How to Roast and Preserve a Pumpkin

roasted pumpkin sitting on a cutting board on the left. A four cup glass measuring cup with pumpkin chunks sitting on the right. background image is dimmed and overlaid with white and orange text

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Learning how to roast a pumpkin is 100% easier than I thought it was a few years back. At the store, you buy canned pumpkin puree. How do I take my pumpkins from the garden and recreate that? Well, you cut it, stick it in the oven, scoop out the tender pumpkin and you are ready to preserve or make your favorite pumpkin dish. Seriously, it is that easy.

orange pie pumpkin sitting on a wooden bench. Top view. The stem of the pumpkin broke off.

How to Roast a Pumpkin

Step 1: Clean it. Whether you buy it at the store or pick it from your garden, be sure to give it a good rinse before getting started.

Step 2: Cut it in half vertically. Where the stem comes out of the pumpkin is where you want to cut to halve your pumpkin.

Step 3: Scoop out the seeds. If you enjoy pumpkin seeds you can save them to make your own roasted pumpkin seeds.

A pumpkin cut in half with the seeds scooped out. They are sitting on a cutting board.

Step 4: Oil that pumpkin. Drizzle olive oil or coconut oil on the inside and outside of the pumpkin. Use your hands or a brush to evenly coat it. Lay it down in a 9×13 pan with the skin facing up. I like to bake mine in a 9×13 pan because you can generally fit both halves in one pan. Be sure your dish has a side to contain any juices that come out. For easy clean-up, line your pan with parchment paper.

Step 5: Bake it! Bake it in a 400-degree oven for 40-60 minutes or until your pumpkin is tender. Test it with a fork.

roasted pumpkin halves siting skin side up in a 9x13 cast-iron pan. Fork is piecing the pumpkin to test if it is tender.

Step 6: Let it cool.

Step 7: Scoop out the pumpkin in large chunks to preserve. If using right away for a recipe, toss it in your blender to create a puree.

Step 8: Preserve in a vacuum seal bag, ziplock bag, or by pressure canning. I use a food saver to preserve mine in two cup portions that I keep in the freezer.

That’s it!

A glass bowl of roasted pumpkin chunks sitting on the counter to the left. Food Saver is on the right sitting open. A vacuumed sealed bag of pumpkin is sitting in front of the food saver.

Kitchen Tools Needed to Roast a Pumpkin

Cutting board

Knife

9×13 pan (preferably, but use whatever you have. A cake pan could even work!)

Parchment paper (optional)

Spoon

Storage bag or container

Yield: 4 cups of pumpkin

How to Roast a Pumpkin

roasted pumpkin on a cutting board with a spoon in it. Glass measuring cup sitting to the right of it with roasted pumpkin chunks in it

Tender and delicious roasted pumpkin ready to be pureed for your favorite fall recipes.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 40 seconds
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes 40 seconds

Ingredients

  • A Pie Pumpkin
  • Olive Oil

Instructions

  1. Clean the pumpkin with a thorough rinse.
  2. Cut it in half vertically. (cut in line with the stem)
  3. Scoop out the seeds and any stringy bits.
  4. Drizzle olive oil on the inside of the pumpkin. Use your hands or a brush to coat it evenly. Make sure to brush the outside of the pumpkin too.
  5. Lay the pumpkin down in a 9x13 pan with the skin side facing up. For easy clean-up, line your pan with parchment paper. (use a pan with a side to contain any juices that come out while roasting)
  6. Bake it at 400 degrees for 40-60 minutes or until your pumpkin is tender. Test it with a fork.
  7. Let it cool for an hour or so or until you can handle it.
  8. Scoop out the pumpkin in large chunks to preserve. If using right away for a recipe, toss it in a blender or food processor to create a puree.
  9. Preserve in a vacuum seal bag, ziplock bag, or by pressure canning. I preserve mine in two cup portions in a vacuum-sealed bag.

Notes

Preserve your roasted pumpkin in chunks not puree. It freezes 1000 times better and can actually be vacuumed sealed whereas vacuum sealing puree is a guaranteed disaster.

How to Make Pumpkin Puree

Once you have roasted your pumpkin, you are just one step away from having delicious homemade pumpkin puree. Toss your pumpkin chunks in a food processor or a blender and blend until smooth. It will take roughly 3-5 minutes. You want it to be smooth and creamy. Generally, that is all that is needed, but if it’s not smoothing out, then you can add a touch of water, milk, or softened butter to make it the texture you like.

Roasted pumpkins sitting in pans on the stove top on the left. Mother and daughter scooping out roasted pumpkin at the counter. Little girl is standing on a chair to help her mom.

Roasted Pumpkin Recipe Ideas

  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Holiday Pumpkin Bread
  • Pumpkin Waffles or Pancakes
  • Cream Cheese Frosted Pumpkin Bars (one of my husband’s favorites)
  • Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
  • Apple Pumpkin Butter
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Crepes

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