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Caramel Pumpkin Pie

In 2011, Washingtonian magazine blind-taste-tested more than twenty pies in the Washington, DC, area -and our Caramel Pumpkin took home the top prize! Instead of simply adding white sugar to the mis, we make a golden caramel sauce to sweeten the pie. A word of warning: the caramel goes from brown to burnt very quickly, so stay focused while it's cooking. Every thanksgiving, we inevitably have to dump burnt batches of it because we become distracted. As for the pumpkin portion of the pie, we used to roast them and make a puree. Even after all that work, though, it was never as good as pure pumpkin puree from a can. So that's what we use, and you should, too.
Recipe from Red Truck Bakery Cookbook

Caramel Pumpkin Pie

Recipe created for

10-inch Emile Henry Pie Dish

Main ingredient



Pumpkin Filling

  • 1/2 recipe Red Truck Bakery Pie Crust, or 1 store-bought crust
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream, at room temperature
  • 1 ( 15-ounce) can pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs

Quick Tip

The caramel goes from brown to burnt very quickly, so stay focused while it's cooking.

Recipe Preparation

  1. Roll out the pie dough into a 13-inch round, fit it into a 10-inch pie pan, trim, and crimp the edges. Chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  2. In a large saucepan, whisk together the sugar and 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water. Bring to a boil over high heat, but don't stir; gently swirl the pan on the burner and occasionally brush down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush. Cook until deep golden brown in color, 10 minutes of longer, taking care not to burn it. Reduce the heat to low, add the cream (be careful, as it may splatter), and gently whisk it into the caramel until completely incorporated. Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool a bit.
  3. Preheat the oven to 325°F with a rack in the center. Place a raised wire rack inside a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Whisk on medium speed until combined, about 1 minute. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.
  5. Pour the cooled caramel through a fine-mesh strainer into the mixer bowl to remove any sugar crystals. Beat on medium-high speed until everything is smoothly combined, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed, 2 to 3 minutes. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the chilled pie shell, making sure not to fill it past the bottom of the crimped edges.
  6. Carefully place the pie on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes and then increase the over temperature to 350°F. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes more, gently turning the baking sheet after 25 minutes, until the filling is puffed and firm to about 2 inches from the rim. Don't worry if the center is jiggly; it'll finish baking while cooling. Let cool completely on a raised wire rack.
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