Does canned pumpkin contain real pumpkin? We went to the grocery store to find out.

Canned pumpkin
Canned pumpkin (KPRC)

HOUSTON – Have you wondered if your favorite canned pumpkin brand actually has real pumpkin?

Several reports have surfaced that some of the most popular brand of canned pumpkin does not contain legit pumpkin.

To answer the question, coincidentally, I had to do some shopping at my local H‑E‑B. They had several brands of canned pumpkin in stock, and so I decided to compare each of them.

Libby, one of the most popular canned pumpkin brands listed their ingredients as “pumpkin puree” along with other preservatives such as dextrose.

Libby's Canned Pumpkin contains "100% pureed pumpkin" as their ingredients. (KPRC)

“Pumpkin puree,” according to a report from the FDA, contains little to no pumpkin and can contain several types of sweet squash.

To my surprise, most of the canned pumpkin brands are either labeled as “100% pure pumpkin” or just “pumpkin puree” on their ingredients list, which can fool the consumer trying to find legit pumpkin inside of a metal can.

In a report from the FDA, pumpkin and several types of sweet squash are mixed intentionally to obtain the same texture that is well-liked by consumers.

Canned pumpkin (KPRC)

Even the brands labeled “organic” are made with “100% pumpkin puree” which, after reading the report from the FDA, may lead to believe that it can also contain squash.

So what does real pumpkin puree look like? It should look like baby food with a golden orange hue once you process two small pumpkins, according to a recipe by The Pioneer Woman.

Once you add ingredients such as brown sugar and cinnamon if you’re making pumpkin pie, you may expect the puree to turn a darker hue once cooked.

If you would rather avoid the canned pumpkin filling for your next pumpkin pie, there are several from-scratch pumpkin pie recipes that are easy to follow, such as this one.

Will you continue to purchase canned pumpkin despite the latest reports? Tell us in the comments below.


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