Pumpkin Butter

Quadruple this recipe for storage in jars

  • 2 cups cooked pumpkin (15 oz. can)
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar or splenda
  • 1 cup brown sugar or splenda blend
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. cloves

Combine all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on high for 3 hours, stirring every 10 minutes to keep from sticking to sides and burning. Put in jars and put in a water bath for 40 minutes. If you like pumpkin pie, you will love it. It is great on hot, fresh biscuits. We like it almost better than apple butter.

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Mike in Madison - September 28, 2010

Do not can this recipe! Pumpkin butter is a dense, low-acid product that cannot be safely processed either in a water bath or pressure canner. Pumpkin butter is only suitable for freezing (if it lasts long enough for you to get is past the toast and into the containers, that is).

No guidelines exist to safely can pumkin butter (I know, I looked extensively and checked with our extension agent, who checked with the Univerity’s canning expert — the one who reviews commerical recipies for factories).

Denise - September 29, 2010

I have a recipe very similar to this that is safe to can. 2 c. pumpkin, 2 c. applesauce, 2 c. brown sugar, 1 T. pumpkin pie spice (or you could use seasonings above, as that is basically pumpkin pie spice). It is from a canning book, so I know it is “cannable”. It tastes like pumpkin pie — can’t really taste the apple.

stacy - September 30, 2010

Denise I was wondering if you could post your recipe on the part about how to can it.

Susan - October 24, 2010

I can my pumpkin butter all the time. The sugar makes it acidic. I’m looking forward to trying this recipe. Thanks for posting it.

    Amanda - October 9, 2011

    At what point does sugar become acidic? Science tells us it does not become acid. This recipe is not safe to can. First, there is no acid. Low acid foods must be pressure canned. Second, and most important, the USDA and UGA say “Home canning is not recommended for pumpkin butter or any mashed or pureed pumpkin or winter squash.”


    The fact that it is made from commercially canned pumpkin does not make it safe. Once the pumpkin is opened it is becoming contaminated with bacteria and other contaminants. To prevent this everything would have to be sterile that comes in contact with it. You can not sterilze equipment and jars in the ordinary home kitchen. Even by boiling the jars.

    You could make it and store it in the refrigerator. But, it is russian roulette to can it.

Nancy Furman - October 30, 2010

If you add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to add acid to the recipe it can be canned.

Sugar does not add acid, that is why you need to use lemon juice. I have been making pumpkin butter for years and have always canned it. I process 1/2 pint jars for 15 minutes.

    Lyn - December 10, 2010

    Nancy: process 1/2 pint for 15 minutes… how many pounds? were you talking pressure cooker or hot water bath? :)

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