Pumpkin butter is a creamy, delicious treat with a sweetly spiced flavor and tantalizing aroma.
Serve it on toast, a warm muffin, or over your pancakes. Yum!
If you’re anything like me, you countdown to PSL season!
I love all things pumpkin spice, which is why I always have a healthy supply of pumpkin butter in my pantry.
It’s rich, full of warm spices, and shockingly easy to make at home. All you need is seven pantry staple ingredients, a saucepan, and a spatula.
Ready in under an hour, this pumpkin butter recipe is a must-make for fall lovers.
Easy Pumpkin Butter Recipe
Before we go any further, let’s clear one thing up: pumpkin butter doesn’t contain any butter.
Instead, it combines pumpkin puree, sugar, spices, and apple juice. So, in short, it’s a fruit spread.
Like apple butter, it gets its name from how its used – i.e., spread on top of toast, muffins, biscuits, and more.
As long as you like sweet toppings and pumpkin, you’ll love it.
It packs a load of fall flavor into a tiny, half-pint jar. And you won’t find many people who don’t appreciate it.
Here are the seven things you’ll need to make yummy pumpkin butter at home:
- Pumpkin puree – You’ll need one can of pumpkin puree for this recipe. And be sure it’s puree, not pumpkin pie filling, which is already sweet and spiced.
- White sugar – Stick to white sugar for this recipe (not brown) because it provides the best taste and texture.
- Apple juice – Apple juice lends even more fall flavor and helps to reduce the pumpkin puree, making it spreadable.
- Ginger, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, and Cloves – Use ground spices here, so they blend well into the pumpkin. And feel free to play with the amounts. If you like more cinnamon, go ahead and add extra!
- Some recipes use pumpkin pie spice, which is okay in a pinch. But I think this blend works best.
How to Make Pumpkin Butter
Making pumpkin butter is incredibly simple, and you’ll find the details in the recipe box below.
But for now, here’s the highlights:
1. Inspect and sterilize the jars.
You need five half-pint jars without scratches, cracks, rust, or damage.
When you’re sure the jars are in good condition, submerge them in simmering water.
Leave them to bubble until the pumpkin butter is ready.
2. Combine the ingredients and heat.
Add all the ingredients to a saucepan and mix well with a spatula.
Then, turn the heat to medium and keep stirring just until it starts to boil.
Reduce the heat to a simmer, and leave it to bubble for about 30 minutes, stirring often to help it thicken.
Turn off the heat and set aside.
3. Transfer the pumpkin butter to the jars.
Carefully remove the jars from the hot water with kitchen tongs and an oven mitt.
Remove any excess liquid from the inside (turn them over and pour it out), and place them on a clean cloth.
Next, pour the hot butter into the jars, filling all but 1/4 of an inch at the top.
Then, run a spatula or knife around the inside edges to remove air bubbles and wipe the rim with a clean cloth.
4. Seal the jars, and allow them to cool.
Put the flat lids and rings onto the jar, then allow them to cool to room temperature before moving them to the fridge.
After they’ve had time to chill, you can use the butter whenever you like.
How to Store Pumpkin Butter
Storing pumpkin butter couldn’t be more straightforward since it’s already in individual, sealed jars.
Let the pumpkin butter cool completely, then place the sealed jars in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
You can also freeze it for more extended storage. Just be sure to use freezer-safe containers and place them upright in the freezer for 6 to 8 months.
When you’re ready to eat it, let it thaw in the fridge overnight.
Tips and Tricks
This recipe is so simple, it’s almost impossible to mess up. But here are a few tips and tricks to make it even easier:
- Freshly ground spices are best. The overall flavor will be better if you grind the spices yourself because whole nutmeg and cinnamon sticks are more potent.
- Be sure to stir often. If you don’t, the pumpkin butter may stick to the bottom of the pan and scorch.
- Don’t let the mixture boil! I know I said to bring the mixture to a boil, but you want to reduce the heat as soon as it starts to boil. That means one or two bubbles only.
- Add a dash of salt to enhance the overall flavor. The recipe doesn’t call for salt, but I often toss in a little anyway. It acts as a flavor enhancer but doesn’t make the butter salty.
- This is a messy recipe, so be careful and keep kids away. Once it starts to simmer, the mixture will spit and pop. So I suggest using a splatter shield at an angle to let the steam out.
- A bit of maple syrup never hurts. Besides salt, maple syrup is another non-recipe ingredient you can add. It makes the pumpkin butter even sweeter and adds another depth of flavor.
- Vanilla is nice, too. Some recipes also add vanilla. It’s another flavor add-in that’s entirely up to you.
- No apple juice, no problem! Apple juice is best for enhancing the wonderful fall flavors. But you can use water if you don’t have juice.
- Make this in a slow cooker if you prefer. Simply mix the ingredients and cook them on low for about 4 hours. Be sure to stir periodically.
Ways to Use Pumpkin Butter
Most people enjoy pumpkin butter for breakfast because it’s delicious on warm, straight-from-the-oven biscuits and toast.
It’s also divine on pancakes and waffles.
However, it’s sweet enough to eat for dessert as well. So use it as a cinnamon roll filling or glaze for freshly made donuts.
You can also mix it into cookie dough, oatmeal, yogurt, pumpkin lattes, and smoothies.
Here are my favorite ways to use pumpkin butter:
- Baked brie topping
- Muffin topping or mixed into muffin batter
- Over French toast
- Cake “icing”
- Cracker spread
- Fruit or pretzel dip
- On crepes
- In milkshakes
Use it however you like! It’s your pumpkin butter, after all!
More Pumpkin Recipes You’ll Love
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