Thanksgiving is incomplete without pumpkin pie. But how do you make it? We took our two household pumpkin pie recipes and prepared each of them with canned pumpkin puree and homemade pumpkin puree. We then held a taste testing showdown with our families to see which was the favorite!
We had five pies: Grammy’s pie recipe using canned puree and homemade puree, Pop-Pop’s recipe using canned puree and homemade puree (all of these had all-butter crusts), and Grammy’s recipe with canned puree and a shortening crust.
It was a lot of fun tasting these pies, I’m not going to lie. The adults really took it seriously, and so did the older kids. They were really excited about participating in the tasting (FIVE [small] pieces of pie!) and were pleased that they got to vote on their favorite pie.
All of the pies were tasty. But there were noticeable differences. Of the nine voters, only three people preferred the pies made with homemade puree. One of our testers liked the soft texture of the pies with homemade puree.
Most of the testers, however, felt that the homemade puree made the pies too soft-textured and not firm enough. Six testers preferred the pies with canned puree. One tester felt that the flavor of the homemade puree was watered-down and the texture was too loose (the pies with homemade puree didn’t seem to have set properly, though fully baked).
Most of the testers also preferred the sweeter pies, made with Grammy’s recipe. Seven testers voted for pies made with this recipe. Pop-Pop’s less-sweet pies were favored by two testers.
The verdict: whatever pumpkin pie recipe you use, go with canned puree. It’s easier to use, and both the flavor and the texture of the pies was superior to those made with homemade puree. Winner: canned pumpkin puree. (And nine very happy taste testers!)