Thursday, September 5, 2013

Cream Cheese Pumpkin Pie

For at least 30 years of my life, I did not eat pumpkin pie.  I didn't understand what people liked about it.  On Thanksgiving, my family made several desserts, so I would just eat apple pie, and bypass the pumpkin.  Then my aunt came home from Williams-Sonoma with a recipe for Creamy Pumpkin Pie.  She made it, I tried it, and it was love at first bite.

Who knew that adding cream cheese to pumpkin pie could make it so delicious!  I love that it is light and creamy, not heavy like a cheesecake.

I always use organic pumpkin puree in this recipe, and my favorite fall spices from Penzeys, which make it so flavorful.

If you have read any of my posts about holiday meals, you know I like to keep things simple, so I can enjoy our holiday feasts.  For this recipe, I like to use Whole Foods GlutenFree Bakehouse Pie Crust from the freezer section, but the Winter Park store is frequently out of stock, so I sometimes use Williams-Sonoma Gluten-Free Piecrust Mix, which I use to make mini chocolate chess pies, and peach, raspberry, and apple crostata.  

When I make a pie crust, the amount of pie filling is perfect for making one large pie in my deep dish 9" pie plate.  When I use Whole Foods gluten free pie shells, I make two pies. 

When I first used Williams-Sonoma's Gluten-Free Piecrust Mix, my crust got a little darker than I would have liked, even with the use of an aluminum foil collar.  Even though the edges of the crust were a little dark, the pie was delicious, and my father-in-law, who is not a pumpkin pie fan, loved it.  

My pie always looks much prettier when I use Whole Foods Gluten Free Bakehouse Pie Crusts, because I start with frozen pie crusts, so they don't get too brown.

You can use this recipe to make one large pie, two smaller pies, or creamy pumpkin pie bars.

Cream Cheese Pumpkin Pie


2 unbaked store bought gluten free pie shells (frozen) or 1 homemade pie crust (chilled)
1 15-ounce can of organic pumpkin
3/4 C (164g) light brown sugar - packed
2/3 C (5.4 oz) cream cheese - room temperature
3 large eggs
1 1/2 C half and half
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Pinch of kosher salt
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground ginger


Preheat oven to 425 degrees, and place a rack in the lower third of your oven. 

In the bowl of a mixer, whisk the pumpkin, brown sugar, and cream cheese on medium speed until smooth.  Reduce to low speed, and add the eggs, one at a time.  Turn the mixer off, and add the half and half, vanilla extract, salt, and spices.  Whisk by hand to combine. Pour the filling into your pie shells.    

Carefully place your pies in the lower third of the oven and bake them for 15 minutes on 425.  Lower the oven to 350 degrees, and continue to bake the pies for about 35 minutes more, until they are evenly, but not firmly set.  

Serve chilled, or at room temperature.  Store leftovers in the refrigerator. 

Serves 8 to 12 

Recipe Notes

If using a homemade pie crust, you can make this pie in one deep dish 9 or 10" pie plate.  After putting the crust it in your pie plate, chill it while you make the filling.  After the oven has been lowered to 350 degrees, cook your pie for 35 minutes more, for a total baking time of 50 minutes.  Check it when it has about 25 minutes left to bake.  If the edges of the crust are browning too quickly, cover the exposed crust with an aluminum foil collar.  

If you are using prepared pie crusts, leave them in the freezer until the pie filling is made, and you are ready to put the pies in the oven.  

We prefer to eat our pie chilled.  I usually take it out of the refrigerator about 15 minutes before I want to serve it.  

You could simplify the recipe by using 1 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.  

This recipe is adapted from a Williams-Sonoma recipe for Creamy Pumpkin Pie. 

Creamy Pumpkin Pie Bars

After seeing a recipe for Pumpkin Pie Squares on Lynn's Kitchen Adventures blog, I decided to try her cooking technique with my cream cheese pumpkin pie filling.  

I pressed a single recipe of prepared Williams-Sonoma Gluten Free Piecrust Mix into my 9x13 pan, before pouring in my cream cheese pumpkin pie filling.  

I baked my creamy pumpkin pie bars in the middle of my oven for 15 minutes on 400 degrees, then lowered the oven to 350 degrees for another 35 minutes, for a total cooking time of 50 minutes.  I allowed them to cool before putting the pan in the refrigerator.  I like to take them out of the fridge right as we're about to eat dinner, so they can warm up just a tiny bit before we eat them.  I loved that I didn't have to worry about overcooked pie crust, and they tasted great!  


  1. Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays Party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :) I can't wait to see what you share next time!

  2. I do like pumpkin pie, but admittedly like my crustless pumpkin pies because they're "less wet" as one reader said. And I love Pumpkin Pecan Pie. So maybe there are a lot of us who are not smitten with the classic version. I'm sure I'd love your creamy cream cheese version, Alexis. Love that you have a bars option, too. Featured this on Gluten-Free Wednesday this week. Thanks so much for linking up!