Sweet potato pie

Photo: Aya Brackett

The Sweet Potato Pie with Spiced Up Flavor
Tanya Holland, the chef at the soul-food restaurant Brown Sugar Kitchen in Oakland, California, considers intense flavors a hallmark of her cooking. "Ingredients are superimportant, but you've got to know how to embellish them," she says. For this Sweet Potato Pie, she enhances the candy-like flavor of fresh sweet potatoes with brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg.

Get the recipe: Sweet Potato Pie
Mile-High Apple Pie

Photo: Maria Robledo

The Apple Pie That's Worth the Wait
Just as some fruits taste better when they’re at peak ripeness, there are desserts that taste better when you let them sit for a day—and this apple pie is one of them. Make it the day before, so the juices have time to thicken, and you'll be rewarded with a perfectly rich and beautiful pie.

Get the recipe: Mile-High Apple Pie
Pumpkin Gingersnap Pie

Photo: Anna Williams

The Pumpkin Pie That's Just a Little Different
A crust of crushed walnuts and gingersnap cookies isn't just an unusual way to jazz up classic pumpkin pie—it's also a time saver, since you don't have to make a dough, chill it and roll it out. And instead of topping the dessert with whipped cream, this recipe has you drizzle the pie with a tart, bright-pink cranberry glaze.

Get the recipe: Pumpkin Gingersnap Pie
Pear and Ginger Tarte Tatin

Photo: Ditte Isager

The Unexpected, Upside-Down Pie
Pear desserts tend to fly below the radar, but this sweet, lightly spiced tarte tatin (a French upside-down pie) reminds us how delicious they can be. It's easy to make: You sauté sliced pears in butter; sprinkle them with sugar and fresh, grated ginger; then drape a circle of dough over the fruit. Bake, let cool and then (carefully) invert onto a serving dish.

Get the recipe: Pear and Ginger Tarte Tatin
Sweet Potato and Pecan Pie with Cinnamon Cream

Photo: Shimon & Tammar

The Pie for When You Just Can't Decide What to Make
A sweet-potato filling with a maple-flavored pecan topping is the ideal compromise for bakers who would like both a sweet potato and a pecan pie (but don't want to spend an entire day in the kitchen). This pie recipe also includes easy instructions for making cinnamon-flecked whipped cream, which you can serve alongside or on top.

Get the recipe: Sweet Potato and Pecan Pie with Cinnamon Cream
Apple-Cranberry Crumb Pie

Photo: Rob Howard

The Apple Pie with Tart and Crunch Accents
Chef Amy Loveless, who cooks at the Dream Away Lodge in the Berkshire Mountains, likes to use a mix of Northern Spy and Cortland apples in her apple-cranberry pie, though Granny Smiths are a fine substitute. She finishes the creation with a sugary crumb topping that adds delightful contrast to the soft fruit.

Get the recipe: Apple-Cranberry Crumb Pie

Next: The 7 dishes that will make you a holiday party star