The 14 Best Places for Pie in NYC
Get ready for the holidays.
It’s pie season! Okay, arguably every season has its relevant pies, but when the leaves start to fall and the meals get warmer and heartier, pie is pretty much essential to a cold-weather feast. While our tiny kitchens with limited counter space don’t make for ideal at-home pie baking conditions, luckily the Big Apple is full of bakeries stocking traditional and more unique flavors of pies, made completely from scratch, so you don’t even have to clear the storage out of your oven to attempt to bake a crust.
When shopping for a pie, always ask if the pie is fresh and when it was made, suggests Bobbie Lloyd, Chief Baking Officer at Magnolia Bakery. “You don’t want a pie that was made a few days ago. The crust will be soggy and there is no way to refresh an old pie,” she warns. Lloyd’s ideal pie is based on an all-butter crust, and it should be strong enough to hold the filling, but not thick (about a quarter of an inch).
Pie is best enjoyed however you like to eat it. But for Lloyd, that involves cutting off a sliver, and then another, and likely another, throughout the day, basically microdosing pie to get a fix whenever needed. While pie leftovers are not typical in Lloyd’s household, she recommends keeping custard pies (like pumpkin) in the fridge and if you can’t eat your fruit pie after two days, cut it into slices, wrap each slice in plastic wrap then foil and place in the freezer for up to three months. You’ll thank yourself in February.
With the holidays around the corner, we rounded up some of the city’s best pie shops to hit up this holiday season.
This new cafe from the team behind the now-closed spot, The Awkward Scone, centers on New Mexican cuisine with flair, as seen in their breakfast burritos, late-night specials (green chile cheeseburger! Lavender brined chicken! Vegan nachos!), and baked goods. Special for the holiday season are two excellent pies: A blue corn-crusted pumpkin and koginut squash; and a green chile Hudson Valley apple cheddar in a rye crust, the perfect spicy-savory riff on a traditional sweet. A portion of holiday proceeds will be donated to Pueblo Relief Fund, which is helping lessen the negative impact of COVID-19 on the Pueblo nations of New Mexico and Texas.
How to order: Email email@example.com for pickup on Wednesday, Nov. 25
New York’s go-to for navy bean pie, this family-owned business opened in 2001 excels at the specialty that’s, arguably, a healthy dish, because beans = fiber and vitamins. If you’ve never had this densely filled bean pie with a flaky filling, expect rich sweetness and a starchy creaminess that’s all too easy to eat. Abu’s also sells sweet potato, pecan, and coconut custard pies, if you want to switch it up.
How to order: Walk in, call 718-230-1115, or order on website
Petee's Pie Company
Specializing in pies highlighting seasonal local produce, natural fair-trade sweeteners, and a crust baked with organic flour and grass-fed butter from New York State, Petee’s ensures its ingredients are as good as it gets. The New York State sour cherry is a fantastic cold weather highlight, along with pear streusel, and wild Maine blueberry. Small 6” pies are also a good option for tiny gatherings, vegan and gluten-free pies are available, and those who visit the cafe can enjoy pie by the slice, plus booze.
How to order: Walk in, or order via Petee’s, Caviar, GrubHub, Postmates, Uber Eats
The Blue Stove
The type of cozy bakery you’d expect to see in a Hallmark-worthy small town, not a bustling corner of Williamsburg, The Blue Stove is a comfy gem in the big city. Ingredients are seasonal, locally sourced, and everything is baked in small batches, ensuring its quality and freshness. Pies are available in small and large sizes, as well as pie by the slice—and the ultra-sticky molasses pecan is just waiting for you to sink your teeth into its crunchy decadence.
How to order: Walk in, or call 718-766-7419 for local delivery or pickup
If babka doesn’t cut it as a holiday dessert, meet Breads Bakery’s excellent Babka pie, a pie version of the flaky layered chocolate babka that’s made the bakery world famous. It’s easy to eat and satisfyingly doughy, with leftover potential that includes some pretty excellent ice cream sundaes or even a breakfast parfait. With locations in Union Square and Lincoln Center, also on Breads’ pie menu: traditional spiced pumpkin pie, Granny Smith apple crumb pie with brown sugar oat streusel, and a cranberry pie with caramelized hazelnut.
How to order: Walk in, order on website, or via Goldbelly for nationwide delivery
Bubby’s might be known as a comfort food stalwart, but fun fact: It first started as a Thanksgiving pie pop-up in 1990. As it celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, its pie game is still going strong after three decades. The pumpkin praline combines two of the best autumnal flavors in a fantastically rich, gooey combo. Other specialties include the apple whiskey crumble, and a double crust apple. Post holidays, the Banoffee, that is, a decadent banana and dulce de leche combo, is always a solid bet for indulgence.
How to order: Pre-order on website
Four & Twenty Blackbirds
Opened in 2009 by sisters Emily and Melissa Elsen, just a simple mention of this pie bakery leaves many New Yorkers salivating, which is a natural reaction for those of us who've tasted their excellent seasonal pies. The brown butter pumpkin is no exception—rich, creamy, and full of caramel-toasted butterscotch notes that launch this squash pie into another dimension. Also try their matcha custard pie or black bottom oat.
How to order: Walk in, pre-order on website for pickup or delivery, or order via Goldbelly
Little Pie Company
At Little Pie Company, expect pies that are handmade from scratch just blocks from Times Square and Port Authority. Order up little slices of sugary heaven with seasonal slices like the incomparable sweet potato pie, made with Kentucky sweet potatoes and imported autumnal spices; salted caramel apple pie; and the insanely chocolatey Mississippi mud pie available all year round.
How to order: Walk in, or order website for pick up, or ship via Goldbelly
Lloyds Carrot Cake Shop
As a NYC institution in East Harlem that’s the definitive destination for anyone who digs carrot cake (there’s an additional location in Riverdale, too), Lloyd’s has been around since 1985, and the bakery offers much more than its namesake, including top-notch pies. Pumpkin pies are served as personal tarts, and in 6”, 8”, and 10” crusts, lush with creamy filling and a crisp, buttery crust.
How to order: Walk in, or order on website
Milk Bar NYC Flagship
With their flagship store in NoMad and additional locations throughout the city, at Momofuku Milk Bar, the recently renamed Milk Bar Pie still endures as treats queen Christina Tosi’s signature creation: A sugary, buttery pie (inspired by Southern Chess pie) topped with powdered sugar that delivers a sweet and salty hit in each bite. Famously created by Tosi as a “happy accident” while working at the legendary Lower East Side restaurant wd~50, the Milk Bar Pie maintains a cult following.
How to order: Walk in or order online
New to the city just in time for pandemic carb-loading, Partybus brings all the joy you used to get from gathering with friends, but with sugar instead. We’re in. The homemade pies are truly excellent and even better than a hug from a friend via Facetime. Try the black bottom pumpkin, salty honey, or almond chess, for Millennial-friendly riffs on the classics. If you’re ordering online, consider adding pre-made pie dough, to test your hand at pie baking when your tin runs out of slices.
How to order: Walk in, or order on website
A tiny bakery led by pie lovers, Pie Corps’ handmade pies in Brooklyn are baked in small batches and are an excellent substitute for the baking neighbor you wish you had. Founders Cheryl Perry and Felipa Lopez opened the shop in 2012, and the signature apple crumb with rosemary caramel is an absolute must, with the herbaceous crust on top accentuating all the roasted apple goodness. Stop in for cake pops and savory hand pies as well, along with slices of seasonal specials.
How to order: Walk in, order on website or via GrubHub
Pies 'n' Thighs
A longtime local favorite for fried chicken and homemade pies, this Southern food restaurant excels at holiday and everyday pies. The sour cherry pear pie with a cinnamon streusel topping is truly in a category of its own, baked in what tastes like a 100% butter crust, that melts in your mouth with the soft fruits. Non-holiday pie lovers can also enjoy the staple banana cream pie, built on a Nilla wafer crust and topped with plenty of whipped cream.
How to order: Walk in, order via Postmates, or ship a pie
Steve's Authentic Key Lime Pies
Specializing in one item puts Steve’s at the top of its game for tangy, tart, and just sweet enough key lime pies made from fresh-squeezed Florida key limes and excellently crumbly graham cracker crust. At this Red Hook must-try of over 25 years, go for the full 10-inch pie, and add a few frozen, chocolate-dipped minis on the side to keep the key lime coming.
How to order: Walk in, or order via Grubhub, Seamless, Postmates, Uber Eats