Pumpkin pie is not a ~thing~ here in Australia. I found this to be a rather sad and shocking discovery. More shocking however, was how difficult it was to actually find the ingredients to make a pumpkin pie from scratch. I first attempted it for thanksgiving last October thinking it would be a pretty straightforward task, but my clueless Canadian self had no idea just how challenging it would be.
So what makes pumpkin pie so difficult to make in Australia, you might ask?
First of all, canned pumpkin puree does not exist here. I googled extensively and looked all around Melbourne trying to hunt some down, but alas, no luck. So I figured I’d just buy a pumpkin to roast and puree myself. Turns out, what Australians call pumpkins are what I consider to be squash. So you can imagine my surprise when I went to buy a pumpkin – the big, bright orange, halloween type I’ve grown up with – and instead found a pile of squash labelled “pumpkins”. So I went with a kent “pumpkin” and hoped for the best (spoiler alert: it worked perfectly). Next I went to pick up some pumpkin pie spice. Nope, that’s not a thing here either. I also discovered that cornstarch is called cornflour here, which explains why I spent so long examining every single product in the baking aisle looking for what I considered to be a very basic ingredient.
Long story short: I went through all of this confusion so you don’t have to.
Whether you’re an Australian looking to try pumpkin pie for the first time, or an expat looking to recreate a taste of home, you’ve come to the right place! I made this for my Australian friends, who were familiar with pumpkin pie from holiday episodes of their favourite TV shows but had never actually tried it. The result? Eleven out of eleven Australians (plus a Kiwi and a Brit) who taste-tasted this vegan pumpkin pie LOVED IT! So give this Canadian classic a try and let me know what you think! x
Vegan Pumpkin Pie ( + How to Make it in Australia )
Whether you're an Australian looking to try pumpkin pie for the first time, or an expat looking to recreate a taste of home, this is the recipe for you! This plant-based pumpkin pie is the perfect autumnal dessert. It's creamy, savoury, sweet, comforting, and simple to make using ingredients easily found down under!
- 1 store-bought vegan pie crust*
- 1/2 ripe kent pumpkin (or one 14oz. can pumpkin puree if available in your area)
- 3/4 cup full-fat canned coconut milk (make sure to shake well before measuring)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup*
- 1/4 cup cornflour/cornstarch
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1 small pinch ground cloves
Kent Pumpkin Puree (skip this step is using canned pumpkin puree)
Preheat oven to 200C (400F). Use a spoon to remove all of the seeds and stringy bits from the center of the kent pumpkin. Place pumpkin cut side down on a baking sheet lined with parchement paper. Bake for 45 minutes or until soft through when poked with a fork. Let cool. Once cooled, scoop the pumpkin flesh into a blender or food processor, leaving skins behind. Blend for 2 minutes or until you have a completely smooth puree. Measure out 1 and 3/4 cups pumpkin puree and set aside.
Lower oven heat to 180C(350F). Prepare pie crust in baking dish and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, blender, or processor, combine 1 and 3/4 cups homemade kent pumpkin puree (or canned pumpkin puree), coconut milk, brown sugar, maple syrup, cornflour, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, and cloves.
Pour mixture into pie crust, using the back of a spoon or a spatula to level it out. I like to firmly tap it against the kitchen counter once or twice while keeping the pie upright to get rid of any air bubbles. Place pie in oven and bake for 60 minutes. The filling will still look a little soft and wobbly at this point, don't worry. Let cool.
Place pie in fridge for a few hours minimum, or overnight. This will allow the pie to firm up and get that perfect creamy pumpkin pie consistency. Serve plain, or with vegan ice cream or whip cream. Enjoy!
Did you enjoy this recipe? Comment, share it with your friends, and don’t forget to snap a picture for Instagram and tag #plantifuleating so I can see your creations!
A similar recipe you’ll love are these healthy pumpkin carrot muffins!
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