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Thursday
Nov242011

Vanilla Bean Pumpkin Spiced Pie

I’m excited.

It’s Thanksgiving!!

And it’s THEE official day of pumpkin!!

If there were ever an official pumpkin day, today would be the day.  Maybe I should have posted pumpkin pie last week, but maybe sometimes I’m not the best at planning. 

Like when planning to type out this post, and then deciding to go to the bar beforehand.

Bad planning.

Luckily [for you] I typed out the recipes ahead of time. 

As mentioned many times before, I am a vanilla freak.  I just love it.  So why not infuse it into pumpkin pie? 

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I tested this recipe twice.  It was based off the 101 Cookbooks Pumpkin Spice-Kissed Pie.  What I wasn’t a huge fan of was using all coconut milk.  While the flavor was subtle, you could definitely taste it.  I didn’t not like it, but I didn’t want that flavor to come through quite so much.  For round 2, I decided to use half coconut milk and half almond milk.

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I also used more pumpkin, and decided to try cooking it for about 5 minutes in a pan.  I thought this would deepen the pumpkin flavor, allow some of the moisture to cook off, and make the pumpkin silky smooth.

Totally worth the 5 extra minutes.

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You can definitely find easier pumpkin pies to make, but this is by no means hard.  There is just a little extra time involved.

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The gluten free crust exceeded my expectations.  It was just what I was looking for!

A few years back, I decided to try making an oat based crust for pumpkin pie.  I’ve never been a huge pastry crust fan, especially paired with pumpkin pie.  I feel like it needs something a bit heartier.  Something with texture.

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I had a hard time photographing this pie and spent a little too long trying…

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The texture was spot-on, classic pumpkin pie.  Just what I was looking for.  And the crust?

Buttery rich, slightly sweet, with a not too chewy bite.  The crust held together very well, and with a serrated knife, cut easily.

Round two!  New slice, new plate, + new whipped cream!

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As you can see from the photos, the crust went slightly past the “golden brown” stage.  It wasn’t burnt, but was a little darker than I would have liked.  For round 2, I shielded the crust with foil.  It was a little bit of a pain, but worked perfectly!  I basically tore off strips of foil, folded them over so they were thicker, and pressed them into the outer-side of the pan, coming up over + hovering above the crust. 

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Vanilla Bean Pumpkin Spiced Pie [adapted from Spice-Kissed Pumpkin Pie]

  • 2c pumpkin puree [not pie filling]
  • 1/2c full fat coconut milk
  • 1/2c unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1/4c sucanat
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1.5T arrowroot starch
  • 3 eggs
  • 1.5t cinnamon
  • 3/4t ginger
  • 1/4t all spice
  • 1/8t nutmeg
  • 1/16-1/8t clove
  • 1/4t salt
  1. Slice the vanilla bean down the center, and scrape all of the seeds out with a spoon or butter knife.
  2. In a saucepan over medium heat, add the coconut + almond milk, vanilla beans and vanilla bean pod.
  3. Whisking frequently, bring to a boil, then turn off the heat + cover the pot for 20min to let the vanilla steep.
  4. Meanwhile, in a sauté pan over medium heat, add the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, ginger, all spice, nutmeg, clove + salt.
  5. Preheat oven to 350*.
  6. Stir to combine and stir frequently for about 5min, until slightly thickened, glossy, and smooth. 
  7. Remove from the heat and stir in the sucanat until combined.
  8. Once the vanilla is done steeping, discard the vanilla bean, and place the mixture in a large bowl.
  9. Vigorously whisk the arrowroot starch until there are no clumps. [If you’re having problems getting rid of clumps, you can always use a hand mixer.]
  10. Whisk in the eggs, then the honey until well combined.
  11. Add the pumpkin mixture and whisk until completely smooth.
  12. *Optional* Fold over 4-5 long strips of foil, to make little guards over the crust.  Press it around the pan, but not actually on the crust, just hovering above.  This will ensure the crust will not burn.
  13. Slowly pour into the pie shell and bake for 50-55min, until the center is set.  It should be golden brown on top and cracked around the edges.  If the center jiggles, bake for a few more minutes and re-check. 
  14. Cool on a cooling rack for 1-2hrs, before placing in the fridge.  Do not wrap with saran, or foil, until fully cooled.

tips/substitutions: All pie pans are not the same.  I used a 9.5” wide 2” deep pie pan, which fit perfectly with the crust about 1/4” below the top of the pan.  If you don’t have a vanilla bean, sub 2t vanilla and forgo the steeping process.  Sub in 1T pumpkin pie spice, instead of all the spices listed, if that’s what you have on hand.  Cornstarch can be subbed instead of arrowroot.  Pure cane sugar/brown sugar/white sugar can be subbed for the sucanat.  Brown rice syrup or maple syrup can be subbed for the honey.

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This crust is a definite keeper! 

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Oatmeal Walnut Pie Crust [I used a 9.5” wide 2” deep pie pan]

  • 1.5c GF rolled oats
  • 3/4c walnuts
  • 4T butter
  • 1/2c GF oat flour
  • 2T honey
  • 3T sucanat
  • 1/4t cinnamon
  • 1/4t + 1/8t sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350*.
  2. In a food processor, process walnuts until crumbly.  ~20sec
  3. Cut butter into pieces and pulse until just combined.
  4. Add sucanat + oat flour and process until combined, and a thick dough has formed. 
  5. Empty into a bowl and add rolled oats, cinnamon, salt, and honey and mash with a fork until fully combined.
  6. Spread evenly into the bottom of your pie pan and then start to work from the middle out to the edges and up the sides.  Press into the sides, rotating the pie pan, keeping the dough about 1/4” from the top.  Make sure the dough is firmly packed around all sides and the bottom.  *Refrigerating your dough for 15min or longer will help, but is not fully necessary. 
  7. Bake for 10-12min and let cool. 

tips/substitutions: A mini food processor will work for this.  If you don’t have a food processor, chop or grind the walnuts until very crumbly, then mash in the softened butter, then oat flour, etc.  I would imagine that the dough could be made and refrigerated 2-3 days ahead of time.  Feel free to sub 1T molasses + 1T honey, instead of 2T honey, if you want a rich, spicy flavor.  Pure cane sugar/brown sugar/white sugar can be subbed for the sucanat.  Brown rice syrup or maple syrup can be subbed for the honey.  Sub pecans instead of walnuts, if desired.  *Make sure to use certified gluten free oats if necessary to make sure the crust is completely gluten free!

If you’re looking for vegan pumpkin pie, check these recipes!

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Hope you savor every last bite this Thanksgiving!! 

Ashley

Reader Comments (56)

I dont normally like crusts..but I can tell I would LOVE the one you made. It's like a granola bar in crust form...yum.

And vanilla-flavored anything is my BFF.

Great work and Happy Thanksgiving!

oatmeal walnut pie crust!! Ack! I wish I read this before I made my (crustless) pumpkin pie. But I do have extra pumpkin...maybe I'll make a pie for breakfast tomorrow...there's never too much pumpkin. Happy Thanksgiving -- I'm thankful for your blog - it inspired me to start my own!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlauren@spicedplate

That crust does sound good!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJane Plass

This looks great Ashley! I'm not normally a pie crust person but this one looks great - "rustic" as Ange at Oh She Glows would say! Pumpkin and vanilla are 2 of my favourite flavours. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAngela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

Looks yummy! Still deciding if I want to make Pumpkin today. Happy Thanksgiving!!

I luv the crust!!! Travis request I bake a pie and not really knowing what I was doing...I put together a similar crust..it was delicious..I am sure yours is amazing!!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLizAshlee

for the first time this year (our canadian thanksgiving was last month) i followed a tip from baking illustrated in which you puree the (already pureed) canned pumpking with all the other filling ingredients in the food processor prior to cooking it in a pot. i thought it was crazy, since the pumpkin is already pureed but i followed the tip!
MAN did it make a difference!
best pumpking pie filling i have EVER encountered!
enjoy your pie!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteralana (at) the food

i'm totally drooling over this right now...and besides, who says you can't have pumpkin pie after thanksgiving too? gotta have dessert to eat with those leftovers :)

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHeather (Heather's Dish)

I love the crust!! :)

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLauren @ What Lauren Likes

Hey Ashley, I think I'm going to have to make about 5 or 6 pumpkin pies because of all the receipes (even though being Canadian, my Thanksgiving was over a month ago)!! However three is a slight typo in your recipe...you list adding sucanat twice and don't mention the starch. BTW do you think you can use cornstarch instead of arrowroot starch? Have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLisa Broadley

That crust looks awesome!!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSamantha @ Bikini Birthday

I had never considered heating the pumpkin before! Brilliant!

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKel@The Kel Show

Happy Thanksgiving! That crust looks amazing!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

Oh my. I just want to gobble that all up! Happy Thanksgiving!!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCait's Plate

Hey Lisa! Thanks for finding the error about listing the sucanat twice. It's added after the pumpkin is taken off the heat. The arrowroot starch was actually listed, but not until Step 9, and I mentioned in the tips/substitutions that you can definitely sub cornstarch for arrowroot. 5-6 pumpkin pies sounds like a Thanksgiving dream!!!! :) Have a great day!!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thanks Samantha! Happy Thanksgiving to you too!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thank you! Hope you have a fabulous day!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Happy Thanksgiving!!! Wish I could mail you a pie! ;)

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thanks Kel and Happy Thanksgiving to you as well!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

TOTALLY. Pumpkin pie does not end today. :)

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

That is a great idea!! Sometimes pumpkin can still be a bit stringy, even out of the can. I bet it was super silky smooth! Cooking the pumpkin really helped too. It became noticeably shinier and smoother. Totally worth the extra steps!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

That's awesome! Glad your crust worked out!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

You definitely want to make pumpkin pie. :) Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Yes! I'm not a big crust person either, but just love the texture and light flavor that this brings. :) Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

You too, Jane!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Yesss, similar to a granola bar for sure! :) Happy Thanksgiving, Averie!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Just made this. SO ready to dig in!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Last year I made Heidi's pie with an oatmeal walnut pie crust too! It was to die for. I'm making it again this year (celebrating on Sunday) and will try your trick of cooking the pumpkin a bit in a pan first. Mmmmm can't wait!!!!!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

This recipe looks fantastic! You've put some really great twists on the classic recipe. I love your idea for the crust! I'm going to have to try that with almonds, since I'm allergic to walnuts.

Happy Thanksgiving love!!!

Your pie turned out incredible...and that crust looks like it has the best texture! Such a cool idea to use whole oats in there. Mmm.
Have a great holiday....I hope you are taking time off work missy!! ;)

ps- I struggled with taking pie pictures too....it's not an easy thing to take pictures of, is it? Your pics turned out really nice though!

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAngela (Oh She Glows)

I eat anything for the crust!!!! :D hubba hubba...it's basically a healthy cookie! And I really fancy that addition of vanilla bean.

November 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEllie@fitforthesoul

Hi Ashley!
I read Your blog for a long time and I think Your pictures are just wonderful. I've tried some of Your recipes and their always turned out delicious. My dream is to write such a food blog and to share with others with many great recipes (gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free etc. ) because I'm on ACD and it's very hard here in Poland where I live, to create a tasty food, when You dont now so many things about "cooking" in different way. I've learned from Your blog and others how to make almond butters, homemade non-dairy milks and other great tasting dishes. And although I have to be on ACD diet, I'm happy, because I eat delicious, healthy food and I can save also a lot money by making all this by myself.
Thanks for Your inspiration Ashley! Greetings from Poland:-)

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMagdalena

Hi Magdalena. Thank you so much for your comment. I truly appreciate it! I'm so glad that my blog has been helpful for you. Thanks for saying hello!! I hope you decide to dive in and start a blog. :)

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thanks Angela!!! I wish we could have traded slices!! :) All of your creations looked delicioussss, especially that breakfast casserole. Oh my goodness! Yeah, I don't know what was with the pie...but I just couldn't get a good vision for the photographs! xo

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Hope you enjoy the pie and/or crust! Almonds would work great.

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Heidi's recipes are great! Hope you enjoyed the pie just as much this year!

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

YAY!!! I hope you enjoyed it!!

November 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Ashley, thanks so much for a gluten free pie and crust recipe! My boyfriend has celiac and is allergic to many other things too, I was so busy making sides that he could eat that I forgot about dessert. He missed out on dessert at thanksgiving. I will have to make this for him sometime soon!

November 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSonya

I just made this pie sub butternut squash and sub 2 chai tea bags for the vanilla bean. Thanks for the FANtastic recipe!

November 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

What a fabulous take on pumpkin pie! I would love to get my hands on this.

November 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJen @ Savory Simple

Totally diggin' the hearty GF crust.

Just made this, subbing vanilla bean paste and sweet potato puree, and the family LOVED it. What a great crust!! I totally agree with you about the pastry crust thing - I really don't think it belongs with such a soft filling - and your oat version totally did the trick... it was fan-freaking-tastic. Thanks for another lovely recipe! :)

November 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEmily

Made this today after missing out at Thanksgiving - LOVED it! Thanks so much for the recipe!

November 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrandae

That pie crust is so unique! I bet it tastes awesome. I am going to try it with pecans (I can't eat walnuts) Thanks lady!

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjanetha

It's like an oatmeal cookie crust!! Pecans would be amazing, and I would have picked them over walnuts if they didn't cost $12.99/lb. haha

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

YAY!!! I'm so glad you and the family loved it. Thanks for letting me know!! :)

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Ohhh yeah...like an oatmeal cookie!

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

THAT sounds amazing!!!! :)

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I hope you both enjoy it!

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

My version of the crust was pecans-only (walnut allergy). It was wonderful.

November 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrandae

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