ou didn’t think I would forget about those gluten free neighbors out there this Thanksgiving, did you? I am still testing out the gluten-free world of pie, but have discovered this full-flavored, perfectly flakey, gluten-free classic pumpkin pie that will rival a floured version any day.
I’m getting straight to the recipe for this gluten-free classic pumpkin pie since there are definitely some differences in preparation when compared to your traditional pie. I learned a ton from this recipe that I adapted from the How Can It Be Gluten Free Cookbook by the experts at America’s Test Kitchen.
This recipe calls for sour cream to make the dough a bit more workable, and rice wine vinegar to tenderize. The xanthan gum helps bind the proteins in the flour and creates more structure to better hold its shape. This prevents the dough from being too crumbly.
This dough is also much softer than your traditional pie dough. Once the dough is prepared, refrigerate for at least an hour. Remove from the refrigerator and wait 20-30 minutes until the dough is workable and can be rolled out without cracking too much. Roll out the dough between sheets of plastic wrap, as adding more flour at this point will leave the dough gritty. Use the bottom sheet of plastic wrap to flip the dough into the pie dish before tucking the sides and gently molding/crimping (this will take some finessing) the edges.
The pumpkin filling is probably one of the best I have ever tasted. I normally choose apple pie over pumpkin, but I went back for thirds on this pie. This filling is exploding with warm spices that activate when you heat the puree on the stove. It is important to use a thicker filling with this crust because a more liquidy filling will leave the crust gummy and raw-tasting.
It is very important to add your filling to the crust while the crust is still warm so the filling can begin to set. This helps keep the bottom crust flakey in addition to baking it on the lower rack.
I have baked this pie a few times now and have noticed that the crust browns pretty quickly, so I highly recommend lightly wrapping some foil around the edges during the par-bake and final bake. Once the filling begins to puff and lightly crack at the edges, and the center giggles like jello, it’s ready! Let set while it cools and serve within 2 days.
Gluten-Free Classic Pumpkin Pie
For the Dough
- 3 tablespoons ice water
- 1 and 1/2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
- 3/4 cup plus 2/3 cup (6 and 1/2 ounces) gluten-free flour blend
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 xanthan gum
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces and frozen for 10-15 minutes
For the Pie
- 1 recipe Gluten-Free Single-Crust Pie Dough
- 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
- 1 cup (7 ounces) packed dark brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 4 large eggs
- Combine ice water, sour cream, and vinegar together in a small bowl. Process flour blend, sugar, salt, and xanthan gum in a food processor until combined, about 5 pulses. Scatter frozen butter over top and pulse until crumbs look uniform and distinct pieces of butter are no longer visible, around 20 pulses.
- Slowly pour in sour cream mixture until dough comes together in large pieces around the blade.
- Turn dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten into a 5-inch disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrapped refrigerate for at least one hour, or up to 2 days. Allow dough to thaw on counter for 20-30 minutes before rolling out between sheets of plastic wrap.
- Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees F. Roll dough into 12-inch circle between 2 large sheets of plastic wrap. Remove top plastic, gently invert dough over 9-inch pie plate, and ease dough into plate. Tuck overhanging dough under itself and gently crimp the edges with your fingers. This may take some finessing and feel more like you are molding it as the dough will be soft.
- Cover dough loosely in plastic and freeze until chilled and firm, about 15 minutes. Remove plastic, cover the edges lightly in foil to protect from over browning, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating pie plate halfway through baking, until the dough just starts to show color. Transfer pie plate to wire rack. (Crust must still be warm when filling is added.) Adjust oven rack to lower position and increase oven temperature to 425 degrees.
- While crust bakes, process pumpkin puree, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and cloves together in food processor until combined, about 1 minute. Transfer pumpkin mixture to medium saucepan and bring to simmer over medium-high heat. Cook pumpkin mixture, stirring constantly, until thick and shiny, about 5 minutes. Whisk in cream and milk, return to simmer briefly, then remove from heat.
- Whisk eggs in a large bowl and gently whisk in a small ladle full of pie filling to temper the eggs and prevent them from cooking in the bowl. Whisk in the remaining pie filling.
- Immediately pour warm filling into warm, partially baked pie crust. (If you have any extra filling, ladle it into pie after 3 minutes of baking, by which time filling will have settled.) Gently cover edges in foil. Bake until filling is puffed and lightly cracked around edges and center wiggles like jello when jiggled, about 25 minutes. Let pie cool on wire rack until filling has set, about 2 hours; serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
Pie is best the day that it is made, but can be may 1-2 days prior and stored at room temperature.