How to Make Pumpkin Purée in the Crock-pot
Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE to use my slow cooker. I love that I can fix something in the morning or lunch time and ignore it until dinner time. I like trying a variety of recipes.
I thought I’d start my “Slow Cooker Saturday” series with something that fits the season: cooked pumpkin purée. I freeze it and use it throughout the year in pumpkin bread, pie, and my latest, pumpkin waffles. Last year I cooked it on the stove top, and it was a bit difficult, okay, more than a bit difficult. It was a burden. What made it hard was the peeling of the pumpkin before cooking it. This week I tried in the slow cooker. ‘Why not?’, I thought. And it made it sooo much easier!!
*Update 10/12/12 Cooking your pumpkin is such a money saver since the pumpkin can be purchased for so cheap. Right now we can get pumpkin for $0.17/lb. $0.17 verses what they sell a 29 ounce can of pumpkin for at $2.99 (current Safeway price), making the pumpkin $1.65/lb. That’s all most ten times the savings. If we include the cost of using the crock-pot it goes down a bit, but not much. If you have grown your own pumpkin you are out the cost of your seeds. Cooking your own pumpkin saves an amazing amount of money!!
The Verdict: I didn’t even need to put it in the food processor to puree. To me this method saves a lot of time and steps. I don’t have to slave over a stove top, no peeling, no pureeing, so less to clean. I love it!! If your pumpkin isn’t as smooth as you want it, by all means, cool it, and puree it in a food processor, blender or immersion blender.
**Update 11/13: every pumpkin is different, and almost everyone one I cook in the crock-pot doesn’t need blending, but I had a pumpkin last weekend that definitely needed a little blender action. Also, the bigger the pumpkin, the more water it may contain, so you may need to squeeze the water out of the pumpkin purée.
**Pictures/post updated 11/14. Recently I saw my friend take her cooked pumpkin with skins on and just blend the whole pumpkin together~skins and all. I did that the last time I crock-potted my pumpkin. I still had to squeeze the water out of the pumpkin before blending. I like that it’s a time saver, and gives the purée a richer orange color (you can see in the top 3 updated pictures) without affecting the taste. I’m planning to continue blending the skins into the pumpkin in the future.
How to Cook Pumpkin in the Crock-Pot
- 1 pumpkin
- a little water (**11/13 update-I don't use water anymore as the pumpkin has enough of its own that cooks out)
- Take your pumpkin, rinse, and cut it up into manageable-sized pieces. Oh! And be careful! **Update 11/13: if the entire pumpkin actually fits in your crock-pot, you could just put it straight in the crock-pot, and cook until tender.
- Scoop out the guts (I keep the seeds to roast).
- Put enough water in the slow cooker to fill the bottom, and place the pieces of pumpkin inside.
- Turn the cooker on low, and cook for 5-8 hours. (I couldn't get to it right away so it might have been 12 hours, and it was still fine. Ah, the glories of the slow cooker.)
- Take it out and let cool for about 10 minutes.
- Scoop out the pumpkin pulp from the peel.
- If the pumpkin is watery, try to squeeze as much water out as possible.
- Discard the peel (if desired, see The Verdict section).
- Purée with blender or food processor if needed.
- Refrigerate or freeze, and use as desired.
For more crock-pot ideas visit our Cookin’ with the Crock-pot Pinterest Board.
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