This easy pumpkin pie recipe is made completely from scratch and is a great make-ahead dessert for the holidays!
If there’s one thing I look forward to at Thanksgiving, it’s the pumpkin pie. Okay, pumpkin pie topped with a huge dollop of whipped cream. Today I’ll be sharing my absolute favorite traditional pumpkin pie recipe that’s made 100% from scratch.
If you don’t make many pies, then this is a good one to have tucked up your sleeve for the holidays. The pumpkin pie filling is as simple as whisking the ingredients together and pouring it into a partially-baked pie shell.
Because pumpkin pie has to be stored in the fridge, it’s a great make-ahead dessert that everyone will love!
Ingredients for This Recipe
This pumpkin pie recipe requires minimal ingredients, so it’s important that you use the right ones. Here’s an overview of what you’ll be using to make this recipe:
- Pie crust: I like to use my favorite pie crust recipe to make this pie, but a store-bought crust works as well.
- Brown sugar: Sweetens the pumpkin pie filling and also adds flavor. I used light brown sugar, but dark brown sugar works great too.
- All-purpose flour: There’s just one tablespoon of flour in the filling to help thicken it and ensure that the pie sets up properly.
- Spices: I use a blend of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. There’s also a pinch of salt in the filling to enhance the pumpkin flavor.
- Eggs: Helps bind the filling together and creates a custard-like consistency. I recommend lightly beating the eggs first to ensure that they mix together better with the other wet ingredients. Room temperature eggs are also best. If you forget to set them out ahead of time, just place them in a bowl of warm water for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Pumpkin puree: Make sure to use pure pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, which is already sweetened and has spices added to it. The only ingredient on the back of the can of pumpkin puree will just be pumpkin.
- Evaporated milk: Not to be confused with sweetened condensed milk, which is much thicker and sweeter. Evaporated milk is richer than regular milk and makes for a creamier pie!
How to Make Pumpkin Pie
To make this pie, you want to start by blind baking your pie crust. If you’re not familiar with this term, it simply means to bake the pie crust for a little while on it’s own before adding the filling.
While this isn’t necessary for every pie, I highly recommend doing it for this recipe because it ensures that the bottom of your crust stays crisp. Here’s a quick breakdown on how to blind bake your crust:
- Roll out the pie crust: I typically roll mine out to about 12-inches in diameter. You want the pie crust to be a little bigger than your dish, so you have enough to fit it into the dish and decorate the edges.
- Transfer the crust to your pie dish: You can do this several ways, but I find that rolling it up over my rolling pin, then unrolling it over the dish is easiest. This recipe makes quite a bit of filling too, so be sure to use a pie dish that’s at least 1 and 1/2 inches deep.
- Fit the crust into the dish and decorate the edges: Make sure to be gentle with the dough during this process and don’t stretch it (which can cause the crust to shrink).
- Chill the crust: This gives the dough time to relax, which makes it less likely to shrink. It will also ensure that the butter and shortening in your pie dough are cold, which makes for a flakier pie crust.
- Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork: This will help prevent the bottom from bubbling up when you remove the pie weights later.
- Line the dough with parchment paper & fill with pie weights: I just use dried beans for my pie weights.
- Bake for 15 minutes at 400°F
- Remove the pie weights: Lift up the parchment paper with your pie weights and remove them from the pie crust.
- Bake for another 5 minutes at 400°F: This will allow the bottom of the crust to bake a little more.
- Cool slightly while you make the filling
If you need more detailed instructions on blind baking a pie crust, I have a full step-by-step tutorial for how to blind bake a pie crust here. You can also watch me do this step in the video below right above the recipe.
Once the crust is partially baked, it’s time to mix together the filling. To make the pumpkin pie filling:
- Reduce oven temperature to 375°F (190°C): The filling needs to bake at a slightly lower temperature so that it doesn’t burn or crack.
- Whisk together the dry ingredients: In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, flour, spices, and salt. Don’t worry if you have a few lumps of brown sugar in the mixture, they will whisk out once you add them to the wet ingredients.
- Whisk together the wet ingredients: In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs, then whisk in the pumpkin puree and evaporated milk.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients: Whisk in the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Pour the filling into the partially baked pie crust
- Bake for 45 to 50 minutes at 375°F: I highly recommend using a pie crust shield to prevent the edges of your crust from burning. I prefer to cover the edges of my pie crust once I’ve blind baked the crust and added the filling, so I don’t have to open the oven door again. If you don’t have a pie crust shield, you can simply use foil to cover the edges instead.
- Cool completely & chill in the refrigerator: Once the pie comes out of the oven, let it cool on the countertop for a good two to three hours. Then, it needs to be refrigerated for several hours before slicing and serving (overnight is best).
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can You Tell if Pumpkin Pie Is Done?
You’ll know the pie is done baking when the center is almost set and wobbles ever so slightly (the center will finish setting up as the pie cools). In total, the pie will need to bake for roughly 45 to 50 minutes at 375ºF (190°C).
Should Pumpkin Pie Be Refrigerated?
Since this is a custard pie, it does need to be refrigerated.
How Long Is Pumpkin Pie Good For?
If covered tightly and stored in the refrigerator, it will keep for up to 4 days.
What Can I Substitute For The Evaporated Milk?
If you don’t have any evaporated milk on hand, then you can replace it with an equal amount of half and half.
Can I Use Pre-Made Pumpkin Pie Spice?
Yes, you can replace the spices in the recipe with 2 to 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
- You can use a store-bought or homemade pie crust for this recipe. My pie crust recipe will make two pie crusts, but you can easily freeze the other half to use later. You can even use the second pie crust to cut out leaves or other decorations to go on top of the pie.
- When blind baking the pie crust, make sure to line the pie dough with parchment paper or foil. You want to cover the bottom and fit it snuggly in the corners and up the sides, then fill it with pie weights. You can also use dried beans or dry rice if you don’t have any pie weights.
- To prevent any cracks in your pumpkin pie, make sure not to over bake it! I usually bake mine for about 45 minutes and remove it while the center is still just a little wobbly. As the pie cools, the center will finish cooking and firm up.
- This pie will freeze well for up to 3 months. Make sure to let it cool completely, then wrap it tightly with plastic wrap, and store it in a large freezer bag. To thaw the pie, place it in the refrigerator overnight.
More Pumpkin Desserts to Try!
- Pumpkin Cheesecake
- Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Cupcakes
- Mini Pumpkin Pies
Pumpkin Pie Recipe
- 1 store-bought or homemade pie crust
Pumpkin Pie Filling:
- 1 cup light brown sugar (200 grams)
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour (8 grams)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 (15-ounce can) pumpkin puree (425 grams)
- 1 ¼ cups evaporated milk (300 ml)
- To prepare the pie crust: Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C).
- Roll the dough out to 12-inches in diameter. Next, carefully transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie plate (make sure it's at least 1 and 1/2 inches deep), gently fit it into the pie plate, trim any excess dough, and decorate the edges. Transfer to the refrigerator to chill for 15 to 20 minutes while the oven is preheating.
- Prick the bottom of the pie crust with a fork. Line the pie dough with parchment paper or foil, making sure to cover the bottom and fit it snuggly in the corners and up the sides, then fill with pie weights (dried beans or dry rice work well too).
- Bake the pie crust at 400°F (204°C) for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and remove the parchment paper (or foil) and pie weights. Return the pie crust to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
- To prepare the filling: Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F (190°C). In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves until well combined.
- In a separate mixing bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Whisk in the pumpkin puree and evaporated milk until well combined.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix together until fully combined.
- Pour the pumpkin pie filling into the partially baked pie crust. Return to the oven and bake at 375°F (190°C) for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the center is almost set (it should be a little wobbly). Cover the edges of the pie crust with a pie crust shield or foil as needed to prevent them from over-browning.
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack for 2 to 3 hours to cool completely. Cover tightly and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Pumpkin pie filling slightly adapted from King Arthur Flour
Hi! I have been having a hard time making the pumpkin pie just perfect as they always end up being too wet, so I am hoping your recipe will help me get the results I am looking for this time but I have a few questions. I will be using a frozen pie crust and I know you mentioned to a previous comment that the frozen pie crust should be taken out overnight and put into the refrigerator to thaw and then blind bake the pie crust but the instructions on the pie said to keep frozen until ready to use and do not need to pre-bake the crust for filling pie like pumpkin pie. Also, I have an oven that has a setting to use convention baking and just baking, which would you suggest to use?
Hi, Eve. It’s really hard to say because I’ve never used a frozen pie crust. Does your pie crust give instructions to thaw overnight before adding the filling? If so and it’s a regular pie crust, I would probably still blind bake it. You can skip blind baking the crust, but if you do you run the risk of the crust becoming soggy and not holding up well. I also use a conventional oven for baking this pie.
I also use Frozen crust and if you don’t bake ahead the crust will bubble and look ugly
Hello! This is my first time baking a pie… so I am a little confused and would like some clarification.
When blind baking: covering the crust with foil, do you simply layer a sheet over the entire thing and crinkle at the edges to cover it? Or what is it that you do?
Baking it with the filling: again, do you cover the entire pie with a sheet of foil and crinkle the edges?
I am really excited to try this recipe out!
You’ll want to lay a piece of parchment paper on the bottom and up the sides of the dough. I have a post about how to blind bake a pie crust here with pictures that should help: https://www.livewellbakeoften.com/how-to-blind-bake-a-pie-crust/. Once you add the filling there’s no need to cover the entire pie with foil. I do suggest covering the edges of the pie crust with foil or a pie crust shield to prevent them from burning though.
I was wondering if you have ever baked two of these pies at the same time? Do you need to add more time? Or do you recommend baking them separately?
I haven’t tried it with this recipe, but I think it would be okay. I would probably bake them on the same rack. You could rotate them to make sure they bake evenly, but that may not be necessary. I would also check them at about 40 minutes to see how they look and then go from there. Hope that helps! 🙂
Just got done making this. It was my first time making a Pumpkin Pie and I wanted to see how it would turn out before making it for my in-laws for Thanksgiving and it is delicious! Thank you for sharing!
So glad you liked the pie, Sierra!
Hi! I doubled the recipe and for some reason they were over spiced ? Too strong taste of nutmeg. Any ideas what went wrong?
Did you double check the measurements of the spices to make sure you didn’t use too much of one? I haven’t ever doubled this recipe, but I don’t think that would affect the taste.
My spiced settled before I poured the filling into the crust, but I just made one pie. That may be why it was over spiced- maybe the first one poured was under spiced. My pie was great, thanks!
Hi, I was wondering if I could maybe use regular milk instead of evap.? I have been to the store several times alresdy
I haven’t tried it, but the pie probably wouldn’t be as rich. I believe you can make your own evaporated milk by simmering regular milk though.
I use vit d whole milk. I believe it is 100% creamier and more delicious
This is the best recipe I’ve ever come across!!!!! I’ve started making this recipe is Terrific Wonderful taste and texture .
So happy to hear that!
Really delicious pie and just the right texture. The pumpkin filling was moist and creamy. Heavier than some recipes. Maybe it’s the evaporated milk . I haven’t been satisfied with ones I’ve baked in the past and have been trying different pies each year. The search is over! The crust was very complimentary as well. It wasn’t overly sweet which worked well with the pumpkin. I should’ve shielded the crust sooner as you spoke of but ended up doing that in the last 15 mins. The only disappointment or concern for me was some tiny bits of egg that floated to the very top of the filling. I was worried that it would be all through the filling, but thankfully when we cut into the pie the following day there weren’t any in the rest of the filling. I guess I didn’t mix the egg thoroughly enough? Do you use a hand held mixer or just mix by hand? Or perhaps I poured the filling into the shell before letting it cool enough so a few fragments of egg cooked at that point.
Thank you for sharing, very nice recipe! And I received many kind compliments. “Ooooo, this is a good one!”
So glad to hear that everyone enjoyed the pumpkin pie, Dorinda! I like to add the pie crust shield once I pour in the filling, just so I don’t have to worry about opening the oven while the pie is baking. I don’t use a handheld mixer when I mix the filling, but I do use a sturdy whisk. It also helps to lightly beat the eggs before mixing them into the wet ingredients. Hope that helps!
Not living in the U.S. I would love to try this pie using fresh pumpkin instead of canned which I can’t find here. do you know how I could go about that?
I’ve never made fresh pumpkin puree, but my friend Kristine has a great tutorial on her website: https://kristineskitchenblog.com/pumpkin-puree/. Hope that helps!
Thank you so much. I will surely be making it for Christmas!
This pumpkin pie recipe is, by far, the best one I have tried! The recipe is very simple, with clear and easy to follow instructions! I have one child who is EXTREMELY picky, and he DEVOURED this pie! I ended up making two of these pumpkin pies because one just didn’t cut it for the demand! I only wish that I could post a picture to show how beautifully it turned out! THANK YOU!!!
That is so wonderful to hear, Summer! Glad it turned out great for you 🙂
I used your recipe for my first pumpkin pie ever! I LOVE pumpkin pie and consider myself to be a little picky. For me the ideal pumpkin pie is creamy without being too soft, full of spices and not watery. I ADORED the pumpkin pie this made! It was thick and full of rich spices. Home run! Thanks, Danielle!
So glad you liked the pumpkin pie, Jamie!
I have made pumpkin pie didy use the evaporated milk I use carnation sweetened condensed milk leaving out the sugar from the recipe and it is a really good pie
I accidentally added sweet condensed milk ; then noticed it was suppose to be evaporated milk. I added a little whole milk. Not sure what the pumpkin pie will taste like. Any thoughts? I can’t believe I did that.
I’m honestly not sure. I imagine the pie will be sweeter and the filling will be thicker too. I hope it still turned out okay for you!
Hi, I am making this today and I use butternut squash instead of pumpkin and heavy cream instead of evaporated milk, I make my own crust from the old grange cookbook turns out flaky and I never blind bake it. I chose your recipe as it seems more like my old one I lost as you use brown sugar instead of white. Thanks!
I have made this twice and both times has been amazing. Both times I have omitted the cloves simply because I don’t have any. At Thanksgiving everyone said it was the best pumpkin pie they have had….so I had to make it again! I have been using Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts and have shalllower pie pans so get two pies out of this recipe every time. We just love it! Thank you!
So glad you liked the pumpkin pie, Alexis!
Similar recipe to mine from my great Grandmother who came to Canada from Scotland. Our recipe doubles the cinnamon and the eggs are incorporated differently. The yolks go into the bowl with all rest of the ingredients, but the whites are whipped separately and folded in. Makes for a very light, airy pie. Something a little different to the classic pumpkin pie recipe. Great website. Thank you.
I’m making this recipe for the first time and I was wondering if I can use pumpkin spice instead? And what would be your recommendation on the measurements for that? Thank you
That should be fine! I would probably use 2-2 and 1/2 teaspoons.
I had a pie that had a cream cheese later on top how would I do that?
I’m not quite sure what you mean, Cecilia?
Such a good recipe! Instead of making a homemade crust I bought a graham cracker crust, and it came out delicious! Thanks so much for this amazing recipe!
Looking to make this recipe Saturday for the family -would a premade graham pie crust be ok to use with same baking time, 400 degrees for 45-50 minutes?
Thank you 🙂
That should be fine! You may still want to use a pie crust shield or something to cover the edges though so they don’t burn.
My husband said this was the best pumpkin pie he’s had… that’s a huge compliment! The crust was especially delicious, so thanks for posting a link to that as well. I was a little nervous about knowing when to pull the pie out of the oven – how jiggly is too jiggly?? – but I followed the time recommendations and checked it at 40 minutes and pulled it out a few minutes later when the sides looked more firm but not quite cracking and the middle was still wet. Turned out wonderfully smooth and moist but still fully cooked! Next time I may play around with the ratio of the spices, maybe less ginger, but that’s just a personal preference. I loved it, so thank you for making pumpkin pie so easy and tasty!
Hi, Laura! When it’s done the sides should look set and the center will still be jiggly, kind of like you mentioned. Glad you liked the pie!
Next time I will make my own crust. The store bought crust was just 1/2 too short on the sides and the filling almost overflowed. I’m waiting for the pie to come out of the oven at the moment. Smells delicious. It is our first homemade pumpkin pie that I made with my 6 year old daughter. We had a blast making it. Even if the pie filling is too high on the edges, I’m sure it will be super yummy. Thanks for the recipe and the great memories.
I am homemaking the pie crust, putting it in the freezer for a week, and then following your instructions. Will that work, or do I need to defrost my homemade crust and then freeze for an hour as you’ve said? Thanks!
I’m a little confused by what you mean. You can freeze pie crust for a week, but you’ll want to thaw it overnight in the refrigerator so it’s easy to roll out.
I used exact increments and had a lot leftover dont understand could not fill 9 in pie crust
This recipe makes a lot of filling. Was your pie dish at least 2-inches deep?
Hello Danielle! Have you ever tried or what do you think of using cornstarch instead of the TB of flour in the filling? Can’t do gluten because of Celiac Disease. Thank you!
Hi, Claudita! I haven’t tried replacing the flour in the filling, but cornstarch may be an okay substitute for that.
Hi! I don’t have evaporated milk. Are there any substitutions? Could I possibly use normal milk?
You could probably use regular milk, but the filling won’t be quite as rich.
I’ve been making pies for 45+ years and decided to check out some different recipes. This is by far the best pumpkin pie recipe I’ve used. Great texture and not overly spicy. Didn’t even use a mixer, just whisked ingredients together. I made 2 deep dish pies and had a bit left over so just baked the remaining in a small casserole dish. This will be my go-to recipe.
So glad you enjoyed the recipe, Connie!
IF I want to add pie pastry cut outs to decorate the crust or the center of the pie when would you recommend adding them so they don’t get overcooked?
It’s really hard to say because I haven’t tried adding cutouts to this pie. I would probably bake them separate, then place them on the pie once it’s cooled and chilled.
Excellent pie recipe
I’m from the UK and trying this recipe. Could I use fresh pumpkin purée instead of canned? It’s quite difficult to find pumpkin purée in our supermarkets x
That should be fine! I would just try to make sure it’s amount the same consistency as canned pumpkin puree. If it’s a little watery, I would squeeze some of the water out.
My family is lactose free. If I use lactose free milk would it turn out the same or is it essential to use evaporated milk?
Evaporated milk is best because it makes the pie creamier. I haven’t tried it, but you could possibly heat the lactose-free milk in a saucepan and reduce it down so that it’s similar to evaporated milk.