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put some pumpkin in that mousse

Recipe: pumpkin mousse

I didn’t completely abandon Thanksgiving, you know. Despite having seafood for three courses, we did end our meal by tipping our hats to the pumpkin pie, sort of. I love pumpkin pie and I love pumpkin, but I wanted something a little different. I chose pumpkin mousse because it was lighter, which seemed more appropriate for chasing all of that seafood.

make custard

I found this recipe on It is straightforward and pretty easy to make. The hardest part is the custard, but if you’ve made custard before then it is a no-brainer. If you haven’t made custard before, just be sure not to let it burn or cook too fast (curdle).

pour custard into the pumpkin mixture

smooth and delicious

When the custard was done, I poured it into the pumpkin and spices. This part tasted just like the filling of pumpkin pie. I let it cool in the refrigerator for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, I whipped the heavy cream to soft peaks. I reserved some of the cream for topping, and folded the rest into the pumpkin mixture.

adding the whipped cream

Even refrigerated, the mousse never quite set up as stiff as I would have preferred. So I molded it in the freezer, which worked quite well since the mousse begins to soften in minutes. The best accompaniments to the mousse are some dark chocolate glaze, whipped cream, and chopped crystallized ginger. It really rounds out the whole thing very nicely.

pumpkin mousse, plated

Pumpkin Mousse
[print recipe]

3/4 cups + 1 1/4 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup sugar
5 large egg yolks
1 1/4 cups canned pure pumpkin
2 tbsp dark rum
1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground allspice

In a medium saucepan, whisk 3/4 cup whipping cream, sugar, and egg yolks together to blend. Stir over medium-low heat until thickened to pudding consistency, about 10 minutes taking care not to let it boil. In a large bowl, mix pumpkin, rum, vanilla, ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, and allspice. Pour in the custard and mix well. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, stirring occasionally, about 40 minutes. Beat 1 1/4 cups cream to soft peaks. Reserve 1/2 cup whipped cream for garnish; cover and chill. Fold remaining whipped cream into pumpkin mixture. Cover and refrigerate mousse at least 4 hours and up to 1 day.

15 nibbles at “put some pumpkin in that mousse”

  1. Francesco says:

    This looks really super delicious!!! I just got here from taste spotting, but I will link your blog … so delicious!

  2. megan says:

    This has two layers. What is on top?

  3. Miss Shoo says:

    This looks so delish! I’ll be adding this to my list of things to make, and I will be back for more!

  4. Ashley says:

    Yum that looks amazing. I’m not usually a mousse-person but I will have to try this! And your plating is beautiful. I’m also curious what the layer on top is – the mixture before you added the heavy cream?

  5. jenyu says:

    Francesco – thanks, I like the mousse very much :)

    Megan – oh that layer *frown*. I had what I thought was some great idea to put pumpkin jello on top (it’s just gelatin with sugar and pumpkin and spices). But because the mousse didn’t set up well in the refrigerator, I froze it… except the jello is too hard when frozen. So to let it thaw long enough to be pleasant, the mousse got too runny. Long story short – I lopped it off after the photo and let it come to room temp before eating it. I omitted it the next time I served the mousse.

    Miss Shoo – great!

    Ashley – see my reply to Megan. I think the whole thing works just fine without that jello layer.

  6. peabody says:

    Good, I was waiting for you to post the recipe.

  7. veron says:

    Your photos are gorgeous – you make them so appetizing on screen I want to just reach in and grab one of those pumpkin mousse!

  8. Kevin says:

    This sounds delicious! Nice photos.

  9. jenyu says:

    Peabody – you know, if there is anything that tickles your fancy, YOU can always email me for it! :)

    Veron – aw, you’re very sweet.

    Kevin – thanks. The mousse is great! Definitely skip the pumpkin jello (the dark layer on top)

  10. Tartelette says:

    This would be perfect for Christmas Eve dinner. Light and airy, gorgeous!

  11. jenyu says:

    Yup! Definitely a great holiday-esque treat :)

  12. An Amazing Pumpkin Mousse | Culinary Cory says:

    […] This pumpkin mousse was the most amazing mousse I have ever created. It featured just the right balance of pumpkin flavor and spice. By folding whipped cream in the base before serving creates fluffy clouds of goodness. It’s a great alternative to the classic pumpkin pie. Pumpkin Mousse Adapted from Use Real Butter Blog […]

  13. Christina says:

    This looks amazing! Definitely trying it out for my family’s thanksgiving this year! I was wondering what recipe you used for that little crust-bottom in the picture, and how you got the mousse to get that shape? I really want to make it in some sort of pie-form for my family to grab at. Thank you so much! I love your recipes!

  14. jenyu says:

    Christina – Hmm, I don’t remember what the crust was. It was some sort of pastry short crust, but you can use anything really. To get the shape for the mousse, I used pastry ring molds.

  15. Vegan Dessert Recipes : Mixing Ingredients to Make Vegan Pumpkin Mousse | Best Vegan Recipies says:

    […] instructor at Chef's Inc. Culinary School in Los Angeles. Filmmaker: Nili Nathan Learn how to mix the pumpkin and ginger snaps…tructional video on cooking and making vegan dessert recipes. Expert: Chef […]

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