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Roasted Pecan Pumpkin Butter

Posted on Oct 10, 2012


Glitzy, elegant, scrumptious smelling – that pretty much sums up Williams Sonoma doesn’t it?  And I get reeled in every time – each trip to the mall ends with a stroll through the store, ooohing and aaahing and drooling over highly priced gourmet chocolate, the latest, greatest cooking gadgets and Muirhead pecan pumpkin butter.  

And sometimes I even resist buying something – imagine that!  But not today – I folded like a deck of cards when I spotted that jar of deliciously creamy, spicy confection, and once again shelled out $12.  Trust me, this stuff is worth it – but at that price, it’s a bit high to justify using it for a major baking spree, or say, eating by the spoonful (highly recommended).

So…I’m on a mission to create a copycat version that’s every bit as good.  Some people think Helen Witty’s recipe for spiced pecan pumpkin butter was the inspiration for Muirhead’s version, and here’s my spin on it…


You’re gonna’ need some cute little sugar pie pumpkins for this butter, just like the ones above (not the big ones you use for jack-o-lanterns). Fresh pumpkin makes a whopping difference in flavor here, and I know you’re tempted, but don’t do it – don’t substitute the canned stuff!  To help you out, I’m gonna’ show you how easy it is to roast fresh pumpkin – you’ll never go back to canned, and you’ll have extra to freeze for bread, pie, cheesecake…

You can make this butter up to 3 weeks ahead and store it in the fridge, or freeze it to keep longer. So you can get a leg up on all of your Thanksgiving baking way before the big day.  It’s fabulous in pies, breads, cookies, whoopie pies, muffins, you name it.   And, since you’re not paying an arm and a leg for it, you can afford to spread a little love.  Tie autumn ribbon around jars of it and give as hostess gifts – now that’s something they will be very thankful for!

Happy Fall!


Roasted Pecan Pumpkin Butter
  • 2 cups roasted fresh sugar pie pumpkin, pureed
  • 1/2 cup pecans, roasted and finely ground
  • 1/2 tsp. finely grated orange zest
  • 1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped crystallized ginger
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup Lyle's golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground Saigon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
    Roast pumpkin:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Wash 2 sugar pie pumpkins, cut in half, then remove pulp and seeds.
  3. Place pumpkins, cut side down in baking pan and add water to depth of 1/4?.
  4. Roast in oven for 30-35 minutes if your pumpkins are on the smaller side. It may take longer for larger ones. Bake until a fork pierces the skin easily and the pumpkin feels tender.
  5. Remove pumpkin from the oven, and when cool enough to handle, scoop pumpkin out of skin. Discard skin, and puree pumpkin in a food processor until smooth.
  6. This will yield a little more pumpkin than you need for the butter. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to a month.
  7. Roast Pecans:
  8. Place pecans on a baking sheet and roast until fragrant at 350 degrees F- 5-7 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool slightly.
  10. Add pecans to food processor and pulse until finely ground and pecans begin to stick together.
  11. To make Pumpkin Butter:
  12. To a medium saucepan, add 2 cups pumpkin, orange zest, lemon zest, orange juice, lemon juice, sugar, golden syrup, salt and all spices.
  13. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly.
  14. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently for about 15 minutes, until pumpkin butter is thickened.
  15. Taste and add more spices or sugar if desired. Remember the flavors will become stronger as the butter cools.
  16. Spoon pumpkin butter into clean airtight containers (mason jars are perfect) and refrigerate up to 3 weeks.


Try swapping this butter for pumpkin in your favorite recipes for pumpkin pie, bread, bars, and cheesecake. It's fantastic!

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