Great American Pie Month – February 2020

February

If you thought you’d escaped the holidays without adding another notch to your belt buckle, settle in and grab a pair of sweatpants because February is also the Great American Pie Month. Let’s never say ‘‘bye, bye’’ to American pie. This beloved American dessert is as versatile as they come. Whether Apple, Cherry, Pumpkin, or Peach, the possibilities are endless. Made from pastry dough, a pie, as we’re sure you’re aware, is as American as baseball. Known as one of the ultimate comfort foods, pies are enjoyed all over the country. It’s the month to share a slice of pie or a recipe with your family and friends and binge on your wildest pie fantasies.

History of Great American Pie Month

A pie as an entity has been around for thousands of years. In Ancient Egypt bakers used to fill bread dough with honey, fruit, and nuts and serve it to the Pharaoh. There are drawings depicting this on the tomb walls of Ramses II.

The first pie to be eaten in the United States was in 1620, when the pilgrims brought their

favorite family pie recipes with them to America. These were English-style, meat-based recipes.

The first pumpkin pie was recorded in a cookbook in 1675 and became popular in the 1800s. It’s our love for a sweet-tasting pie that makes an American pie distinctive, and over the years it has become woven into our culture as a symbol of tradition and the home. This is backed up by the fact that July 4, our nation’s birthday, is one of the most popular days to bake and eat pie.

By 1990 our love for pied had blossomed so much that the Great American Pie Month was declared to be February.

Great American Pie Month timeline

2000
Drove my Chevy to the Levy

Madonna releases a cover of ‘‘American Pie’’ to promote the soundtrack of ‘‘The Next Best thing.’’

1990
Let’s Make A Month Out of It

The first Great American Pie Month is celebrated.

1620
Hello American Pie

The Pilgrims bring family pies recipes with them.

1500’s
Long Live the Pie

Fruit pies or tarts as they’re known were first made, and the first Cherry pie is made for Queen Elizabeth I.

2000 BC
First pie recipe found

Dated from thousands of years ago, archaeologists discovered a tablet with a chicken pie recipe.

Great American Pie Month FAQs

What are the top American Pies?

36 million Americans claim it’s Apple Pie, Mississippi Mud Pie, and then the Cherry Pie.

What’s the American Pie Council?

The American Pie Council is an organization committed to preserving America’s pie heritage.

Is a Pie an American thing?

Not necessarily. During the American revolution the term ‘‘crust’’ was used instead of coffyn and over the years the pie has simply become a very traditional American dessert.

Great American Pie Month Activities

  1. Eat pie for breakfast

    A quiche is a savory pie whose filling is based on an egg-based custard and is rife for experimentation. Popular ingredients to include in breakfast quiches include bacon, sausage, mushrooms, kale, goat cheese, and even garlic.

  2. Experiment with pie crust

    Pies aren't singular in their format. A pie with no bottom pie is a cobbler. A pie baked without the use of a baking pan is a galette. A two-crust pie uses the dough to completely encase the filling, ensuring a colorful, bountiful finished product.

  3. Go the non-traditional route

    There are so many variations of pies to cook! If the idea of another apple pie is unappealing, try meat, key lime, lemon meringue, or even buttermilk pie.

5 Facts About The Great American Pie Month

  1. Crust or no crust?

    Pie’s with crusts were known as ‘‘coffins’’, while pies without were ‘’traps.’’

  2. Big and tiny

    Large and short-sided pies are known as tarts, and tiny pies are tartlets.

  3. To be cooked, not eaten

    In the early days, pies were only used as a vessel to cook the fillings, not to be eaten.

  4. Pie in a box

    In the 13th and 16th centuries, pies held live birds, frogs, and dwarfs for entertainment purposes.

  5. Eat as the Romans do.

    The first pie recipe was published by the Romans for rye-crusted goat cheese and honey pie.

Why We Love Great American Pie Month

  1. Pie-fect

    The pie is known as the most traditional American dessert. The versatility of the pie is unrivaled and has become a huge part of American culture. The term ‘‘as American as Apple pie’’ proves that it is arguably the nation’s favorite dessert.

  2. It’s self-contained

    Pie crusts were created to replace such appetizing things as wet mud or leaves. Dough not only allows ingredients to remain fresh but also retains the juices created in the baking process.

  3. Baked pies are as American as sitcoms

    From Carol Brady of the Brady Bunch to Marge Simpson, characters are always baking pies on TV. Just like eggs and bacon are for breakfast, pie is always for dessert in a sitcom!

Great American Pie Month dates

YearDateDay
2020February 1Saturday
2021February 1Monday
2022February 1Tuesday
2023February 1Wednesday
2024February 1Thursday