It doesn’t have to be pumpkin.
But, this time of year, that’s usually what comes to mind first. Pecan would do, too. And, of course, there’s always apple. Maybe even mincemeat.
It helps to pre-order. Most bakeries require it. They become extremely busy during the holiday season – basically now through the end of the year.
This is where to buy Thanksgiving pie in and around Spokane.
Thanksgiving pies must be pre-ordered online at this charming West Central shop, which specializes in scratch-made special occasion cakes, tarts and, of course, pies. Pastry chef and owner Mika Maloney lives in the neighborhood and uses real butter, Pacific Northwest flour and nothing artificial. “We love playing with new flavors and unexpected combinations, but the goal is always undeniable deliciousness,” her website says. At Thanksgiving, she doesn’t make straight-up pumpkin pie “because everyone’s grandma makes it. If you bring something a little different, you’re not hurting anyone’s feelings and it won’t be competing with the (pumpkin-only) pie and the person who brings it every year.” Look for an apple-huckleberry slab pie, dairy-free chocolate-pecan tart, roasted plum-and-pear ginger galette, apple-pumpkin pie, gluten-free pumpkin chai-spice cream pie and cranberry crunch cake. Customers have until Nov. 17 to place an order. The shop will be open for pie pick-ups Nov. 22 and 23 – that’s right, on Thanksgiving itself – when other baked goods and small, individual-serving pies will also be for sale for walk-in customers. But, Maloney, said, “You cannot walk in and get a full-sized pie.” Nov. 22, farmers from Urban Eden will be at the bakeshop, selling produce. And plants, flowers and last-minute gifts will be for sale both days of pie pick-up. Maloney, who founded Batch in 2011, will be donating $2 from each Thanksgiving pie (or cake) she sells to a few different nonprofits. Customers can choose one of five organizations when they complete their online order and even opt to give more. 2023 W. Dean Ave. (509) 413-3759. www.batch-bakeshop.com.
Meet Mira. This pie is creamy, silky and “super pumpkiny” – with hints of cinnamon and other warming spices. All of the desserts at this newer bakery carry distinctive, fun and usually feminine names. Aria – gently spiced with cinnamon and packed with more than 2 pounds of Granny Smiths – is the apple pie. Cabo is coconut cream topped with chantilly and toasted coconut. Bria is the pumpkin-spice cheesecake, topped with whipped cream, caramel and candied pecans. Wife-and-husband Ella and Maximus Piskun recently started baking out of the commercial kitchen at the Montvale Event Center in downtown Spokane. They started miFlavour as an online-only bakery not quite a year ago and are still looking for a storefront. They focus on high-end, scratch-made, creative specialty cakes, pies and other creations. While some of their baked goods are now available in a few local grocery stories, special cakes and pies are still ordered online. Delivery is free with orders of $150 or more. Otherwise, pick-up is at the Montvale Event Center, 1017 W. First Ave. (509) 426-5596. miflavour.com
Just American Desserts
Established in 1986, this longtime local bakeshop specializes in special occasion cakes, tarts, pies and cheesecakes. “You name it, we’ve done it,” said owner Eva Roberts, noting some customers have returned to her bakeshop for their holiday desserts year after year. “I feel like I’m in the business of creating memories, not necessarily baking cakes,” she said. Roberts requests a couple of days’ notice, and that means getting Thanksgiving orders in by Nov. 20 “if possible.” But she’s been known to turn orders around with at least 24 hours notice. Her traditional pumpkin pie is deep dish with a handmade crust. The filling is made with half-and-half as opposed to evaporated milk. “I think the texture is lovely,” said Roberts, who also offers a pumpkin cheesecake, Washington apple cake and caramel apple cheesecake. Her tarts are done in 10-inch spring-form rounds with short crust. Look for apple and a decadent Kentucky Bourbon Chocolate Chip tart. On the way out, consider picking up a bunch of Humbles, the shop’s signature soft cookie, made with warming spices and topped with vanilla icing. 213 S. University Road. (509) 927-2253. www.justamericandesserts.net/.
Cupcakes are the best-seller at this whimsical bake shop, which recently added cheesecakes and pies to its repertoire. The crust is a mix of butter and lard. “We don’t use shortening in anything, except to attach fondant,” owner Sally Winfrey said, noting the shop goes through about 500 pounds of butter and 1,000 pounds of powdered sugar each week – and that’s just for butter cream frosting. “We bake fresh every day,” Winfrey said. And, “we refrigerate; we don’t freeze.” The shop is closed on Thanksgiving. Customers are asked to place orders for pies (and cakes) by Nov. 20 in order to have them in time for the holiday. Pies are pumpkin, pecan, apple, Dutch apple and more. Crust options are classic, spiced, crumble, double, lattice and cookie cutter. Sweet Frostings also offers pumpkin cheesecake and spiced cheesecake with apple crisp, crumb topping and caramel sauce – among other flavors. Want something different? Sweet Frostings can make a pumpkin cheesecake cake, a layer of classic cheesecake sandwiched between two layers of pumpkin spice cake with vanilla cream cheese butter cream. Cakes come in pumpkin spice, pumpkin chai, pumpkin chocolate chip and more. And for smaller seasonal treats, look for a variety of pumpkin-flavored macarons and, of course, cupcakes. Sweet Frostings has three locations. Wandermere: 12501 N. Division St., Suite 3. (509) 368-9811. Downtown: 15 S. Washington St. (509) 242-3845. Spokane Valley Mall: 14700 E. Indiana Ave. (509) 381-5927. Note: A fourth location is coming soon. A Sweet Frostings kiosk is slated to open in the NorthTown Mall after Thanksgiving. www.sweetfrostingsbakeshop.com
Lilac City Bakery
This new bakery in Spokane’s University District now serves as the production facility for its sister Celebrations shops. (See related story.) Celebrations has specialized in cakes and cupcakes. And that’s true at Lilac City, too. But, since moving into the new location, proprietor Amber Owens is expanding the offerings. Pie is now on the menu. Orders must be in by Nov. 20 to be ready in time for the holiday. Pies are pumpkin, apple, pecan and chocolate mousse. Plus, custom pie orders are welcome with three-day lead time. 1215 N. Ruby St. (509) 315-4958.
Conley’s Place Restaurant and Pioneer Pies Bakery
Pies are made daily from scratch at this family-owned Spokane Valley eatery and bakeshop. They feature hand-fluted crusts and come a whole host of flavors: pumpkin, apple, Dutch apple, pecan, mince and many more. Call to place a Thanksgiving pie order by Nov. 21 at the latest. Pie pick-up is 5 p.m. Nov. 22. 12622 E. Sprague Ave., Spokane Valley. (509) 924-5411. www.conleysplacerestaurant.com.
Spokane Community College
Students in the professional baking program here will be making pies for pick-up from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 20 and 21. Student bakers are making and selling several varieties, including pumpkin. But they aren’t taking any special or custom orders, according to Janet Breedlove, culinary arts program coordinator. Pies – pumpkin, apple, nut, fruit – are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Parking is metered and costs 50 cents per hour. SCC, Building 1, Room 130, 1810 N. Greene St. For more information, contact commercial baking instructor Harry Wibisono at (509) 533-7281 or Katie Anderson at (509) 533-8685. www.scc.spokane.edu.
Cole’s Fine Foods Gluten-Free Bakery and Cafe
Cole’s crust is made with its own secret signature blend of gluten-free flour. Buy it by the bag and make your own pie. Or, let the bakers here do all of the work. Just be sure to get your order in by Nov. 18. Pick up before 6 p.m. Nov. 22. Pies are pumpkin, pecan or apple. Dairy-free is also available. So are other gluten-free baked goods to round out your Thanksgiving meal including dinner rolls, croutons for stuffing and pumpkin rolls – think cinnamon rolls but pumpkin – with cream cheese. Cole’s opened in 2014 as a gluten-free bakery and has since expanded into a full-service restaurant as well as bakery. Cole’s serves breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. It also features dairy-free and vegan fare. 521 E. Holland, Suite 20. (509) 413-1739. colesbakerandcafe.com.
Cyrus O’Leary’s award-winning pies are made in Airway Heights and available at many local grocery stores. The line of pies grew out of the brand’s signature restaurant, which opened in downtown Spokane in 1981. The pie plant opened six years later, and frozen pies were added in 1996. The restaurant closed in 2011. Look for pumpkin, pecan, apple, Dutch apple and more. Some varieties come in a no-sugar-added option. www.cyruspies.com/.
Costco introduced its pumpkin pie in 1987. Today, it makes and sells more than 5 million pumpkin pies during pumpkin-pie season. They’re 12 inches around now, adding even more value. They also weigh about 3 1/2 pounds each, cost just $5.99 and enjoy a cult following. Find Costco pumpkin pie on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/CostcoPie/. Someone who’s “on a mission to get Costco to sell slices of pumpkin pie at the food courts” – that is, Costco pumpkin pie at Costco’s food courts – apparently started it in 2016. Find it at https://twitter.com/costcopie. Costco is closed on Thanksgiving. https://www.costco.com/.