It’s the pie most guests expect at Thanksgiving and every home cook should master. Here’s how to do it.
Makes 1 (9-inch) pie, 8 to 10 servings
What You Need
- 1 (9-inch) unbaked pie crust
- 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (about 2 cups)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves or allspice
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Prepare the pie crust
– Arrange a rack in the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 425°F.
– Roll out the pie crust and transfer it to a 9-inch pie pan.
– Crimp the edges.
– Chill for 30 minutes while the oven heats.
2. Blind bake the crust
– Line the pie crust with parchment or aluminum foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans.
– Bake until the edges just start to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
– Remove the weights and lining, and bake for another 5 minutes.
– Remove from the oven and keep near the stove.
3. Prepare the puree.
– Combine the pumpkin puree, granulated sugar, brown sugar, salt, and spices in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment or blender.
– Blend until the brown sugar is completely mixed in and the puree looks glossy.
4. Cook the puree mixture.
– Transfer the puree to a saucepan and set over medium-high heat.
– Stir frequently until you see wisps of steam rising from the puree, then stir continuously until the mixture is very steamy and “plops” when you pause for a second.
– The mixture will also start to smell like spices and cooked pumpkin. Cook for no more than 5 minutes.
5. Whisk in the milk and eggs.
– Remove the pan from the heat.
– Whisk in the milk and cream.
– To warm the eggs and ensure that they don’t cook when you add them to the pumpkin mixture, whisk them together in a separate bowl, then whisk in a few spoonfuls of the warm pumpkin mixture.
– Slowly whisk the eggs into the saucepan with the pumpkin mixture. Whisk in the vanilla.
6. Fill the pie crust.
– Place the partially baked pie crust on a parchment-lined baking sheet and set it near the stove. – Carefully pour the warm pumpkin mixture into the warm pie crust.
– If it looks like there’s too much filling for the crust, stop when you come close to the edge of the crust.
7. Bake the pie.
– Carefully transfer the baking sheet with the pie to the oven and immediately turn down the heat to 375°F.
– Bake for 50 to 60 minutes — until the pie is puffed in the middle, but still jiggles when you gently shake the pan.
– You’ll also see small cracks form in the outer part of the pie and some bubbling around the edge.
– Check the pie every 15 minutes or so and cover the crust with a ring of foil when it becomes deep brown.
8. Cool the pie.
– Let the pie cool before serving — it will continue to set as it cools.