To make homemade pumpkin puree for baking, cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds. Roast the pumpkin halves for 45 to 60 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow the pumpkin to cool, scoop out the flesh and puree the pumpkin in a food processor.
To make a pumpkin pie using homemade pumpkin puree, combine 1/2 cup brown or granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice with 2 cups of pumpkin puree. Beat 3 large eggs, and add them to the mixture along with 1 cup of cream. Stir the pie filling until it's smooth and all of the ingredients are combined. Pour the pie filling into a pie shell that was pre-baked for 15 to 20 minutes at 425 F. Bake the pie for 20 minutes at 400 F, followed by another 45 to 60 minutes at 350 F.
Most recipes for homemade pumpkin puree call for roasting a sugar or pie pumpkin. These small pumpkins typically weigh 2 to 3 pounds, making them easier to handle than larger varieties. According to The New York Times, sugar pumpkin usually doesn't offer the sweetness or tenderness necessary for making a delicious pie. Instead, try using a different squash to make the pie. Some examples include butternut, acorn or kabocha squash. Each provides rich flavor and requires the same cooking method as a pumpkin to make the puree.