Pumpkin Pie

Too Many Cooks: Thanksgiving Desserts, Sans Pumpkin

November 16, 2012

You'll be hearing from the staff at FOOD52 every week in Too Many Cooks, our group column in which we pool our answers to questions about food, cooking, life, and more.

There's no getting around it -- everyone's mind is on Thanksgiving. As the big day grows nearer, our plans fall into place: we decide which sides should grace the table, which way is best to cook the bird, what to serve before the meal. And then there's always the pumpkin pie

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But what if this year, there wasn't? This week we're getting creative with our Turkey Day desserts, and answering the question: 

Something terrible has happened, and there are no pumpkin pie custard provisions left on earth. None. Now that the traditional pie is off the table, what do you serve guests for Thanksgiving? 

Read on to find out how, in a crisis, the meal can go on -- pumpkin or no pumpkin. 

Jennifer: I started the tradition last year and I plan to keep it going -- Salted Pumpkin Caramels.

Amanda Li: If someone smashed all the pumpkins in the world, my go-to crowd-pleaser dessert is "Death by Chocolate Kahlua Brownies." Layers of Kahlua-soaked brownies, whipped cream, crushed Heath bits, and chocolate mousse. No reason to skimp on the Holidays.

Peter: Eight words: brown butter ice cream with Maldon sea salt.

Marian: I would delegate my mom to make apple crisp with hefty amounts of cinnamon. I'd pile mine high with good vanilla ice cream for that perfect cold ice cream/melted ice cream/hot apple balance.

Kristy: If I can't have pie, I want rice pudding. 

Kenzi: Puddings, unite! I think I'm going to put in an official vote for bread pudding

Molly: I second the bread pudding vote! I like mine plenty bready, eggy, and sliceable.

Maddy: I'll jump on the pudding train. My vote: banana pudding.

Christina: And I'm jumping on the banana train -- Bananas Foster is my favorite. Pretty sure the pilgrims loved them too. 


52 Days of Thanksgiving
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52 Days of Thanksgiving

Top-notch recipes, expert tips, and all the tools to pull off the year’s most memorable feast.

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • SandyLaFleur
  • blanka.n
  • Nanne
  • aargersi
  • Kenzi Wilbur
    Kenzi Wilbur
Kenzi Wilbur

Written by: Kenzi Wilbur

I have a thing for most foods topped with a fried egg, a strange disdain for overly soupy tomato sauce, and I can never make it home without ripping off the end of a newly-bought baguette. I like spoons very much.


SandyLaFleur November 17, 2012
Pecan Tassies. Pecan Pie. Apple pie.
Ice cream.
Something dark chocolatey.
Small very nutty cookies like the mexican wedding cakes, ruegehlah, cheesecakes, sometimes pumpkin pops up in there, and no one wants pumpkin pie.
At my house they like to eat their fill of Roche Bros. take out butternut squash. I think that takes away any appetite for pumpkin pie. I would think those marshmallow sweet potatoes might do the same.
blanka.n November 17, 2012
Bread pudding!
Kenzi W. November 19, 2012
Glad you're on our team!
Nanne November 16, 2012
growing up, we never had pumpkin pie at thanksgiving (although we do now). my grandmother always made a yellow cake with boiled chocolate icing, a coconut layer cake and a carmel cake. i'm, for the first time this year, making my grandmother's coconut cake, substituting lemon curd for the icing between layers and toasting the coconut.
aargersi November 16, 2012
No pumpkin pie at our house! We will have cherry pie, Gaining Ground Board maple popcorn, and pumpkin flan

unless I cave and bake a punkin pie too
which could happen