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I have a memory of reading somewhere (but I can’t seem to find the source) that when making a pumpkin pie from fresh pumpkin, you could beneficially dice the pumpkin after roasting it instead of puréeing it. Is this true, or will it ruin the pie if I try that?

Also, does dicing the roasted pumpkin instead of puréeing it make it easier to deep freeze it?

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    When you slice the completed pie, what is your desired interior look and texture?
    – moscafj
    Oct 27 '20 at 10:40
  • @moscafj Good question; I haven't thought about that. I don't really know, because pumpkin pie is not something I have made very many times in the past. Oct 27 '20 at 13:29
  • This is really just a matter of texture. You can make a pie with puree or with chunks. Traditionally, squash pies have a smooth interior, but that doesn't mean it can't be lumpy, which I think is what your diced pumpkin would produce.
    – moscafj
    Oct 27 '20 at 13:36
  • You could also split the difference -- mix some chunks into mashed pumpkin
    – Joe
    Oct 27 '20 at 13:38
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If you are trying to make a classic, traditional, American Thanksgiving pumpkin pie, use pumpkin puree. If you dice the roasted pumpkin instead of pureeing it, it will be somewhat chunky. If you make a regular pumpkin pie and it has chunks in it, it will not come across as a creative twist on a classic. It will come across as, "Ew, this pie has lumps in it." Even mature adults turn into children when you start messing with the recipes their mom and grandma used to make for the holidays.

That's not to say there's no way to make a good pie with chunks of chopped, roasted pumpkin. It just won't be traditional. My rule of thumb when putting a creative twist on a traditional recipe, is to make the new version different enough from the original that I can call it something else. That way the people I feed it to are expecting something new and different.

For example, you could make a savory pie with caramelized onion and spinach and chopped roasted pumpkin. Make sure the top of it doesn't look like a regular pumpkin pie, or someone will try to eat it for dessert and be very disappointed. A crumbly or crunchy topping would do the trick.

It also helps to have a good name for your creation. Something that references the chunkiness and makes it seem like an feature, not a bug. Also something that makes it clear that it's different from the traditional. Notice that I didn't describe my savory example as a pumpkin pie. I can't wrap my brain around calling something savory a pumpkin pie, even though that's a technically accurate description.

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