The Evolution Of Jovina’s Pumpkin Pie

Throughout much of the United States, it is traditional to serve pumpkin pie after Thanksgiving dinner. I began making pumpkin pie for my family on Thanksgiving not long after I married, but back then, I used the recipe on the back of the pumpkin can! It never really tasted great to me.

A few years later, I began experimenting.


Instead of canned pumpkin, I made my own pumpkin puree from pie (sugar) pumpkins, that are about six to eight inches in diameter, nothing like the jack o’lanterns pumpkins that are plentiful this time of year. This lightened the pie, but it still lacked that deeper, richer taste I was hoping to create. Eventually, with the addition of some varied spices, brown sugar and fresh tasting half & half, I achieved a great tasting pumpkin pie that my family really likes.

The last thing to tackle was the pie crust. It needed to be easy to make and be healthier than traditional pie dough. So substituting olive oil for shortening and not having to roll out the pastry solved those issues, as you will see in the directions below. I hope you will try Jovina’s Pumpkin pie and enjoy it as much as we do.

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone.

Jovina’s Pumpkin Pie

Jovina's Pumpkin Pie

Pie Crust

This recipe makes enough for a single deep dish crust.


  • 1 1/2 cups (6 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup (2 3/8 ounces) olive oil
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons (1 1/2 to 2 ounces) cold water


You will need a 9 inch deep dish pie pan that’s at least 1 1/2 inches deep.

Whisk together the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder. This can be done right in the pie pan, if you like.

Whisk together the oil and water in a measuring cup; then pour over the dry ingredients.

Stir with a fork until the dough is evenly moistened. Pat the dough across the bottom of the pie pan and up the sides. A flat-bottomed measuring cup can help you make the crust even.

Press the dough up the sides of the pan with your fingers and flute the top. Chill in the refrigerator while you make the filling.


Pumpkin Pie Filling


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • Pinch black pepper
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups fresh cooked sugar pumpkin, see recipe below
  • 1 cup half & half (half cream/half whole milk)


In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugars, flour, salt and spices.

In a large measuring cup, beat together the eggs, pumpkin and half & half. Whisk into the dry ingredients.

For best flavor, cover and refrigerate the filling overnight before baking.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

When the oven is hot, place the pie pan with the chilled crust on a baking sheet. Pour the filling into the unbaked pie shell and place the baking sheet in the oven on the center rack.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the filling is set 2 inches in from the edge. The center should still be wobbly. Remove the pie from the oven and cool on a rack; the center will finish cooking through as the pie sits.


Pumpkin Puree


  • 2 ½ pounds pie pumpkins


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Cut the pumpkins into 5×5-inch pieces. Remove and discard seeds and strings. Arrange pieces in a single layer, skin sides up, in a foil-lined baking pan.

Cover with foil. Bake about 1 hour or until tender. When cool enough to handle, scoop pulp from rind. Place pulp in food processor or blender.

Cover and process or blend until smooth. Measure 2 cups puree to use in the pie. Transfer remaining puree to an airtight container.

Store for up to 3 days in the refrigerator or freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw frozen puree in the refrigerator.




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