I don't know if it is the same everywhere but right now pie pumpkins are extremely affordable. I was able to pick up two organic pie pumpkins from our local (not really local) natural food store for $1.99 a piece. A can of organic pumpkin puree usually runs me $2.99. So even if I was just using the pumpkins for puree I would be saving $1. I didn't just use them for puree though, I also roasted the seeds for a tasty snack. Pumpkin seeds can be a bit expensive for I would say I saved more than a $1 by buying pie pumpkins to make my own puree.
Some people like to argue the convenience factor, that buying puree already made is worth the extra $1+ for the time it saves but seriously this could not have been easier to make. Personally, I find the taste of homemade puree much tastier than the canned stuff.
The how to:
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Cut the pie pumpkin in half. This is the hardest step. If you can get past this step you are golden. While I was cutting the pumpkin I was second guessing my money saving, but I am not one who likes to cut anything.
3. Remove the guts and seeds. Make sure you save the seeds so you can roast them. Toss guts, preferably in your compost!
3. Place the pumpkin, cut half down, onto a baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes.
4. Remove pumpkin from oven and let cool completely.
5. Once the pumpkin is cool, remove the skin. It should come right off. Toss the pumpkin into a food processor, if you don't have a food processor a blender should work also. Turn processor on and puree to your desired thickness. (I had to do two separate batches to make it all fit.
6. Enjoy your puree in whichever way you prefer. We used it in a smoothie this morning. I also have plans for pumpkin pie, pumpkin muffins, and pumpkin bagels!
One regular size pie pumpkin provided me with 2 pint size jars + a pickle jar worth of puree (I would estimate about 8 cups of puree).
What is your favorite way to eat pumpkin puree?