This pumpkin pie recipe is one of my very favorite recipes. Not only does it make an outstanding homemade pumpkin pie (frequently described as the "best pumpkin pie ever" by my family), but it's just so much fun to make.
For me, this recipe has wonderful associations. First of all, to me, this recipe means that it's fall. And I love fall. I love the colors, I love the cool weather, and it just gives me this great feeling of new possibilities.
Another great thing is that I almost always make this traditional pumpkin pie from fresh pumpkins. And really, it just makes me happy to work with fresh ingredients. The only thing better would be to grow the pumpkins myself!
And last but not least, I love this pumpkin pie recipe because it was given to me by my husband's grandmother. The very first time I met her, she welcomed me into her home, and let me go through all her recipes and copy whichever ones I wanted to keep. It was a great gift — it means a lot to me to have some of my husband's favorite recipes. And there's nothing better than a family recipe!
So here it is: Grandma Arlyce's pumpkin pie recipe! I hope you like it as much as we do.
Preheat the oven to 425F.
If using frozen pie shells, preheat the oven to 375F.
Combine all the ingredients other than the pie shell, in the order given. Mix well and pour into the pie shell.
Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
Reduce the temperature to 350F and bake for an additional 45 minutes, or until a knife inserted near the center of the pie comes out clean.
If you're using frozen pie shells, there's no need for the initial 15 minutes baking at high heat. The instructions below are the total cooking time.
If you're using a frozen deep dish pie shell, bake on a cookie sheet at 375F for 70 minutes, or until the pie tests done.
If you're using regular frozen pie shells, you should be able to fill two. Bake on a cookie sheet at 375F for 45 minutes, or until the pies test done.
Cool before serving. If you like, you can garnish your traditional pumpkin pie with a bit of whipped cream.
You can definitely use a can of pumpkin puree for this homemade pumpkin pie recipe, but I find it turns out better with homemade pureed pumpkin. Just be sure to plan ahead — once you puree a pumpkin, you need to let it stand for a while to let the moisture drain out. It's not hard, but it's not a last minute job.
If you're using an aluminum pie plate, like the frozen pie crusts usually have, the heavy filling can cause it to bend. To avoid accidents, I like to place the pie plate on a baking sheet. It ensures the bottom stays flat, and help prevent messy spills.
Unlike some baked goods, pumpkin pie filling doesn't rise very much at all. So it's okay if your pie is filled almost to the brim. It'll rise a teensy bit, but not usually enough to leak. The real danger is when you're moving the pie to the oven!
If you like, you can use a teaspoon or two of pumpkin pie spice instead of the cinnamon, ground ginger, and ground cloves. Or you can substitute them for your favorite spices. But this spice combination is really, really good, so I'd recommend giving this pumpkin pie recipe a try as is!