Kick up your pumpkin pie game this Thanksgiving by making this Festive Cornucopia Pumpkin Pie. It’s easier to make than you may think. Let me show you how.
By now you know I love to embellish and add a flourish to my food, especially around the holidays.
For me, it’s exciting and fun to bring something to the table that’s traditional, and yet unexpected and new.
Enter stage left, Mr. Cornucopia Crusted Pumpkin Pie, and take your rightful place in the spotlight.
**Please Note – The printable recipe card with detailed instructions and complete ingredient measurements for making Cornucopia Pie is available near the end of this post.
I’ve decided to show you two ways in which you can make and serve this pie Cornucopia Crusted Pumpkin Pie. With, and without the color.
I actually can’t decide which way I like better as I feel they’re both charming in their own ways. Plus, not everyone has an array of gel food color in their kitchen pantry to choose from, so I’m keeping it real for you.
What do you think? Both pretty cute, right?
Before I go any further with this post, I have to add a disclaimer to this post as is it not so much a “recipe” as it is a “method” for embellishing your homemade, or store-bought, pumpkin pie.
For the purpose of this post, and to keep it less intimidating than it may already be, I used a store-bought pumpkin pie, and a package of store-bought rolled pie crust which can be found in the refrigerated section of any grocery store.
However, for those of you who like to bake everything from scratch, I commend you and welcome you to make this pie your own way using your scratch methods and recipes.
If you happen to be looking for a scratch pie dough recipe, and scratch pumpkin pie recipe, please check out the following excellent resources:
My wonderful pie friend, Kate McDermott, author of the book “Art Of Pie” shares her recipe HERE for basic pie dough (I’ll also leave an Amazon affiliate link for her book down below, so don’t forget to look for it).
And here’s a recipe for scratch pumpkin pie from Rachel Farnsworth of The Stay At Home Chef, which she calls Easy Peasy Homemade Pumpkin Pie.
Tips and tricks for making this decorative pie;
- First, is that the pie needs to be partially baked before you add any of the pie crust embellishments on top.
If the pie is not partially baked, the add-on crust pieces will brown and most likely burn before the whole of the pie is set and cooked through.
- The second tip I have for you is to keep the pie dough for the embellishments chilled until you’re ready to roll and cut.
Then, roll it out the dough to ¼” thickness on a lightly floured surface, and use a very sharp paring knife to cut out all the pieces.
*Note – Feel free to use whatever type of fruits and vegetables you like as the “bounty” of your cornucopia.
I happen to love pumpkins and corn and thought they’d give the cornucopia crusted pumpkin pie a nice traditional feel, and the apples and grapes were added for the pop of color I knew they’d bring.
- My third tip for you is to use an actual “tip” (as in piping tip) to cut out the grapes (should you decide to use grapes in your design).
As you’ll see in the photos and video, I used the large end of a piping bag tip (the side that fits onto a piping bag) as my cutter, and then I used a skewer to pop the pie dough out of the tip after each cut, as needed.
- The fourth and final tip I have for you is for when you’re scoring the dough, like for the cornucopia basket itself, the corn kernels, and leaves, don’t slice all the way through the pie dough.
There were a few instances where you’ll see I didn’t take my own advice, and it was harder to move those pieces into place. Use a light hand and take your time.
I hope all these tips and tricks will help, not hinder, your desire to make this cornucopia crusted pumpkin pie.
They’re not meant to intimidate you, they’re meant to inspire and bring out the food artist within YOU!
You can do this!!
The easy instructions for making cornucopia pie;
- Roll out your pie dough to ¼” thickness.
- Use a plate that is roughly the same size circumference as your pie plate (gently press it into the dough so it makes a slight imprint) and use that as your guide as to how big your cornucopia basket should be.
- Use a sharp paring knife to cut out a cornucopia making it crescent in shape with a wide end, and a pointy end.
- Carefully cut out all the fruit and vegetable elements to fill your cornucopia.
- If needed you can find fruit and vegetable templates on the web.
- Once all your pieces are cut, detailed, and scored, remove the unused dough (you can bake that up in separate pieces with cinnamon and sugar so you don’t waste it), and place your fruit and vegetable pieces on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Start arranging your cornucopia and its contents onto a partially baked pumpkin pie, making sure to cut a slit in the cornucopia and then nestle the contents under the slice so it appears the contents are spilling out of the basket.
- Continue arranging the remaining fruit and vegetable pieces as you see fit, using a light touch of water to stick the pie dough pieces to one another.
- Mix together an egg and a tablespoon of water and gently brush the egg wash over the completed design.
- Bake the pie to completion (so it’s set in the center) at 350-degrees and the cornucopia design is lightly golden brown.
- Cool completely, and serve, or take a few extra steps to add color to your pie.
- If you are painting your pie dough, divide the remaining egg wash between 6 small cups (paper cups work well for this) and add a few drops of gel food color to each cup. I used orange, green, purple, red, green, and yellow.
- Using a clean paintbrush, gently paint the colored egg wash onto the pie crust pieces, adding a second coat if you’d like more vivid colors.
- Continue painting until your design is complete and return the pie back into a preheated 350-degree oven for an additional 20 minutes to set the color. Cool completely and serve.
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If you’re familiar with my blog and recipes then you probably recognize my Turkey Crusted Pumpkin Pie.
This particular pie has been pinned on Pinterest a remarkable 237K times (and counting) and has been shared all over the internet.
I’m completely in awe at how well this little turkey crusted pie design has done (and continues to do) and am SO thankful for how it has resonated with people and how many people contacted me saying how successful they were when making their own Turkey Pumpkin Pies at home.
Now you may think that I’m trying to capture lightning in a bottle and have the same successes a second time around with this new Cornucopia Crusted Pumpkin Pie design…but, can you blame me?!! HaHa.
In all actuality, the success I’ve had with that pie has only spurred on my creativity and made it more and more exciting for me to push my artistic culinary boundaries. It’s what I do. It’s who I am. You’ll notice it in my blog’s tagline.
I sincerely hope you’ve enjoyed this post on how to make a Festive Cornucopia Crusted 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!