Old-Fashioned Squash Pie

If you like pumpkin pie, but are looking for something a bit richer and more flavorful, Squash Pie is the pie for you.

I used  heirloom hubbard squash to make this hundred-year-old Squash Pie recipe, but other winter squash would work equally well.

This recipe uses less milk and more eggs than the typical modern pumpkin pie recipe. Similarly the spices are just a little different  from modern recipes.  Many modern recipes call for cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger – the old recipe lists cinnamon and nutmeg, but does not call for any ginger. All of these tweaks are good – but the texture and taste are a little different than modern Pumpkin Pies.

Here’s the original recipe:

Source: Lowney’s Cook Book (1912)

Paste is an archaic term for the pie pastry. When I made this recipe I used my usual pie pastry recipe, but sometime soon I’ll try the old recipe for “Chopped Paste.”

Here’s the Squash Pie recipe updated for modern cooks:

Squash Pie

  • Servings: 4 - 6
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

1 3/4 cups winter squash (hubbard, butternut, etc.), pared and cut into 1-inch cubes

1/2 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 9-inch pie shell

Put cubed squash in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until tender (about 20 minutes); remove from heat and drain. Puree squash. (There should be approximately 1 cup of pureed squash.)

Preheat 425° F.  Put pureed squash in mixing bowl, add sugar, eggs, milk, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg; beat until smooth. Pour into prepared pie shell. Place in oven. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°. Continue baking (approximately 40-50 minutes) until a knife inserted in the center of the pie comes out clean.

40 thoughts on “Old-Fashioned Squash Pie

  1. This really does seem like a special part of your culture. I haven’t come across anyone in England – and that includes me – who fancies sweetened pumpkin. Should we try this one?

    1. hmm. . . this recipe also includes sugar, so maybe not. The warm, spicy, nuttiness of the nutmeg is a somewhat more dominant flavor in this recipe than in many more modern ones; and the custard is a little “eggier” (in a good way).

  2. My first thought was ‘what’s chopped paste?’ so thanks for explaining that one! Makes me want to look up a recipe for that. Pie looks lovely, and perfect for this time of year.

    1. I’m going to have to make the “chopped paste” recipe sometime and then post it. It calls for using both butter and lard to make the pie pastry.

      Confession – I was going to make it when I made the squash pie, but then I realized that I didn’t have any lard so I instead used my more modern “tried and true” pastry recipe.

    1. This pie has a nice old-fashioned taste to it. My husband actually told me today that he likes it better than the pumpkin pie recipe that I usually use. That said, I’m not sure whether this pie is the same as your mom’s. It calls more less milk than most modern recipes, so there is relatively more squash and egg.

      1. My mother’s recipe has twice as much pumpkin as milk, and two eggs per pie. but she used to boil the pumpkin to cook it so it was very moist as well. The pumpkin mixture was very “pourable.” She also made her own pie crust which was wonderful!

        1. Your additional description of your mother’s pie is starting to make me think that you’re right, this pie may be similar to her pie. I boiled the squash. The old recipe calls for “stewing” it. I cut the squash into 1-inch cubes, covered it with water, and then boiled until tender. This recipe also has a relatively high amount of squash to milk.

    1. Squash makes a nice pie. Over the years I’ve often substituted squash for pumpkin in pumpkin pie recipes. It’s nice to have found a recipe written especially for squash.

        1. Thanks for looking it up. It’s interesting that there is a significant difference in the amount of Vitamin A across pumpkin and squash. It feels good to know that the pie I made is the more nutritious option. 🙂

  3. I love pie but I’ve never been able to make a successful piecrust look good. I appreciate seeing your success. I think this year I’m going to be making the stuffing and the cranberry sauce. Nice to share with the family in the preparations.

    1. mmm. . . You’re making some of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes. My mother-in-law knew how to make pies with perfectly crimped edges. I try my best, but my pie crusts aresn’t even in the same league as hers.

  4. I will have to try it especially after I read somewhere that the pumpkin that comes in cans actually have more squash in them. Always looking for new recipes – well in your case new “old” recipes. 🙂

    1. I’ve also heard that canned “pumpkin” is really squash. If this is true, it almost seems like a case of false labeling. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

      1. A pumpkin is a squash. There are winter squash, and summer squash. Winters are generally “keepers.” Because of their harder skins and firmer textures, they can be kept and used in the Winter, if cared for properly. These can all be used in pies. Some examples of Winter squash are pumpkin, Hubbard, acorn and butternut. Summer squash have a more tender skin and softer flesh, and do not keep well. Some summer squash are zucchini, yellow crookneck and, “patty pans.” Summer squash can all be cooked, but they break down quickly in heat. Better for sauces than pies. Some, I’m told should not be eaten raw. Zucchini is the only Summer squash my family likes on salads, anyway.

        1. Thanks for the information. I hadn’t realized that pumpkins actually were a type of winter squash – though it makes sense. They taste very similar to hubbard and other winter squash.

  5. Our family’s Thanksgiving preference for years. My mother started using butternut squash when she couldn’t find long-neck pumpkins.

  6. I just saw this again and see that I promised a photo of a long-neck pumpkin. I may need to be reminded again when fall comes. The custard pie recipe made me hungry for pie, so I jumped from that post to this one.

Leave a Reply to Sheryl Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s