True story: I had read this post at Stacy Makes Cents about cooking spaghetti squash in your slow cooker . Apparently, after reading it, my mind automatically replaced the spaghetti squash with pumpkin… which isn’t all that odd come to think of it, since I really don’t love spaghetti squash but I do looooovvvee pumpkin! Anyway, a few days later, I popped a pumpkin into my crock pot and posted a pic of it on Instagram, and was kind of surprised by the reactions that I received on Facebook (where all my Instagram photos instamatically appear). Everyone was asking me for directions and what I did with the pumpkin once it was cooked, so I went back to Stacy Makes Cents and searched for her post about cooking pumpkins in the crock pot.
Except that Stacy doesn’t have a post about cooking PUMPKINS in the crock pot. I searched and searched and searched every way I knew how on Stacy’s site. Then I searched on Google. Then I searched my browser history. I COULDN’T FIND THE DUMB POST ANYWHERE!!!(Pardon me for yelling, but I was extremely frustrated at this point.)
So in desperation, I asked Stacy herself. At this point, since I couldn’t even find it in my browser’s history, I was beginning to think I had dreamed the whole thing. Stacy very kindly informed me that she had indeed posted instructions… for cooking a SPAGHETTI SQUASH in the crock pot.
So here is a post about cooking a PUMPKIN in your crock pot. Now if you google cooking pumpkins in your crock pot (Which I have. More than once.), you will find that everybody – and I mean everybody – tells you to cut your pumpkin apart before putting it in the crock pot. I say No Way! Cutting a pumpkin is hard work, and I prefer to work smarter, not harder. The trick is to purchase pumpkins that are small enough to fit in your crock pot – I’ve found that most of the Pie Pumpkins available will fit perfectly, although some need to have the stem cut off. If you want to cook up your jack-o-lantern pumpkin, well then, you’re on your own, honey. I don’t think that’s gonna fit in your crock pot unless you hack it into bits first. And then, what’s the point?
One more thing: Stacy put water in the crock pot when cooking the spaghetti squash, but I’ve cooked 4 pumpkins so far and haven’t used water with any of them. So you can put water in there if you want, but mine seem to cook fine without it.
Crock Pot Pumpkin
Wash your pumpkin thoroughly. Take a very sharp knife and poke a few slits in it so as to prevent a pumpkin explosion in your crock pot.
Place it in the slow cooker. If the stem prevents the lid from closing completely, carefully cut it off.
Cook on High 2-4 hours (depending on the size of your pumpkin) or on low for 6-8 hours.
Turn off crock pot and remove the lid; allow the pumpkin to cool a bit before removing from the crock pot (using hot pads if it’s still pretty hot).
Cut the pumpkin in half, and scoop out the seeds and pulp with a spoon and discard.
Scoop out the flesh with a spoon and puree in a blender or food processor. Cool completely and store in the refrigerator for a few days or in the freezer for a few months.