We could argue that the pie is the best part of Thanksgiving. Following the annual post-dinner walk around the neighborhood, we turn to pie as the sweet finish to the occasion (and then a nap). We recognize the holy trinity of Thanksgiving pies: pumpkin, pecan, and apple. However, the holiday also offers a chance to shake it up by branching out to pie recipes that use other seasonal flavors, are Southern mainstays, and, yes, even revive leftovers! Whether you’re a Thanksgiving traditionalist or you never make the same dish twice, try one of these pie recipes for a sweet end to the feast.
Southern Pie Recipes for Thanksgiving
Wherever Nathalie Dupree leads, we follow with oven mitts in hand. The addition of candied ginger ups the spice level found in traditional pumpkin pie. Plus, using cream cheese creates a firmer custard, more reminiscent of a cheesecake.
This is definitely isn’t your grandma’s apple pie recipe. The bourbon-infused filling is made even naughtier with the hard cider caramel sauce (don’t worry, the alcohol cooks out of the finished product!). Note that you’ll have plenty of caramel left over, a perfect dip for apple slices.
If you find yourself torn between a pecan pie or chocolate chess pie, let this recipe combine the best of all the worlds. This pie recipe strays from the typical goo found in most pecan pies, opting for half the corn syrup. Using dark chocolate also keeps the filling balanced instead of overly sweet.
This elegant apple tart makes an eye-catching addition to any dessert spread. It blends seasonal cranberry and apple flavors into a smooth filling, and the savory crust makes it a balanced, less cloying dessert.
A big mouthful of chocolate custard? Don’t mind if we do! The quintessential Southern chess pie levels up with a deep dash of cocoa powder. Note that this recipe yields two ten-inch pies, so feel free to halve if you wish.
Tired of plain, ol’ pumpkin pie? Give the Thanksgiving superstar a decidedly Southern twist in this pumpkin-chess pie hybrid from Vivek Surti’s Nashville restaurant Tailor. This filling is less custard-y and more buttery and rich. It also uses a warm blend of cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and clove spices.
Don’t banish leftover cranberry sauce to the back of the fridge. Give it new life a mixture of raspberries and almonds in this slab pie. This pie is perfect for a few days after Thanksgiving when you experience the fresh urge to bake.
And If You Don’t Like Pie…
For a completely unexpected but festive addition at the dessert table, try this autumn squash cheesecake from Belinda Smith-Sullivan. It uses cushaw, a green-striped, crook-necked squash native to Southern states and the Appalachian mountains, and gets finished with a decadent pecan topping. You could also use butternut squash, sweet potato, or pumpkin.
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