46 In Life/ Recipes

Pumpkins to Eat

Good Friday morning! Last year this time I was up to my eyeballs in Apple Butter {which I hope to be up to my eyeballs in again a little later this month}, but right now it’s Pumpkin Butter.

I had no idea that they only stocked canned pumpkin in the grocery store in the fall. Apparently they don’t consider October 23rd “the fall” because the manager told me, “it hasn’t come in for the season yet”. So, I was forced to make my pumpkin butter the ole fashioned way.

**Update: Apparently the manager was unaware of the nationwide pumpkin shortage. If you can find it canned, grab it up. Thanks, to those of you who informed me!**


Pumpkins are in the same family as Butternut Squash so I baked them just like I bake Butternuts, face down with 1/2″ of water at 350 for about an hour or until fork tender.

I think I’ve mentioned before that I adore my oven because it’s 2 ovens for the size {30″} and price of one.  Which means, while my pumpkins baked below my seeds could roast above.

For the seeds:

I picked them out and ran them under cool water in a collander. Then spread them over a baking sheet coated with 1 tablespoon of canola oil. And then seasoned them with freshly ground sea salt.

They roasted at 325 for 20 minutes, stirring after the first 10 minutes.

When they were done I patted the excess oil off on a paper towel and tried to keep my little fingers out of them. They are excellent by themselves or this is just a little serving suggestion {equal parts seeds, milk chocolate chips and dried cranberries}:

When the pumpkins were done, I spooned out all the tender flesh and blended it in the blender. 3 baking pumpkins yielded a whopping 68 ounces of pumpkin puree.


In the heaviest and largest pot I own {my pressure cooker without the pressure cooker parts} I added the pureed pumpkin, apple juice, sugar and all the yummy spices. I used this recipe and ended up using pumpkin pie spice + ground cloves. 

Early in the simmering/reducing process…


30 minutes later…

If you try this I suggest you stir the Pumpkin Butter constantly while simmering, otherwise it will splatter all over. The hardest part of the entire process was stirring for 30 minutes. I thought the time would never be up.

By the way, your entire house will smell DELIGHTFUL!!

Once the Pumpkin Butter has reduced and thickened you can can it… but you can’t really can it because the USDA doesn’t recommend “canning” pumpkin puree and since I don’t want to make any one sick, I decided to freeze it in these.



Of course, I couldn’t freeze it all… I stuck some in the frige for now! I had it this morning on a hot, buttered Bays and seriously thought “I could eat it every day and every meal.”

You should try it this weekend! It is so good and would be much faster if you can find canned pumpkin in your grocery store… but good luck, it’s only seasonal!

And… while I was doing this nothing was happening at my house, literally nothing.


Unless you count this as something…

I only can count it as “cute”!

And why children should never be allowed to make “earrings” out of Silly Putty.

Happy weekend friends! And thanks for your overwhelming interest in McBeach!! Miki should be getting back to all of you shortly!!

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  • Jeannine
    October 23, 2009 at 10:41 am

    Hi, I love your blog. I saw the owl in the one picture and was hoping you could tell me where you found it. my daughter LOVES owls and so I am always looking for some to get her. Thanks so much. your family is precious!

  • Megan
    October 23, 2009 at 10:44 am

    Oh Darby, can I have some pumpkin butter? ha it looks fabulous.

  • Chrissy
    October 23, 2009 at 10:47 am

    Yummy!! FYI – from what I’ve heard, there is a pumpkin shortage this year and that’s why canned pumpkin is hard to come by.

  • amy d
    October 23, 2009 at 10:57 am

    I found out the hard way about the pumpkin puree too. Our stores didn’t even have baking pumpkins…just big ole jacks. Well, long story short: don’t hack up a jack-o-lantern to avoid disappointing your kids. The nasty butter will do that for you. 🙁

  • Laura
    October 23, 2009 at 10:57 am

    cute owl sitting on the table in the background!

  • Christina
    October 23, 2009 at 11:02 am

    MMM, thank you for posting this! I just finished some pumpkin butter from a local market and thought about making some at home. This will help motivate me. I’ve also heard about the canned pumpkin shortage. Hope I can find some baking pumpkins.

  • Savannah Garcia
    October 23, 2009 at 11:05 am

    yum! I will add this to my weekend baking list 🙂

  • jenn
    October 23, 2009 at 11:28 am

    I sincerely hope my child had nothing to do with that earring. 🙂

  • alison g. (brazil)
    October 23, 2009 at 11:32 am

    Mmmmmm…think I can smell the yumminess all the way down here! Very much eye-balling that little trail mix, too!

  • Tiffany
    October 23, 2009 at 11:49 am

    Good to know about the silly putty earrings. I will keep that in mind for my little girl! : ) Also, I have a similar style vacuum and that is exactly what my little guy does when I get it out. He also likes to hold on to it and get pulled along while I vacuum. Little boys are great!

  • Jessica F
    October 23, 2009 at 11:58 am

    Looks sooooo yummy! I just found your blog a few weeks ago and love it! I have a couple of questions for you, first, can you share the color of the room in the top picture, I’m looking for a good off-white??? Second, I’m in love with the shelf thing with the letters on it in your kitchen, where did you find it??? Thanks in advance, don’t you just love when people are seriously checking out your house!!!

  • Jacci
    October 23, 2009 at 12:07 pm


    YUM! 🙂 Sounds so super delicious.

    And **thank you** for the shot of your laundry. I was actually wondering how on earth you were doing everything else it takes to keep home with 3 young kiddos (I’ve mentioned before that I have 4 of my own). It’s sooo good to know that you were picking and choosing. You chose pumpkins over laundry. I chose laundry over pumpkins. You have yummy pumpkin butter. I have clean socks 🙂

    (I know you probably have plenty of clean socks, too)

    Anyway, thanks for keeping it real. Love you little man’s chub.


  • Malerie
    October 23, 2009 at 12:18 pm

    Pumpkin shortage!? I had no idea! Your pumpkin butter looks good enough to practically lick my computer screen though 🙂

  • christi
    October 23, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    mmmm pumpkin butter! i’m canning apple butter at the moment … delicious! love the photos!

  • Janet
    October 23, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Wow — you’re amazing to make that pumpkin butter! Your little guy is such a cutie and I’m sure thankful that my girl never figured out Silly Putty earrings! Have a fun weekend!


  • angela
    October 23, 2009 at 12:49 pm

    That explains it. We tried to buy canned pumpkin the other night and was told that it was *seasonal*. I love the freezer plastic containers. I had not seen those.

    Oh, and I am a *Nonny* who LOVES to do laundry. (sick, I know). I could fold for you if I lived close by!!:)

  • Tegan
    October 23, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    question??? i’m feeling quite domestic these days and would love to make both the apple butter and pumpkin butter. can i use the plastic freezer containers fot the apple butter as well. i want to can, but question by abilities? help??!!

  • Christie
    October 23, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    The pumpkin butter looks delicious — I wish my house smelled like it right now.

    And silly putty in the hair — that is definitely something my girls would do! It is amazing what their little minds think to do!

  • Stacy
    October 23, 2009 at 1:26 pm

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting the pic of your couch covered in clothes. I was beginning to feel worthless….ha!

  • Amber
    October 23, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    I posted about the pumpkin shortage on our blog a couple of weeks ago! I have since found it at our grocery store, and I now have three loaves of yummy pumpkin bread to show for it! I’ve never even heard of pumpkin butter, but I may have to try it soon!

  • Krista
    October 23, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    Thanks Darby! I have been hard core craving apple butter for months now. Since we’re currently living in Guatemala, I cannot find it anywhere. I had been considering making my own, but didn’t want to just use any old random recipe. Now I’m gonna get to it right away and maybe even the pumpkin butter too!

  • Lane
    October 23, 2009 at 3:33 pm

    I wrote Libby’s about a month ago and they said that the pumpkin crop from last year wasn’t up to par with their standards, but that they’d be harvesting this year’s crop and it would be out in stores soon. I have been able to find canned pumpkin recently and I stocked up with 12 cans!! If you need any let me know! 🙂 Haha!

  • Ashley
    October 23, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    Love the post! I just baked pumpkin seeds the other day. I had forgotten how much I love them.I added a little Tony Chachere’s and they were so good.I am going to have to try out the pumpkin butter recipe. I have been dying for some pumpkin and apple butter from Huber’s…however this living in Alabama makes that a little hard.

  • Rachel
    October 23, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    You are so much better than me. :o) I made pumpkin butter the lazy way…by buying it at the local nursery…but now I’m tempted to make some.

  • michele
    October 23, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    oh my goodness, that’s impressive, and it looks divine. But I think you’re extra nice to show your laundry all over your couch.

  • Grace
    October 23, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    I want to make both the apple AND pumpkin butter for my darling husband because he will love both (not that I won’t!).

    And can I please BEG you to go into photography (or at least think about doing it sometime down the line – I know you have a lot on your hands right now!) – you are so crazily talented, I look forward to seeing your photos every day. When you are given a gift like that….

  • melissa stover
    October 23, 2009 at 6:59 pm

    oh my goodness the silly putty earrings are hilarious!!
    i think i have that same green couch. your house is amazingly clean to be canning all day.

  • Meredith
    October 23, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    We LOVE pumpkin butter! My mother-in-law gave us some from Williams-Sonoma the other day and it is almost gone. It’s SO good! Happy Fall!

  • Hilary
    October 24, 2009 at 5:02 am

    Hello…I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now and I love it! Your children are absolutely beautiful and I am amazed at how you get so much done! How do you do it? Making pumpkin butter, being crafty, etc. with the kids around. I only have one daughter, 11 months old, and I don’t seem to be able to get anything done (besides reading blogs early in the a.m. before she is awake, haha)!

  • mamacita
    October 24, 2009 at 9:28 am

    Words cannot express how much I appreciate that photo of your couch.

  • Jennifer
    October 24, 2009 at 11:16 am

    I just made the pumpkin butter and my house smells like fall…and Williams Sonoma! You were right about the stirring…at least my right arm got a work out today! Thank you for posting this! I love all your posts and your adorable family!

  • Maura Gomez
    October 24, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    Wow – thanks, this is perfect timing cause I have been wanting to make some pumpkin puree and roast some seeds…never ventured into that world before! 🙂 Also, the silly putty earring made me laugh out loud!! 🙂

  • Christina
    October 24, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    I made the pumpkin butter this afternoon and have to say thanks again for your post. The pumpkin butter is delicious, much less expensive than what I bought pre-made, and all natural ingredients are a HUGE bonus due to my food allergic babe.

  • Devon
    October 25, 2009 at 11:31 am

    Do you remember that 80’s movie with Diane Keaton where she gives up corporate life because she ‘inherits’ a baby and heads to Vermont and starts making homemade organic applesauce? I have no idea why, but your post reminded me of that movie…I can just see you surrounded by a 100 pumpkins and couldn’t stop laughing!

  • The Monogrammed Mrs.
    October 25, 2009 at 2:07 pm

    Great post. You are just too good! Making pumpkin butter and all… I saw your vacuum and was was wondering which one you use. I am looking for a good one.

  • Ashley
    October 25, 2009 at 10:17 pm

    So I’m thinking I need to head back to the pick-your-own pumpkin patch, get a monster punkin’ and make some of this delicious stuff. Yummy! 🙂

  • Weekend Recap « The Kesler Expressler
    October 26, 2009 at 7:48 am

    […] of caulking the shower, making pumpkin butter was an easy success.  I got the idea from Darby at Fly Through Our Window. The recipe was super easy and it took less than 30 minutes! I think we have plenty to last us […]

  • Erin from "scoots and cuddles"
    October 26, 2009 at 8:49 am

    The pumpkin butter looks fantastic…. yum! Loved the post! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Betsy
    October 26, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    I love your blog – and your sister’s, too!! I wasn’t aware of a pumpkin shortage, but after reading your post, I ran to the store to see if I could find any – we have aplenty up here in Maryland – let me know if you want me to send you some!! xoxo

  • ali
    October 26, 2009 at 11:18 pm

    Yum! I’m going to have to try this- we have pumpkin, both canned and au natural, at our local store!

  • Kate @ Savour Fare
    October 27, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Pumpkin butter is also delightful stirred into oatmeal with some cream cheese.

  • Grace
    October 28, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    Just made the pumpkin butter (and I decided to just try it with the flesh of the regular old pumpkin we carved, baked in the oven until tender, strained of excess water and blended, rather than baking the half pumpkin with skin) and it was STILL delish!! Thanks for sharing that recipe. Apple butter is up next!

    Happy fall!

  • alissa
    October 29, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Hi Darby – I found your blog a few weeks ago and I really enjoy reading it! I have the same Jenn-Air oven – isn’t it the best? I love it and can’t imagine ever having a single oven again!

  • Victoria
    November 3, 2009 at 8:09 am

    I wanted to thank you. We carved our pumpkins this weekend and after seeing how easy it is to roast the seeds I did – and everyone loves them! I also make tons of pumpkin butter and apple sauce every year and freeze it. Canning is great but takes so much more time. Although, we are having trouble getting apples because this summer was so cool and rainy 🙁
    Oh yeah, I totally agree with you about TV. We don’t even have cable and everyone I know thinks I am crazy. Definately not worth paying for!
    Glad y’all are feeling better.

  • Dorothy
    November 7, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    Hey Darby,
    I made this pumpkin butter today, but instead of cooking (and stirring constantly) on the stovetop, I put a lid on my oven-proof pot and “baked” it for about an hour at 300 degrees. I stirred every fifteen minutes, but you probably stir less frequently. This is how I cook my apple butter too; it frees you up and no splatters and scorched fruit on the bottom of the pan!
    Thanks for the recipe and the idea! We will enjoy our pumpkin butter for a while!

  • Cari King
    November 21, 2009 at 9:09 am

    I live in Western Michigan and everytime I go to the stores I check on the canned pumpkin and we always have tons in all the stores. The shortage must not be in this area…or the Michiganders don’t like pumpkin.