Bring home that adorable whole pie pumpkin from the farm stand and whip up your very own batch of homemade Instant Pot Pumpkin Puree! Smooth, pumpkiny, and perfect for using in your favorite recipes. This method for making pumpkin puree is the EASIEST ever, and you’re going to love the results!
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One of the best things about the Fall season (besides soup and sweater weather of course) is the appearance of gorgeous round pumpkins at every doorstep and street corner. I happen to live in a community that is largely based around farming, so I see this perhaps more than the average person. I am surrounded by farmers who make the majority of their income during the agritourism season, with pumpkin patches lined up to the road, and corn mazes bursting with young patrons.
This time of year is a special one indeed for me, and for many others in the Western hemisphere. It represents a time of harvest, and a time of preparing for the long Winter months ahead. Fall is about reaping the harvest you have sowed for 6 months or more, and getting ready to make that harvest last until the first signs of spinach in the Spring.
Making it Easy with an Instant Pot
With this dramatic shift in seasons comes the opportunity to get to work in your kitchen, cooking up yummy food from scratch. It’s wonderful fun to bring home your bounty from the apple orchard, the pumpkin patch, or the farmer’s market and get to work on turning into something usable and lasting.
Such is the case with this easy to make Instant Pot Pumpkin Puree!
Since the Instant Pot has entered the scene, food preparation and preservation has never been easier. It makes apple sauce effortlessly (to think how long I used to peel and strain before!), and it turns a simple whole pie pumpkin into pumpkin puree in practically a flash. I’ve even made up yummy Refrigerator Dill Pickles using my Instant Pot!
You’re going to love this easy method to make Instant Pot Pumpkin Puree, and you’re going to love using it in your favorite recipes even more! Let’s get started:
Ingredients and Equipment Needed
- Pumpkin: You will need a pie pumpkin, which is different than the typical pumpkins you purchase to make Jack-O-Lanterns. Pie pumpkins are small, with few seeds and dense flesh. They should be labeled and sold as pie pumpkins at your local grocery store or farmer’s market.
- Instant Pot: Any model of Instant Pot will do for making pumpkin puree! We use the standard manual pressure setting, which is available on all models. My recommendation is to use an 8 quart model, since it’s a little bit easier to fit the pumpkin halves in versus a 6 quart model. This is the one I have.
- Sharp knife: Cutting squash and pumpkin in half can be a very difficult job! The thick skin can be hard to cut through, so it’s important that you use a very sharp knife and do so as carefully as possible.
- Trivet with handles: If your Instant Pot model didn’t come with a trivet with handles for lifting, I would suggest that you pick one up for future use. You can still remove the cooked pumpkin with tongs, but it will fall apart quickly and it is much easier to lift out using the trivet.
- Food Processor: This blends the cooked pumpkin into a smooth puree, suitable for baking and cooking. If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a hand blender to manually blend the pumpkin into a smooth consistency.
How to Make Pumpkin Puree in an Instant Pot
Get started by washing your pie pumpkin and cutting it in half using a sharp knife. Remove the stem and place each half cut side up on a cutting board.
Use a spoon to remove the seeds and scrape the stringy pulp from the inside cavity. You can make roasted pumpkin seeds with the reserved seeds, if desired.
Add the trivet to the bottom of your Instant Pot and pour in 1 cup of cool water for a 6 quart model, and 1 1/2 cups for an 8 quart model.
Place each cleaned pumpkin half in the Instant Pot, with the cut sides down.
Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the valve to “sealing”.
Cook on manual pressure for 12 minutes.
Once the cook time is up, carefully switch the valve to “venting” to do a manual quick release.
Once the pressure has fully released, the pin will drop on the lid, indicating it is safe to open.
Open the lid away from your face, and use a pair of oven mitts or silicone pot lifters to remove the trivet with the cooked pumpkin halves. Place on a heatproof surface, like a cutting board.
Allow the cooked pumpkin to cool slightly, before using your hands to carefully remove the skin from the pumpkin. This should come off VERY easily!
Discard or compost the skin, and transfer the flesh to the bowl of a food processor.
Blend on high until smooth and completely uniform.
Transfer to a glass or plastic container without a lid and allow to cool to room temperature. Once the Instant Pot pumpkin puree has completely cooled, place a lid or plastic wrap on top and transfer to the fridge for storage. Use within 3 days, or freeze for longer periods of time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Pumpkin puree is cooked pumpkin that has been blended or processed into a smooth consistency for use in baked goods and cooking.
Canned pumpkin comes in several varieties, the most common being canned pumpkin puree, and canned pumpkin pie filling. If your can is labeled “pumpkin puree”, it is the same thing, but if it is labeled “pumpkin pie filling”, it is not.
No. The two products are not interchangeable. Pumpkin puree contains no additional sweeteners or spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. Pumpkin pie filling does, and therefore cannot be substituted for pumpkin puree.
Although I don’t know for sure, I think part of the skin is pureed in the manufacturing process of canned pumpkin, giving it a bright orange hue. It could also be the particular cultivar of pumpkin, as Libby uses the Dickinson Pumpkin, which is bright orange inside and resembles more of a butternut squash than a pumpkin.
Recipes that use pumpkin puree
- Pumpkin Pie – Sally’s Baking Addiction
- Pumpkin Muffins – Cooking Classy
- Instant Pot Thai Pumpkin Soup (coming soon)
- Pumpkin Bread – Once Upon a Chef
- Pumpkin Scones – Cooking Classy
And don’t forget to turn your seeds into a tasty snack using my Air Fryer Pumpkin Seeds recipe!
- 1 pie pumpkin, approximately 3-5 pounds
- 1 - 1 1/2 cups water
- Start by washing your pie pumpkin and cutting it in half using a sharp knife. Remove the stem and place each half cut side up on a cutting board.
- Use a spoon to remove the seeds and scrape the stringy pulp from the inside cavity.
- Add the trivet to the bottom of your Instant Pot and pour in 1 cup of cool water for a 6 quart model, and 1 1/2 cups for an 8 quart model.
- Place each cleaned pumpkin half in the Instant Pot, with the cut sides down. Place the lid on the pot and set the valve to "sealing." Cook on manual pressure for 12 minutes.
- Once the cook time is up, carefully switch the valve to "venting" to do a manual quick release.
- Once the pressure has fully released, the pin will drop on the lid, indicating it is safe to open. Open the lid away from your face, and use a pair of oven mitts or silicone pot lifters to remove the trivet with the cooked pumpkin halves. Place on a heatproof surface, like a cutting board.
- Allow the cooked pumpkin to cool slightly, before using your hands to carefully remove the skin from the pumpkin. This should come off VERY easily!
- Discard or compost the skin, and transfer the flesh to the bowl of a food processor. Blend on high until smooth and uniform. Allow to cool to room temperature, and then store or use in your favorite pumpkin recipes!
Water amounts: If you are using a 6 quart Instant Pot, you will need approximately 1 cup of cool water to bring the pot to pressure. If you choose to use an 8 quart Instant Pot, you will need 1 1/2 cups of water to bring the pot to pressure.
Storage: the pumpkin puree has cooled to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you need longer storage, freeze in 1 or 2 cup portions for later use.
Pumpkin puree substitute: If you are using this to substitute for canned pumpkin puree, you can use it in a 1:1 ratio for canned pumpkin puree. This homemade version is a bit more watery than commercial puree, so you may need to add some more of the dry ingredients OR reduce the liquid ingredients ever so slightly.
Serving Size:1/2 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 54Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 55mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 0gSugar: 4gProtein: 1g
Nutrition information is an estimate only.