Pumpkin Butter

Disclaimer: Please note, this is a home canning recipe and needs to come with the appropriate disclaimer. I can only recommend this recipe if you have home canning equipment that allows you to process canning jars at at least 11 pounds of pressure per square inch and are comfortable using that equipment. Meave and I have made this recipe a couple of times now with delightful results, but in the rare case that the canning process isn’t done properly, there is a risk of death from botulism. Be advised.

This is a pumpkin butter recipe that we found here on the website of Mother Earth News. The good news and the bad news is that it makes a lot of pumpkin butter — something on the order of 12 – 15 quarts. We like to run this recipe once at the end the harvest season, when it’s easy to get ahold of a lot of cheap pumpkin. 🙂 We can it into pint jars and then use the pints of pumpkin butter for gifts or as the basis of other baking projects. It’s a nice thing to have around the house.

Here goes:


  • 40 lbs of raw pumpkin or other winter squash
  • about 3 lbs of honey (You may add more honey to taste)
  • 6 tablespoons of cinnamon
  • 4 teaspoons of ground nutmeg
  • 4 teaspoons of ground cloves
  • Preparation

    Make sure your pumpkins are free of dirt, then cut them in half and scoop out the seeds and the stringy insides. Place your pumpkins, cut side down, in a baking dish with about half an inch of water in the bottom. Bake them at 325 degrees Fahrenheit until the flesh of the pumpkins is “spoonably soft.”

    Remove your baked pumpkins from the oven and let them cool until you can handle them. Spoon all the pumpkin flesh into a stock pot, composting the skins. Put the pot on medium-low heat and get it simmering. You’ll find that the mixture bubbles and spits in a way that can toss scalding hot pumpkin on your hands … so use a long-handled spoon for stirring.

    Add the honey and spices, and taste test to see whether it pleases your palate. Now let the sauce simmer — stirring it every so often to prevent sticking. When it’s thick enough to support an upright wooden spoon, you’re ready to can!

    Sterilize your canning jars and lids by boiling them for 10 minutes. Then pack the hot pumpkin mixture into the jars to within one inch of the top.

    Load your canner, and follow the instructions that came with your canner to process the jars at 11 pounds of pressure per square inch for at least 10 minutes.

    There you have it!

    Not sure what to do with a canner full of pumpkin butter? Look at the list of vegetables/ingredients on the right side of this page, and click on “Pumpkin Butter”. That will give you a list of exciting new things you can create with your pumpkin butter.

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