A delectable pumpkin pie recipe with a few tricks up its sleeve. This Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust features an all butter chocolate pie crust surrounding smooth maple and pumpkin spiced filling. It's as airy & delicate as a soufflé with all of the classic pumpkin pie characteristics.
In my quest to come up with the best pumpkin pie recipe, I failed, hard, at least the first few tries. My friend Liza, @ill_have_what_shes_having on Instagram, recently made the most incredibly fluffy pumpkin mousse I've ever tasted. We paired it with my chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies for dippin'. Those two were so good together that I began to wonder if this combination was the entire reason that the world brought Liza and I together as friends in the first place.
Determined to make a pumpkin mousse pie with that filling from the moment I tasted it, I tried, and failed. Three times. I was ready to throw in the towel on this whole pumpkin pie recipe. Instead I realized I had to let the mousse go and be ok with the fact that this pumpkin mousse just belongs with the Ginger Molasses Cookies and not in a pie.
Back to the drawing board, I got to work again. This time focusing on a more classic pumpkin pie but with a some small but impactful changes. This Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust is my answer to my years long quest to come up with a pumpkin pie recipe worthy of sharing with you all.
This Pumpkin Pie starts with a Chocolate Crust
For this Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust, I took crust inspiration from my hit recipe for Chocolate Hazelnut Maple Bourbon Pie. Both recipes use my Chocolate Pie Dough recipe as a base. Adding a bit more personality in flavor and color to these pies. In this pie dough, I added a bit of cinnamon to the chocolate pie crust, bringing in notes of warm hot cocoa to the crust.
Blind bake the Chocolate Pie Shell
Since this is a single crust pie, the Chocolate Pie Crust needs to first be blind baked. This step will help your chocolate pie shell maintain its signature shape and crimped edge. Blind baking also fights pie crust slouch and soggy bottoms. Don't let it stress you out. Between the recipe instructions for this Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust and the easy step-by-step instructions on the Chocolate Pie Dough post, I walk you through the whole process. It's easier than you think. I promise.
Pumpkin pie filling ingredients
- Canned pumpkin puree. I am a big believer in the simplicity of canned pumpkin puree. Sure, you could roast your own and make it a whole affair. But I lean on building up the flavors and imploring smart techniques to zhuzh up the canned stuff.
- Half & Half. A rich and creamy addition that makes the filling extra creamy and luxurious.
- Maple Syrup. This is one of my power moves. Instead of sweetening the pumpkin pie filling with a ton of sugar, I like to sub in maple syrup for some of the sugar. This rounds out the sweetness with mellow, rich maple flavor.
- Eggs. Custardy richness is key for a delicious pumpkin pie recipe. The eggs help set the pumpkin filling for luxurious, creaminess.
- Granulated sugar and brown sugar. Using a combination of the 2 sugars gives sweet depth and stability to the pie filling. But we dial back the amount and allow the maple syrup to really shine in this Maple Pumpkin Pie filing.
- Pumpkin spices. This airy pumpkin pie filling uses a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves. Heavy on the cinnamon, like I like it. However, you can absolutely sub in a store bought pumpkin pie spice here if you'd prefer.
Other than the brilliant addition of maple syrup, the ingredients are basic in this pumpkin pie filling. What matters most here is technique. This recipe has a cheeky little trick that transforms the pumpkin pie filling from basic to delectable.
Whiz the pumpkin filling in a blender for an ultra airy, soufflé-like texture
The real magic comes from the mixing. As I started to whisk the ingredients together, I remembered a tip that I learned years ago for making quiche. If you whizz the shizz out of the filling in a blender, it comes out as light and fluffy as a soufflé.
So, I poured this pumpkin pie filling into the blender and whizzed it up real good for a few minutes. This Maple Pumpkin Pie filling baked up as the airiest, most delicate pumpkin pie filling I've ever had in my life. If I didn't know any better, I'd swear it was actually pumpkin mousse, just what I was going for in the first place!
Blending the pumpkin pie filling is non-negotiable
By simply blending the pumpkin pie filling in a blender, you are ensuring a pie filling that's as airy as a cloud. It truly is key to the creamiest, dreamiest pumpkin pies. Even if you don't use my Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust recipe, be sure you blend the bejeezus out of your filling whenever you bake your favorite pumpkin pie recipe. It is a game changer.
Save those pie dough scraps
Another tip I always stress is save those pie dough scraps! When you trim the extra pie dough from your pie shell, gather those scraps together, roll them out and cut them into decorative shapes. I've been using my set of pie leaf cutters for years to add extra flair to my pies.
Use decorative pie crust leaves to cover up any cracks in your pumpkin pie
For this Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust, I bake the pie dough leaves separately and use them to cover any cracks that pop up when I bake my pie. Brilliant, right? Then serve it with bourbon infused whipped cream to cover any additional cracks. Because bourbon whipped cream. Yum! It's a win win.
While this Maple Pumpkin Pie With A Chocolate Crust may not have been what I originally envisioned, it turned out to be the best pumpkin pie I've ever had. And to think, I almost gave up. Not all fails end in failure.