Mini Pumpkin Pies

With quicker bake and cool times, plus no need for blind baking the pie crust, there’s no denying that mini pumpkin pies are easier than the full-size version. They’re fun, festive, and baked in a mini muffin pan. This recipe uses my homemade pie crust and a deeply spiced filling like my original pumpkin pie.

mini pumpkin pies baked in a mini muffin pan

Pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin spice potato chips (they exist!), pumpkin scented candles, and about a billion other pumpkin spice items this time of year. But where does it all begin? The Iconic Pumpkin Pie, of course.

The motherhood of everything pumpkin spice, pumpkin pie is the original source for our pumpkin fix. It’s a very popular recipe this time of year and one of the most frequent questions I receive is “how can I turn this into mini pumpkin pies?”

I’m always happy to answer this, but I figured it’d be most helpful to have a separate post dedicated to Mini Pumpkin Pies. Instead of telling you how I do it, let’s show you the process. These are FUN and let’s be honest… the cuteness is hard to resist.

You Will Love These Mini Pumpkin Pies Because:

  • they’re fun to make with kids
  • unlike the full-size version, there’s no blind baking the crust (YAY!)
  • they’re deeply spiced and sweetened with flavorful brown sugar
  • bake time & cool time are a lot quicker than regular pie
  • decoration can be minimal
  • they’re handheld & easy to serve

If larger pies intimidate you, try shrinking it. Or if you don’t want to mess with pie crust at all, you’ll appreciate my easy pumpkin pie bars instead.

mini pumpkin pies

Overview: How to Make Mini Pumpkin Pies

Have you made my mini pecan pies or mini quiches before? We’re doing the same thing here, only switching the filling. (One note, if you ever try my mini pecan pies, you need to pre-bake the crusts since the filling is so thin. Not necessary today though.)

  1. Make pie dough: My pie crust recipe yields 2 crusts and you’ll conveniently use both here. This crust is a staple in my kitchen, a recipe I’ve had memorized for years. I use a mix of butter and shortening to make it. Why shortening? Shortening aids in creating flakiness. Why butter? Butter adds unparalleled flavor. If you’d like, try my all butter pie crust instead. The pie dough needs to chill for 2 hours before it’s useable, so I always recommend making it ahead.
  2. Make the filling: I’m certain you could make this filling in your sleep– it’s that easy. Mix all the ingredients together. That’s it, you’re done. Chill the filling in the refrigerator as you work on the dough or you could even make the filling 1-2 days in advance. See make ahead instructions in the recipe below.
  3. Roll out pie dough & cut into small circles: I recommend a 2.5 inch cookie cutter. If you don’t own a cookie cutter that size, I bet you have a measuring cup that’ll work. I use my 1/3 cup measuring cup. Re-roll the dough scraps until all the pie dough is used. You’ll have about 24 from each crust (48 total). Work quickly because the dough becomes delicate the longer it sits at room temperature.
  4. Fit the dough rounds into your mini muffin pan: Grease a mini muffin pan. Press the dough flat into the bottom of the crevice and up the sides.
  5. Fill each with the filling: The filling is pretty thick, but you can try pouring it into each crust. Spooning it in is a little neater.
  6. Bake until the crust is browned: These are so much quicker to bake and cool than a full size pumpkin pie. Cuter, quicker, more convenient! Have I sold you on these yet?
  7. Cool & serve: As always, fresh whipped cream finishes things off. I used a Wilton 1M tip to pipe a simple star-shape dollop on each.

pie dough for mini size quiches

pumpkin pie filling

unbaked pumpkin pies shaped in a mini muffin pan

Filling is Adapted From My Favorite Pumpkin Pie

These mini pumpkin pies are an adaptation of my favorite pumpkin pie recipe.

  • Reduced Amount: The most notable change is the reduced amount of filling. We don’t need as much filling as we would for a large 9-inch pie. These mini pumpkin pies are dough heavy– lots of crust in each bite. The filling really has to stand out, so we’ll use flavorful brown sugar and extra pumpkin pie spice.
  • No Cornstarch: Cornstarch thickens the filling for the full-size pie so we’re guaranteed neat slices. We’re not slicing these mini pumpkin pies– and the crust already keeps the filling tight and compact.
  • Black Pepper: Black pepper is our secret ingredient. I learned about the addition of black pepper to pumpkin pie filling over at King Arthur Flour a few years ago. I’m forever changed. Seriously! This little bit of spice turns your pumpkin pie into the BEST pumpkin pie. No one will know it’s there– all they’ll taste is a delightfully spiced flavor. I’m just going to shout it: IT’S SO GOOD.

My toddler loved to help make these. Shaping the dough was easy with a little help from mom and she could whisk the filling mostly by herself. She calls them baby pies. We still have more in the freezer and she gets especially excited when we thaw a few for our special treat. I think it’s because they’re just her size. 🙂

mini pumpkin pies with whipped cream on top

mini pumpkin pie with a bite taken out of it

More Variations of Pumpkin Pie

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mini pumpkin pies with whipped cream on top

Mini Pumpkin Pies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes (includes pie dough chilling)
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 48-50 mini pies
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This delicious pumpkin pie filling recipe is adapted from my beloved pumpkin pie. Bake in my super flaky homemade pie crust in mini muffin pans.


Ingredients

  • 2 unbaked Flaky Pie Crust (what I used) or All Butter Pie Crust*
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (285g) pumpkin puree*
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) whole milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice*
  • small pinch black pepper (optional – see note)

Instructions

  1. Pie crust: I like to make sure my pie dough is prepared before I begin the mini pies. Make pie dough the night before because it needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before using.
  2. Prep the filling: In a large bowl with a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment– or simply using a whisk and mixing bowl– beat/whisk the pumpkin, brown sugar, heavy cream, milk, egg, salt, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and black pepper together (on medium high speed if using a mixer) until completely combined, about 2 minutes. You’ll have about 3 cups of filling. Cover and refrigerate filling until step 6.
  3. Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C). Grease two 24-count mini muffin pans. Nonstick spray is best. (If you only have 1 mini muffin pan, bake these in batches. Roll out first pie dough, shape, fill, and bake then roll out the 2nd pie dough, shape, fill, and bake.)
  4. Shape the mini crusts: Working with 1 chilled pie dough at a time, place the dough onto a floured work surface. Roll into a large 12-inch circle. Use your warm hands to mold any cracking edges back together if needed. From the circle, cut rounds using a 2.5 inch cookie cutter. (Sometimes I use my 1/3 cup measuring cup, which is 2.5 inches in diameter.) You’ll have to re-roll the dough scraps a few times. Work quickly, as the dough becomes much more delicate the longer it’s at room temperature. You’ll get about 24 rounds per pie crust. Repeat with 2nd chilled pie dough for a total of about 48.
  5. Place the dough rounds into greased 24-count mini muffin pan(s). Press the dough flat into the bottom of the crevice and up the sides.
  6. Evenly spoon cold filling into each unbaked crust, filling to the top.
  7. Bake mini pies until the center is just about set and edges are lightly browned, about 21-25 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing from the pan. If greased well, the mini pies pop right out using a spoon to scoop them up. Cool, then serve at room temperature or refrigerate until chilled and serve cold. Filling deflates a bit as they cool. Top with whipped cream if desired. (Also pictured are sugared cranberries. See how to make them in my full size pumpkin pie recipe.)
  8. Cover leftover pies tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Freezing Instructions: The pie dough can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. The filling can also be made ahead of time, covered, and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. To freeze, cool baked mini pumpkin pies completely, then layer between sheets of parchment paper in a large freezer-friendly container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature.
  2. Mini Muffin Pan (affiliate link): I love these Wilton Mini Muffin Pans and the Gold Touch line from Williams Sonoma.
  3. If using a 12-count standard muffin pan: Cut the pie dough into 3 or 3.5 inch circles. Other assembly instructions are the same. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the centers are set and edges are lightly browned. Yields about 16.
  4. Pie Crust: Both linked pie crust recipes make 2 crusts. You need 2 crusts for this recipe. You can use store-bought pie crust if desired. Make sure it is thawed.
  5. Pumpkin: Canned pumpkin is best in this recipe. If using fresh pumpkin puree, lightly blot it before adding to remove some moisture. The filling will be thinner and the bake time may be a little longer.
  6. Whole Milk & Heavy Cream: These are the best options to use to guarantee the filling sets up. In a pinch, use 3/4 cup (180ml) of full fat half-and-half.
  7. Spices: Instead of prepared pumpkin pie spice, you can use 1/4 teaspoon each: ground nutmeg, ground cloves, ground allspice, and ground ginger. (You will still want to use 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon in the recipe, in addition to these spices.) A pinch of black pepper adds incredible spice flavor. I highly recommend it! Use a little less than 1/8 teaspoon.

Keywords: pumpkin pie, mini pies

49 Comments

  1. By heavy cream do you mean whipping cream….?

    1. Heavy cream or heavy whipping cream. Look for the term “heavy” in the title.

      1. Every store is out of heavy cream! Could half and half be used in stead of both the heavy cream and whole milk? 3/4 cup?

    2. Heavy cream is 33% milk fat or more so it is not whipping cream which is around 26 % milk fat. So heavy whipping cream is fatter than whipping cream

    3. Karen Schreiber says:

      A friend told me of a way to make crust for pumpkin pie, grease the pans heavily with butter. Then coat the pans with cornmeal. Then pour pumpkin mixture into the pan. I tried hers and it was good. So im trying it this Thanksgiving.

  2. This are going to be sooo good.
    Thx SALLY for sharing this recipe

  3. These look amazing! They’re on my list to make for a Halloween treat next weekend! PS: typo – “This crust is a my staple in my kitchen”

  4. Thanks for sharing this! We are having a little Halloween party at home next weekend for my toddler and I thought our baked goods menu was done, but maybe we need to add these! 😉
    Also, what a sweet little paragraph about Noelle and these ‘baby pies’! I love when you share little bits about her.
    Your full sized pumpkin pie is my absolute favourite, I usually make it every year for thanksgiving but didn’t this year because we moved away from my family and didn’t travel (thanks COVID ). It was Canadian thanksgiving 2 weekends ago.
    Don’t skip the black pepper!!!

    1. These would be the perfect addition to your Halloween party! Such a cute idea, Stephanie. Hope you love this one as much as The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe!

  5. Thank you for this idea. I’m thinking about also trying it for sweet potato pie. Do you see a reason that wouldn’t work?

    1. Should work just fine! You can sub in sweet potato puree for the pumpkin OR use my sweet potato pie filling. You can discard or freeze any extra filling.

  6. These are too cute. Could I substitute sweet potato filling for pumpkin?

    1. Definitely. You can sub in sweet potato puree for the pumpkin OR use my sweet potato pie filling. You can discard or freeze any extra filling.

  7. Hi! Would I be able to use regular cupcake/muffin tins instead of the mini ones for this recipe?

    1. I’m going to try doing this too! We’ll probably just need to cut the crust circles a bit bigger, use more filling per pie, and potentially bake for a bit longer, but otherwise I can’t see why not!

    2. Yes! See recipe notes on details for a standard muffin tin.

  8. Yum! This looks so delicious and tasty!

  9. Hi Sally! I would like to know at which temperature the cream has to be. Should I put it in the fridge or at room temperature? Thanks!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Isabella, Room temperature is best. We hope you enjoy this recipe!

      1. I actually use the cream straight from the fridge since I didn’t have a reply in time, but it worked good anyway. But I have a lot of pumpkin filling and uncooked pie crust left overs. What should I make with them a little bit different than other mini pumpkin pies?

  10. I just made these for a Halloween party yesterday and they were delicious! They’re so convenient to serve, no cutting required. They taste exactly like the great pumpkin pie recipe but with a little more crust (which is great for people who just can’t get enough of that flaky, buttery goodness). Thanks for another great recipe!

    1. Thrilled to hear they were such a hit, Abby! Thank you for giving this recipe a try.

  11. Sally-I still have pie dough in the freezer from last Thanksgiving…good times use, or should I toss it and start fresh??

    1. Hi Aubrey, it might be ok to use but for best taste and texture, I recommend making a new batch of dough.

      1. Just made this, can’t wait to try once it’s cooled! …I have lots of uncooked filling left over, can it be frozen in this state to use later? Or does it have to be cooked before freezing?

  12. Joan Heilbronner says:

    Hi! Delicious filling, but my first try at pie crust didn’t go quite perfectly. I refrigerated the dough overnight. When I tried to roll it out it cracked. Any guesses as to where I went wrong? Too cold? Not enough water?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Joan, I’m glad to help. If the dough is just too hard right out of the refrigerator, let it sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. It will still be cold, but even a few minutes at room temperature will help soften it up. Roll out very slowly and gently. If it’s cracking, use your hands to bring the edges back together. (I always use my fingers to “meld” any cracks back together– as if it were play doh.) If it’s cracking, the dough may not have enough liquid. I highly recommend at least 1/2 cup of ice water. Most pie dough problems come from not adding enough water. I hope all of this can help for next time!

  13. Hi Sally,

    I can’t wait to make these for Thanksgiving
    How should I test if they are done?

    Thanks

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      They will be finished baking when the center is just about set and edges are lightly browne. Enjoy!

  14. This may be an unanswerable question, but I would like to halve this recipe as we’re only having 3-5 people for Thanksgiving this year. And I’ll be using regular muffin tins. How would I halve the egg? Do you know how many ounces or grams the egg should be so I can weigh it and be able to halve it? Thanks!

    1. Hi Toni, 1 large egg without the shell is about 50 grams. You can crack the egg, beat it, then use 25 grams. Or you can crack the egg, beat it, measure it (will be a few Tbsp), then use half of that measurement.

  15. Can you use the leftover filling just to make muffins?

  16. After baking , have you ever frozen them to serve later?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Mark, Yes! See the Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions in the recipe notes for details.

  17. Can I make these into hand pies for shipping? Or can I ship these?

    1. Hi Star, I’m sure you could use this filling for hand pies, but they’ll be a little messy. These pies are best stored in the refrigerator, so they aren’t ideal for shipping.

  18. Can I substitute evaporated milk

    1. Hi Elizabeth! You can replace the milk with evaporated milk. I don’t recommend replacing the heavy cream though.

  19. My husband really likes crispy shells, could I blind bake them first? How long would you recommend?

    1. You can definitely pre-bake these pie crust shells if you’d like. I’d say about 5-10 minutes at 375°F (191°C), then continue with step 6.

  20. My oven only goes up to 350 degrees. Can I just bake them longer?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Jenn, That should be fine. I’m unsure how much longer they will need but bake the pies until the center is just about set and edges are lightly browned.

  21. Hi!
    i’m baking the recipe and my filling is very thin, not thick at all. what did i do wrong? i put all the ingredients together

    1. Hi Kristy, does it look like the photo above? Did you use canned pumpkin? I know some brands of canned pumpkin have a thinner consistency than others. I usually use Libby’s. This won’t really affect how the pumpkin pies taste, but if the filling consistency is thinner, the mini pies may take an extra minute or two in the oven.

  22. How much black pepper?

  23. My filling is super liquidy. Should I put anything in there to thicken it? I think the pumpkin I used was too thin and moist. Is it okay to just pour it in the muffin pan? even if it’s really thin

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sabine, The filling does seem thin after it’s all mixed but it will set as is bakes!

  24. This recipe converted me– I never liked pumpkin pie before. Made this with my daughter and we loved it! This is such a fun one to do with children and was a huge hit for Thanksgiving. Thank you!

  25. I used the all-butter crust with this recipe and it came out amazing! Will definitely make again in the near future

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