Mini Pumpkin Pies

Pumpkin pie has never been something I particularly loved.  I’ve always been more of an apple pie sort of gal, but when my sister was visiting we decided to do pumpkin pie for fall’s sake.

I’ve had these Le Creuset mini cocottes (baby Dutch ovens) for a while now and I’m absolutely in love with them.  Aren’t they adorable?  Basically, if something can be made “mini”, I’ll do it just so I have an excuse to use these cute little things.

Onto the pie!  As I said, I’m not a pumpkin pie person… or at least I wasn’t – until I tried this recipe.  WOW, it’s good.  The filling is creamy and sweet with the perfect amount of spice.  The flavor combo is pretty much a formal salute to the noble pumpkin.  I have a new-found respect for that beautiful orange fruit.  With a dollop of homemade vanilla bean whipped cream, this dessert will have you completely smitten.

If you don’t have cocottes, you can use ramekins.  If you don’t have ramekins, you can use a regular 9-inch pie dish (as the recipe originally intended).

What are your favorite “mini” or individual serving recipes?  Have you ever baked with mini cocottes?

*I’ve entered the Mini Pumpkin Pies in a linky over at TidyMom.net!!*  “Come join Love the Pie with TidyMom  sponsored by Whirlpool and enter to win a new Whirlpool Range”

Hop on over to check out all the entries!  You’ll be sure to find at LEAST one new & delicious recipe to try out this holiday season!

Mini Pumpkin Pies
Slightly adapted from “Classic Pumpkin Pie” in the Williams-Sonoma “Essentials of Baking” book.  Crust & Whipped Cream recipes are also adapted from this book.
Yields 6 mini pies

– Crust –

8 tbsp. cold unsalted butter (cut into smaller pieces)
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. ice water

In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt.  Pulse 2 or 3 times to mix.

Add the butter pieces and pulse 8-10 times until the mixture forms large, coarse crumbs.

Add the ice water a little at a time and pulse 10-12 times until the dough begins to form.

Transfer the dough to a work surface and shape it into a 6-inch disk.  Wrap it in plastic and chill for at least 1 hour.

– Filling –

1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
3 large eggs
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar (dark or light)
1 cup evaporated milk
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

If you’re using 6 mini cocottes or ramekins, cut your dough into 6 equal pieces and roll them out into circles.  Line your cocottes with the dough circles and trim & press with a fork to finish the edges.

If you’re using a regular 9-inch pie dish, roll out the dough into 1 large circle and line your dish, trimming to finish the edges.  For 1 large pie, you’ll need to partially pre-bake the crust.  To pre-bake, raise your oven temperature to 400 degrees F.  Line your pie crust with heavy duty tin foil and fill it with uncooked rice or beans to weigh it down and prevent bubbles from forming during the bake.  Place it in the oven, and bake for about 20 minutes until the edges are lightly browned.  Set the pie dish on a wire rack to cool before adding your filling.  Lower the oven temperature back to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, eggs, brown sugar and evaporated milk.  Whisk until smooth.

Slowly whisk in the melted butter, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt until the mixture is smooth and well blended.  Pour the filling into your crust(s).

Bake until the filling is set, 50-55 minutes (same bake time for individual pies & 1 large pie).  The center should jiggle slightly when the pan is given a gentle shake.

Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

– Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream –

1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tbsp. confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cream, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla.

Beat with the whisk attachment on medium-high speed until medium peaks form.  Medium peaks are just able to hold their shape, but are still soft.

Drop a dollop of cream on each individual pie, or on each slice as you’re serving.

25 responses

  1. Those mini cocottes are killing me! I think I may have to get a set. The question is how to convince my mister that I’ve had them all along, and that I definitely didn’t buy any more “unnecessary” kitchen supplies?

  2. This looks awesome! If you don’t mind me asking, what settings did you use on your camera in this picture… Please respond! Thanks! ~ nerdwithtaste.wordpress.com

    • Thank you! 😀 I don’t mind at all! My camera is the Canon EOS 5D Mark II, and I was using the 100mm macro lens. My settings for this shot were: ISO – 1000, f/2.8, shutter speed: 1/125. It was pretty dim outside when I shot the pics so I had to compensate with a higher ISO than I normally prefer. 🙂

  3. Can you make these in a cupcake tray? I cant imagine it would make too much of a difference, but I’ve gotta work with what I have!

    • I’m sure they would bake just fine but transferring them out of the tray may be an issue unless you have some silicone cupcake molds or something sturdy like that! 🙂 I’d also keep an eye on them as they would probably over-bake at the original bake time.

  4. Pingback: whats cooking ... thanksgiving

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