Have you noticed a lack of canned pumpkin puree lining your grocery store shelves? Instead of panicking over potentially missing out on your favorite fall treats, think of this as the perfect time to learn how to make your own!
Before we get into the recipe, you should know that rumors about a canned pumpkin shortage this year have been a bit over-exaggerated. Libby’s, one of the most popular sources for the pureed gourd and other preserved veggies, issued a statement explaining that weather conditions this year did cause a delay in pumpkin harvesting, but that it didn’t wipe them out entirely.
Cans are scheduled to show back up in stores soon… But you still might discover a few greedy bakers in your area snagging them all up before you can get your hands on one. Remember those empty shelves of toilet paper and hand sanitizer shortages? And those don’t even create delicious desserts.
All this to say, having a pumpkin puree recipe in your back pocket is a definitely a good idea as we head into the holiday season. Thankfully, it also happens to be super easy to make!
How to Make Pumpkin Puree
We’re fans of Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond’s simple pumpkin puree recipe. All you need is two small pumpkins, which is the perfect excuse for a family trip to your local pumpkin patch if you haven’t gone yet. Cut the gourds in half and scoop out all the seeds and pulp (saving the seeds to roast later).
Drummond then says to roast the pieces on a baking sheet at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 minutes, or until they’re tender enough to easily poke with a fork. Once they’ve cooled down a bit, you can easily peel off the skin and then pulse a few chunks at a time in a food processor until it forms a smooth puree.
You might need to add a few tablespoons of water if it seems too dry. Don’t worry if you accidentally add too much water, though — you can squeeze the extra moisture out with a cheesecloth.
Once you’re done, you can either use the puree right away or store it in your freezer. Drummond spoons hers into large freezer bags to pull out whenever she needs it for a recipe. She also hilariously admits that she disobeys the “freezer police” who will tell you to only store the puree for six to eight months.
“I SWANEE [swear] I’ve used year-old pumpkin from the freezer before with great success,” she writes with her typical southern charm. It’s up to you whether you copy her time frame, but even following the “rules” will help you keep the puree around for a good long while.
Now, there’s no need to worry about whether or not you can find it in the stores. Plus, we’re sure all your pumpkin recipes will taste even sweeter with this homemade version.