“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.” – David Mamet
Pie is my favorite dessert. I love its simplicity, the fact that it’s been traditionally made with seasonal produce, its sweet and comforting smell, and how even the sound of the word “pie” makes my heart sing! I must confess that, since becoming an adult some decades ago, my dinner choice has often been a generous slice of pie.
Pie is perhaps the most traditional American dessert and is invited to every holiday meal throughout the year. The idiom “as American as apple pie” confirms it. Although pies originated in ancient Egypt and Greece and came to this land through the British, America has perfected them like no other country.
Chocolate cream pies for Valentine’s Day, sweet-tart rhubarb pies in the spring, scrumptious peach pies by the pool in June, bubbly cherry pies for July 4th, crispy apple pies in September, sweet potato and pecan pies for Christmas, you name it! Pies are everywhere at all times, and, of course, Thanksgiving doesn’t happen without a pumpkin pie on the table.
Thankfully, Asheville has amazing pies all year round. You can sample slices from local restaurants’ dessert menus, order whole pies from local bakeries to enhance your dinner at home or your sunset picnic, buy them at an adorable tiny art gallery (keep reading!), and, if having to choose only one flavor makes your life miserable, you can even enjoy a famous pie flight at Baked Pie Company!
And remember this fantastic piece of advice when deciding to share a precious Asheville pie:
“Cut my pie into four pieces; I don’t think I could eat eight.” – Yogi Berra
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7 Delicious Places for Pie in Asheville
1. Enjoy Pie at Tiny Gallery on Tuesdays
In March of 2023, the 2018 James Beard “Rising Star Chef of the Year” and 2020 Food & Wine “Best New Chef” Camille Cogswell decided to start selling her out-of-this-world baked goods at her mom’s (Margaret Cogswell’s) Tiny Gallery in North Asheville. (Before I continue into the pie world, take some time to check out the beautiful Tiny Gallery project!)
Camille currently works at Tall John’s and Mother (check them out, too!), and on Tuesdays (her free days), she sells some of the best pies in Asheville from 2pm to 6pm at Tiny Gallery. Please keep in mind that her schedule is two weeks on and one week off, so follow her on Instagram to get the updates.
You’ll find pies, cookies, and other sweet treats, too. There are limited preorders for whole pies. Use the link in her Instagram bio that goes live on Friday at 1:30pm, and hurry up!
The flavors have included the classics – apple, cookies and cream, berries – and some more adventurous, super delicious ones like a mocha cream pie with sugared almonds, coconut cream with raspberry jam and salted caramel, almond frangipane and strawberry, and coffee walnut chess pie. Stay tuned because Camille will open her own bakery in Marshall soon!
Tiny Gallery: 34 Woodward Ave, Asheville
2. Pay a Visit to The Worthy Baker in Candler
Jill Worthy of The Worthy Baker does her magic in her certified home kitchen in Candler. There is no storefront, so you’ll have to call or text to place your order and pick it up. Believe me – it’s all worth it!
You can request your favorite flavor (seasonal is always best), or if your love for pie can’t be satisfied with just one flavor, get some mini pies and build your own pie flight. Some flavors are cherry Asian pear, chocolate cream with marshmallow meringue, strawberry rhubarb, coconut custard, salted caramel apple, maple bourbon, and blueberry peach cobbler.
The Worthy Baker also sells cookies, cakes, and amazing cheesecakes. You can find some of these creations in downtown’s Asheville City Market. Think pies in jars (pumpkin spice, cherry cobbler, and an amazing key lime pie), cobblers in cups, savory cheese scones, cheese straws, truffle cookies, and giant cinnamon rolls.
The Worthy Baker: 7 Brenda Drive, Candler
3. Try Some of the Best Local Pies at Baked Pie Company
Baked Pie Company opened in 2016 after Kirsten, its founder, and her daughter were looking for a place in South Asheville to enjoy the easy pleasure of sitting down in a laid-back, friendly place to savor a slice of homemade pie with a cup of coffee and couldn’t find it.
Locals and out-of-towners love this unique pie-focused bakery. The offering is irresistibly simple: pies baked daily with the freshest and highest quality ingredients in a welcoming atmosphere complete with super-friendly service, just like home.
There are lots of options for baked and cream pies, and the menu changes daily – follow their Facebook page for updates. The bakery also accommodates various dietary choices, including gluten-free, keto, vegan, and sugar-free pies, which are always available, so don’t worry about preordering.
One of their most popular items is the pie flight: You get to choose three flavors of pie plus a scoop of ice cream. Forget about having to decide on just one flavor! My favorite? Tres leches, key lime, and strawberry rhubarb to welcome the warm weather in the spring. Whole pie orders have to be put in 48 hours in advance.
Baked Pie Company: 4 Long Shoals Road, Arden
4. Eat Pie for a Cause at The Pie Shoppe AVL
The Pie Shoppe AVL is a small business started by owner and founder Cheryl, a self-trained baker and retired educator who was inspired from an early age by watching the women in her family do “magic” in the kitchen. The best part? A portion of each sale is donated to Meals on Wheels of Asheville-Buncombe County to help feed the area’s homebound seniors.
You’ve got to love their motto: “We make life better one pie at a time!” These fantastic Asheville pies’ ingredients come from some of the best farms in the region (check them out here).
Their flavors have included strawberry lattice, mountain berry trio with lattice crust, Atlantic beach (lemon cream), black button peanut butter cream, chocolate mocha cream featuring French Broad Chocolate, ginger peach with oat crumble, and triple coconut cream. They also have a small selection of gluten-free pies.
They offer delivery for addresses within zip codes 28801 and 28806.
5. Order Your Holiday Pies at City Bakery
City Bakery in North Asheville is a great place to have breakfast, lunch, or an afternoon snack in Asheville. Plus, it has outdoor seating, and it’s dog-friendly. They have excellent artisan bread, and many local restaurants and shops use it (Nine Mile’s amazing Natty Bread is made with it!).
They offer a variety of Thanksgiving pies you can preorder, including an unbeatable apple streusel pie, salted caramel apple, pumpkin, pecan, and cherry almond streusel. In addition, they offer special rolls and stuffing bread for your holiday meal.
City Bakery helps you celebrate every holiday with special baked goods. Their Mardi Gras King Cake is so good! You can also preorder your Easter and Christmas treats. Their menu features terrific sandwiches, soups, salads, and some of the best cookies in Asheville.
6. Try Whisk’s Chocolate Chip Bourbon Pecan Pie
Whisk Avl is a drive-through bakery in Candler. They have excellent baked goods, including their famous cinnamon rolls (and super yummy caramel pecan sticky buns on Saturdays) and a full menu of espresso drinks featuring PennyCup Coffee.
Their pie menu is extensive, and you’ll love the blueberry ginger pie and the triple berry crumb. The bourbon pecan (you can order it with or without chocolate chips, but of course, everything is better with chocolate) and their key lime pie are to die for. All orders have to be placed by noon, 48 hours in advance.
In addition to pies, they have lovely cakes and cheesecakes, scones, fresh bread, and quiches. They also cater events.
7. Order Old Europe’s Key Lime Pie with Ginger Crust
Old Europe Pastries opened in 1994 and is one of the oldest, most loved downtown shops. It has been voted one of the top three “Best Dessert Places in Western North Carolina” by Mountain Xpress readers year after year, and it’s a wonderful place to sit down and summon the sweetness of life and embrace Asheville’s slow-living vibe.
It serves unforgettable European-inspired cakes, pastries, desserts, quiches, and a full menu of beverages, including mimosas and wine. Their menu includes one of the best key lime pies in Asheville, served with a slice of fresh lime meant to be squeezed over the pie! In addition, they have a perfectly sticky pecan pie during the fall.
The ambiance and the space make it a great café to bring your laptop and work. Plus, it’s the only coffee shop open until 10:00 pm during the weekdays and till 11:00 pm on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Because of its location in the heart of downtown, it’s also one of the most fun people-watching spots in Asheville.
Try These 3 Pie Recipes from Local Restaurants
“The homemade pie has been under siege for a century, and surely its survival is endangered.” – Janet Clarkson
Although the best pies in Asheville are, in fact, homemade, I think everyone should at least try to make a pie from scratch once in their life.
WNC magazine has featured The Rhu’s Sweet Potato Chess Pie, and it’s the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving meal in Asheville. It starts with a top-notch crust (if you’ve been to The Rhu, you’ll know!), and it involves a sweet potato filling, a rosemary-honey glaze, and a sorghum marshmallow fluff.
Gee Burcham’s Cardamom Orange Chocolate Chess Pie sounds like heaven! Burcham, the owner of Elderflower Baking Co. in Winston Salem, says: “If you like thick, fudgy brownies, then this is the pie for you.”
Finally, check out this Ultimate Apple Pie recipe by Buxton Hall Barbecue featured in Southern Living. It includes different types of fresh apples, dried apples, apple butter, ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom.