How to Decorate a Pumpkin Pie: 3 Ways
Jazz up the Thanksgiving classic with these 3 Festive Pumpkin Pie Decorations! Finish the baked pie with with a cinnamon whipped cream flower, toasted meringue, or cut-out pie crust leaves. Which one would you choose to display on your dessert table?
Not making your own pie this year? Well these decorations work for a pre-made pie too! Give store-bought pumpkin pie a total glow up with these tips:
How to make a whipped cream flower
This extra-large flower turns any custard pie into a show-stopper. The pattern is mesmerizing and much easier than you might think to create.
Stabilized whipped cream helps the petals keep their shape. Fill the center with anything for chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, or even roasted hazelnuts. Use a petal piping tip to create the petals using the same technique as this Orange Salted Honey Cake. Remember to always keep the narrow end of the piping tip away from the center of the pie.
How to Make A Toasted Meringue Pumpkin Pie
They WOW-factor comes from all of the different textures of this toasted topping. It’s important to create different patterns, as the edges of the piped meringue are what will catch the flame of a culinary torch and turn brown.
Use a combination of star and petal piping tips to pie zig-zags, ruffles, bit, and bobs. Or get creative! Use whichever tips and designs you’d like!
Easy Pie Dough Cut Outs
Using leftover pie dough to create edible accents is an easy way to dress up any pie. They key here is to bake the cut-outs separately from the pie. Baking them separately allows you to control how brown they turn when baked and keeps them from sinking into the pie.
I favor plunger cookie cutters for pie crust. They add a bit more texture, like the veins on the leaves. Don’t forget to add the egg wash so they bake up nice and golden brown!
Pumpkin Pie Decorations
Use ½ of the all-butter pie dough to create a single bottom crust.
For the Meringue Topping
2 egg whites
⅔ cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Fill a saucepan with a couple inches of water and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, whisk together the egg whites and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer. Place the mixer bowl on top of the saucepan to create a double-boiler and lower the heat on the stove to maintain a simmer. Whisking intermittently, heat the egg mixture until it reaches 160F on a candy thermometer (or until very hot to the touch).
Carefully move the bowl back to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on high speed until the meringue returns to room temperature and holds stiff peaks, about 8 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix until combined.
Fill two piping bags fitted with different piping tips (I used star and petal tips) with the meringue. Pipe meringue stars, kisses, and zigzag patterns on top of the completely cooled pie. Gently toast with a culinary torch until the edges of the meringue is golden brown.
Alternatively, pile on the meringue and swirl it around using the back of a spoon. You want lots of texture here so the edges get all toasted and brown. Use a broiler to brown the meringue if you don’t have a culinary torch.
For the Cinnamon Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy cream
2 to 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Whip cream and sugar together until soft peaks form. Add the remaining ingredients and whip until thick and smooth. Do not over-mix.
Fill a piping bag fitted with a large petal tip with the whipped cream. Keeping the narrow end of the piping tip facing away from the center of a cooled pie, pipe petals around the edges of the pie. Continue to pipe concentric circles, leaving the center open. Fill the center of the flower with chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, sprinkles, and chopped nuts.
For the Cut-Out Pie Leaves
Pie dough scraps or single pie dough recipe
1 tablespoon milk
Roll out pie dough scraps (or a second batch of pie dough) on a lightly floured surface. Cut out leaves with cookie cutters or a paring knife. Place the cut-outs on a lined baking sheet and chill in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400F. Mix together the egg and milk to create a wash and brush over the chilled cut-outs. Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Place the leaves on top of a cooled pie.