because every dessert is a little decadent

Easy Vanilla and Pumpkin Mousse

This pumpkin mousse is topped with delicious vanilla flavored meringues. Pumpkin is a great ingredient because you can use it in sweet dishes like pumpkin pie recipes or savory ones like casseroles or stews. There are also savory mousse recipes, although you might not see those as often as sweet mousse recipes and they would not contain pudding or JELL-O ® gelatin because it is too sweet. Salmon mousse and cheese mousse are savory mousse examples. Salmon mousse can be served on toast and cheese mousse is often piped on to vegetables or meat as a garnish. A mousse is an airy mixture and the word “mousse” is French for foam or froth.

The following recipe uses vanilla instant pudding as the base of the mousse and both pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice for flavoring. The vanilla flavored meringues are good with the vanilla pudding used to make the pumpkin mousse. You can leave out the vanilla meringues if you don’t want them or you can make extra and keep them to have with other desserts or for future mousse recipes and gelatin recipes.

Using canned pumpkin means you can make this spiced pumpkin mousse recipe anytime. If you wanted to use fresh pumpkin, that is fine but do not use the big jack-o-lantern ones because they tend to be less sweet and rather stringy. Small, sweet pumpkins are the best and you should boil or roast the flesh until it is very soft before using it to make the pumpkin mousse.

Spiced Pumpkin Mousse with Vanilla Meringues
Cuisine: American
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves or Makes: 10
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 15 oz can pumpkin
  • 2 packages vanilla instant pudding
  • 2 cups whipped cream
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup cold milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  1. Beat the pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla pudding mix, and cold milk for 2 minutes with a wire whisk, and then stir in the whipped cream.
  2. Divide the mousse between 10 serving glasses and chill them for 4 hours. Preheat the oven to 260 degrees F.
  3. Beat the cream of tartar with the egg whites until the mixture is like a stiff foam.
  4. Beat in the sugar gradually and keep beating the mixture until it is glossy and stands up in stiff peaks.
  5. Beat in the vanilla extract and dot spoonfuls of the meringue mixture on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake for an hour or until the meringues are dry and set.
  7. Cool them on a wire rack, and then put a couple on each pumpkin mousse before serving.
  8. Keep any extra meringues in an airtight container in the freezer or at room temperature.

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