How To Dehydrate Pumpkin Plus Making Pumpkin Flour

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It’s so easy to get sick of something when it’s in season. God planned everything so well, you get so sick of something that it takes 3 seasons to start missing it again. Pumpkin is no exception, and some would argue that pumpkin is the perfect example of this “in-season overload” in the Fall. I can relate. After all you can only drink so many pumpkin lattes, eat so much pumpkin flavor fro-yo, or eat so many pumpkin scones before the pumpkin spirit just up and leaves you. But even though you’ve been bombarded with pumpkin this or that for the better part of 2 months already, bear with me as I explain how to preserve it and also explain that your love/hate relationship with pumpkin should really be more love than hate.

Pumpkins are really a super food; they contain high levels of beta-carotene and potassium. Both the flesh and the seeds contain a ton of other nutrients and the best part is that they are fairly easy to grow. We all love coconut oil and should stock-up on it but in an emergency situation or in a collapse it’s possible to run out. Unless you live in a tropical climate coconut trees are a little difficult to grow. Pumpkins are not difficult to grow in cooler climates and pumpkin seed oil is almost as good for you as coconut oil. The meat of the pumpkin is versatile and can be used in savory, sweet dishes and yeast bread. It’s a starchy vegetable so it will provide more calories than say a cucumber. Also it’s really easy to preserve. Pumpkin should be a preppers friend.

How To Dehydrate Pumpkin Plus Making Pumpkin Flour


Start with good looking pie pumpkins. You can actually use any kind of pumpkin but pie pumpkins have more meat and more seeds than the bigger ones, which these days are mainly grown for decoration. Also, pie pumpkins taste more like pumpkin.


Peel your pumpkins. I use a potato peeler, but you can use a paring knife if you are more comfortable with it. The skin is a bit thicker than a potato so it’s personal preference.


Which one does not belong? I had this butternut squash sitting in my pantry about to go bad so I thought I would peel it and dehydrate it as well. It’s the exact same process for both squashes. As you may know butternut squash can be substituted for pumpkin and vica versa. They are very similar. Pumpkins do have more seeds though.


After your pumpkins have been skinned remove the stem.


Then cut the pumpkin in half.


Take out the seeds.


Then scrape out the stringy bits. This is a picture of my son using a grapefruit spoon. His idea. I like to use a melon baller. I suggested the melon baller to my 14 year old but he insisted on doing things his way.  What is that old saying, “hire a teenager while they still know everything”? Yeah, that’s the stage we’re at right now. Oh well, I’m not complaining. I was happy to have someone model for you so I could handle my camera without pumpkin goo hands.


Since my intention is to make pumpkin flour out of some of the pumpkin I wanted the pumpkin shredded into tiny bits. I remember last year my grinder did not like the big chunks. If you cut the pumpkin into chunks they will get almost rock hard. So imagine your grinder having to grind little pumpkin pebbles. It takes awhile and it’s hard on the motor.


I did want to dehydrate some of the pumpkin as chunks to throw into soups or stews. So I thought I would put this dicer to the test.


To be fair I have to mention that I did break it, but not on the pumpkin. I was dicing onions and the onions were getting to my eyes so badly that I couldn’t see. So I did not have the top in the proper position when I pushed down and the hook snapped off. After using this for a while on the pumpkin I found that it was really difficult to push down and that this dicer is better suited for nothing harder that onions. I’m not even sure I’d put potatoes in it.  I do however like it for tomatoes, peppers and onions. It’s great for making salsa but not pumpkin chunks. So I chopped up the rest with a knife.


Load your trays.


I set my Excalibur dehydrator to 135 °F for about 24 hours. The chunks take longer to dehydrate than the shreds so depending on how you cut up your pumpkin you might want to adjust the time.


Here are the chunks of pumpkin dehydrated.


Here are the shreds of pumpkin dehydrated.


You might remember awhile back that I lost my little coffee grinder. I got a replacement that I really like. The grinding bowl is removable and hopefully I won’t have the same problem of not being able to get the blades completely clean. You can use a coffee grinder to make powder or flour out of your dehydrated food. However, just understand that that’s not really what the manufacturer had in mind when they designed the coffee grinder and that you will likely wear your grinder out faster than if you just grind coffee and a few herbs now and then. It does help to only put in tiny bits of whatever you want to grind. That’s why I shredded the pumpkin to grind and I’m not grinding the chunks.


I recently purchased the twister jar for my BlendTec so I thought I’d give my coffee grinder a break and use it.


The twister jar is quite a bit smaller than the WildSide jar or the FourSide jar from BlendTec but it is made to grind dry ingredients and nut butters.


You twist the top in the opposite direction that the blender motor is rotating your food. The top is not liquid or powder proof so once the food is ground up into a powder a bit of it escapes from the top.


At this point I could put on the liquid proof lid on and grind up the powder even finer, but alas I am lazy and honestly this is fine for throwing into some bread or other baked good. You can replace 1/4 cup of wheat flour with pumpkin flour in yeast bread.  You can also reconstitute pumpkin flour with hot water to make pumpkin puree.


I like to use the FoodSaver to vacuum pack all of my dehydrated food. I use both the regular mouth and wide mouth accessories. Label and put away.

Dehydrating pumpkin is super easy. If you preserve it for later in the year maybe you won’t have to eat so much of it now that you get sick of it and you can enjoy the health benefits all year long.

  • Emelda says:

    This is so beautiful. Thank you for this excellent idea

  • Cathy Price says:

    I was just staring at a load of pumpkin and buttercup squash trying to think of what I could do with them, besides canning. Thanks for the info. I’m going to try doing squash flour too. We shall see what happens.

  • Faye says:

    What a great idea Jennifer. This post came at exactly the right time. Windows clean. Etc etc etc, Now I can go back and finish off the squashes. Thank you

  • Carol says:

    Thanks so much for this information. It came at just the right time for me. I have been considering dehydrating some, but wasn’t sure just how I should do it. I did dehydrate some zucchini real thin slices sprinkled with a little salt, and we just love to eat it raw.

  • Wayne Johnson says:

    This is a great article! Makes me sad for all the squash I’ve wasted, but using a Vitamix sure sounds like a winner— of course, now I need to buy one….. Pumpkin in my smoothies— now that is a wonderful thought…!!

  • Kathy in Idaho says:

    Great ideas. I never thought about doing this either. I’ll do this with my pumpkins this year. I’ve been busy making zucchini noodles out of the several large zucchini that we found hidden way down under the plants.

  • cheryl coan says:

    Thank you Jennifer, I never would have thought of pumpkin dehydrated, awesome, someday I will try it, Question, does it have to be pie pumpkins or can it be halloween pumpkins?

  • Janette says:

    Thanks for this info. I used to bake my pumpkin then puree and dehydrate. This method is so much quicker. I am wondering about the enzymes are they still active since the pumpkin wasn’t blanched? All other sites say to blanch first just wanted your opinion on this.

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Janette,

      You have to dehydrate below 118 degrees Fahrenheit to preserve enzymes, so I wouldn’t worry.

      • Janette says:

        Thanks for the info. Your method is so much quicker and less time consuming than other ones that say to precook or blanch the pumpkin. Thanks for sharing.

      • Sandy says:

        Would this be why my hubbard and buttercup squash turned pale even though it was tored in dark conditions?

  • opero says:

    Am to start making flour .what am asking does it contain starch cause I want to make it for food like posho

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Yes, pumpkin contains starch it’s a member of the winter squash family.

      • Sandy says:

        You know far more about food science than most! Would there be a distinction between carbohydrates in general and starchy starchy carbo-s? Opero did not describe posho, but I had a feeling the term may mean something like polenta. So I looked it up and the definition I got was for a starchy flour dish aka Ugali cooked in boiling water into a porridge that can be cooled and served as a staple carbohydrate for people in Central or Southern Africa!. Polenta! Pumpkin doesn’t hold a shape the way that corn, millet cassava flour would hold together when boiled and put in a mold, so I am wondering if there is a category of carbohydrates that makes grain flour thicken in hot water, hold a shape and still be tender? Or is it a matter of percentage of carbohydrate?

        • Jennifer Osuch says:

          Hi Sandy,

          I’m not a scientist, but I would think it has to do with the amount of starch and what kind of starch other than what’s in the grain.

  • Marilyn Jones says:

    Pumpkin flour (powder) is expensive to buy so I was excited to come across your site. Do you know approximately how much shredded pumpkin you would have to dehydrate to make one cup of pumpkin powder? Thank you for your expertise.

  • Kara says:

    Do you have any recipes for pumpkin cookies with your pumpkin flour? I would like to make a pumpkin cookie with the texture of a normal cookie. I was wondering if it could still have the pumpkin flavor, but be less like a cake or a muffin.

  • Jenny says:

    Hi Jenny,
    Im wondering how the pumpkin tastes in its shredded dehydrated form? can you just munch on it as is?
    possibly adding cinnomn for a tasty snack or is it too hard to munch? If its to hard, is there something you could do, like brush with coconut oil to make it more crunchy?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Jenny,

      Yes, you can try it in it’s dry state to see if you like it. Yes, adding a bit of oil can make it crispy, just be sure your slices are supper thin. The best way to eat it dehydrated is by slicing the pumpkin into chips instead of shredding it.

  • Cindy says:

    I love this, thanks! I have Cinderella pumpkins which are quite large and we can rarely eat a whole one before it goes bad. Now I’ll dehydrate half a pumpkin every time we make pumpkin soup.

  • Ade says:

    Hi Jenny. Thanks for this post. I have this big pumpkin at home and was thinking of preserving it. The flour idea came to my mind and I decided to research on it before doing it. I found your post very useful. However, I want to ask that can I oven dry since I don’t have a dehydratdehydrator?

  • Simone Rezik says:

    Hello…great idea to dehydrate pumpkin. In germany we don’t do it or it is not known that it is possible. We love pumpkin and in summer it is difficult to buy fresh pumpkins. So if I dehydrate pumpkins next autumn in chunks for arabic couscous or a stew is it necessary to soak the dried pumpkin in water before? Or just place the dried chunks in your pot while cooking the meal? And is the cooking time similar to fresh pumpkin?
    Do you spice the pumpkin before dehydrating with salt or pepper?
    Even the idea of pumpkin flour is great for bread.
    Thank you. 😉

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Simone,
      You should re-hydrate the pumpkin before you use it in a recipe. You can do this by placing it in a pot and covering it with water. Then cook over medium to low heat until the pumpkin is completely re-hydrated. You don’t have to re-hydrate the pumpkin flour, just the pumpkin chunks before placing them in a recipe.

  • Zachary says:

    Hi this a nice idea.Can mix a portion the pumkin flour with the locally available maize flour since its rich in Beta carotene and potassium?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Zachary,

      That sounds like a great idea!

    • Sandy says:

      I’ve made pumpkin pudding with steamed, mashed pumpkin, eggs, cream, spices and a modest amount of cornmeal, just a Tbs or two to 2 C pumpkin. Blend well and bake at 325 in a well buttered bowl. It holds together better than custard pie filling, is as satisfying as pie with out the fuss of a crust.

  • Mary says:

    I’ve experimented making pumpkin flour before by dehydrating the chunks and grinding up with the vitamix, but I thought the pumpkin flour was a little too gritty (something like cornmeal). Do you have any insight as to how I can make it more of a finer flour? I think I might try shredding it first this time around and I’m so glad someone else shared the fact about not peeling it first. I use the pumpkin flour mostly for pumpkin pancakes, but last Thanksgiving I used it by mixing it with coconut oil, salt, and water and pressing it into a pie pan for a gluten free pumpkin pie. It was delicious and those who aren’t able to eat gluten appreciated the ability to have pumpkin pie.

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Mary,

      You might try running the pumpkin flour through a sifter and then running it back through your blender.

      • I sifted the pumpkin flour as I emptied my blender. One the finest powder was removed, I add it back to the blender and just kept repeating the process. It was way more time consuming, but I did get a better product in the end. Not a perfect product, just a better product.

      • Lynda says:

        This article brought lots of ideas to my mind. Thanks for it! I have some very large zucchini that need to be used up so am planning to make flour with them using this method. It will not have much flavour so think it might work out for a thickener. What do you think of this idea? We are a gluten free family so needing alternatives.
        Also wondering if not ground as fine if it could be used as a replacement for cornmeal. Corn is also a no no for me. Your thoughts would be appreciated.

  • Nasar says:

    My creative friend

    Is there any pumpkins flour in the market ?

    if so, what’s the brand.

  • Linda says:

    After vacuum sealing, how long will the product last on the shelf?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      It depends on the conditions you store the dehydrated pumpkin in. Keeping it vacuum sealed like you mention will help it last longer. It should last at least a year. I know a lot of people who have it last for several years.

  • Rachel Lyn says:

    I’ve just recently gotten into dehydrating, and I have to admit that your blog posts on the subject have been the most helpful for me. You discuss things that most people forget or just don’t talk about. So THANK YOU! Please keep these posts coming. I turn most of my dehydrated veggies into powder so I love that you discuss that quite a bit. So thanks for discussing that in this post.

    • Cheryl Abdelnour says:

      When you use the Foodsaver to can the powdered items, does it clog up your tube? I want to put cinnamon, dehydrated potato flakes, baking soda, brown sugar, ect. into canning jars and am afraid
      of what it might do to the Foodsaver tubing.

      • Missy says:

        Cheryl, I put a paper muffin cup at the top to keep the powder from being sucked up into the tube….small size for the narrow jars and large size for the wide jars.

        • Hixinthestix says:

          You can also put powders into small brown paper bags and fold them over before putting into the vacuum bag. Stops powders from going into the machine but the paper let’s the air out.

  • Gloria says:

    I have the same chopper and the only things it doesn’t chop well are the squashes and turnips because they’re just too dense. It will do carrots and potatoes easily but the slices shouldn’t be too thick, maybe 1/4″ or so. I dice masses of celery with it for dehydrating. For pulverizing, I use my Magic Bullet as it’s all I have and it does a great job. Check thrift stores and yard sales for spare chopper parts.

  • dbw says:

    I do something similar. After I buy several on super duper clearance after the holidays, I wash the pumpkin, bake it, remove seeds then put flesh and skin in the vitamix. Pour onto dehydrator sheets, then pulverize again in the vitamix after it’s dehydrated. Stores beautifully! Plus no skin is wasted, you can’t even tell it’s in there!

    • Guinan says:

      I do the same, but I didn’t know you can also use the peel. This info is gonna save me lots of tme (for peeling) next time around. Thanks!

    • Alyce says:

      My only concern with the skin is what chemicals are on it? If you grew it yourself you would know.

  • melissa says:

    I bet it would make a great additive to smoothies, i make banana, yogurt, pumpkin, honey smoothies with p7mpkin pie spice. I bet the powdered pumkin would work well in the *off* season (i also freeze pureed pumpkin in ice cube trays for smoothie or cooking use). Going to try this pumpkin powder!

  • Barb says:

    When I am working with onions I wear swim goggles, it keeps the eyes from being irritated. I never thought about pumpkin flour before. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  • Audrey says:

    How much water do you add to the pumpkin flour to get pumpkin puree?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Audrey, It depends on what you want to use it for. If you want to use it for pie and have it be the consistency of the stuff you can buy commercially canned. I would start out with 1 T pumpkin flour to 2 T water.

  • What do you use pumpkin flour for? As a thickener?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Amber,
      You can use it as a thickener or you can use it to replace 1/4 to 1/3 cup of flour in your homemade bread.

  • Mike the Gardener says:

    Dehydrating the pumpkins never even crossed my mind. What a great idea!

    • Deborah Rodgers says:

      Im going to try canned pumpkin and use unsweetened applesauce in it instead of sugar n then add spices i use in pies. I’ll then dehydrate in small circles size of cookie. Hope to try tomorrow

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