If you’re one of those people who only eats pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving, then this post may upset you. I have three words of condolence: get over it! Sorry to be brash, but for me, pumpkin season is from October (possibly September as well) until the end of December. Moreover, there are many folks who enjoy pumpkin pie on both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Pumpkin-palooza is far from over. If I had it my way, we’d be eating pumpkin all year-long! For now, 3-4 months a year will have to do.
Pumpkin pie is good. Is it amazing? Eh, not in my book at least. I love a good slice on Thanksgiving, but it’s not my favorite pumpkin product. And I know there are a lot of folks who don’t like pumpkin pie at all. The texture can be a bit off-putting for some. The possibility that holiday dinner guests may have a distaste for pumpkin leads many people to make multiple pies to please multiple palates. But what if there was a light, fluffy, creamy pumpkin pie to please even the pickiest pumpkin pie haters?
Good news, my little cookies: there is.
Allow me to introduce you to Pumpkin Cream Pie with a Ginger Cookie Crust.
I would like to begin by telling you all that this is the best pumpkin pie I’ve ever had. It is a refreshing twist on a typical holiday dessert while not straying far from the traditional. This is pumpkin pie; there’s no two ways about it. It has those flavors you long for every Christmas & Thanksgiving while offering a delightful texture and kicked-up crust so that even those who don’t like pumpkin pie will experience a change of heart.
This filling tastes like classic pumpkin pie, only better. It is so creamy and dreamy, a cross between mousse and classic cream pie filling. Although it is light in texture, it is rich in flavor and indulgence. The pumpkin is not overwhelming, but it is clearly the star. Comforting fall spices add dimension and entice you with the tastes of the season. It is a sweet, fluffy filling that’s good enough to eat on its own. But why would you when you can serve it in a delicious ginger snap cookie crust?
This is my new favorite pie crust! It’s similar to a graham cracker crust, but with more crunch and more kick. The crust is just as reliable and easy to make as a graham cracker crust, but all of the wonderful spices in the ginger snaps take this it to a whole new level. It’s got a bit more bite to it than graham cracker crusts do, giving the pie the support it deserves. It’s kind of like serving the pie on a big cookie! I think I could eat it without the luscious filling; it’s that good. However, that pumpkin cream pairs so perfectly with the flavors of the crushed ginger cookies that it’s just too good a combo to keep apart.
If pumpkin pie is a must at your holiday feasts, then you simply must make this heavenly treat. And even if you don’t typically go nuts for pumpkin pie, then you’ve got to give this one a try anyway. It is a classic with a few delicious twists, making it the tastiest pumpkin pie out there. It’s not so crazy that traditionalists will have a heart attack, but it’s definitely got something special. You need to make this pie. Period.
Oh, and might I add how easy it is to make? Nothing complicated; amateur cooks can handle this, no problem. It’s easy as pie!
A Few Tips Before You Get Cooking:
- The original filling recipe calls for only 1/2 the amount of whipped cream I used. I thought this wimpy bit of whipped cream barely made a difference; the pie filling was still too thick. Therefore, the extra whipped cream is a MUST.
- If you have some strong distaste for ginger snaps, you can make a graham cracker crust instead. However, don’t write it off if you haven’t tried it. This crust is so good!
- Because you need to chill the pie, make sure to plan ahead.
- You really, really should make this pie a day ahead. The difference in flavor is incredible. All of the delicious flavors get to absorb overnight and the extra cookies on top get soft and cakey. This is definitely a pie that gets better each day!
- If you don’t want to use whole cookies as garnish, you could do a sprinkle of the cookie crumbs instead. Or, pipe whipped cream along the edges.
- You can crush the ginger snaps either in a food processor or putting them in a bag and pulverizing them with a rolling pin.
Pumpkin Cream Pie with a Ginger Cookie Crust
For the Crust:
Crust recipe adapted from Food Network
- 2 1/2 cups crushed ginger snap cookies, (about 55 to 60 cookies)
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
For the Filling:
Filling adapted from The Pioneer Woman
- 1 box (3 Oz. Box) Vanilla Pudding (Cook And Serve Variety)
- 1 cup Half-and-half
- 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
- 1/4 teaspoons Cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon Cloves
- 1/2 cup plus 3 Tablespoons Pumpkin Puree
- 1 cup (additional) Heavy Cream
- 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
- Extra Ginger Snap Cookies, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Make the crust by combining the ginger cookie crumbs and melted butter in a large bowl, until well blended. Pour mixture into a 9 in. pie pan and spread out evenly. Press down until in a firm, even layer. Bake until set and a bit darker in color, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
- In a medium saucepan, mix dry pudding mix with half-and-half and cream. Add spices. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is bubbly and thick. Remove from heat. Add pumpkin and stir to combine. Set aside to cool. When cool enough, place pot in the fridge to cool completely.
- When mixture is cool, remove from the fridge. In a mixing bowl, add 1 cup heavy cream and brown sugar. Beat until very light and fluffy and stiff peaks form. Gently fold in pumpkin cream mixture until just combined. Pour into cooled crust and smooth out. Place additional cookies around the edge of the pie. Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight.