Our grandmothers are probably rolling in their graves at the thought of a pumpkin pie NOT including eggs or milk. After all, pumpkin pie filling is essentially custard – a thickened concoction of milk, sweetener, eggs and occasionally a thickening agent. The results of a 2006 Harris Poll published in the New York Times states that only about 2.3 percent of the US population is vegetarian, and only half of those are practicing vegans. A vegan diet not only excludes meat, but does not include any animal products, such as milk, eggs, honey or products including these items. Baking a vegan pumpkin pie is not impossible, using corn starch as a thickening agent in the filling. If you are not comfortable making a pie crust, purchase a pre-made vegetarian option.
Recommended Reading: Get started with baking by reading our Ultimate Guide to the Best Baking Equipment for Beginners!
Vegan Pumpkin Pie
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 2-3 tablespoons ice water
Measure the flour into cup by spoonfuls, leveling off with a spatula. This allows the flour to not compact. In medium bowl, stir together the flour and salt, making a well in the center. Using two table knives or a pastry blender, “cut” the shortening into the flour until the mixture resembles small peas. (I have also successfully used a food processor to do this, pulsing on and off a few times.) Add the ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, gently tossing in the bowl until the mixture begins to form a ball. Gather the crust mixture together into a disc shape, placing on a well-floured surface. Working quickly from the center of the dough, roll the dough evenly to a 12-inch circle. Starting from one side, roll crust around the rolling pin, and then place the crust gently into a 9-inch pie pan. Set aside.
- 2 cups prepared pumpkin (canned or well-drained home processed)
- 1 cup vanilla flavored soy milk
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup corn starch
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon EACH salt, ground ginger and ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon EACH ground allspice and ground cloves
Using a blender or an electric mixer, combine all filling ingredients until smooth. Pour into prepared pie crust. Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 450 degree oven, and then reduce heat to 350 degrees. Continue baking 40-50 minutes until a knife blade inserted two inches from crust comes out clean. If edges and crust begin to brown too quickly, cover loosely with foil. Cool on rack 1-2 hours, then refrigerate until serving.
While the vegan pumpkin pie will not look exactly the same as traditional pumpkin pie, most non-vegans should find it appetizing as well.
Don’t forget the non-dairy whipped topping!
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