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How To Prepare Fresh Pumpkins for Baking


This is called a Pie Pumpkin.

This pumpkin, which is the size of a softball, is the type of pumpkin to be used for making pies.

Photo © 2006 Carroll Pellegrinelli, licensed to About.com, Inc.
Want to expand your "baking horizons"? Try using fresh pumpkin instead of canned this year. Just follow these simple directions to prepare your pumpkin for baking.
Difficulty: Average
Time Required: 25 Minutes

Here's How:

  1. Rinse pumpkin.
  2. Place in the microwave.
  3. Microwave on high for 2 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven.
  5. Pierce entire pumpkin skin deeply with a fork or metal skewer.
  6. Microwave on high for another 2 to 4 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and wrap in foil.
  8. Let stand for about 5 minutes.
  9. Slice open the pumpkin.
  10. Remove seeds.
  11. Scrape-out pulp.
  12. Mash pulp.


  1. Don't use those huge pumpkins that are used for Jack-O-Lanterns. The meat is tasteless and dry.
  2. Pick what is called a "Pie Pumpkin", which is between the size of a softball or cantaloupe.
  3. The entire pumpkin should be completely dotted from piercing.
  4. About 2 cups of pulp is needed to make a 9-inch pie.
  5. A 15-ounce can of pure pumpkin holds about 1-3/4 cups of densely-packed pulp.

What You Need

  • Pumpkin(s)
  • Microwave Oven
  • Metal fork or skewer
  • Very Sharp Knife
  • Spoon to Remove Seeds
  • Fork to Mash Pulp
  • A Great Recipe to Use Pulp.

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