Pies on the table

Whether you’re a baker or a consumer (and the world needs both), no one can argue with the fact that real sugar is essential to delicious, quality baked treats. The period between Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day is the most active time of year for baking, with 73% of Americans more excited about baking over the holidays than other times of year. Retail sugar sales also increase by about 50% during this time period. Right now is baking’s (and sugar’s) Super Bowl!

A 2019 baking trends survey found that holidays are one of the most popular times of year for baking. More than half of U.S. millennials cite baking as a way to connect and spend time with loved ones during the holidays.  There is something about baking with or for family and friends that makes it a little more special. While many favorites are steeped in family traditions, of all the possible holiday baking creations to be made, which are the most popular in the U.S.?

Sweet as Pie

The top-three baked goods to make or buy during the holiday season are pies, cookies and cakes. Internet search and social sharing data indicates that pies are about twice as popular in November than any other month of the year. And when it comes to traditional holiday pies there is clear geographic preference for favorite pies! Apple is most popular in the northeast and pecan in the south, while pumpkin rules in the West, Midwest and Southeast. The type of pie isn’t the only thing folks have an opinion on though. How it is served also comes with another set of preferences, with nearly half of U.S. consumers (45%) claiming whipped cream is the way to go, followed by ice cream (24%), and coming in last, those that prefer to eat just the pie (17%).

pumpkin pie


As American as Pumpkin Pie

Sweet and savory pies were a part of the English cuisine before settlers set sail for America and quickly became a part of American culture. Even though they are claimed as uniquely American, apple pies (and the trees that produce the fruit) are believed to have been brought over by Swedish, Dutch and British immigrants in the mid-1600’s. The pumpkin and its pie, however, IS native to North America. In the 1600’s, early American settlers stewed pumpkins or filled the hollowed shell with milk, honey and spices. While pumpkin pie is a clear favorite across the U.S., it is rarely served in other parts of the world.


Most Popular Thanksgiving Pies
*according to Instacart sales

  1. Pumpkin
  2. Apple
  3. Pecan
  4. Cream
  5. Cherry

PRO TIP: Prevent Soggy Pie Crust Do your fruit-filling pies end up with soggy bottoms? Mix equal parts sugar and flour and sprinkle it on your pie crust before adding the filling. This protective layer prevents liquid from making the crust soggy.

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