Pumpkin Pie Tamale Recipe

pumpkin pie tamale recipeAs we close in on Thanksgiving here in the US, the markets are already flooded with pumpkin foods and pumpkin recipes, not the least of which is the standard pumpkin pie that we’ve all come to expect as a fall holiday food (and which some of us would gladly eat all year round).

But if conventional pumpkin recipes leave you feeling a bit ‘plain’ in the kitchen, and you’d like to add a southwestern twist to your seasonal pumpkin dishes, you might try your hand at making these pumpkin pie tamales, courtesy of IMUSA, a leader in Hispanic cookware. The following recipe takes traditional Mexican Masa tamales and adds a number of favorite fall ingredients to it, such as ginger, nutmeg, raisins, and of course pumpkin, delivering a sweet side dish that’s bound to be a favorite of anyone who gets their hands on one.

Pumpkin Pie Tamale Recipe


  • 40 to 60 dried corn husks
  • 7 cups maseca corn flour
  • 3 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 29-ounce cans of pumpkin puree (or cook your own pie pumpkins)
  • 4 sticks of butter, melted (or vegan equivalent)
  • 2 cups of warm milk (or coconut or soymilk)
  • 2 cups of walnuts, chopped
  • 12 ounces of raisins

How to make pumpkin pie tamales:

  1. Fill a large bowl with warm water and soak corn husks until softened, about 30 minutes.
  2. In an extra-large bowl add Maseca corn flour and the rest of the dry ingredients. Mix together making sure that all of the clumps are broken up with your fingers. Then add all of the wet ingredients and once again, use your hands to mix the corn flour. Add more water as needed until you achieve the consistency of peanut butter. Fold in the walnuts and raisins.
  3. Assemble the tamales by using a rubber spatula to spread 1⁄2 cup to 1 cup of dough mixture onto the corn husk, depending on the size of the corn husk. The spread should cover about two thirds of the husk, away from the pointed end, making sure you leave some space on each side to fold. Gently fold one side of the corn husk to the other end and fold up the pointed end across. Lay each tamale fold-side down. There should be an open end to each tamale.
  4. Once the tamales are folded, fill the IMUSA Tamale Steamer with water just below the fill line and place the steam tray on the rack. Carefully place each tamale standing up on the steam tray without overloading it and bring water to a simmer. Steam with the lid on for 90 minutes.
  5. Remove each tamale with tongs and let rest for a few minutes before serving it as a sweet side-dish. MAKES 40-60 TAMALES.

If you’re serious about making tamales, you’ll want to invest in the right tools to get the job done, such as the IMUSA Tamale steamer, which is available at Target starting at just under $30, or at Amazon, starting at about $21. Find out more about the offerings from IMUSA at the company’s website.

Derek Markham

Things I dig include: simple living, natural fatherhood, attachment parenting, natural building, unassisted childbirth (homebirth), bicycles, permaculture, organic and biodynamic gardening, vegan peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips, bouldering, and the blues. Find me elsewhere at @NaturalPapa, @DerekMarkham, Google+, or RebelMouse.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *