Video: Dairy Free Pumpkin Pie (No Nasty Evaporated Milk!)

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist Holiday Cooking Tips (aired on NBC), Other, VideosComments: 30

The second of the five cooking tips I filmed for News Channel 8 Today television show demonstrates how to make pumpkin pie without canned evaporated milk.

Canned evaporated milk is one of the most health robbing processed foods that is regularly part of Holiday meal preparation and it can so easily be avoided!

Not only is the milk used to make canned evaporated milk typically from sick, confined cows kept going via a cocktail of drugs and fed large amounts of genetically modified corn and soy, but it is also heavily processed which denatures the fragile milk proteins.

The violent processing required to produce evaporated milk damages the fragile milk proteins so completely that the enzymes the body produces to digest these proteins lose their effectiveness as they no longer fit together like puzzle pieces.  Any undigested milk proteins either rot in the gut providing the perfect breeding ground for pathogens, or worse, make their way into the bloodstream due to “leaky gut” syndrome, which nearly all Westerners suffer from to some degree.   At that point, the body identifies the undigested proteins as foreign invaders and mounts an immune response, better known as allergies, asthma, eczema and other symptoms of auto immune disorders!

A simple substitution of whole coconut milk for the evaporated milk solves this problem entirely.   While it is best to use fresh coconut milk if possible (click here to learn how to make), even if you used a canned version with no additives, it is a huge improvement over evaporated milk.   Coconut milk is low in protein so there isn’t much to denature via processing and the fats in coconut milk are stable when heated and highly beneficial to health.   These medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) are even being researched as a method for halting and reversing Alzheimer’s disease.

As a bonus, coconut milk is naturally sweet so you may find as I have that you can reduce the amount of sugar (I use coconut sugar or sucanat – click here for sources) in your recipe and still achieve the same level of sweetness.

The best part about using coconut milk instead of evaporated milk in your pumpkin pie is the taste. The taste is creamier and much more enjoyable than the results produced with canned evaporated milk!

Click here for my pumpkin pie recipe.

To view all the Holiday Turkey Tips I filmed for the NBC News Channel 8 Today show, click here.

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Comments (30)

  • Aaron Houk

    What would be the ramifications of using my own fresh raw goats milk, gently condensed over low heat to 60% volume?

    November 18th, 2012 11:30 am Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      That would probably be fine. Keep that heat as low as you can though. Those milk proteins are so fragile.

      November 18th, 2012 12:58 pm Reply
  • Mikki

    I’ve seen Organic evaporated milk. Any better? There are times I don’t want that coconut taste in food.

    November 18th, 2012 11:32 am Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      Organic evaporated milk has the same allergenic qualities as supermarket evaporated milk. It is from milk w/o steroids and antibiotic residues, but it is still completely undigestible from the violent processing.

      November 18th, 2012 12:59 pm Reply
  • Cassandra

    I just use heavy cream.

    November 18th, 2012 11:49 am Reply
    • Jen

      This is what I do, as well.

      November 18th, 2012 12:48 pm Reply
      • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

        You will like the results from coconut milk better. I’ve tried heavy cream too.

        November 18th, 2012 1:00 pm Reply
  • Jill Nienhiser

    The way I make pumpkin pie, which always gets raves, is to use the Libby’s recipe on the can, but substitute an equal amount of heavy cream for the evaporated milk. Way richer, creamier, and delicious, and I can use my raw heavy cream or pasteurized organic heavy cream (better at least than conventional evaporated milk).

    Of course, that recipe uses white sugar, but most people do only make pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving, so a once a year indulgence may be okay as long as you aren’t sugar sensitive. Using maple sugar or maple syrup might be an acceptable substitution and provide a few more minerals (any one know if you can just put an equal amount of maple sugar or syrup in for the white sugar in a typical pumpkin pie recipe?).

    November 18th, 2012 11:53 am Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      You will like the results with whole coconut milk better I think. Coconut milk is sweet so you can reduce the sugar as a bonus. I typically use coconut sugar or sucanat.

      November 18th, 2012 1:01 pm Reply
  • Marie Gagnon via Facebook

    Great Info!

    November 18th, 2012 1:14 pm Reply
  • Brian J. Swanson via Facebook

    My daughter is allergic to all animal milk and allergic to almonds, coconuts. I make all my pies from scratch. there the best that way. do you know of any allternatives to soy milk. rice milk has cona oil it. any suggestions?

    November 18th, 2012 1:34 pm Reply
    • Jennifer J

      I made 2 pies with almond milk last week, and nobody knew the difference.

      November 18th, 2012 10:35 pm Reply
    • Saeriu

      I wonder if you could make your own rice milk? I’ve seen recipes here and there on doing it. I think has a recipe but I’m not sure. I’ve also come across cashew milk…homemade. If memory serves me, homemade rice/cashew milks are not very labor intensive.

      November 26th, 2012 4:49 pm Reply
  • Sara James via Facebook

    Thanks for sharing this! My dad has trouble digesting dairy but loves pumpkin pie! I’ll try this :-)

    November 18th, 2012 1:36 pm Reply
  • Helen Griggs via Facebook

    I will be trying this! We love coconut milk!

    November 18th, 2012 1:46 pm Reply
  • tina

    Nice segment, Sarah! I might try coconut milk if I could find one that didn’t have crap in it. I will stick with cream for now.

    November 18th, 2012 1:57 pm Reply
  • Amanda Slavinski via Facebook

    i will definitely be making this for my husband this year.

    November 18th, 2012 2:34 pm Reply
  • Joan Wiersma via Facebook

    How about Almond milk? Anyone ever try that? It works in so many things. :)

    November 18th, 2012 5:51 pm Reply
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  • Sara

    Great idea. I’m curious about your crust though? What do you do for yours? I tried to make a quiche crust from coconut flour once and it did not turn out so well. Waiting for suggestions from our HHE:)

    November 19th, 2012 9:04 am Reply
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  • Kelly Kindig via Facebook

    What do you think of coconut sugar? Aside from the fact that it’s processed food.

    November 19th, 2012 12:03 pm Reply
  • Tina

    Can your daughter have sunflower seeds? You can make milk from sprouted sunflower seeds just like you would homemade almond milk. IT might be worth a try. You could try it in a small batch of custard and just cook it in 8 oz jam jars on the stove top in a slow water bath to see if how it turns out before you make the whole pie.
    We make custard this way sometimes.

    November 19th, 2012 7:17 pm Reply
  • Lori Hora

    Hi Sarah – can I just use coconut cream? I get mine from Wilderness Family Naturals and it is a great product. Thanks for the great recipe!

    November 20th, 2012 5:56 pm Reply
  • Michelle

    I usually make my home made pumpkin pies with organic condensed milk. Is condensed milk as bad as evaporated milk?

    November 21st, 2012 1:54 pm Reply
  • Tiffany Collins

    I made 1 pie using creme fraiche and 1 using coconut milk and coconut sugar. I made a gluten free crust and used coconut oil. My son is gluten,dairy, and nut free. His pie turned out lovely. I love seeing Sarah recommend this. We’ve been eating this way for more than 4yrs. and have learned a lot.

    November 24th, 2012 12:43 pm Reply
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  • Kathleen Miller

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    Kathleen Miller

    January 27th, 2013 7:57 pm Reply
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