A lighter, fluffier pumpkin filling with an unapologetic cloud of whipped cream go into this Easy Pumpkin Chiffon Pie recipe! This no-bake (flakey crust optional) dessert will clear up tons of room in oven for turkey at Thanksgiving.
Since turning my hobby into a career, it’s not often that I take the opportunity to bake without my DSLR camera near by or the intention of turning the recipe into a blog post. Clearly (see iPhone photo above), I didn’t plan on posting this recipe. But when this Pumpkin Chiffon Pie turned out to be a total home run, I couldn’t help myself from documenting it.
My recipes and tutorials on this site are planned, tested, and scheduled in advanced. They are usually seasonal, timely, or hold a specific meaning for sharing. Although I do leave room for some spontaneity, my editorial calendar is typically full well before anything goes LIVE.
I’m so lucky that my passion IS my job. I still very much love baking and coming up with new recipe ideas. But as a blogger, I often find it difficult to separate work from fun.
I made this Pumpkin Chiffon Pie for Canadian Thanksgiving. Between all the chaos that comes with hosting Thanksgiving, I had no intention of blogging this recipe. I (tried) to make a conscious decision to “live in the moment” and bake just for the sake of family and celebrating rather than strategically styling and documenting my bakes…
Well, I just couldn’t help myself!
This pie turned out way prettier and tastier than expected that I had to snap a couple pics on my iPhone. I compromised and skipped the styling all together - instead opting for my son’s art table as my backdrop - lol. It wasn’t until after we feasted on turkey, cranberries and the like that I grabbed my camera and took a few snaps of some leftover slices the following day.
I was hesitant to post my un-styled and un-beautified pie, but how ridiculous would that be -right?! I actually left it up to you guys to see if you wanted the recipe anyways. You guys!!! So much yes! There was an astounding amount of readers that wanted the recipe!
I learned a couple things from this post: 1) you guys still LOVE new recipes (thank goodness!) and 2) you care more about the recipe than the pretty pics. I understand and fully support the business of food styling and photography (you eat with your eyes first, after all) and we need the pretty pics to grab the audience’s attention in a sea of recipes that clog the Internet. But, at the end of the day, a good recipe is where it is at.
This recipe is pretty straight forward yet festive. The whole family loved it! Okay, maybe there were a few dollops of whipped cream pushed to the sides of the plates and just maybe I went a little overboard with the topping because it looked pretty, but it’s still a solid recipe and a welcoming alternative to the classic pumpkin pie.
If you want a no-bake version (as in you need more room in your oven for turkey), then you could totally opt for a graham cracker or gingersnap cookie crust. If you want flakes for days, then you can blind bake your pastry the day before.
The filling is cooked on the stove. It starts like a custard, set with gelatine, and lightened with whipped cream. Find traditional pumpkin pie filling too dense and heavy? Then you should definitely make this lighter, more heavenly Pumpkin Chiffon Pie for your next Thanksgiving!
Pumpkin Chiffon Pie
serves 10 to 12
Pre-baked pie crust, cooled
2 envelopes unflavoured gelatin
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon all-spice
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large egg yolks
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 Recipe Whipped Cream (may be cut in half)
cinnamon for dusting
Bloom the gelatine by placing it in a bowl. Sprinkle the gelatine with the water and set aside for 5 to 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, place 1/4 cup sugar, milk, spices, and salt in a saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat until the mixture barely comes to a simmer.
While the milk mixture is cooking, whisk together the egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Once hot, temper the milk mixture into the egg mixture by slowly whisking in a little of the hot milk in at a time.
Pour the egg-milk mixture back into the saucepan. Whisk in the pumpkin. Place the saucepan back on the stove over medium-low heat. Add the bloomed gelatine.
Stirring slowly yet constantly, bring the mixture to a slow boil (large bubbles will begin to “plop” on the surface). Continue whisking for another minute or 2 (or 160 degrees F) until thick and smooth.
Strain the pumpkin custard into a heat-safe container. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly on the top of the custard. Chill it in the refrigerator until completely cool.
After the custard cools, whip the 1 cup of cream. Begin mixing on meidum-low speed until the cream begins to thicken slightly. Add the sugar and continue mixing on medium-high until soft peaks. Add the vanilla and mix until combined.
Fold the whipped cream into the cooled pumpkin custard. Start by stirring about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the pumpkin custard (no need to be gently here). Once the pumpkin custard is slightly lightened, fold in the remaining whipped cream.
Spoon the pumpkin chiffon filling into the pre-baked pie crust. Smooth it out with the back of a spoon or offset spatula. Return the pie back to the refrigerator to set, at least an hour or 2.
Top with a mound of fluffy whipped cream (or dollop small amounts on each slice when serving) and dust with cinnamon.
Notes and Storage:
- Please note the rest and chill times before getting started! Both the crust and custard can be made in advanced.
- Add the whipped cream topping just after the pumpkin chiffon filling and before it sets in the refrigerator OR add the whipped cream just before serving (either way works).
– If you don’t want a mound of whipped cream on top of a pretty creamy, custardy pie, then cut the whipped cream recipe in half. Add a dollop of cream to each slice when serving.
– Store leftovers in the refrigerator loosely wrapped in plastic for 2 to 3 days.
– More traditional chiffon pies are lightened with whipped egg whites. In these recipes, the egg whites remain uncooked. I opted for whipped cream instead since I was feeding young children and didn’t want to risk it.