrup from From The Larder
- Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal from Mom Foodie
- Easy Pumpkin Waffles from Six Hungry Feet
- Sweet Pumpkin Porridge from Amy Savage Nutrition
Savoury Recipes using Pumpkin Purée
- Pumpkin Gnocchi from Fuss Free Flavours
- Pumpkin & Sage Soup from Curly’s Cooking
- Pumpkin Sourdough Bread from A Mummy Too
- Pumpkin Hummus from Farmersgirl Kitchen
- Pumpkin Hand Pies from Sew White
- Pumpkin Spice Latte (Starbucks Copycat) from Cooktoria
- Pumpkin Pie Smoothie from A Mummy Too
How to Make Pumpkin Purée FAQs
If it’s your first time making this recipe or you have a question, please take a moment to have a read through my FAQs for some extra tips and allergen information.
What kind of pumpkin is best to use for pumpkin purée?
Now sadly it turns out that whilst the big orange pumpkins that you use for carving are edible and taste kind of OK, there are much better pumpkins to use in cooking.
Also, once you’ve carved a pumpkin and left it sitting on your doorstep with a candle inside for a few hours you’re not really going to want to eat it, are you?
To make a really nice pumpkin purée you need to head past the big boxes of pumpkins in the supermarket entrances and into the vegetable section instead.
Look out for culinary pumpkins or failing that use something like the mini pumpkins I used in these pictures or a butternut squash.
How is the pumpkin cooked for pumpkin purée?
In my opinion almost everything tastes better roasted and I’ve applied this to my pumpkin purée too by roasting the pumpkin rather than boiling it or steaming it.
Another advantage of roasting is that you don’t need to peel the pumpkin before cooking it, a job I really don’t enjoy.
As well as adding a bit more flavour, roasting also helps to dry out the pumpkin flesh making sure that your finished purée is nice and thick.
Pumpkins give out a surprising amount of water as they cook (especially if you ignore my first tip and use a big orange one), so put them into the roasting dish skin side up. That way the water drains into the tray rather than collecting in a little puddle on top of the pumpkin, which will soak in and make your purée more watery.
What seasonings do you use when making pumpkin purée?
Finally I like to cook just the pumpkin without any seasonings.
In general I’d say when I’m roasting something that it’ll come out tasting much better with a pinch of salt and drizzle of oil, but for something like a pumpkin pie they’re extra flavours you probably don’t really need.
So leave the pumpkin plain and then add more flavour to whatever you’re planning on using it for later.
What is this recipe free from? Who is it suitable for?
The ingredients I used to make this recipe are all free from the following allergens. However, please check any labels carefully for allergens you need to avoid as brands can vary, and product recipes can change over time.
- Suitable for Vegetarians and Vegans
- Tree Nut-Free
- Sulphur Dioxide and Sulphite-Free
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How To Make Pumpkin Purée
- 1 Pumpkin - preferably a culinary pumpkin or butternut squash
- Pre-heat your oven to 180ºC/160ºC fan.
- Cut the top off your pumpkin and cut it in half. Scrape out the seeds (you can clean these up and roast them too for a healthy snack). Cut each pumpkin half in half again.
- Place the pumpkin into a large roasting tin skin side up (to allow water to drain away from the pumpkin as it roasts) and roast for about 45 minutes until the flesh is soft.
- Once cooked, remove the pumpkin from the oven and allow it to cool a little, then scrape the flesh out of the skin.
- Pop it into a blender (or into a large bowl if using a hand blender) and blend until smooth. I’ve got a really powerful blender so I don’t end up with lumps but if you’ve got a few then strain it though a sieve to remove them.
- Now you’re ready to turn it into something delicious.
Any nutritional information provided is the estimated nutritional information per serving. Please refer to my guide to Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen nutritional information if you would like to learn more about how this is calculated.
Monika Dabrowski says
All the best ideas are simple. Such as this one! I agree that roasting produces more flavour than boiling or even steaming would. I have been roasting a lot this autumn.
Kirsty Hijacked By Twins says
I always buy culinary pumpkins for the kids to carve as I hate the waste of other carving ones. I always make a soup with the flesh. Your puree sounds delicious, I bet it is lovely with some mixed spices. Thank you for sharing with #CookBlogShare x
Charlotte Oates says
That sounds like a sensible plan, I’ll have to remember to do that next year.
Sarah James @ Tales From The Kitchen Shed says
Great idea Charlotte, it’s such a waste to carve a pumpkin and not use the flesh. I often make jam with ours but I’ll save some for roasting and pureeing to put in the freezer this year, perfect for a soup.
Charlotte Oates says
Ooh pumpkin jam sounds delicious 🙂
I’ve not made it into soup yet as I’ve made far too much pumpkin pie instead! It would definitely make a great soup though.
Fionnuala Three Sons Later says
Snap! I posted a recipe for pumpkin Puree the other day. Mine is a sweet, spiced one, ready to use as a breakfast topping or for cakes or pies. I love the colour of yours. So vibrant.
Charlotte Oates says
Ooh, I hadn’t spotted yours, I’ll be over for a look in a bit x
This is a great idea Charlotte. I find pumpkin purée hard to find and last time I went into Wholefoods in London they’d sold out! Thanks for adding to #CookBlogShare
Charlotte Oates says
It seems as though they buy a batch in ready for October and then once it’s gone it’s gone. It seems to be sold out in all of my local shops.