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Grey white background and plate with slice of pumpkin custard pie with whipped cream.

Pumpkin Custard Pie

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This simple and creamy pie is a mix of sweet custard and soft pumpkin. The result is a fantastic filling and, therefore, pie. The base is an easy graham cracker crust that can be replaced with a classic flaky dough. Make it as soon as the fall season begins. It's a big holiday yes (especially the Thanksgiving feast) and a wonderful alternative to the traditional pumpkin pie. 

  • Total Time: 2 hours 55 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

Units

For the graham crust:

  • 1 3/4 cups ground graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted

For the pumpkin custard filling:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/3 cup cream
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

For the whipped cream:

  • 1 cup double, heavy, or heavy whipping cream
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sour cream or cream cheese
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Turn on the oven at 350°F/180°C.

For the graham cracker crust:

  1. Combine ground cookies with sugar in a medium bowl.
  2. Add the melted butter and stir until it looks like wet sand.
  3. Pat on a 9-inch pie plate (24cm), covering the bottom and sides. Begin pressing at the sides and angle where the bottom meets the sides, then press to cover the bottom. 
  4. Refrigerate while making the filling.

For the pumpkin creamy filling:

  1. Put eggs in a large bowl and add the sugar. Stir or lightly beat just to incorporate with a fork or whisk. 
  2. Add the pumpkin puree, vanilla, salt and spice mix. Mix well until integrated. 
  3. Slowly add milk and cream, stirring constantly without beating, until you have a smooth and fluid mixture. 
  4. Place the pie shell in the preheated oven and slowly pour the pumpkin mixture. You can do this right next to the oven but be very careful when transporting it to the oven as it’s very liquid and it spills easy. 
  5. Bake for about 40 minutes, until it’s almost completely set and the top is golden brown. It will continue to solidify as it cools. If the edges of the pie are browning too quickly, loosely cover with foil and continue baking until done. 
  6. Cool to room temperature on a wire rack, cover and refrigerate for a few hours before serving. You can make it 2 days ahead and keep refrigerated, always well covered to prevent dryness. 

For the whipping cream:

  1. Beat cold cream with sour cream/cream cheese and powdered sugar in a medium bowl. 
  2. Consistency of the cream: I like it to be thick but soft, so I whip it to medium peaks. But you can go all the way and beat it to firm peaks, similar to chantilly cream. 
  3. Be careful it doesn't curdle. It's what happens if it's overbeaten. You might want to beat with an electric mixer until you're almost there and then end it by hand with a whisk. It's hard to overbeat a preparation with a manual whisk. 

Notes

  • 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.
  • Baking time: consider that all ovens and pans are different, even if they look similar. The baking time in my recipes is as accurate as it can be, but it might take you more or less time. You can use a thermometer (like the OXO oven thermometer) to check that your oven is at the right temperature. I recommend you keep track of how your oven works and what tiny details you might need to adjust. 
  • Pumpkin puree: use canned fresh pumpkin or make homemade pumpkin puree. Please don't mistake it for pumpkin pie filling, which is a different product. 
  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cooling + refrigeration time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Category: Pies & Tarts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American