How To Make Pumpkin Puree (or any squash!)
Serves: several cups of pumpkin puree depending on the size of pumpkin used
  • 1 Pumpkin or Winter Squash
  • Sharp Chefs Knife
  • Baking Sheet
  • Water
  • Blender or food processor
  1. Choose a pumpkin or winter squash and wash the outside skin before diving in. Use a sharp chefs knife to cut it in half, keeping to one side of the stem.
  2. Use a large spoon to scrape out the seeds and stringy flesh from the inside of the pumpkin halves (discard seeds or save to roast later).
  3. Cut the top stem and bottom knub off of the pumpkin and cut both halves in half again so that you have four quarters. If you are using a really large pumpkin you may want to cut in into six's or oven eighths.
  4. Place the pumpkin wedges cut side down on a baking sheet and pour enough water on the sheet to just cover the bottom.
  5. Place the sheet pan in the oven on the middle rack and roast the pumpkin at 400 degrees for 30-45 minutes. Length of time will depend on size and thickness of pumpkin quarters. Pumpkin is cooked when a fork pierces the flesh with ease - it should be very tender.
  6. Remove the pan from the oven, drain off the water, and let the pumpkin cool until you can easily handle it.
  7. Using your hands, peel the skin off of the pumpkins. Use a small knife to cut off any skin that doesn't readily pull back.
  8. Place the skinless pumpkin flesh in a blender or food processor (my Vitamix made this process almost effortless), place the lid on the blender, then puree for 30 seconds to one minute, or until smooth and silky. You may need to scrape the sides down a time or two to get all of the pumpkin pureed.
  9. If you are not using the puree right away (and my guess is you won't be using all of it right off the bat - depending on the size of pumpkin you roast you can end up with a LOT of puree) then I would recommend freezing what you don't think you'll use. I pour my pumpkin puree into Ziploc bags in 1 cup increments, label, date, and freeze so that the bags are flattened and stacked upon each other. This way the puree freezes in a thin layer with thaws quickly under warm running water whenever you might need to use it, along with the 1 cup  being a good amount for most recipes. I always have pumpkin left over when I use canned, don't you?
Recipe by The Kitchen McCabe at