Carving Pumpkins: These are the classic, big, tall, bright orange pumpkins for carving and decorating. They are usually sold as Face Pumpkins or Jack-o-Lantern Pumpkins. Their flesh is stringy and watery and lacks flavor for baking – they’re basically inedible. The seeds, as all hard squash and pumpkin seeds, are fine to eat when toasted.
Pie Pumpkins: Also, called Sugar Pie, Baby Pam and Mystic Pumpkins, this is the pumpkin to use for making your own home-made pumpkin pie filling. They’re small, mostly round and weight only a couple pounds. Halve the Pie Pumpkin, remove the seeds and pulp, bake face down at 350 degrees for 45-90 minute until the flesh is easily pierced by a fork, scoop the flesh from the shell, puree and add to your pumpkin pie recipe in place of canned pumpkin.
Peanut Pumpkins: They’re odd-looking peach colored pumpkin with growths on the skin that look like peanut shells. This heavy heirloom variety is fantastic for pies and baking. Or just get people to squirm when they see it on your counter.
Fairytale Pumpkins: With a short stance, these wide and dense pumpkins have deep ribs and look like something from old Europe. Green or brown skin, they are excellent for baking.
Neck Pumpkins: You get lots of good flesh to bake with a Neck Pumpkin. They’re a favorite for making pies in Pennsylvania Dutch County.
Cheese Pumpkins: This is a popular variety for baking in the NY-NJ metro area. The skin is tan in color, while the flesh is orange, dense and smooth.