A freshly baked pumpkin pie is one of the most perfect desserts you can slice into during the fall. The sweet flavor of pumpkin, combined with warm spices and brown sugar in a smooth custard is just delicious – especially if you have family and friends to share it with. A pumpkin pie demands to be shared and, as a result, many of us wait to eat pumpkin pie until we have a big crowd around us, when we could be enjoying pumpkin pie a lot more often. One easy solution is to bake up a batch of Individual Pumpkin Pies, instead of baking one full sized pie. This recipe makes a very small batch of four single-serving pies that is perfect for one or two (or up to four, though it is always nice to have at least one extra for yourself!).
The pie filling is a very simple mixture of pumpkin puree and sweetened condensed milk, seasoned with pumpkin pie spice and bound together with an egg. It is smooth and creamy, with a great pumpkin flavor. You’ll also find that it is nice not to have to fuss with too many extra ingredients when you’re preparing such a small batch recipe.
You can buy a four-pack of mini graham cracker crusts in the baking aisle of most supermarkets, next to the full-sized graham cracker crusts. These are easy to use and will work nicely for the filling recipe. Using premade crusts will also save you a lot of time, since the filling only takes a moment to put together. Still, I prefer to make my own crumb crusts when I have time. After all, an individual pie is a treat for myself and I want to make sure I’ve got a delicious crust for it! I use Norpro 5-inch mini pie pans, which are just slightly larger than the storebought mini crusts. This is a small-batch graham cracker crust that has a hint of cinnamon and makes a nice match for the pumpkin filling.
Serve the pies at room temperature or when chilled. They tend to be easier to pop out of the pie plates when they are slightly chilled, however they should still come out easily if your pie plates are nonstick. The pies will be at their best within a day or two of baking, but it is such a small batch that you should be able to get through them quite quickly! One for dessert, one for breakfast, one for a snack…
Individual Pumpkin Pies
2/3 cup graham cracker or cookie crumbs
2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
2 1/2 tbsp butter, melted and cooled slightly.
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a medium bowl, whisk together graham cracker crumbs, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Add in melted butter and stir until mixture resembles wet sand. Divide evenly into four mini 5-inch pie plates and press into a thin, firm crust that reaches about halfway up the sides of the pans.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden.
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large bowl, whisk together all ingredients until smooth. Divide evenly into four prebaked mini pie shells, homemade (recipe above) or storebought. Place pie shells on a baking sheet.
Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the centers of the pies are set and no longer jiggle.
Allow pies to cool completely before serving, then transfer to the refrigerator, if desired. Serve at room temperature or well-chilled.
Makes 4 mini pumpkin pies.