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White bowl with pumpkin puree on off-white cloth

Homemade Pumpkin Puree

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Very easy to make, it's perfect for all the baking recipes. You can follow the instructions whether you use pumpkin or squash.

  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups


  • 1 whole pumpkin or butternut squash (if using pumpkin halves see Notes below)
  • 1 piece of aluminum foil or parchment paper, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C
  2. Wash and scrub the pumpkin or squash, and put it on a baking sheet. You can line it with aluminum foil or parchment paper for easier cleaning afterward.
  3. Baking it: it takes a while, at least an hour, sometimes half an hour more (it depends on the size and type of pumpkin) until it's fork-tender or can be very easily pierced with a knife. The inside should be very soft.
  4. Remove from the oven and cut it in half.
  5. Remove the pulp with a spoon and put it in the bowl of the food processor.
  6. Processing: process until it's creamy. It will still be very wet, but that is fine.
  7. Transfer to a colander set atop a bowl. You can add a cheesecloth before adding the pulp.
  8. Draining: let the pumpkin pulp drain until the puree is thick. It will take a while.
  9. Transfer the thick puree to a sealed container and keep refrigerated until ready to use. It keeps for several days.
  10. Or keep it in the freezer for a month in an airtight container. 


  • Organization: read the recipe first and ensure you have ingredients at the correct temperature, equipment, and enough workspace. This will make the process so much easier.
  • I love to use butternut squash, sugar pumpkin (the typical orange one below), or English pumpkin (the green one, which can have different names depending on where you live).
  • What pumpkin doesn't work? The ones that have a pulp that is stringy, like spaghetti squash or acorn squash, will not have a smooth consistency after it's pureed. 
  • Pumpin halves: bake each one covered with aluminum foil so the pulp doesn't create a crust. Prick the foil with a fork a few times to let the steam escape. If you don't want to cover the half pumpkin pieces, bake them directly and discard the brown skin or crust that will have formed. You only need the soft pulp for the puree. 
  • Storing: the drained pumpkin puree lasts for a week in the refrigerator in a sealed container. Always taste or smell it before using it. You will find it's mildly acidic and pungent when it starts to go bad. Freeze it in an airtight container and defrost it in the refrigerator. If you see that it collected water when it thaws, drain it before using it. 
  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Processing time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 75 minutes
  • Category: Basic Recipes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: International


  • Serving Size: 1/4
  • Calories: 42
  • Sugar: 4 g
  • Sodium: 6.1 mg
  • Fat: 0.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 9.9 g
  • Fiber: 3.6 g
  • Protein: 1.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg