Tipsy Pumpkin Butter Pie, Dairy Free, Gluten Free

Until this year, leftover turkey sandwiches were the only thing I really enjoyed about Thanksgiving. I’m also a sucker for stuffing and mashed potatoes. It’s even better if the stuffing is a lot like that box stuff that everyone eats but no one admits to liking.

There is something about Thanksgiving. I don’t have a single memory of the holiday from when I was a kid – but my brothers swear we had turkey and all the trimmings just like everyone else.

As an adult, we continued the tradition of a Thanksgiving with all the trimmings. For a time we even had the requisite farm-house in Vermont to complete the picture. I also remember that we ran out of hot water every single year because everyone loved coming to Vermont for the holiday. The turkey was dry.  The pumpkin pie unmemorable. But the cold showers and mountains of laundry are etched in my brain forever.

And then when we moved to the left coast, no one wanted to come visit for the holiday which turned out to be a little sad.  I never did really learn to love Thanksgiving food, but I did miss the crazy gathering of the assorted friends and relatives and the endless piles of food and how the dishwasher always was running even if we had no hot water left. The cold showers, the endless laundry – not so much.

Because Thanksgiving should be about more than stuffing, this is about pie.

Reinventing that boring pumpkin pie was this year’s late summer challenge. Neither of us tolerate dairy in huge quantities anymore and the pie was begging for a makeover.

The 1st test was not bad. The 2nd try a little more promising and the last two were great. There are a few tricks to making this pie taste great, but heck – even if you just throw it together, it will taste terrific.

At last, Thanksgiving will be more than just about stuffing – it’ll be about stuffing, mashed potatoes and pie. I’m thankful.

Tipsy Pumpkin Butter Pumpkin Pie, Dairy Free, Gluten Free
The spices in the pie provide a nice balance and back note to the pumpkin and coconut milk. You can punch it up more by using more than a dash or a heavier dash. I'm a big fan of cloves so I always hit the container a little harder than say the cinnamon. Use what you think smells good. Your nose is your guide with this pie. The pie is one that mellows overnight and the flavors blend together quite well with a little patience. Best to make this the day before you need it and let it cure. The coconut milk is pronounced the first day, but the second day, is only a back note hint. The Whiskey has a chance to mellow if left to cure and is sublime on day two. The dairy free crust even benefits from an overnight camp-out in the refrigerator. I've no idea why, but the entire pie was so good the next day we ate the entire thing in one sitting. Yes. Oink.
Pie Crust
  • 300 grams GF Flour (150 brown rice flour, 100 grams white rice flour, 50 grams starch)
  • pinch salt
  • pinch sugar
  • 200 grams vegetable shortening (spectrum)
  • 50-100 grams ice water
Pie Filling
  • 425 grams (one 15 oz. can) organic pumpkin puree
  • 240 grams (8 oz. jar) organic pumpkin butter (think one with fewer ingredients)
  • 380 grams (one 12oz-ish) can full fat unsweetened coconut milk (Thai brand)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 120 grams (heaping ⅓ cup) cup organic maple syrup
  • 75 grams (about ½ scant cup) brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons whiskey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 heaping tablespoon starch (tapioca, corn or arrowroot)
  • dash kosher salt
  • dash cinnamon
  • dash cloves
  • dash powdered ginger
  • dash black pepper
  • dash lemon peel powder
Pie Crust
  1. Weigh the flours, add in the salt and sugar. Using a fork or a food processor, pulse or work in the cold shortening until it looks like large peas. Add in about half the liquid and keep adding until the dough forms a ball. At this point you can pat it into your pie pans (it'll make two 9 inch pie shells, topless). Form into a pretty design on the edges and make certain the top is a little higher than needed and that where it bends is nice and thick because it will shrink slightly once baked.
Pie Filling
  1. Weigh and mix all ingredients together in one bowl. Strain into partially prebaked 9 inch pies shells (two). You want to strain it because there will be some solids from the coconut milk, spices and pumpkin.
Making the Pie
  1. Prebake (empty) pie crust at 425 for 10 minutes. At that point, fill each hot 9 inch pie crust with pumpkin mixture and bake at 425 for 10 minutes. Turn oven to 350 and bake for 20 minutes. Turn oven to 325 and bake about 20-35 minutes more or until center is just barely jiggly and knife inserted comes out pretty much clean. Baking time varies by oven and the mood of the pie. Just keep an eye on it. You want the crust to be golden and the center to be fully cooked.
  2. Cool on a rack. Refrigerate overnight wrapped loosely in plastic. Bring to room temperature to serve.


  1. Whiskey in pie, sign me up. I bet it does work beautifully with all the fall flavors. I’m going to have to try your pie crust, mine keep falling apart. I have been rolling them out, though. Maybe I just need to skip that step and press it into the pie shell like you suggest. Hmm, I see more pie experiments in my future.

  2. Love the tipsy in the title…cute! I am fascinated with the combination of pumpkin and coconut milk. Totally unique for me. Great idea! I use Thai brands too when using coconut powder or coconut milk in liquid form. I can truly say the Asian versions are totally good when it comes to coconut flavored products. I love to serve this for the holidays…the usual flavors with a twist, a tipsy one at that!

  3. Lisa, I have been looking for a vegan pumpkin pie for TG at a newly vegan friend’s home this year. I will be making this! Thanks!

    • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

      That’s great! Enjoy it. It really does taste best 2nd day when the liqueur and coconut mellow out. For some reason the crust was great the next day, too. Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Sounds delicious. What whiskey is gluten free?

    • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

      Distilled liqueur is gluten free as long as there no flavor additives that contain gluten. Better brands are the way to go. But you can always contact the manufacturer if you have questions about a specific brand or check their web page. If in doubt leave it out. It’s just there for a flavor punch.


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