This old fashioned pumpkin pie from scratch is made with the best flaky crust. Made with fresh pumpkin puree this delicious pie is perfect for all of your holiday dinners.
This post was originally published in November 2017 and has been updated for content.
The best part of the holiday season is the desserts. We always make pies for Thanksgiving dinner and sometimes for Christmas. This old fashioned pumpkin pie recipe is made from scratch and has become a family favorite at our holiday table.
🎃 Ingredient notes
- Pumpkin - For this recipe you will need 2 cups of pumpkin puree. I usually use my fresh pumpkin puree recipe that is made from sugar pumpkins. You can also use canned pumpkin puree, just make sure you get 100% pure pumpkin instead of pumpkin pie filling.
- Pie Crust - The recipe below includes enough dough for a 9 ½ inch pie plate. Alternatively, a store bought pie crust can be used instead. The filling will also work in a 9 inch pie pan, but it needs to be a deep sided dish to have room for all the filling.
📋 Substitutions and variations
- Dairy Free - To make this pumpkin pie dairy free, replace the butter in the crust with a dairy free butter substitute and replace the evaporated milk with a non dairy unsweetened milk.
- Gluten Free - The filling for this pumpkin pie is naturally gluten free. To make this pie gluten free, simply substitute the homemade pie crust for a gluten free pie crust.
🥣 Step by step instructions
First, pulse the all purpose flour with the salt and cold butter in a food processor until the butter is the size of small peas. Add the ice water a tablespoon at a time, pulsing for 3-5 times after each addition, until the dough just comes together.
Turn the dough mixture out onto a tea towel and twist up the towel to press the form into a disc. Wrap the disc in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, milk and eggs. In a separate bowl, mix the the white and brown sugar together with the salt and spices.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until no lumps remain. Chill the filling for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
When the dough is done chilling, roll it out on a floured surface until it's about ¼ inch thick.
Place the dough in a greased 9 ½ inch pie plate and press it down gently so it is flat against the sides and the bottom. Use your thumb and index finger from one hand and thumb or index finger of your other hand to crimp the edges. Pour the chilled pie filling into the pie shell.
Bake the pie in a 400˚ oven for 50-55 minutes until a knife comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the pie. Cool the pie for 30 minutes and then refrigerate to chill it completely. The pie can then be served chilled or at room temperature.
If you ever don't recognize a tool or skill that I mention, be sure to look it up in the Glossary of Cooking Terms and Definitions for more information.
⭐ Expert tips
- The trick to making a flaky pie crust is to keep the dough cold. Make sure both the butter and water are kept ice cold before using to help with this.
- The dough will be crumbly after mixing it, but will start to meld together in the refrigerator during chilling time. Be careful not to over mix the dough or it will become tough.
- If you don't have a food processor, a pastry blender can be used to work the butter into the flour and a mixing spoon to form the dough.
- Twisting the pie dough up in towel will help to form it without overworking the dough or making a mess.
- Place a baking sheet on the wire rack underneath the pie to catch any drips during baking.
- If the crust is getting too browned, place aluminum foil over the crust edges for the remainder of the baking time.
- Let the pie cool for at least 30 minutes before transferring it into the refrigerator to chill completely. If you can, let it chill overnight for best results.
⏲️ Make ahead and storage instructions
Filling - The pumpkin pie filling can be made up to 2 days ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator or it can also be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. Frozen filling should be thawed completely before using. Cooking times may be longer.
Pie dough - The dough can be prepared up to 3 days ahead of time and stored tightly wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator. Dough can also be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Frozen dough should be thawed completely in the refrigerator. Dough that has been thawed or stored in the refrigerator for a while should be taken out 30 minutes before use to make rolling out easier.
Pie - Once the pumpkin pie is baked and cooled, it can be stored in the refrigerator up to 2 days ahead of time. The whole pie can also be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one month. Frozen pie should be completely thawed in the refrigerator.
🎃 More pumpkin recipes
If you loved this old fashioned pumpkin pie recipe, check out these other pumpkin recipes that I know you will love too!
- Roasted Pumpkin Hummus
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread
- Pumpkin Roll Cake with Mascarpone
- Sweet and Salty Pumpkin Seeds
Don't forget! If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and give it a rating. I love to hear from each and every one of you! Tag me on Facebook and Instagram as well! It makes my day to see all of your photos of the food you have made.
Old Fashioned Pumpkin Pie from Scratch
- In a food processor, combine flour, salt and cold butter pieces. Pulse the ingredients 8-10 times, until the butter is the size of small peas.
- Add the ice water 1 Tablespoon at a time, pulsing 3-5 times after each addition, until the mixture just comes together. The mixture will be crumbly, but should just hold together if it's pressed together.
- Turn the crumbly dough mixture out onto a tea towel. Pull the ends of the towel up and twist them to wrap up the dough mixture completely in the towel and help form it into a disc.
- Remove the disc from the towel and wrap it up completely in plastic wrap. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Pumpkin Pie Filling
- Preheat the oven to 400˚ and grease a 9.5 inch pie plate with butter or baking spray.
- In a mixing bowl, combine pumpkin puree, evaporated milk and eggs and whisk to combine.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the brown sugar, white sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk everything together until no lumps remain. Chill the filling in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Roll the chilled pie dough out on a floured surface until it is approximately ¼ inch thick.
- Carefully lay the rolled pie dough onto the prepared pie plate and gently press it down to lay flat against the sides and bottom.
- Using the index finger and thumb on one hand and a finger or thumb on the other hand, gently pinch the pie dough in between the fingers to form a V to crimp the edges.
- Pour the chilled filling in the prepared crust and bake in the preheated oven for 50-55 minutes until a knife comes out clean when inserted into the middle.
- Let the pie cool for 30 minutes outside of the oven and then transfer it to the refrigerator to cool completely. Pie can be served chilled or at room temperature.
- Keep butter and water as cold as possible to make a flaky pie crust.
- The dough will be crumbly but will meld together during chilling. Don't overmix or it will become tough.
- Twisting the dough up in a towel helps to form it without overworking it and making a mess.
- A baking sheet can be placed on the rack underneath the pie to catch any drips.
- If the crust is getting too browned, place foil over the edges.
- Let the pie cool for 30 minutes before transferring it the refrigerator. Chilling overnight will give the best results!
Substitutions and Variations
- Filling - Either homemade pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin puree may be used. Use 100% pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling.
- Crust - The recipe includes enough dough for a 9 ½ inch pie pan. The filling will also work in a 9 inch pie pan, but it needs to be a deep sided one. Store bought crust may also be used.
- Dairy Free - Replace the butter in the crust with a dairy free butter substitute and replace the evaporated milk with a non dairy unsweetened milk.
- Gluten Free - Substitute the homemade pie crust for a gluten free pie crust.