It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without pumpkin pie. Since I’m trying to eat more plants, I decided that I’d give vegan pumpkin pies a go (traditional pumpkin pie is made with sweetened condensed milk = dairy). My first attempt at mini pumpkin pies was an absolute fail…which I blame on the fact that I had shot for the stars and tried to make my own crust which was gross. Note to self: Trina, you don’t know how to make pie crust, let alone a vegan version – start simple, lil momma.
My second go with vegan pumpkin pie was a delicious, easy success and I want to share this simple recipe. The first win was using a store-bought whole wheat pie crust (thank you, Whole Foods!). The second win was using soaked raw cashews as a cream base and adding the 4 other ingredients: pumpkin, maple syrup, salt and pumpkin pie spice. Honestly, it’s really good. I was skeptical after my first experience, but this recipe won me over with its yummy taste and simple ingredients.
Easy Vegan Pumpkin Pie
Recipe source: Healthy. Happy. Life. http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/2011/10/four-ingredient-vegan-pumpkin-pie.html
- 1 standard vegan pie crust (I used whole foods)
- 1 1/4 cups raw soaked cashews
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 1 can organic pumpkin puree (16 ounces)
- 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp salt to taste (depends how much salt you soaked your cashews in)\
Note: Use high quality maple syrup. Both grade A and B work, but some people prefer grade B.
- Soak about one cup of raw cashews in about 2 1/2 cups of water in a large bowl. Add about 1/2 – 1 tsp of salt to the bowl – mix to dissolve. The salt allows the water to absorb more efficiently into the cashews and also adds some salt for your recipe.
- Soak this cashew bowl overnight in the fridge. You want well-soaked cashews so that your pie mix blends up perfectly creamy. I soaked my cashews for about 18 hours. At least 8 is optimal.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. The day of your actual pie making allow at least 3 hours from the time you start to the time you wish to serve the pie. I like a cool time of at least 2 hours.
- Pre-bake your store-bought pie crust at 400 degrees for 8 minutes.
- Drain the water from your cashews. Add 1 1/4 cups of cashews to your food processor or high speed blender (such as a Vitamix). The cashews should be very soft to bite and a slight purplish dark hue. This is normal.
- Add pumpkin to blender. Next, add in the maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice. Blend on low -> high for about 3-5 minutes until the mixture is completely creamy. If your mixture is a bit thick for some reason – you can add in a few teaspoons of either water, maple syrup or even non-dairy milk. After blending, do a taste test and add a 1/2 teaspoon of salt if needed. I added in about 1/3 tsp extra salt. But taste before adding.
- Pour your mix into the pre-baked vegan pie shell.
- Bake pie at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Then reduce to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 30-40 minutes – or until the edges look fluffy and a darker caramel orange tone. Use a toothpick in center if unsure. The tooth-picked filling should come out slightly wet – but very thick and dark. It is important to remember that your pie will firm up significantly upon cooling and chilling in the fridge.
- Remove pie from oven. Cool on counter for at least 30 minutes. Then place in fridge until ready to serve. At least 2 hours cooling and/or chilling time is my preference. A warm pie will be tasty, but still a bit “wet” to slice.
- Serve chilled.
Note: If you want to try vegan whipped coconut cream, here is a good tutorial on how to make it: http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/2011/09/how-to-make-whipped-coconut-cream-from.html
Please feel free to share recipes for your favorite plant-based pumpkin treats!