3 Ways To Use Leftover Canned Pumpkin Puree

Sneak Preview: Here are 3 ways to use leftover canned pumpkin puree you might have from another pumpkin recipe. Pumpkin is too expensive these days to let a few leftover tablespoons go to waste. None of these ideas require more than 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree.

three ideas for leftover canned pumpkin pureePin

1. Pumpkin Pecan Pancakes

My friend Joan of Orange Waffles’ fame recently wrote, “I had been wanting the pumpkin pancakes that I-Hop has been advertising, so I decided to try to make some. I was going to open a can of pumpkin to make a cake today anyway.  The cake only used 1 cup.”

Joan adapted her favorite pancake recipe from one of her favorite cookbooks. I recognize it as the Feather Pancakes from my Better Homes and Gardens Quick Breads Cook Book, published the year before I got married a l-o-o-o-n-g time ago. It has been around a while, but it’s a keeper.

Although I don’t claim to be a pancake connoisseur, I really like these–enough to forsake my usual bowl of yogurt and cereal occasionally.  Joan recommends drizzling them with hot caramel sauce (although maybe not as much as you see in the picture–YIKES!) and a little maple syrup on the side. See the recipe here.

2. Pumpkin Greek Yogurt with Cookie Crumbles:

I eat a LOT of homemade Greek yogurt so I’m always looking for creative ways to eat it. Whenever I have a tablespoon or more of leftover pumpkin, this is my first thought.

How To Make Pumpkin Yogurt

Add a couple of tablespoons of pumpkin puree to 6-8 ounces of plain Greek yogurt along with your favorite sweetener. For me, it’s a packet of Splenda or a tablespoon of sugar-free Torani syrup, preferably the Gingerbread or Pumpkin Pie flavor.  Honey, sugar, or a different artificial sweetener would also work. 

Add a 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon and combine until smooth. 

Serve with a crispy cookie crumbled on top for a low-calorie facsimile of pie with a crumb crust.  Gingersnaps are pictured but vanilla wafers, graham crackers, or granola would also work.

3. Pumpkin Sponge Pie

This family favorite tastes great with pumpkin instead of squash and requires only two rounded tablespoons of pumpkin puree. At this point, I’m sure my sisters are wondering what in the world a sponge pie is and why I’m calling it a family favorite. 

Turns out, that’s the kind of pie we’ve been eating all these years.  Google turned up recipes for Lemon Sponge Pie and Chocolate Sponge Pie as well. (I’ll be trying those soon.)

They’re all made by separating eggs, whipping the whites until stiff, and then, folding them into the remaining ingredients. This technique produces a light but sweet treat with the characteristic layers we love.

To make pumpkin sponge pie, go to Grandma’s Magic Pumpkin Pie with Incredible Layers.

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  1. Sue Huffstutler says:

    where do I find the recipes for the pumpkin pancakes?

  2. steph (whisk/spoon) says:

    forget leftover puree…i want to open a new can just so i can make all these things–mmm! i have no idea why i haven’t made pumpkin pancakes yet. i know i would love them. i have never seen a sponge pie…looks like half cake half pie?

  3. Drat… just threw away about 1/2 cup the other day! Trust me I looked for recipes…! These are GREAT!!! Especially the pie. Your crust looks wonderful! I have this wonderful book: “Sweetie Pies” – recipes from southern women handed down from grandmothers, chess pie, buttermilk pie, etc – this looks like something out of there. I must try it. HAPPY THANKSGIVING (a day late)! I made a Frangelico Mascarpone/Pumpkin Pie (with hazelnut crust) – you know me, so traditional. 🙂

  4. Just look at that stack of pancakes! Even after all of the carbohydrates yesterday I would love a forkful drenched in caramel sauce! Notice, I did said just a forkful. 🙂

  5. Such delicious ideas!!

  6. I want to try ALL of those… especially those pancakes! These all sound (and look) wonderful! Great site; so happy I found you!


  7. Wow! Who knew you could get three lovely dishes from 1/4 cup of leftover pumpkin! Those pancakes would certainly kick-start the day.

  8. great ideas! And Paula, your invited to come have some of that turkey if you bring that chocolate silk pie! 😉

  9. Yum! I wondered if u would have a thanksgiving post. These look good to me!

  10. bigFATcook says:

    Yummy!! I cant take my eyes off these goodies!! :))) Looking great, tasty and lovely:)


  11. What a phenomenal idea.. I always avoid recipes that don’t use entire can increments of pumpkin, but I eat a lot of yogurt and this looks like a great way to make it more interesting. I can imagine it would be really good if you cooked the pumpkin with some butter or cream first, too.

  12. I just ate some mixed into yogurt, and it’s wonderful! Gotta love a guilt-free treat!

  13. Wow, these look so scrumptious! Love your ideas – no one would ever know these fantastic treats were made with leftovers. I wish you and your family have a very happy Thanksgiving!

  14. TheKitchenWitch says:

    I have 1/2 of a cup of canned pumpkin sitting in my refrigerator RIGHT now. How did you know? This is why I need you in my life, Paula!