Recipes » How to Substitute Fresh Pumpkin for Canned

How to Substitute Fresh Pumpkin for Canned

As Autumn rolls in, so do the recipes for mouthwatering dishes containing pumpkin. . . muffins, pies, cakes, soups and more. Which begs the dilemma for those who don’t have access to solid-pack canned pumpkin, just how much should you use?  Here’s a handy guide on how to substitute fresh pumpkin for canned in all of your favorite recipes.


Canned Pumpkin

Canned pumpkin contains nothing but Canned pumpkin, no spices, salt or other ingredients. So the answer to how do I substitute fresh pumpkin for canned, of course, is to use the exact same amount the recipe calls for.

If a recipe calls for a 15 oz can of pumpkin, use 15 oz of fresh (prepared) pumpkin which is about 2 cups MINUS 1 Tablespoon.


How to Prepare Fresh Pumpkin

Preheat oven to 375F

Wash the exterior of the pumpkin, then cut it into quarters (Cut it in half and then cut the halves again). Scrape out the innards (just the fibrous strings and seeds, much like you would if you were carving a pumpkin for Halloween).

Place the pumpkin on a baking sheet skin side UP and cover tightly with foil.

Roast in the oven for about 1 1/2 hours, or until it is fork-tender.

Scoop the soft pulp from the rind and transfer into a blender or food processor. Puree.

Pour the puree into a cheesecloth-lined sieve and strain for about an hour to ensure that all the excess liquid has drained away.

Measure out 2 cups of puree per recipe into vacuum seal bags and seal them. These will last up to 18 months in the freezer. If using freezer Ziploc bags, they’ll last about 4 months before becoming frost-bitten.

Choosing the Proper Pumpkin Size

After cooking and draining, this is about what to expect from a typical cooking pumpkin.

2 1/2- lb.pie pumpkin =1-3/4 cups puree

3 1/2-lb.pie pumpkin=2-1/2 cups puree

6-lb. carving pumpkin=2-3/4 cups puree

5-lb. round pumpkin=3-1/3 cups puree

Alternatively, if you are completely out of pumpkin all together, you can use sweet potato puree or butternut squash puree (well-drained!) as a delicious substitute in place of the pumpkin in your favorite recipes!

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What are your favorite pumpkin recipes?