Fearless Thanksgiving: Easy as Pie

First time making pie? Or are you simply out of your gourd from baking one too many of the Thanksgiving classic? No problem. We went straight to the expert, Kate McDermott, the pie maven at Art of Pie. She worked with us to put together some easy, palette-pleasin’ pie tips, including her recipe for spicing up the old standby.

If you’re looking for a go-to pie crust, try McDermott’s. She kindly demonstrates how to prepare it in the video below.


  • CANNED VS. FRESH PUMPKIN: McDermott tends to have more success with canned. She explains, “I used to grow nearly everything for my family in the ’80s and ’90s including pumpkin and winter squash. After going through the process of growing, cooking, pureeing and baking my winter squash pies, I returned to the can. The product is more consistent and I actually get better results.” But be sure to get canned pumpkin and NOT “canned pumpkin pie filling.” Here’s why.


  • SKIP THE PROCESSED WHIPPED CREAM: If you plan to top your pie with ultra-processed whipped cream from an aerosol can, consider how easy it is to make your own. Or scoop on some yummy ice cream.
  • WANT SOMETHING DIFFERENT? If you’re tired of the tried-and-true, try something new, say this Sweet Potato Buttermilk Pie at Smitten Kitchen.
  • FOOLPROOF: If you don’t have a favorite pumpkin pie recipe, we recommend  McDermott’s, which you’ll find here. It’s made special with the addition of coconut milk.

And if you’re stuck with leftovers, come to our house.


About katflinn

Kathleen Flinn is the author of "The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry" and "The Kitchen Counter Cooking School." Her third book, "Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good" will be published in April 2014. All are published by Viking/Penguin.

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