You Won't Believe it's Vegan Pumpkin Pie

October 31, 2012

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: Growing up, I always made pumpkin pie the same way: with pumpkin pie mix, eggs, and cream. When I became vegan, I thought my pumpkin pie days were over, until I realized that cashews make a killer, creamy filling. This dairy and egg free pie, made with simple ingredients, proves that vegan baking can be easy and authentic. Gena Hamshaw

Serves: 8


  • 1/2 recipe of Vegan pie crust (see link below)
  • 2 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 cup cashews, soaked 3+ hours and drained of soaking water
  • 3/4 cup demerara, brown, or cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
  • 2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • pinches cloves
In This Recipe


  1. Prepare one perfect vegan pie crust. You can find the recipe here:
  2. Roll the crust out to 1/4 inch thickness and line a greased and floured pie pan. Pinch edges decoratively.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Blend all pie filling ingredients in a food processor till super smooth. The mixture should be quite thick, but if it's too thick you can thin it with a tablespoon or two of water or non dairy milk. Spoon into the crust, smooth over, and bake until the edges of the crust are golden brown and the filling is dark (35 to 40 minutes). Let cool for a while before serving.

More Great Recipes:
Pie|Pumpkin Pie|Vegetable|Thanksgiving|Vegan

Reviews (46) Questions (2)

46 Reviews

Tatyana H. November 16, 2016
Hi Gena, could I use almonds instead of cashews? Make the pie fo rmy dear friend, but she doesn't tolerate cashews. Thank you, Tatyana
Tatyana H. November 27, 2016
Great recipe! I've made two pies -- one with cashews and one with almonds. I socked almonds overnigt
Tatyana H. November 27, 2016
and the filling was as smooth and delicious as the one made with cashews. My friends are still raving about the pie! Thank you for sharing the recipe!
Chef D. November 22, 2015
Eeeee Pumpkin Pie!
Kate S. November 28, 2014
Quartered the filling and made two mini tarts for a couple of dairy insensitive guests this thanksgiving. Used roasted butternut squash instead of pumpkin. The verdict? Amazing! The recipe worked like a charm and tasted absolutely divine. The filling was delicious both raw and cooked -- will definitely be using this again, even for non-vegan occasions.
Judith April 20, 2014
For Easter Dinner today I decided to try this cashew based recipe instead of the tofu based one I've used in the past. My daughter is also allergic to gluten, so I make a pie crust subbing the flour for Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Gluten Free Flour, and instead of rolling it out I just press and roll it out right inside the pie crust pan. (I have a mini roller that's perfect for rolling out dough right inside the pie plate pan.) I poke it with a fork in several spots and then bake at 350 for ~14 minutes. Then I put the pumpkin pie filling in and bake. It turned out beautifully! The taste was much more pumpkin like than the tofu based recipe, and my family gobbled it up. For the topping, I make the whipped cream using canned coconut milk that's been in the fridge for at least 24 hours. Just whip it up with 2-3 tbsps of sugar. Make sure the pie is cool before putting the coconut whipped cream on top. This pumpkin pie recipe is a winner! I'll be making it for all future holiday dinners, scrumptious!!!
Sara B. January 26, 2014
Jackelyyyn January 9, 2014
This is my first effort to making a vegan apple pie, however I had trouble acquiring some ingredients and was wondering if I could substitute the following? -(considering I'm eager to bake tonight, haha.) If worst come to worst, I can run to a specialty store tomorrow since everything is already closed, however I thought I would still ask!

-Tapioca starch with corn starch
-Molasses with Agave Nectar
Jackelyyyn January 9, 2014
*I meant PUMPKIN pie! Haha, sorry! Multi-tasking over here!
Sarafina December 19, 2013
Can this be made using a raw vegan crust using dates and nuts and without baking the filling ??
Vienna November 30, 2013
Didn't read the comments on the density of the pie - was surprised at how it was almost like a nut butter texture in my mouth (but it sets like a standard pumpkin pie). But the sweetness and spices were perfect.
Cassia C. October 21, 2013
Would Arrowroot or Cornstarch work in place of the Tapioca Starch?
Author Comment
Gena H. November 25, 2013
Hi Cassia -- yes!
Virginia October 2, 2013
Yum! This punpkin pie is extraordinary and so tempting for someone with a sweet tooth like me. Usually I grab my dessert recipes from here:
Author Comment
Gena H. November 25, 2013
So glad you like!
Irina V. May 29, 2013
I was wondering, if you use real pumpkin, does it need to be cooked prior to pureeing it or not? Thanks!
Valentina S. October 20, 2013
My answer is probably a little late, but here's my 2 cents:

Yes it does! raw pumpkin just doesn't happen. The best thing would be to oven roast it in a preheated oven at 340 F? until slightly caramelized for optimal flavor, about 1 hour or so (but check it with a knife or fork after about 45 mins to check for doneness, you want it to be very soft). This way it will also lose the excess water and will make for a very creamy filling.
Author Comment
Gena H. November 25, 2013
Agree with Valentina -- must be cooked and then pureed.
MollyKing December 29, 2012
This was my first attempt at a vegan pumpkin pie. I followed the instructions to a T and it is quite delicious. Flavr is spot on. It is Very pumpkiny and quite thick, my fork can almost stand up in this pie. I might experiment with adding a touch of almond milk mixed into the tapioca, perhaps to achieve a somewhat more custardy like set.
Author Comment
Gena H. November 25, 2013
So delighted, Molly :-)
ninadora November 24, 2012
I made this pie for thanksgiving and it truly was delicious, It was actually one of the BEST pumpkin pies I've ever eaten. Its not like a custard-y pumpkin pie but really heavy on the pumpkin due to the lack of egg and milk...FABULOUS! I used standard pumpkin pie puree and cooked it as per instructions for the genius pumpkin pie recipe on this website. I really cooked it a while to get out as much moisture as possible, then measured out the 2 1/2 cups in the recipe. I had to puree the mix for a long time-- longer than I've ever run my food processor before! At the end it was beautifully smooth and thick. I baked it the morning of Thanksgiving and though it was cool by meal time but it really was best cold after a night in the fridge.
ninadora November 24, 2012
ahh, I also blind baked, cause I hate crust that hasn't been I can not speak to the issue of undercooked bottom crust.
AntoniaJames November 23, 2012
This tasted lovely but the bottom crust was sadly undercooked, even after 50+ minutes. (The crust top edge was a pretty light brown at that point.) I suspect the problem lay in my using a glazed earthenware pie pan -- a rookie error on my part, to be sure. Next time I'll use Pyrex or metal, and not worry about its appearance! ;o)
Jennifer D. December 25, 2012
I have never used that type of baking dish before but I get flawless results by baking my pies on the lowest (not the middle) rack in the oven.
Anna W. November 23, 2012
Mmmm cashews... I'll have to try that. I just made a dairy-free pumpkin pie today by evaporating unsweetened coconut milk. the pie turned out beautifully! but i'm sure the cashews add some yummy flavor..
msallied November 21, 2012
I doubled the recipe and just pulled the pies out of the oven. They look gorgeous and I know they will set up perfectly. After tasting the filling, I knew it was going to be a huge hit. I don't think I've ever tasted a more delicious pumpkin pie filling, and I loved that it didn't have raw eggs in it and that I didn't have to cook a custard (one of my least favorite kitchen tasks). Even for non-vegans, I would recommend this recipe simply for the ease of it!

I used my Vitamix to blend, and I did have to thin it a tad with some almond milk, but i used maybe 3 tablespoons at most. Also, I used Trader Joe's organic filling, which was very low moisture. I think if people are having trouble getting this to set, it's because their pumpkin had a lot of water in it. If your pumpkin seems wet, drain it for a little while through some paper towels set in a fine mesh strainer (similar to how you'd drain yogurt) for a little while to get rid of some of the water.

Also, I wasn't originally going to use the blackstrap molasses in it, because I thought it might overpower. Turns out I had a whole jar of the stuff in my pantry, so I decided to just use it and see what happened. There was no problem at all with the flavor. In fact, it added the perfect depth. Also, I used light brown sugar as the sweetener since that what I had on hand.

Used the Perfect Vegan Pie Crust recipe for this as well, and I've never had an easier time of rolling dough. All in all, a perfect recipe combo, and what will probably be my go-to recipe for years to come!
SusanIlene November 21, 2012
I couldn't find black strap molasses. Can I substitue with "Robust"?
Lulutalulu November 21, 2012
Hi! This is the first time I've made a pie. The crust, just as you said, is perfect! Unfortunately, for the filling, even after baking an additional 30 minutes and letting it cool, it has turned out a bit runny. The inside of my pie also looks lighter in color than the top of the pie that has browned; which is also different from your pictures :(. I used organic pumpkin puree. The raw cashews had soaked for 24 hours and I'm wondering if that added too much moisture? I also had to add some almond milk, not more than 1/8 cup, to get the cashews and pumpkin to blend well in the vitamix (I know you used a food processor). Were my deviations from your original recipe my mistakes or is there something else that could have gone wrong? Even runny though, it tastes REALLY good. Thank you!
Lulutalulu November 21, 2012
Update! I put it in the fridge last night, and sliced into it today, and it's perfect! You are the best!
leah_shelton_pucciarelli November 18, 2012
I would love details on avocado or coconut cream success. Also has anyone tried flax "eggs" in the filling?
Author Comment
Gena H. November 20, 2012
I don't care for flax egg in the filling, Leah: the tapioca starch is far more palatable, if you ask me!
Allison D. November 17, 2012
I'm really looking forward to trying this. However, I'm really not a fan of blackstrap molasses. Would maple syrup be a suitable substitute?
Author Comment
Gena H. November 20, 2012