This adorable Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie is easy to recreate and will amaze your family and friends this holiday season. Let me show you how easy it is to assemble and bake this fun Thanksgiving holiday treat.
**Please Note - The printable recipe card with detailed instructions, complete ingredient measurements, and nutritional information for making Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie is available at the end of this post. OR you can hit the "jump to recipe" button (found above) to be taken directly to the recipe.
The ingredient list:
**Note - The following lists of ingredients plus kitchen tools and equipment contain affiliate links (highlighted in blue) for your consideration and shopping convenience.
- 2 - 9" round pie crust (store-bought or homemade)
- all-purpose flour (for rolling the pie dough)
- pumpkin puree
- granulated sugar
- ground cinnamon
- grated nutmeg
- evaporated milk (not sweetened condensed milk)
- pure vanilla extract
- ground ginger
- ground cloves
- kosher salt
Kitchen tools and equipment needed:
- large mixing bowl
- cardboard or cardstock (for making the pattern)
- pen or pencil
- rolling pin
- paring knife (for cutting out the pie dough pattern)
- spatula or offset spatula
- measuring cups and spoons
- baking sheet
- parchment paper
- pie pan (if using homemade crust)
- small round bowl (4" circumference)
- nutmeg grater (optional)
- cake lifter (optional)
Why this recipe works?
Because the pie is tasty, and the decorations are not difficult or intimidating.
I've done my best to give you easy step-by-step instructions and descriptions but the best pies are the ones that are unique with your own style and personality.
Have fun with this and you'll be as proud as a peacock (um, make that turkey) with how your pie turns out.
Oh, don't forget to tag me across all the social media platforms (@kudoskitchen) with a photo of your turkey crust pie because I'd love to see your edible work of art!
What is the key to assembling this turkey pumpkin pie?
The major key to assembling the turkey crust (so he doesn't drown in all that luscious pumpkin filling) is to bake the pumpkin pie partially before adding Mr. Tom Turkey on top.
That way the custard pie will be set enough so the turkey crust will sit on top of the pie and won't be eaten up and fall to the bottom of the pie, rendering him invisible.
That would be no fun at all!
Is homemade or store-bought pie dough better for this recipe?
That depends on you!
To simplify the process of making this pumpkin pie with a turkey crust, I used some store-bought pie crust that can be found in the refrigerator section of the grocery store.
However, if you have a penchant for making your own crust, by all means, use your favorite recipe, but be sure you make enough for a double-crust pie.
Can this turkey pie crust design be done on a store-bought pumpkin pie?
Sure thing!! Whatever is easier for you!
If using a store-bought pumpkin pie (as shown in the video), start by baking the pie halfway before adding the turkey crust.
OR, you can pre-bake the turkey and add him to the fully baked pie as described below.
Can I assemble and bake the turkey crust by itself first?
You sure can!
I've heard of a lot of people who prefer to bake their turkey crust and pumpkin pie separately and then lay the baked turkey crust on top of the finished pumpkin pie.
If this sounds like a method you'd like to try, make sure to watch the baking of the turkey closely.
I suggest assembling him on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and sprayed lightly with baking spray.
Bake him in a preheated oven for 12-15 minutes (keeping a close eye on him so he doesn't burn).
Once he is golden brown, remove him from the oven and allow him to cool completely before adding him to the top of the cooked pumpkin pie. A large cake mover works well for this.
Check out some of the turkey crust pumpkin pies that have been made by readers like you over the years?
Can this turkey crust pumpkin pie be made in advance and frozen?
YES!! I've done it several times!
- Cool the pie completely after baking.
- Once fully cooled, wrap the pie well in 2 - 3 layers of cling wrap and freeze for up to 2 months.
- Thaw at room temperature for 1 hour and unwrap the pie. Continue thawing until no longer frozen.
The step-by-step photo instructions for making a pumpkin pie with a turkey crust:
- Roll out one pie crust to fit a 9" pie plate.
- Roll the dough loosely onto the rolling pin and transfer it to a waiting 9" pie plate.
- Carefully unroll the dough...
- Gently press the dough into the corners of the plate and up the sides.
- Crimp the top of the crust however you like.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt, ground ginger, grated nutmeg, and cloves.
- In a large bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, and vanilla.
- Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and whisk well to combine.
- Pour the filling into the prepared pie crust.
- Once the pie is filled, partially bake it in a preheated 375-degree oven for 40-45 minutes.
- While the pie is baking, roll out the second pie crust and start trimming the pie crust pieces to form the turkey body.
- Use water on your finger to "glue" the turkey beak and waddle to the neck and head.
- Using more water, carefully transfer the turkey neck to the body (a spatula works well for this).
- Use a small piece of cardboard (from the back of a small note pad), and draw out two sizes of feathers, one longer, and one shorter.
- Cut out the cardboard feathers to use as a pattern.
- Use a paring knife to trim at least 15 feathers (both sizes) from the remaining pie crust.
- Carefully use the blade of the paring knife to score lines into the dough to resemble feathers.
- If needed, use the paring knife to gently fraction the body of the turkey to more easily determine the placement of the feathers.
- Once the pie is partially baked, it's time to start assembling the turkey on top of the pie, starting with his body.
- Use a touch of water to add the feathers, one at a time to the body of the turkey until you like the way he looks.
- Use a skewer or toothpick to make the holes for the eyes.
- When the turkey is completely assembled, return the pie to the oven and continue baking until the center of the pie is completely set and the turkey crust is lightly brown and golden.
- Cool completely before cutting and serving.
Popular homemade pie crust recipes from around the web:
*Art of the Pie Dough Recipe from Kate McDermott
*Homemade Buttery Flaky Pie Crust from Sally's Baking Addiction
*The Best Homemade Pie Crust from Cookies and Cups
*Mom's Homemade Pie Crust from (yours truly) Kudos Kitchen
This turkey pumpkin pie has been featured in the following publications:
Since his original creation, I'm as pleased as pie that this Tom turkey-decorated dessert has been featured in the following publications -
Country Living Magazine (yes, twice!)
This recipe post for my pumpkin pie with a turkey crust is also proudly featured on Meal Plan Monday.
Below is the printable recipe card along with the exact ingredient measurements and nutritional information for making today's Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie.
If you've made this recipe, or are excited to make this recipe, I'd appreciate it if you'd take a moment to leave it a star rating in the recipe card, along with a comment if you're so inclined. Thank you. 🙂
Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie
- 2 9" round pie crust
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 large eggs
- 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin pie purée
- 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 375-degrees.
- Roll out one of the pie crusts to fit slightly larger than a 9" deep dish pie plate.
- Loosely roll the pie crust upon the rolling pin and transfer it to a waiting 9" pie plate.
- Gently unroll the crust and evenly press the crust into the corners and up the sides of the plate.
- Crimp the edge of the crust with your favorite method of decoration.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, and vanilla.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk to thoroughly combine the pie filling so that it's creamy, with no lumps.
- Carefully pour the pie filling into the waiting pie crust in the pie plate.
- Partially bake in a preheated oven for 30-35 minutes.
- While the pie partially bakes, roll out the second pie crust.
- Use a small 4" - 5" bowl as the body of the turkey and use a paring knife to carefully cut around the bowl to form the body of the turkey.
- Using the paring knife cut out a neck and head shape for the turkey, along with a small triangle for the beak, and also a long skinny piece for the turkey waddle.
- Wet a finger with water and use it to attach the turkey beak and waddle to the head of the turkey.
- Using additional water (as glue) and a spatula, carefully transfer the turkey neck and head onto the bottom of the body of the turkey. Use your fingers to re-shape if needed.
- To make the feathers, use a small piece of cardboard (from the back of a notepad) and draw out two sizes of feathers (one long, and one short).
- Use scissors to cut the feathers from the cardboard. Cut at least 15 feathers (long and short) from the remaining uncut pie dough.
- Gently use the paring knife to score veins onto each feather, making sure not to cut through the dough.
- Use the paring knife to gently and evenly fraction the turkey body to help with the placement of the feathers (optional step).
- Remove the partially baked pie from the oven and use a spatula to gently place the turkey body (including the neck, head, beak, and waddle) and on top of the pie.
- Using water as glue, place the feathers one at a time onto the body of the turkey overlapping as needed, and to your liking.
- Use a toothpick or skewer to add small holes for the turkey's eyes.
- Return the turkey crust pie back to the oven and continue baking until the center of the pie is set, and the turkey crust is lightly golden (approximately 30-40 minutes)
- **NOTE - If your outer pie crust is turning too brown before the turkey is golden, cover the outer rim of the pie crust with aluminum foil and continue baking until the pie is set and the turkey is golden.
- Cool the pie completely on a wire rack before serving.
I sincerely hope you've enjoyed today's recipe for Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie as much as I've enjoyed bringing it to you!
**Note - The post above includes affiliate links. As always, I truly thank you for your support!