Monday, November 12, 2012

The Pumpkin Pie of My (Vegan) Dreams

Pumpkin pie is the best pie, and I will accept no arguments to the contrary. None. Not one. You're wrong: Apple is not the superior pie. No, not even when there's cheddar in it. Take that pecan thing away from me, too: What the hell is that? You're trying to pass off pecan pie as being better than pumpkin?? I mean, have you ever even had pecan pie? What is that stuff?!

See that missing slice? Yeah, I ate that. Standing up, in the kitchen, hunched over the sink.

Now, don't misunderstand: I love other pies. I love tart-cherry pie, I love a blueberry pie, I even like Boston creme pie pretty well. But there's pie, and then there's THE PIE™. And at Thanksgiving—okay, actually any time between October 1 and January 1—pumpkin pie is THE PIE™. It is the king of the table.

This year, I wanted to try a new pumpkin pie. A new vegan pumpkin pie. Something that would be delicious and gooey and not too heavy. Something that might even be, you know, healthy. At least a little bit.

I stumbled upon the perfect pie. THE PERFECT VEGAN PUMPKIN PIE. And you know what else? You know what's kind of amazing about it? It doesn't have any crust. Because it doesn't need any crust. Because it's just unadulterated pumpkin goodness. It does have tofu in it, but you're just going to have to get past your tofu thing. Because trust me: It's really good. I'm kind of obsessed with it.

Gently adapted from The Happy Herbivore
1 cup soft or silken tofu
2 tbs corn starch
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1.5 cup non-dairy milk
16oz canned pumpkin (or sweet potato)
1/2 cup flour you prefer (I used matzoh meal)
2 tsp baking powder
sweetener you prefer (I used 1 tsp agave + 1 tsp molasses)
3 combined tsp of spices you like for pie
Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly grease a 9" pie pan.

In a food processor, blend tofu, corn starch, vanilla, salt, and milk until completely smooth. (If the mixture sticks to the sides, scrape it down into the bowl of the processor with a rubber spatula.) Add the remaining ingredients and blend until creamy and fully mixed. (It will look a lot like traditional pumpkin-pie filling.)

Pour filling into the pie dish and bake for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature (about an hour), then cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and chill in the refrigerator for about 4 hours.

Serve as you normally would (may I suggest a scoop of vegan vanilla iced cream?) or eat it right out of your hand while standing up in the kitchen, hunched over the sink, like I do.

You agree with me, right? That pumpkin is the best pie? Of course you do. You're a thinking person, you know what's what. Go Team Pumpkin!


  1. I love to mix pumpkin pie filling with soy ice cream, fill a graham cracker crust with it, then freeze for 2 hrs.

    DELICIOUS and with coffee?

    I feel like I won the lottery.


  2. Is pumpkin pie one of those all american classics? Perhaps that's a dumb question but I'm Swedish so I guess I can get away with it:)

    I would like try this but I have no idea what kind of pumpkin I should use... Can I use fresh pumpkin?

    This recipe sounds really healthy and light!

    1. Hi there! It's not a dumb question at all: I think pumpkin pie is a pretty classic Thanksgiving dish. I don't know the exact origins of it, but I think that pumpkins themselves are native to North America.

      Sure, you can use fresh pumpkin, but I would recommend roasting or baking it first, and scooping out the cooked flesh in place of using the canned type. It is a very light flavor and a light dish—a little bit savory, a little bit sweet, and a little bit spicy!


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