Pumpkin Butter

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes
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This easy, homemade pumpkin butter recipe is made with with canned pumpkin, maple syrup, apple cider and more. With a rich combination of fall flavors, it’s a luscious, ultra-easy, seasonal favorite!

Why This Pumpkin Butter Is a Must-Have for Fall!

What better way to embrace the flavors of fall than with a vibrant jar of homemade pumpkin butter?

  • Autumn Flavors: Rich, velvety pumpkin puree mingles with warm spices, apple cider, brown sugar, and more for the best fall treat ever!
  • Perfect on Everything: Spread this on toast, dollop it on a pancake, or serve it with a savory dinner like kielbasa or pork chops. There are endless ways you will find yourself enjoying this fall specialty.
  • Wholesome and Old-Fashioned: This simple recipe is made from scratch with old-fashioned, healthy ingredients. For instance, pumpkin is rich in vitamins A and C, and contains plenty of fiber, too! The spices add anti-inflammatory properties, as well. 
  • Oh-So-Easy: Anyone can make homemade pumpkin butter. All you need is a pot and a spoon!

What Does Pumpkin Butter Taste Like?

Pumpkin butter has a warm, cozy flavor that’s a mixture of smooth, rich pumpkin with warm, fragrant spices. Additionally, my recipe includes real apple cider, brown sugar, maple syrup, and a wee bit of lemon juice to brighten the flavors and bring them out. You’re going to love it!

Ingredients for homemade pumpkin butter.

The Ingredients You’ll Need

Let’s take a closer look at those ingredients, shall we? For ingredient amounts and full recipe directions, scroll to the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • Pumpkin: Canned pumpkin or homemade pumpkin puree, both work great!
  • Apple Cider: If you don’t have apple cider, you could also use apple juice.
  • Sugar: A combination of brown and white sugar. However, if you want your pumpkin butter to have a richer molasses flavor, use all brown sugar.
  • Maple Syrup: Go for pure maple syrup, not “pancake syrup,” which usually contains a lot of additives and extras.
  • Lemon Juice: To bring out the best in the other ingredients, a little sharpness from the lemon works perfectly. Fresh is best, but bottled is also fine.
  • Spices: Cinnamon, freshly-grated nutmeg, and cloves.
  • Salt: Like the lemon juice, this brings out the flavors and adds balance.
Overhead shot of pumpkin butter in a glass jar with a spoon.

How to Make Pumpkin Butter

One of the best things about this recipe? You don’t need any special equipment or techniques!  A pot and a spoon will do the trick.

  • Bring the Ingredients to a Boil. Literally just dump everything in a medium-sized saucepan, and bring it all to a boil. 
  • Cover and Cook Down. Once the mixture boils, turn down the heat a bit, cover it with a lid, and let the pumpkin butter cook down until it thickens up – about thirty minutes. 
  • Cool and Enjoy. Take the butter off of the heat, and let it cool (it will thicken more as it cools off). Taste, adjust the seasonings if needed, and enjoy! 

Tips for Success

Need tips? I’ve got ‘em! Here are a few helpful ways you can change up this scrumptious recipe:

  • Sugar: You can use all brown sugar for a deeper caramel flavor! Or use dark brown sugar to really double up on the molasses!
  • Spices: I highly recommend grating whole nutmeg with a microplane grater. It takes just seconds and the flavor is so much better. Also, if you would prefer, you can replace the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves with 1 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice. Easy!
  • Vanilla: I didn’t feel my pumpkin butter needed vanilla, but you can also stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract as it cools. Vanilla bean paste would give the butter an even stronger vanilla flavor, along with pretty flecks throughout.
A jar of homemade pumpkin butter.

What Is Pumpkin Butter Used For?

Now for the fun part: what can you use your homemade pumpkin butter for? The answer is, just about everything. Here are just a few recipes to get you started:

  • Breakfast: Slather it on toast, bagels, muffins, or any other breakfast bread – Homemade Crescent Rolls, anyone?
  • Snacks: You can simply dip your favorite snacks into pumpkin butter for a nourishing, sweet snack. Think apple slices, graham crackers, or Soft Pretzels
  • Dessert: Spreading pumpkin butter over the top of a plain vanilla cheesecake (store bought, Instant Pot Cheesecake, or No Bake Cheesecake) is always a delicious way to create an easy autumn dessert. You could also pipe it into these Fried Cheesecake Tacos in place of the cherry pie filling to create pumpkin pie cheesecake tacos!
A small jar of pumpkin spread on a cutting board with pumpkins and cinnamon sticks.

Storing Homemade Pumpkin Butter

I like to store this in jars with airtight lids, but any airtight container is fine. It will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks. Serve it cold right out of the refrigerator, or warm it up first in a saucepan or the microwave. Either way, it’s sure to please!

Can I Freeze This?

Pumpkin butter actually freezes very well, so you can enjoy the taste of fall all year long. Once it’s cooled, spoon it into freezer-safe containers or resealable bags, leaving a bit of room for expansion. Freeze it for up to six months, and thaw it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before serving.

More Cozy Pumpkin Recipes

A jar of pumpkin butter with a spoon in it.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Recipe
Yield: 2 cups

Pumpkin Butter

This pumpkin butter recipe is a must have for fall! It’s delicious with desserts, breads, breakfasts, and more. With a rich combination of fall flavors, it’s a luscious, ultra-easy, seasonal favorite!
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Chill Time2 hours
Total Time2 hours 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 oz) can pumpkin purée, or homemade pumpkin purée
  • cup apple cider
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, or ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon ground cloves

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Instructions 

  • In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  • Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat to low and cover the saucepan.
  • Stir occasionally, so the pumpkin butter doesn’t stick to the bottom or burn, and continue cooking until thickened, about 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and let cool completely. The pumpkin butter will continue to thicken as it cools.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator. Use as desired.

Notes

Storage: Store in an airtight container, in the fridge, for up to two weeks. Serve it cold right out of the refrigerator, or warm it up first in a saucepan or the microwave. 
Freeze: Once it’s cooled, spoon it into freezer-safe containers or resealable bags, leaving a bit of room for expansion. Freeze it for up to six months, and thaw it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before serving.
Sugar: You can use all brown sugar for a deeper caramel flavor! Or use dark brown sugar to really double up on the molasses!
Spices: I highly recommend grating whole nutmeg with a microplane grater. It takes just seconds and the flavor is so much better. Also, if you would prefer, you can replace the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves with 1 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice. Easy!
Vanilla: I didn’t feel my pumpkin butter needed vanilla, but you can also stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract as it cools. Vanilla bean paste would give the butter an even stronger vanilla flavor, along with pretty flecks throughout.

Nutrition

Serving: 2 tablespoons, Calories: 55kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 0.03g, Fat: 0.04g, Saturated Fat: 0.02g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.003g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.002g, Sodium: 75mg, Potassium: 27mg, Fiber: 0.1g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 1IU, Vitamin C: 0.4mg, Calcium: 13mg, Iron: 0.1mg

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Jessica
For the past 15 years, Jorge & Jessica have loved getting to share their families' favorite recipes with all of you. They live in Florida with their 3 kids.