Meta Given's Pumpkin Pie

By • November 21, 2011 115 Comments

1,616 + Save

If you like it, save it!

Save and organize all of the stuff you love in one place.

Got it!

If you like something…

Click the heart, it's called favoriting. Favorite the stuff you like.

Got it!

Author Notes: Caramelizing the pumpkin puree means that this is a pie with guts, one that won't just sit there phoning in the pumpkin flavor, burying it under lots of spice. But its genius is much more than that. You don't have to blind bake the crust. You use real milk and cream instead of evaporated milk, with predictably better results. And because you blast it at 400 degrees the whole time, it bakes in 25 minutes -- less than half the time of your average back-of-the-can recipe. From Meta Given's Modern Encyclopedia of Cooking, an underrated gem of a cookbook.Genius Recipes

Serves 6

  • 1 3/4 cups canned or fresh cooked pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Unbaked, unpricked, chilled 9-inch pie shell (we like lapadia's simple Himalayan Blackberry Pie crust, also on FOOD52)
  1. Turn pumpkin into saucepan and stir over direct heat for 10 minutes until somewhat dry and slightly caramelized, stirring frequently. Remove from heat but keep hot.
  2. Mix thoroughly together the sugar, salt, and spices, and stir into hot pumpkin.
  3. Beat eggs, add cream and milk, and beat into pumpkin mixture until smooth.
  4. Pour immediately into unpricked pastry-lined pie pan and bake in a moderately hot oven (400° F) for 25 to 30 minutes or until pastry is golden brown and only an inch circle in the center of the filling remains liquid. Cool thoroughly on cake rack before cutting.
  5. Note: Perfectly baked pumpkin pie has no cracks on its surface. Baking hot filling in a chilled crust at 400° F for 25 to 30 minutes produces a smooth, shiny good textured custard and a well-baked crust free from soaking. But if your pie dish is thicker glass or ceramic instead of metal, or you loathe underdone bottom crust, you might still want to blind bake it a little. Here's what we'd recommend: Blind bake at 350 F lined with parchment and filled with baking beans/weights until sides are dry and firm, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove weights, then bake until completely dry and firm (including bottom crust) and starting to turn golden, 5 to 10 minutes more. Cool thoroughly. Then watch the pie closely as it bakes -- it might be done early, since the cold raw crust isn't there to protect it. And if the edges are starting to look wrinkled while the middle is very jiggly, turn the heat down to 350.

More Great Recipes: Blackberries|Vegetables|Desserts|Pies & Tarts|Tarts

Topics: Thanksgiving, Pie

💬 View Comments ()

Comments (115) Questions (12)


5 months ago Rosemarie Moran Bush

I just found my 1953 Meta Given's Cookbook and I am delighted to have this recipe known as Pumpkin Pie #2. Cannot wait to try this pie next holiday season.


9 months ago Stacy Fraser

This is the best pumpkin pie I've had by far. Great recipe!


9 months ago scootermagoo

Brilliant! This is THE recipe I've been looking for (with an added touch of nutmeg). Big hit for Thanksgiving. Thank you, thank you, thank you!


9 months ago Connie

Wow. Just. Wow. I had about 1/2 can of pumpkin left over from Thanksgiving in which I made different pie. I scaled down this recipe to accommodate my limited amount of pumpkin and with a pate sable crust, I baked it in a tart pan. Incredible! I baked about 20 minutes for the tart and it was perfectly set.


9 months ago mdm

My new go-to for pumpkin pie -- we all loved it! (oh, and used milk instead of cream, and it was still delicious)


9 months ago Chevelle

I followed this recipe to a T, did not blind bake or anything and it turned out fabulous! I made my own crust- only the second time ever I have done this. The pie was a huge hit, everyone loved the driver and consistency of the pie and the crust was perfect! I am no baker, so I was quite pleased with the genius of this recipe!!!


9 months ago Kendall S.

I used whipping cream for the cream and single cream for the milk (I am in the UK and I only had skimmed milk in fridge), Libby's pumkin puree, Just Roll shortcrust pastry. I did not blind bake but it probably took about 45 minutes in bottom right of Aga. IT WAS THE BEST PIE EVER!


9 months ago pamelalee

The filling of this recipe baked in the gingersnap crust from made this the best Thanksgiving pumpkin pie ever!


9 months ago ghainskom

Does take a little longer to bake but so worth the wait!


9 months ago Kristy Morrill

My pie took quite a bit longer to firm up and the top got browned a lot. But it looks like it is fine...anyone else have a long time cooking and getting too brown?


9 months ago tiana von radics

I still have my pie in the oven. I have done everything according to the recipe. The filling is just not firming up. It has been in for almost an hour. Will it set up if I remove it and let it cool?


9 months ago Monica8866

I have doubled, tripled and even quadrupled it successfully. I made this pie this weekend and it is GONE! I love this recipe! It does take a little longer to bake in my experience.


9 months ago sunkisst22

Can this be doubled?


10 months ago nancy

The mixture was VERY liquid-y, more so than other recipes I've used. It took a long time to bake, probably double what was called for, and the top cracked. I just took it out of the oven, since the top seemed like it might burn, but it's still jiggly. Hoping that it sets! Still, I'm guessing how bad could it be?


11 months ago Rachel

Made this with the recommended pie crust and stuck it in the freezer with a decorative trim before blind baking as recommended. I was a little worried about an underdone filling after reading the comments, so I pre-cooked the custard a little on the stove (with the eggs and all mixed in) to thicken it a bit before filling the shell. I only cooked it a couple of minutes while waiting for my oven to finish preheating - and this resulted in about 25 minutes in the oven to set. Absolutely delicious and a huge hit. Thanks!


over 1 year ago Amy Ghiz

Wow, I made this and it's fantastic. It's exactly the same recipe as my Mom's, except using milk and cream instead of evaporated. It was exactly enough filling for one Pyrex deep dish pie plate (my usual recipe makes two), and I blind baked for 25 minutes. Outstanding. Thank you!


over 1 year ago PRST

Geez, spell check got me again- sorry. I meant to say substitute ras el hanout…..


over 1 year ago PRST

The caramelizing of the pumpkin is truly amazing along with substituting ras el hanout (1-1.5 tsp) and cinnamon (1/2 tsp) for the cinnamon and ginger in this recipe. However it might depend on the quality of your ras el hangout. My pie was OUTSTANDING, especially a day or two after baking.