The Best Pumpkin Pie Recipe (Easy & Homemade)

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If you’re on the hunt for the best pumpkin pie recipe, you’ve come to the right place. 

This homemade pumpkin pie is the perfect holiday dessert – a time-honored Thanksgiving classic that just never gets old. 

Seriously – when I say I could eat this pie for breakfast, lunch, and dinner – you know I mean it!

I’ve been known to savor a slice of pie for breakfast, standing over the sink. You too? It really tastes so much better that way.

You can already smell the blended spices of cinnamon, ground ginger, and nutmeg, can’t you?

This classic pumpkin pie recipe is sure to be the star of the dessert table this holiday season – I promise!

closeup view of pumpkin pie slice

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Make-Ahead – This is one of those great pie recipes that you can make a couple of days ahead. 
  • Perfectly Balanced – Rich and creamy, light in color, and not too heavily spiced. The sweetness combined with my buttery, flaky crust just can’t be beat. 
  • Family Tradition – With just a hint of pumpkin pie spice, the creamy filling is crafted with love, backed by over 60 years of family tradition.
  • Pie Crust Flexibility – Our favorite homemade pie crust recipe can be made ahead of time, so you just need to roll it out when you’re ready to bake.

Ingredients

You’ll find all the ingredients to make this easy pumpkin pie recipe in your local grocery store:

  • Pie Dough: Enough dough for a one-deep dish pie shell. Use our easy butter pie crust recipe. Store-bought pie crust is also fine. 
  • Pumpkin: Here, we use canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling). The most famous brand is Libby’s, and you can find it just about anywhere –  We think it has the best pumpkin flavor. 
  • Milk: Keeps the pumpkin filling nice and velvety. Use whole or full fat, not evaporated milk. 
  • Sugar: White or brown sugar both work. 
  • Spices: All the traditional warm spices: Cinnamon, ginger, and ground nutmeg. We have a homemade pumpkin pie spice recipe here. 
  • Eggs: The binding agents. Make sure they are at room temperature. 
fork pushing into slice of pumpkin pie with whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon

How to make Pumpkin Pie

Want to make the perfect Pumpkin Pie? Follow these instructions carefully. Look for the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and grease the pie plate.
  2. Thoroughly mix all ingredients using a hand mixer or food processor.
  3. Roll the pie crust out in your pie dish, and fill ¾ full with the filling – allowing room for expansion.
  4. Bake for 50-60 minutes, varying slightly based on your oven.
  5. Leave the pie in the oven until it cools to avoid cracking.
  6. Check for doneness by inserting a knife into the center; it should come out clean. Some edge cracking is normal.

Expert Pumpkin Pie tips

Since I’ve probably baked a few hundred pumpkin pies during my forty years as a baker –  I do have a couple of important tips!

  • Mix Master: When combining the ingredients, make sure you mix all the ingredients really well on high speed using either a hand mixer or a food processor with a really deep bowl.
  • Milk Magic: I’ve always used 2% milk. However, there are lots of homemade pumpkin pie recipes that use either condensed milk or heavy whipping cream. While I swear by 2% milk, You can also use sour cream.
  • Mess Alert: This pie filling is very light and will spray everywhere, so use a really large bowl and even cover your kitchen counter with a towel.
  • Don’t Overfill: When filling the pie shell, only fill about three-quarters full – the filling will expand as it cooks.
  • Just Follow: Seriously, follow all the directions carefully. The temperature and time have been fine-tuned for perfection.
  • No Blind Baking: Unlike some recipes, there’s no need to blind-bake (pre-bake) the pie shell here. There are times when you pre-bake a pie crust using pie weights, but not this time!
  • Crust Care: Use a pie shield or aluminum foil to keep your crust from overbaking.
  • Oven Prep: Put a baking sheet or a piece of aluminum foil in the bottom of my oven for spills.
  • Be Cool: Let your pumpkin pie cool in the oven first. This gradual cooling of the oven temperature will help stop the top of the pie from cracking. You can move it to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Have Trust: Folks, follow all the directions carefully. The temperature and timings have been perfected over many years!
overhead shot of pumpkin pie with whipped cream on a white plate, white napkin two forks and pumpkin pie in the background

How to serve

While some folks love their pumpkin pie crowned with whipped cream or even a scoop of ice cream, I’m all about just the pie itself!

How to store

Have a leftover Pumpkin Pie!? Here’s how to store it:

  • Fridge: Your pumpkin pie will happily chill in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just make sure to place it in an airtight container to keep it fresh.
  • Freezer: You can also freeze your pie for future cravings. I usually wrap it in a few layers of plastic wrap before placing it in a freezer-friendly container.
  • Reheat: When you’re ready to dive back into that heavenly slice, warm it up in the oven at around 300F for 10 to 15 minutes. Good as new, I promise

FAQs

Here are some of the questions people have asked me:

Can I use fresh pumpkin instead of canned pumpkin?

Pumpkin is more than just a staple of autumn, Thanksgiving, and Halloween; it’s actually a vegetable that’s part of the squash family.

side view of slice of pumpkin pie
Right from the oven, can’t you smell those delicious spices?

If you have the time, you can make your own fresh pumpkin puree from scratch. Just cook the meat of the fresh pumpkin down (peeled and diced), and once that is done – toss it in the food processor. 

Presto – you have homemade pumpkin puree.

Can I use yogurt instead of sour cream?

Yogurt does have a bit more water in it, though, so use a bit less. For 1 cup of sour cream, use 3/4 cup of yogurt – Let me know how it works out for you!

Where did I get my inspiration for this recipe?

My inspiration for this homemade pumpkin pie recipe is deeply rooted in my own life experiences. Family celebrations just wouldn’t be complete without a traditional pumpkin pie, especially as the main Thanksgiving dessert.

I think pumpkin pie is where my passion for baking and pies actually began. I grew up enjoying two versions: Grandma’s, which was dark and very spicy, and Mom’s, a lighter pie with a lovely blend of spice and sweetness.

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Pumpkin Pie is often the star of a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner. Next to the turkey of course.

Hands down, it was Mom’s recipe that was the best. So much so that when I went away to college – a full pumpkin pie would often come with me. I was really popular with my classmates!

Fast forward a few years, and our pie became a staple on our family catering business menu. The bulk of our business was banquet catering – for weddings, sports, and business events. 

Mom’s homemade pumpkin pie was always in high demand – so we usually planned on making enough so most could have seconds. You really couldn’t just eat one piece!

Balancing Time and Taste

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These pumpkins will make scary Jack O Lanterns won’t they? I use canned pumpkin puree and have for years.

I’ve made my pumpkin filling using both homemade and canned pumpkin puree. If there is lots of time, I’ll make my own pumpkin puree, but usually, it’s a can of pure pumpkin – either Libby’s or from ED Smith!

In today’s fast-paced world, I appreciate the time-saving aspect of canned pumpkin. It lets me focus on what truly matters: enjoying quality time outdoors with my grandchildren and dogs – and that’s the best kind of inspiration there is.

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I love taking a walk with my grandchildren after a big family Thanksgiving dinner finished with a big ole slice of pumpkin pie!

You might also like…

Looking for more pumpkin desserts? We’ve got a whole pumpkin pie recipe guide.

Here are some of our faves:

The Best Pumpkin Pie Recipe 

Your new favorite pumpkin pie recipe? I hope so!

When you take a bite of this pumpkin pie, your mouth will do a happy dance – I promise! And for all those pumpkin pie lovers in your family, I’m sure they’ll join in!

closeup view of pumpkin pie with whipped cream

Great for Thanksgiving, or even Christmas! Pumpkin Pie is perfect anytime.

THANKS SO MUCH for following and being part of the Pie Lady Bakes community! We’re all about sharing easy-to-make vintage recipes that remind us of the ones our moms and grandmas used to make.

If you haven’t already, you can sign up for my weekly email newsletter using this link. It’s absolutely free, and you’ll never miss out on any of my new recipes.

See you soon!

Judy

★★★★★ 

If you’ve made this delicious Pumpkin Pie, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Be sure to give us a 5-star rating!

★★★★★ 


overhead view of pumpkin pie sliced with pie server under a piece of pie

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Recipe

4.39 from 18 votes

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Judy
Hands down the easiest and most delicious pumpkin pie recipe I have ever made. Lightly spiced, using milk and eggs, it is rich and creamy and you will be more than happy with the result!
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Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine North American
Servings 10
Calories 485 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pie shell - One deep dish or two 9” unbaked shortcrust
  • 1 can pumpkin - prepared
  • 2 cups milk - or use 2 cups sour cream!
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 tbsp flour - heaping, or gluten free flour!

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven temperature to 350F and grease your pie plate.
  • I also put a baking sheet or a piece of aluminum foil in the bottom of my oven for spills.
  • Mix all ingredients really well – using either a hand mixer or food processor.
  • Tip: This liquid is very light and will spray everywhere so I use a really deep mixing bowl and even cover my kitchen counter with a towel.
  • Fill pie shell ¾ full, the filling will expand as it cooks.
  • Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes, depending on your oven
  • Once finished, leave the pie in your oven until it cools to prevent cracking.
  • Pie is finished when a knife comes out clean in the centre – it may crack a little around the edges.

VIDEO

Notes

Prep time does not include making the piecrust – just rolling it out and filling. You could add another 30 minutes for that.
Serve warm with real whipped cream!
This recipe will serve 10 slices of pie – either a large deep dish pie plate or 2 9" plates.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 485kcal | Carbohydrates: 80g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 100mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 55g

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment, star rating or post your photo on Instagram and tag @pieladybakes

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Judy Kahansky is an experienced writer and baker, creating delicious desserts (including pie!) for over 40 years. She loves to take classic and vintage recipes and update them to fit the busy lives of her readers. When not baking, Judy and her husband Mark are passionate golfers, travelers and dog lovers, spending as much time as they can with their sweet pup Millie.