The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It’s rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust and served with whipped cream.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

Pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin bread, but HELLO what about pumpkin pie??

My Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe. Is Here. Today. Say hi to this pie.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

I spent the majority of my incredibly awesome week last week testing pumpkin pie recipes. And when I say awesome, I really mean frustrating because testing the perfect pumpkin pie recipe is a lot more challenging than one would assume. Fresh pumpkin, canned pumpkin, ginger, no ginger, brown sugar, white sugar, cornstarch, flour, no cornstarch, no flour, and O-M-G how do I decorate it and make it look pretty for my blog?

But I think I cracked the pumpkin pie code. I grew up in a house of pumpkin pie lovers and absolutely no Thanksgiving was complete without a nap, and then a massive slice and an even bigger serving of cool whip. What I’m trying to say is, my pumpkin pie standards are high. When it comes to this Thanksgiving classic, I’m a huge snob. And now that I’ve found the recipe, I can rest easy at night. And you can too! Because I’m sure finding a tasty pumpkin pie recipe haunts your dreams as well.

Just me? Ok.

How to make pumpkin pie from scratch on

Since this is such a classic recipe, I snapped a lot of pictures of the process as well as the finished products. Yes, productS. I made three of these pies, just to be sure this recipe was the best of the very best. I’m crazy, as you know. So, what makes it so great?

The pie crust. Every pumpkin pie has to start with a stellar pie crust. My homemade pie crust uses a mix of shortening and butter so you get the most buttery tasting, tender, flaky (so flaky) pie crust. It’s easy to make. And I have a ton of step-by-step photos here. 🙂

Decorate your pies with pie crust leaves! On

Decorate your pies with pie crust leaves! On

The pumpkin. Fresh or canned? I tested this recipe with both and I truly liked the pie using canned pumpkin better. The canned pumpkin pumpkin pie (say that 3 times fast) was a little more sturdy when baked for the same amount of time. I found the pie to taste grainy and a little… herbaceous? And the sugar couldn’t even cover that up. I prefer using fresh pumpkin puree in savory recipes, not desserts. This is your call, you can use either.

The mighty ingredient in pumpkin pie, besides the pumpkin, are the eggs. They set up the filling. They give the filling its rich, luxurious texture. 3 eggs are needed here, no shortcuts around it. Another ingredient making this pumpkin pie so luxurious and silky smooth? Heavy cream. Thick and creamy and absolutely heavenly in this pumpkin pie recipe. I use 1 cup of heavy cream and 1/4 cup of milk. I found that 1 and 1/4 cups of heavy cream (or more) was simply too much. Too thick, too gloppy…

Gloppy is the best word I can think of right now.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

A starch thickener is one of the most important ingredients in a pie filling. I use a touch of cornstarch in my pumpkin pie filling because it helps set up the pie. Makes it a little sturdier and firm, while keeping everything smooth.

My Secret Ingredient

This sounds so incredibly weird. But I add freshly ground black pepper to my pumpkin pie filling. It’s bizarre, I know. But I’m being serious. I got this tip from the genius kitchen crew over at King Arthur Flour. And I am forever grateful. Because this little addition turns your pumpkin pie into the BEST pumpkin pie. No one will know it’s there! Except for you. And they will all be wondering how this spiced pie is so damn good. A pinch of pepper.

These pie crust leaves! I am so excited about them.

And let’s not forget about the sugared cranber… I mean crannies.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

And the whipped cream. Unlike everything else about this pumpkin pie recipe, I did not make the whipped cream from scratch. I felt like I was cheating. And it felt wonderful.

Silky yet thick, this pumpkin pie cuts beautifully as long as it is baked for the right amount of time. How to tell? The bake time is about 55-60 minutes. At this time, the center of the pumpkin pie will be slightly wobbly. That’s ok. It will set as it cools.

Careful not to overcook; overcooking it will cause the filling to crack

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

So from my kitchen to yours, enjoy The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe.

The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust and served with whipped cream. The pie crust leaves are purely for decor, you can leave those off of the pie and only make 1 pie crust (so, halve the pie crust recipe). You can also leave off the sugared cranberries.


Sugared Cranberries

  • 1 cup (120g) fresh cranberries1
  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (240ml) water

Pumpkin Pie

  • Homemade pie crust (full recipe makes 2 crusts: 1 for bottom, 1 for leaf decor)
  • one 15oz can (about 2 cups; 450g) pumpkin puree2
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (250g) packed dark brown sugar3
  • 1 Tablespoon (15g) cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger4
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg4
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves4
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) milk (I use 1% - any is fine)
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 teaspoon milk, for brushing

Special Equipment


  1. For the cranberries: Place cranberries in a large bowl; set aside. In a medium saucepan, bring 1 cup of sugar and the water to a boil and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Pour sugar syrup over the cranberries and stir. Let the cranberries sit at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 6 hours or overnight (ideal). You'll notice the sugar syrup is quite thick after this amount of time. Drain the cranberries from the syrup and pour 1 cup of sugar on top. Toss the cranberries, coating them all the way around. Pour the sugared cranberries on a parchment paper or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet and let them dry for at least 2 hours.
  2. Make the pie crust through step 5 according to my directions, tips, and pictures. Or use store-bought.
  3. For the pumpkin pie filling: Whisk the pumpkin, 3 eggs, and brown sugar together until combined. Add the cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, pepper, cream, and milk. Vigorously whisk until everything is combined. Filling will be a little thick.
  4. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  5. Roll out the chilled pie crust: Remove 1 disc of pie dough from the refrigerator. On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 12-inch circle. Make sure to turn the dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls. Carefully place the dough into the pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. With a small and sharp knife, trim the extra overhang of crust and discard. Crimp the edges with your fingers, if desired. Brush edges lightly with beaten egg/milk mixture. Using pie weights, pre-bake the crust for 10 minutes.
  6. Pour pumpkin pie filling into the warm pre-baked crust. Only fill the crust about 3/4 of the way up. (Use extra to make mini pies with leftover pie dough scraps if you'd like.) Bake the pie until the center is almost set, about 55-60 minutes give or take. A small part of the center will be wobbly - that's ok. After 25 minutes of baking, be sure to cover the edges of the crust with aluminum foil or use a pie crust shield to prevent the edges from getting too brown. Check for doneness at minute 50, and then 55, and then 60, etc.
  7. Once done, transfer the pie to a wire rack and allow to cool completely for at least 3 hours. Decorate with sugared cranberries and pie crust leaves (see note). You'll definitely have leftover cranberries - they're tasty for snacking. Serve pie with whipped cream if desired. Cover leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Make ahead tip: Pumpkin pie freezes well, up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving. Pie crust dough freezes well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using. If decorating your pie with sugared cranberries, start them the night before. You'll also begin the pie crust the night before as well (the dough needs at least 2 hours to chill; overnight is best). The filling can be made the night before as well. In fact, I prefer it that way. It gives the spices, pumpkin, and brown sugar flavors a chance to infuse and blend. It's awesome. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Recipe Notes:

  1. Fresh cranberries, not frozen. The sugar syrup doesn't coat evenly on the frozen berries, leaving you with rather ugly and some very plain shriveled cranberries!
  2. I prefer canned pumpkin in this pumpkin pie recipe.
  3. Light brown sugar is OK but my taste testers and I prefer dark brown sugar.
  4. About 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice can be used instead of these spices.

For the pie crust leaves: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the balls of chilled dough (keep the other one in the refrigerator). Roll out into any shape you really want (doesn't matter) and 1/8 inch thickness. Using leaf cookie cutters, cut into shapes. Brush each lightly with the beaten egg + milk mixture. Cut leaf veins into leaves using a sharp knife, if desired. Place onto a parchment paper or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet and bake at 350°F (177°C) for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove and set aside to cool before decorating pie.

Did you make a recipe?

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

Hi, it’s me again. Making this post even longer. Two more things:

Pie crust leaves are easy.

My pie crust recipe makes enough for two crusts. So with the extra dough, you can make adorable leaves for decoration on your pumpkin pie. Or any pie, really. I’ve seen the pie crust leaves baked directly on top of the rim of the pie – and I tried that – but was not thrilled with the results. Too much uneven baking. The underside of the leaves weren’t really cooked through and the tops got a little burnt (even through my pie shield).

So, to make things easier, just bake the pie crust leaves separately and place them on top of your pie before serving. You can also sprinkle them with a little cinnamon-sugar right before baking. I was going to do that, but I forgot.

My leaf cookie cutters don’t have “veins” so I made leaf veins myself using a sharp paring knife. It’s tedious, but if you want authentic looking leaves you can go ahead. Don’t worry if your veins aren’t perfect. That’s a weird sentence.

My directions for the leaves are in the print-out recipe above.

Bursting with flavor, this pumpkin pie recipe is my very favorite. It's rich, smooth, thick, and tastes incredible on my homemade pie crust!

If you don’t want to decorate your pie with pie crust leaves, maybe a little sugared cranberry action is more your style. And guess what? Sugared cranberries are easier.

I like to use them on pumpkin pie because they give a vibrant, fresh pop of color to the very brown and very orange pie. Plus, they’re tasty. And so festive. Simply prepare a sugar syrup, let the cranberries soak in the syrup overnight, drench in sugar (so dentist-approved) and let dry for a couple hours.

My recipe for sugared cranberries is in the print-out recipe above, too!

How to make sugared cranberries on

How to make sugared cranberries on

Let me know if you try my pumpkin pie. Happy baking!

This post contains affiliate links.

Sugared Cranberries for your holiday baking and pumpkin pie-- these are so simple!
I call this the GREAT pumpkin pie recipe because it's my absolute favorite recipe for this Fall dessert!
Here's how to make adorable and festive pie crust leaves for your homemade pies! #pumpkinpie #applepie


  1. Sally, it’s me again (go ahead, sigh with me).  Do you just use the 15 oz can of pumpkin and call it a day?  Or do you open up another can to make it the 2 cups as listed?  I don’t want to mess up on your heavenly creation!  Wait, I will be this time because I bought pre-made frozen deep dish pie crusts just because of everything that is going on!  At Christmas, I will work up enough courage to do the crust too!  Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Hi Sally,
    I am very new at baking and especially making a pie. I attempted twice last week to make pumpkin pie (pre-made crust) and the bottom of the crust was completely black! 🙁
    I am going to intend on following your instructions. However, besides an aluminum container, is it necessary to invest in a pie bowl? also a roller for the dough? I have the very very basics (measuring cups and spoons). What can you recommend for me being a beginner and getting this right the first time? I would love to make this for my family on Thanksgiving. Thank you. I love your blog, it’s beautiful and inspiring.

    • Lizzy, I highly suggest baking pies in a ceramic, metal, or glass pyrex pan. I usually use ceramic or glass. Yes, you will also need a rolling pin. You can’t go wrong with the type. They pretty much all get the job done!

  3. I followed this recipe to the letter. It seemed like everything went smoothly at first when I took it out, but after some time, it still had not set. I put it in for another 5 mins, let it cool, and I still had a wet toothpick. I did this again, same! Will this thing ever harden???

  4. Sally or anyone out there – I only have the canned Pumpkin pie filling. Too late to swap it out at the store. What adjustments would need to be made to compensate for using this? 

  5. Hey there! I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you for this recipe and the detailed how-to post. I couldn’t have found a more thorough, educational breakdown of the process. At 21 years old, I made a homemade pie for the first time this Thanksgiving. (The first one from scratch that my family has ever eaten…counting back three generations.) It was a hit! Even more important than that: I was so satisfied with how it turned out. I owe it all to you! The things I learned in your post will be forever in my heart, and I will be sure to give you and this blog plenty of credit when I teach others what I now know! I enjoyed that you explained alternatives and other techniques that you have tried, and I appreciated the pictures. I look forward to further exploring your blog and recipes.

    Best, Brittany

  6. Perfect recipe!! I even made the sugared cranberries and free-hand cut leaves. Rave reviews from all on Thanksgiving!!

  7. Just wanted to note that if you use the pumpkin puree from Whole Foods it is more watery than the more common canned packed pumpkin varieties – my filling batter came out very thin and only using about 3/4 of the batter it still took about an hour to setup. So maybe add less milk. Also, this made for a more custard-y filling – very silky. Don’t forget to cover the pie crust with aluminum foil halfway thru- since it takes a while in the oven, your crust edges will be very brown, even with the foil/shield.

  8. My husband and neighbors really enjoy this pie recipe as is, however, I found it to be too sweet. I cut the sugar by half or add unsweetened applesauce and it comes out great. Thank you again for another amazing recipe!  🙂

  9. Sally,

    I will be attempting my first ever pumpkin pie for this Thanksgiving (Canadian), and I don’t have a deep dish pie plate, do you think this recipe can be halved and fit in a regular pie plate so there isn’t as much left over filling?

    I’m slightly nervous about pumpkin pie, so I really appreciate your very detailed post.=)


    PS.  Can’t wait for more fall inspired recipes.

    • Hi Maureen! Halving the filling recipe could work, though I’d hate for you to not have enough. What about making the entire thing then freezing any extras you have leftover?

    • I made this pie last year with a pre made crust and had some filling left over so I just poured it in some cupcake cups and baked them and had some mini crust less pies. The filling is so delicious you don’t even need a crust! 

  10. hello! interesting use of pepper, Alton Brown uses the Grains of Paradise, same effect. as to the Cool Whip, as a child I adored the stuff, like Twinkies~ life affirming .. but as I grew older and most assuredly was told I must be wiser, I put away those things of child.. but not Cool whip! ha! no really , i did, but what I found was I could add to real whipped cream and zowie.. that made it so much more fun. my fav, Frangelico or White choc Ghiadellies liqueur. and now on the the main event, I am also a major pumpkin snob.. and grow my own ! ha, no waiting in line at the store for those grainy types.. I grow the Organic Long Island cheese and the Kobacha Squash.. after careful fine mesh food strainer, i get the purest smoooth as velvet pumpkin puree.. hence, pies! I get enough for about 8 pies so I freeze. but by Feb or March, I’m jonesing and have to buy. so I get Libbys Canned and I go half and half on the two. I do tend to use the Clear Jel instead of the corn starch and i sometimes cheat and use marscapone instead of all that heavy cream and ive been known to add flavors to my crust like Rivulet instead of vodka.. ok the truth is out now! ha! anyway, loved this post and of course, love pumpkin pie!

  11. How long do the cranberries last?

  12. I made your filling and it was to die for! The silkiest and most flavorful pumpkin pie I’ve ever had and my friends loved it. The addition of the pepper is superb 🙂 I even made some mini crustless pies like you suggested. I had one sciencey question. At about the last 10 minutes of baking, the center of the pie filling puffed up and then levels out again after cooling. There was a little bit of a crack in the center. Is there any way to avoid that? I whipped the filling pretty good, should I maybe mix a little less? Overall I LOVE this recipe and will be making it again 🙂

  13. Hello, I made this recipe last year for Thanksgiving and want to make it again this year with a gingersnap cookie crust instead. Do you think I could do this in a spring form pan?

  14. Sally, I think you have your side notes numeration wrong – they don’t match. Aside from that, this recipe is one of my favorites of yours! It’s my go-to Pumpkin Pie recipe. 

  15. Hi Sally, This recipe reads “Delicious”. I will be trying this one. Have you ever tried using molasses? I am originally from Ca. and many years ago there was a grocery store chain called Alpha Beta. They made one of the best pumpkin pies I have eaten and it has long remained in my memory. I always read ingredients on packaged foods and if I recall correctly their pies were made with molasses and brown sugar. Abbey

  16. I have never commented on a recipe before, but felt I needed to after successfully baking my very first pie! Thank you for your detailed steps and tricks – I cannot believe my first pie turned out so amazing. From the pastry to the filling, everything was perfect. I can’t say that it looked anything like your photos, but it tasted amazing. My grandma would have been so proud of me. Wish she could have tasted it. Thank you again! I’ll send all the pie-making newbies I know to your site. 

  17. Hi Sally! Yesterday, I baked this pie but it ended up having kind of a mushy consistency w/ the filling the crust was perfect tho… Any idea of what might have happen and how to fix it? Thank you 🙂

  18. Hi Sally!

    I want to make these pies for Thanksgiving this weekend and didn’t see the answer I was looking for in the past comments. Would I need to adjust the baking time using a metal 9 x 1/2 inch pie plate? I see you said there was going to be extra filling leftover, do you think this would yield two pies then? Thanks for your help in advance! Excited to make these and am going to attempt to make the Pumpkin Cake Cheesecake as well for a different dinner party!!!

    • Sorry, that should read 9 x 1 inch pie plate.

    • Hi Sammi, I don’t think it could quite make 2 pies. Unless the pies were smaller, let’s say 6-7 inch pie pans. The baking time may be a couple minutes less in your metal pan. Hope you enjoy!

      • Hi Sally!

        I wanted to let you know how it went! The pies were a success! I tripled the recipe and got 3 pies with enough for 12 mini pies and 4 pieces of Pumpkin Pie French Toast! The pies took 53 minutes, so you were spot on with the time as well! SOOO good! I even made the pie crust leaves! Everyone was very impressed. Thanks again for the wonderful recipe!! P.s new website looks fantastic!

      • I’m so glad to hear it! And thank you 🙂

  19. Hi Sally if I am substituting the pumpkin pie spice how much do I use? I don’t have all the spices As you listed thanks

  20. This is my husband’s favorite pumpkin pie hands down. I’m so glad I found it 2 years ago! He’s been asking me lately if I’m going to make it. Haha! I’m linking this post to a blog post I’m currently writing. Sharing is caring! 🙂

  21. I love your blog. Every time I search for a new recipe I always end up using yours!

  22. Oh man I just noticed the footnote-I used fresh pumpkin purée! I really hope this turns out.  My filling is VERY RUNNY

  23. Hi Sally,

    I am just learning how to bake and am going to attempt your pumpkin pie recipe however I will have to use frozen crust for now.

    If I am using frozen crust, do I still pre bake the crust for 10 min? I presume so, but thought I would double check.

    Thanks so much for your great recipes!


  24. This pumpkin pie recipe was a hit. I roasted my own pumpkin for the recipe and mixed in a 1/3 cup of canned. My mother in law said hands down this was the best pumpkin pie she has ever had. 

  25. Hi Sally, this pumpkin pie was a huge hit at yesterdays (canadian) thanksgiving dinner. Just wondering if the remaining pumpkin filling can be frozen and used in a pie later? Thank you! 

  26. Thanks Sally. I had already made the pastry before I found your recipe so I cant comment on that but everyone at dinner tonight raved about how this was the best pumpkin they ever had and everyone including the men asked for a link to your recipe. It is an amazing pumpkin pie. Thanks again!

  27. I just found your site and plan to make up for it, baking several of these. Thanks for a wonderful recipe!

  28. Hi, I am English, through and through,, and elderly, so not new to baking, though I am no expert

    I really wanted to try your Pumpkin Pie,, I have it in the oven now! I don`t like shop bought pie crust, so made my own, from shop pastry.. but it shrank off the edges, hope the pumpkin mixture is still edible if it sticks to the sides of the glass dish

    I love your recipe, so complete and interesting, thankyou

  29. Hi Sally! I just came across this recipe, and I am in love! I cannot wait to make this pie! I was just wondering though, do you think that the pie would stand well if I swirled some chocolate ganache in with it? And instead of doing sugared cranberries, would raspberries work? Just some thoughts I had! Thanks, I love your blog! 

    • Oh my gosh the chocolate ganache swirl would be delicious. With sugared raspberries? You’ve got a beautiful and delicious pie on your hands. Try it and let me know!

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