Pumpkinhead pie

Like a taste of Halloween – this shake is frighteningly good. 

Serves: 2 


  • 200g diced pumpkin 
  • 750ml (3 cups) milk 
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup 
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 
  • Pinch of ground allspice 
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg 
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla essence 
  • 2 scoops vanilla ice cream 

Monster your shake 

  • Buttercream frosting (see below) 
  • 2 scoops vanilla ice cream 
  • Vanilla bean whipped cream (see below) 
  • Caramel syrup (see below) 
  • 2 cinnamon donuts 
  • 2 vanilla macarons
  • Ground cinnamon, for dusting 


  1. To make the shake, place the pumpkin in a small saucepan and cover with water. Cook over a medium heat for 8 minutes or until soft. Drain and return to the saucepan. Using a hand-held blender, puree the pumpkin until smooth. Set aside to cool. Combine with the remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and combined. 
  2. Using a spatula, smear the frosting around the outer rim of each glass. Gently pour in the shake and top with a scoop of ice cream. Using a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle, top with swirls of whipped cream. 
  3. Drizzle the outside of the glasses with caramel syrup and top with the donuts, macarons and a dusting of cinnamon. 

 Buttercream Frosting

(makes 375g/1½ cups) 

  • 125g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened 
  • 185g (1.5 cups) icing (confectioners’) sugar, sifted 
  • 2 tablespoons milk 
  1. Place the butter in a medium-sized bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on high speed for 5 minutes or until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in half the icing sugar and the milk, then the remaining icing sugar. Beat for 4 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is smooth. 
  2. Add any ingredients for variations into the mixture, if using, and beat for another 1 minute. 
  3. Use immediately or transfer to an airtight container. The frosting will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week. 

NOTE: If you’ve pre-made the frosting and stored it in the fridge, allow to sit for 20 minutes at room temperature to soften. 

 Whipped Cream

(makes 625ml/2.5 cups) 

  • 300 ml thickened cream 
  1. Place the cream in a medium-sized bowl along with any ingredients for variations, if using. Using an electric mixer, beat on medium speed for 3–4 minutes until the cream is fluffy and holds soft peaks. 
  2. Use immediately or transfer to an airtight container. The whipped cream will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week. 


  • To colour whipped cream, add 1 drop food colouring and keep adding drops as you beat until you reach your desired shade. 
  • For vanilla bean whipped cream, add 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste and 2 tablespoons icing sugar. 

 Caramel Syrup (makes 500ml/2 cups) 

  • 330 g (1.5 cups) sugar 
  • 125 g (2/3 cup lightly packed) 
  • brown sugar 
  • 300ml thickened cream 
  1. Combine the sugar with 60 ml (1/4 cup) water in a medium-sized saucepan over low heat. Stir constantly for 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved, brushing any sugar from the side of the pan with a wet pastry brush. Increase the heat to medium–high and boil for 2 minutes then reduce the heat to medium and simmer without stirring for 10 minutes or until golden. 
  2. Remove from the heat and add the brown sugar and cream and stir until combined. Return to medium heat and stir for 2 minutes until smooth. Do not boil. 
  3. Set aside to cool completely before transferring into a squeeze bottle or container. 
  4. The syrup will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. 

Variation: For Salted caramel syrup, add 1 tablespoon of salt when adding the brown sugar and cream. 

Monster Shakes

Extracted from Monster Shakes, by Vicki Valsamis. Photography 2016 © Chris Middleton. Published by Smith Street Books. RRP NZ$28.99. Out now.

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