Nobody wants to live with out pumpkin pie when you become a vegan, and thanks to today’s conveniences and food science you don’t have to. I was sketchy about the outcome here. But what I’m quickly learning about vegan baking, is that it just boils down to a matter of substitutions or just plain omissions.
In the case of the pumpkin pie, the substitution came in the form of butter. The crust was my biggest concern really. Making a pie crust w/ out the help of cow butter was going to take some convincing. But, for this recipe, it was just a simple substitution-one for the other. The outcome of the crust was soft, flaky and buttery. You would never know it was made with out real butter.
The next hurdle was the filling of the pie. In my opinion…the second item of importance after the crust. But, when I took a look at the new recipe, there was was more omitting than substituting. There were no eggs, no condensed milk, and really, no hassle! The filling was based on the fresh-baked pumpkin flesh, some coconut milk, a bit of sugar, syrup and cornstarch. But, what about the eggs? Aren’t they the important binders that would be needed to pull this pie together? How can it be that we don’t need to add eggs in order to have a successful pumpkin pie? Well, I was about to find out.
A bit of spice goes a long way
The final level of taste in the pumpkin pie really does depend on the spices and the balance. Sometimes there’s too much nutmeg, not enough cinnamon. I’m a big cinnamon lover, from it’s nutritional benefits to the taste, there can never bee enough cinnamon in the pumpkin. In addition, be sure the balance is soft with a bit of clove and nutmeg. While the right amount of sugar is also important, as it’s not to be an overly sweetened dessert. But rather, just right. And why not add a bit of ground ginger and or cardamon for a unique flair! Just a small pinch of each spice will give the pumpkin a bit more of a chai flair.
But, let’s not forget to stress the fact that you should always strive to make your own pie filling for your pumpkin pie. There is no comparison to your fresh-baked pumpkin added to the pie vs. a filling from a can or jar, which is more than likely filled with additional sugars and unnecessary ingredients. This recipe is perfect for the Fall holiday’s, and with abundant stock of pumpkins well into the winter months, you can bake throughout winter using fresh pumpkins.
Vegan Pumpkin Pie
For the crust
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp sugar
- 3 1/2 cups coconut butter or another plant-based butter (113grams)
- 1/4 cup oat milk or your favorite plant-based/nut based milk
For the filling
- 1 3/4 cups pumpkin cooked, soft and pureed
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon or more if you prefer cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp clove
- 1/8 tsp ground cardamon optional
- 1/8 tsp ground ginger powder optional
for the crust
- with room temperature plant-butter, combine together with flour, salt, sugar and add milk slowly. Combine until you reach a nice, smooth texture
- on a floured surface, roll the dough out
- line the oiled pie dish
- pike a few holes, then bake in the warm oven (200 Celsius) for about 10 minutes. Take out then add your filling.
For the filling:
- once your pumpkin is baked and soft, scrape the seeds out and discard (or save, clean and save for plantings next year, or roast for pumpkin seeds as a snack)
- throw all the ingredients on the list into the food processor and pulse until smooth
- pour into pre-baked pie crust, and bake for about 50-60 min, or until it looks nearly set in the middle.
- Take out, cool and wait a few hours to cut.