While travelling we have learned that “The Land of Opportunity”, football fanatics, food indulgers, coffee addicts, and Beyonce are among the plethora of ideas people when they think of America.
Understandably so, these were on our lists as well; however, with more than 75 million people visiting North American each year there is another very important reason that it’s on the top of many tourists’ must-do list when they visit: pie!
The U.S. is known for having an endless supply of some of the most delicious pies you will ever taste.
Texas – Pecan Pie
If you have a major sweet tooth, travelling to the deep south and visiting Texas for this sinfully sweet dessert is a must. Besides being home to Tex-Mex, cowboys and the Dallas Cowboys, pickup trucks, and yes, Beyonce, they are also known for their pecan pies.
Pecans were propagated and introduced by Native Americans to the southern United States. Recipes for this sweet-tooth pleaser can be found as early as 1870 in Texas. A thick, crisp crust holds the gooey filling with pecans generously spread on top, some pies will have pecans on the bottom as well. Buttery pecans, the perfect mix of ingredients, and proper baking methods result in a pie that satisfies the taste buds desire for texture and taste.
Our top recommendation for a pecan pie is Goode Company Barbecue located in Houston, Texas. With four locations in the city, mouthwatering BBQ, and their infamous Brazos Bottom Pecan Pie, making your way to this restaurant is win/win. Try a slice of their pie for $5.25 (plus tax) and when you realize you want more, take a whole pie to-go for only $19.95 (plus tax).
Wisconsin – Apple Pie
America’s Dairyland, Swiss Cheese capital of the world, and home of the Green Bay Packers, Wisconsin should be on the list of globetrotters looking for a traditional pie experience with a twist. The “Land of 10,000 lakes” (16,692 to be exact) is committed to all things cheese – even when it comes to their pies.
“America’s Dairyland” has a knack for apple pies with golden crusts hugging a plethora of perfectly spiced and baked apples. For the adventurous tourist, you cannot leave the state without trying a slice of homemade apple pie topped with – not ice cream – but cheese.
Stop by Ogden’s North Street Diner for their authentic execution of apple pie topped with Hook’s Cheddar Cheese for approximately four to seven bucks. Talk about catering to lovers of sweet and savoury foods.
For those who are not as brave when it comes to food, you don’t have to miss out. Head over to Elegant Farmer and grab yourself an “Apple Pie Baked in a Bag”. These pies are baked in a bag to enhance the flakiness of the crust and are sold fresh in the bags. We suggest the eight-inch “Gourmet Caramel Apple Pie” which is jam-packed with apples and smothered in caramel for only $29.99 USD (plus tax). Add two scoops of ice cream for a paradisiacal experience.
New York – New York-Style Cheesecake
Lady Liberty, New York Fashion Week, and an overwhelming number of taxis and hot dog stands, 2017 brought over 60 million tourists to New York and it is obvious why. The “Big Apple” has a reputation for making an unforgettable statement in all they do, and they do not skimp on the pie.
As if their pizza and fashion aren’t enough of a gift from this posh city, they give us “New York Cheesecake” – actually a pie – too. Though the very first cheesecake is traced back to the Greek island of Samos around 2000 B.C., it went global over the centuries and many variations have come about, including the American version which adds cream cheese. Fans of the New York-style cheesecake fall in love with the incredibly smooth texture and crumbly brown crust. Due to the perfect balance in flavours, you need nothing but a fork to enjoy this pie.
Junior’s hails as one of the best places to enjoy cheesecake in New York and we suggest checking out The Original Junior’s located in Flatbush. For less than $10 dollars you can enjoy a slice of the classic New York Cheesecake or step out of the box with Apple Crumb or Black Forest Cheesecake. Go ahead. Your taste buds will thank you.
Arizona – Prickly Pear Pie
Arizona, home of the Grand Canyon, breathtaking sunsets, and colourful cactus-filled deserts attracts travellers from around the world every year. In between skiing, tanning, and finding your inner peace you will want to make some time to get a look at their prickly pear cactus, then try the fruit in a pie.
This colourful desert bloom is completely edible from its bright flowers to its unique pads, and visitors can find everything from massage oil to tortillas made with the interestingly flavoured plant. Prickly pear has a neon red appearance and produces a palette satisfying taste of watermelon and natural bubble gum. Add this to a pie crust and you have a stimulating experience.
The Bread and Butter Cafe in Tucson is the place to go for homemade pies including the prickly pear pie and they do not leave customers disappointed. Bright red prickly pear filling sitting upon a thick crisp crust and topped with meringue – for about five dollars you’re going to get more than your money’s worth.
With a multitude of states and pies to choose from we were only able to spotlight some of our favourites. Comment below and let us know what states and pies you think should’ve made the list.