Canning Pumpkin: From Gourd to Gourmet

homecanned pumpkin with textThings I have canned in the last year:

and now…PUMPKIN!

That’s right, I’m in the middle of making my own pumpkin pie, from scratch! I’ll share with you in a later post about the pumpkin pie, but here’s how to can your own pumpkin.

No preservatives, no added anything, just pure pumpkin!

Firstly, you need a pumpkin. I got this one when I went apple-picking with my family a couple of weeks ago. It was either going to be a jack-o-lantern or a pumpkin pie, and my tummy won the debate.

The pumpkin. I've heard that sugar pumpkins are good, but I just picked up one that wasn't expensive and looked cute. Meh. Good enough!

The pumpkin. I’ve heard that sugar pumpkins are good, but I just picked up one that wasn’t expensive and looked cute. Meh. Good enough!

You’ll also need a slow-cooker. Most people have one tucked away somewhere, otherwise they’re super-cheap on Craigslist.

Halve, and scoop out the seeds. Reserve those seeds for roasting.

Halve, and scoop out the seeds. Reserve those seeds for roasting.

Home-Canned Pumpkin

  • 1 pumpkin
  • water
  • a slow cooker

Cut of the top of the pumpkin. Scoop out the seeds and reserve for roasting. Scrape the insides of the pumpkin until no more gooey innards remain. Peel outside of pumpkin. Chop into small chunks. Place 1/2 the pumpkin in the slow cooker (it’ll likely take two batches to use up the entire pumpkin) with about 1 c. of water. Cook on high for about 8 hours, stirring every two hours. Once soft when pricked with a fork, blend using an immersion blender. Then, it’s ready to can!  

pumpkin peeled

To can, sterilize your canning jars. I just rinsed mine in water and popped them in the microwave for a minute. Then I filled up the jars with the pumpkin mixture, leaving about 1/2 cm room at the top of the jar. I screwed on the lids fingertip tight, and then placed them in boiling water for 20 minutes. Remove from water bath and let cool. You should hear the lids go ‘pop!’ at they cool and the seal sets. If the lid doesn’t pop, it’s not properly canned; but you can just put that jar in the fridge and use it up in the next week. If you follow this process though, you shouldn’t have any unpopped jars. And then you can store your jars in the cupboard and feel very pioneer-like! Or take a photo and post it on facebook. #authentic #preservative-free #hipsterforlife

Chop into pieces, and pop into the cooker, with some water. And yes, those are some pickled beets that you see cooling in the corner. My mum told me I was "a real farmer's wife"! Incidentally, I live in the city.

Chop into pieces, and pop into the cooker, with some water. And yes, those are some pickled beets that you see cooling in the corner. My mum told me I was “a real farmer’s wife”! Incidentally, I live in the city.

I’ve got my second batch of pumpkin in my slow cooker now, and the simmering pumpkin is making my home smell like pumpkin pie. I hadn’t realized that pumpkin, by itself and without any spices, actually has a distinct pumpkin smell. I reallllly want pumpkin pie now!

Boil to make sure they heat seal!

Boil to make sure they heat seal!

Which leads to me to my…

Next Post: Pumpkin Pie! And how to make it. Plus a fancy braided crust for that uber-Martha look. Bring on the (Canadian) Thanksgiving!

4 thoughts on “Canning Pumpkin: From Gourd to Gourmet

  1. Pingback: Tiger Cakes & The Rare Case of Too Much Chocolate! |

  2. Pingback: Chocolate Chip Zucchini Loaf, Domesticity, & Why I Freeze My Zuccini |

  3. Liz

    I hate to be a buzzkill, but I really have to warn you against eating pumpkin canned like this!

    First, when water bath canning the jars should be upright.

    Second, pumpkin is a low-acid food and definitely requires pressure canning to avoid botulism.

    Third, pumpkin is not recommended for canning as a puree due to its thickness. It should be canned in cubes and then pureed when opened.

    I would STRONGLY urge you to read up on canning safety.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *