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Pumpkin Cream Pie


If you're planning on making this for Thanksgiving, start it early in the day. The pie needs four hours to set, but the refrigerator does just about all the work.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8
  • Yield: Makes one 9-inch pie

Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2010


For the Gingersnap Crust

  • 1 1/4 cups ground gingersnaps (from about 25 cookies)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

For the Pumpkin Cream Filling

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Salt
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 cups solid-pack pumpkin (from one 15-ounce can)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream, whisked to medium peaks
  • Garnish: freshly grated nutmeg


  1. Make the gingersnap crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine gingersnaps, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Stir in melted butter. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch metal pie dish. Refrigerate until set, about 15 minutes. Bake until crust is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool.

  2. Make the pumpkin cream filling: Bring milk, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, 1/4 cup sugar, and a pinch of salt to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

  3. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks with cornstarch and remaining 1/4 cup sugar in a medium bowl.

  4. Gradually whisk about 1/2 cup milk mixture into yolk mixture. Gradually whisk in remaining milk mixture. Return entire mixture to saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until bubbling in center, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Immediately whisk in pumpkin. Whisk in butter.

  5. Strain filling through a fine sieve into a clean bowl. Pour into gingersnap crust, smoothing the top with an offset spatula. Refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours. When ready to serve, top with whipped cream, and garnish with nutmeg.

Cook's Notes

Pie and whipped cream can be refrigerated, separately, overnight.

Reviews Add a comment

  • Jennie Frost
    28 NOV, 2013
    I had the same soup-consistency problem after setting it overnight, but fear not: it can be saved if you still have time to set it again. Poor the filling into a double boiler and warm it. In a separate bowl, whisk an egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of water. Add some of the warmed filling to the yolk mix and whisk until smooth. Combine yolk mix with the rest of the filling. Warm it over low heat and keep stirring until it thickens. Pour it back into the pie crust and refrigerate.
  • Christopher Robison
    14 DEC, 2012
    Hi, just wondering do you think the recipe could work as cupcakes? i made it and loved it.
  • Dynamom
    25 NOV, 2011
    Unfortunately I didn't read any of the reader comments until it was too late and my pie was soupy too. We still ate some at Thanksgiving (after I convinced people to look beyond the soupiness!) Then I scraped the rest into a lidded container and stuck it in the freezer, My kids and I have been enjoying it delicious!
  • JBuckbye
    25 NOV, 2011
    This pie was incredible! Best pumpkin pie ever. I didn't have any trouble with the pie setting up. I did make one substitution and that was canned evaporated milk instead of regular whole milk. Everyone who tasted it raved!
  • phoebeF
    24 NOV, 2011
    This was a yummy alternative to the traditional pumpkin pie. It's lighter and more custard-like than the usual. Don't be afraid about it not setting! I am not a baker or cook and mine came out perfectly. I agree with the other reviewers, don't pay attention to the "2 minutes;" watch the video and you'll see how it thickens on the stove, that's when you remove it from the heat. This is a great pie to make the day before.
  • trish5
    24 NOV, 2011
    NellyP is EXACTLY right. I have made this pie twice. The first time I had the soupy consistancy like many other reviewers had. But then I kept the filing on the stove longer -- for just about 4 minutes -- whisking constantly, and in an instant it went from soupy to almost custardy in consitancy. At that point I took it off the stove, strained it and filled the pie. It set perfectly. Just ignore the "2 Minutes" in the directions andkeep on whisking until you see that change in thickness.
  • nelly_paola22
    23 NOV, 2011
    The recipe has cornstarch! Cornstarch will not thicken in the refrigerator it has to thicken on the stove! When you have mixed the eggs mixture with the milk mixture make sure to keep the heat on medium and whisk your little arm off until it thickens. It takes about 4 to 5 mins you will start to notice the texture change about after 2 mins and then do not stop whisking until it is a thick creamy texture then you can add the pumpkin.
  • atoddharlin
    23 NOV, 2011
    To those having a hard time getting pie to set up your eggs might be too fresh. Sounds crazy but an old baking trick. Buy your eggs well in advance of using them!
  • Juliacr
    23 NOV, 2011
    This recipe was a rare fail from Martha Stewart. I was dubious about this pie after reading several reviews stating that the filling did not set, but I decided to try anyway. After I returned the cream mixture to the saucepan and was whisking away, waiting for it to bubble, it suddenly seized up and thickened to mousse consistency. I finished the steps anyway, but the filling wasn't that good and I had 2 cups too much. I'm angry that MS hasn't responded to any like reviews. It would help.
  • KevinKaye
    21 NOV, 2011
    also, if you strain it, it makes it incredible smooth! so don't skip that step. if you think it's too thick to strain, trust me, it's not. just be vigorous with shaking it so that the filling works its way through the sieve or strainer.