the quest for the perfect pumpkin pie

If you follow any of my posts or this blog, you know how much I love Fall. As the first leaves start to change their color, I have visions of family holiday get togethers, cozy sweaters and scarfs, and of course, pumpkin pie. What’s not to love? The perfect flaky crust, the creamy, sweet filling with just the right amount of spice, and the memories made while enjoy a big slice with the people I love.

Now, Rusty’s mom makes one amazing pumpkin pie. Everything about it is pure perfection. But, since changing my diet 3 years ago, I just can’t have a piece without suffering the consequences. The dietary changes I have made have added so much to the quality of my life, and knowing how I would feel from eating flour, sugar, and conventional dairy, keep me from diving in. It DOES NOT, however, keep me from craving an amazing slice (or three) of pumpkin pie. I know that I am not alone in this quest for a “clean” pumpkin pie, so I decided to take on the challenge of creating a version that is grain, nut, processed sugar, and pasteurized dairy free with all the taste and none of the consequences. So, with my beautiful mother-in-law’s pie in mind, I got to pie making. It took three attempts to get there, but I finally got the texture and taste perfected.

It’s the creaminess that made my heart melt with one bite, and the key here is adding in whole, raw cream that I get from our local 100% grass fed dairy farmer. Yes, I said cream. Stay with me.


Over the course of three years of studying, experimenting, and eating, I have learned what I can and cannot eat, what foods heal and what foods hurt, and how to get creative with recipe changes and tweaks. I know that I cannot eat gluten or vegetable oils without getting really sick. I know that eating processed sugar makes me feel terrible. And I know that pasteurized dairy will ruin me. What I have come to find, though, is that I can enjoy pure maple syrup and raw honey in moderation, and I can also enjoy raw (unpasteurized) whole fat dairy from grass-fed cows without any issues. This is great news because there are TONS of health benefits to be had from this full fat nectar of the gods (like CLAs and essential fatty acids, but read more for yourself HERE or HERE) and TONS to be gained from cutting out pasteurized, reduced fat milk, which doesn’t actually deserve to be called milk (more on this HERE and HERE). If you can’t have dairy (because I know not everyone can), no need to fear because I have included an option for dairy free filling that is also so tasty!IMG_6139

Developing this pie was a labor of love, and I hope you enjoy every bite and bake with love in your heart and a smile on your face. Feel free to dance around the kitchen because, in my experience, it makes the food taste better. While this might not be truly perfect (because there is always room for improvement), I am calling it my “perfect” because right now to me, this pie is perfect, and that’s what counts.

So here you go. Introducing my “perfect” pumpkin pie….

The Perfect Pumpkin Pie (GF, NF, DF option)

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print


  • THIS CRUST from the paleo partridge… I tried to create my own, but I honestly think there is no possible way to beat the flaky perfection of this crust. Trust me.
  • 2 cups fresh roasted organic pumpkin*
  • 1/2 cup packed blonde coconut sugar
  • 3 TB pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cup raw whipping cream OR the cream** from 2 cans of full fat coconut milk
  • 4 pastured eggs

*You can sub 1 (15 oz) can of organic pumpkin purée, but I recommend roasting your own pumpkin because it’s just. so. good. **JUST the cream. Put your cans in the fridge for at least an hour before opening (do not shake) and then use a spoon to scoop the cream out (should come to 1 1/4 cup)


  • make your crust using THIS recipe, and then make your filling while it cools
  • set your oven to 375 degrees F
  • blend pumpkin, coconut sugar, maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt in a food processor or Vitamix until smooth
  • move mixture to a pot set to low heat and stir until warm
  • if you are using coconut milk, use a hand mixer to blend the coconut cream until thick and extra creamy, about 1 min (raw cream needs no whipping)
  • add your cream to the pumpkin mixture and stir until combined into creamy deliciousness
  • continue stirring over heat until you see some bubbles
  • in a medium bowl, whip your eggs until combined
  • add pumpkin mixture to eggs and stir with a spatula until combined
  • pour pumpkin filling into your crust until full (you will probably have leftovers, which is great because now you can make some pumpkin pie pudding in a small glass ramekin)*
  • bake your pie for 30 minutes or until only the very center jiggles when you gently shake the pie
  • let the pie cool for at least an hour then pop it in the fridge (I think it tastes best after a night in the fridge)
  • ENJOY!! We had ours with some of my homemade paleo vanilla ice cream

*cook any leftover filling in a glass ramekin for the same amount of time as the pie. Keep this for a delicious snack! I top it with walnut butter that I get from our Farmers Market, and it’s sooooo good (see below).


Let me know what you guys think! I would LOVE to hear your feedback. Also, don’t forget to tag #liftlaugheatrepeat when you post pictures. It makes my day. Enjoy! And always remember to bake with love.

By | 2016-11-22T10:36:16+00:00 November 3rd, 2014|A Little Sweet Tooth, Recipes|4 Comments

About the Author:

I am a Certified Nutrition Consultant and a Certified CrossFit Trainer. I have a passion for educating, and I absolutely love teaching others about nutrition, functional movement, and the power each has to set the foundation for health, wellness, and true quality of life. I LOVE to eat and fuel my body to live life to the utmost, and I wholeheartedly believe that sustainably sourced, nutrient dense foods can be the greatest form of medicine as well as the ingredients to create the most delicious, palate pleasing meals (it’s a win-win!)


  1. […] We will start with the results of months of labor (labor of love)… my finally perfected PUMPKIN PIE! […]

  2. […] have a similar texture. I happened to have some extra roasted pumpkin lying around from a recent pumpkin pie, and I knew exactly what I was going to […]

  3. Sam December 28, 2017 at 8:30 pm - Reply

    I just made this pie as my birthday treat, and it was my my first ever pie that I have made. Pumpkin pie is one of my absolute favorites, so thank you for providing an absolutely incredible pie recipe that even a pie newbie such as myself can make successfully! I’ll be keeping this recipe bookmarked 😃

    • Laura Bruner December 29, 2017 at 8:38 am - Reply

      This just made my morning. Thank you for sharing, Sam! I’m so glad you enjoyed it ♡

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