What To Look For When Choosing A Pie Pumpkin

Autumn is without a doubt the best time of year for many. Harvests are wrapping up with the rapid collection of corn, grapes, and apples being picked by eager hands. Oktoberfest is just around the corner and fall treats like caramel apples and roasted sunflower seeds are everywhere. But the one thing most look forward to every year are the pumpkins.

Orange pumpkins are an autumnal classic for a reason, you can use them for decoration, of course, but most people are excited to eat them in as many desserts as we can conjure up (via Second Harvest). Once pumpkins are ready to harvest, they can be turned into cheesecake, cookies, donuts, and, one of our favorites, pie. And though most people play it safe and go to the store for some good old-fashioned pumpkin puree, some brave souls looking to harvest their own fruit need to know how to pick the perfect pumpkin.

Good things come in small packages

The term "Go big or go home" does not apply to pounding the perfect baking pumpkin. Now, if you're looking to carve some squash into jack-o'-lanterns or use them to impress your neighbors, by all means, try to find the biggest, grandest pumpkin and set it proudly on your front stoop. But just don't use it as an ingredient in your pumpkin pies. When it comes to baking, you should look for smaller sugar pumpkins that are smoother and sweeter than the bigger varieties (via Today).

The kind of pumpkin you should be looking for is called "Baby Bear" (via Gardeners Path). Cute, right? The Baby Bear pumpkin is short and round like, well, a baby bear. According to True Leaf Market, this small variety is amazing to eat. The seeds can be easily devoured after being cooked and seasoned and the sweet flesh of these gold mines can be roasted and transformed into a pie. They weigh in just under 2 pounds when ripe and, because of their size, they are easy to transport and to store.