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Pumpkin Spaetzle


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  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin purée
  • 3 extra large eggs
  • 1 c. milk, + extra as needed
  • 2 1/2 c. flour, + extra as needed
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. cumin
  • 2 heaping Tablespoons of roughly chopped fresh sage, plus extra whole sage leaves for garnish
  • 4 T. butter
  • 2 oz. Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • s&p


Adapted from


Step 1

Empty canned pumpkin purée into a fine mesh sieve and set over a bowl or measuring cup. Let drain for at least two hours. From time to time use a spoon to stir the pumpkin around in the sieve so as much liquid drains out as possible. Discard the liquid.

In a mixing bowl whisk together the drained pumpkin, the three eggs, 1 cup of the milk and the salt and cumin. When fully blended whisk in the flour, 1/2 c. at a time, to make a thick viscous batter. The batter needs to be just loose enough that it will fall through the holes in a spaetzle sieve or a colander. Add a little flour if too thin, a little more milk if too thick. It is the right consistency when it reluctantly drips in thick blobs off of a wooden spoon .

Prepare a large bowl of ice water (lots of ice cubes) and keep at the ready to plunge the hot boiled spaetzle into the ice water to arrest cooking.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Fill the spaetzle sieve with the batter and scrape the sieve back and forth along the grater board to create blobs and squiggles that drop into the water.

If you don’t have a spaetzle sieve, use a colander: Position a metal colander over the boiling water and pour in the thick batter. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the batter back and forth across the bottom of the colander. This will create the same type of blobs dropping right into the boiling water.

(Larger spaetzle dumplings can be achieved buy using a bit more flour to make a thicker dough, one that is soft but thick enough that it will not easily drip off a wooden spoon. Place this thicker dough on a cutting board and use a metal spatula to smooth it into thin layers of dough running down to the edge of the cutting board. Use the spatula to chop off thin shreds of the dough and scrape them into the boiling water. German granny in this video is a proponent of this technique. It is well worth watching.)

Don’t overcrowd the pot. Depending on the size of the pot of boiling water, you will have to boil the spaetzle in two or three batches.

The spaetzle will rise to the surface soon after meeting the boiling water. Let the water come back up to a full boil (about 1 minute) before removing them with a strainer or slotted spoon and dropping them into the prepared bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.

Once all the spaetzle are boiled and chilled, drain well and spread out on a clean dish towel to allow them to dry out as much as possible — as much as an hour or two.

In a large wide pan, melt 4 T. of butter over medium heat. Put in the chopped sage. When the sage starts to sizzle, carefully add the spaetzle. Bring the heat up to medium high and stir gently with a wooden spoon, tossing the spaetzle in the butter and heating them all the way through, about 6-8 minutes.

Taste for s&p. Sprinkle in 1/2 of the grated cheese, stir, then turn out into a serving bowl. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top, garnish with sage leaves, and serve very hot.


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