The Year In Food » Fine Seasonal Eating

Masthead header

Pumpkin Butter

Pumpkin Butter

There is probably no single food that captures the evocative core of fall as perfectly as pumpkin butter. It tastes like the month of October, Halloween and Thanksgiving all rolled into one, spicy and sweet and warming. What good, essential, addictive stuff.

And it’s so easy to make. Don’t worry about perfectly measuring everything with this recipe – it’s flexible and forgiving. For instance, I am very fond of ginger, so I added more than is called for in the recipe below. You may want to add spices conservatively, tasting as you go.

Also know that pumpkin butter is not the kind of product that can be canned and stored on a shelf; the pH is too low to safely preserve. So, keep it in the fridge for up to two weeks, or freeze it for six months.



3 cups pureed pumpkin (from about 4.25 pounds fresh sugar pumpkin)
1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 – 3/4 cup water (can use apple cider as well; adjust sugar accordingly)
2 tsp cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 tsp clove
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Slice pumpkins in half with a sharp knife. Remove stem and scoop out seeds and pulp with spoon. Reserve the seeds for roasting. (Recipe to follow.)

Roast pumpkins in a baking dish until soft when pierced with fork, about 35-45 minutes, depending on the size. When mine were ready, the skins slipped right off. Otherwise, scoop flesh from pumpkin. Discard skins.

In a heavy pot over low heat, combine all ingredients. Simmer for up to one hour, stirring at regular intervals to avoid burning, until the mixture has thickened. Blend with an immersion blender or transfer in batches to an upright blender and puree. Spoon into jars and refrigerate. You may also freeze it.

  • Anonymous - How much sugar?ReplyCancel

  • Kimberley Hasselbrink - Oops! Sorry about that. Fixed.ReplyCancel

  • Rosie - Wow, that looks amazing. Can you use butternut squash? I wonder if you can freeze this? Thanks so much, I'm gonna give it a go.ReplyCancel

  • Kimberley Hasselbrink - Hi Rosie – You can definitely freeze the pumpkin butter; I froze half my batch. And I would venture that butternut squash would work well in a butter. If you try it, let me know how it turns out!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - That sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing. Becca :)ReplyCancel

  • Patricia Scarpin - Your photos are absolutely breathtaking. I'm in spring here and you're making me crave fall. ;)ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth - I have a surplus of squash and this looks amazing. Also, so glad I won't have to bust out the food mill to make it.ReplyCancel

  • Tricia - Yes! This looks amazing. Making this today… thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - This looks great!! About how many jars does one batch make?ReplyCancel

  • Kimberley Hasselbrink - Hello Anon! It made me two half-pint jars' worth. Not too much!

    Elizabeth! You caught another oversight. Oops! It does need some kind of blending/processing, which is now tucked into the recipe where it should be. Though not necessarily a food mill, which is a gadget that still eludes me.ReplyCancel

  • Granola, pumpkin butter, and other breakfast things | All Around The Larder - […] kind of sort of followed this recipe, except instead of brown sugar I used lots of different sweeteners including molasses and […]ReplyCancel

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *