The World Needs More Pie

"Give a Piece a Chance." — Books. Blog. Pie Classes. And a Pinch of Activism.

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Pitchfork Pie Stand

The Pitchfork Pie Stand at the American Gothic House is closed.

We thank you for your support over five fruitful seasons (from our first pie in October 2010 to our last one in July 2014), but the pie stand became so popular and grew so big, we could no longer sustain it. Baking over 100 pies every weekend in a tiny house with one oven, with the public cramming into your living room to buy them…well, it was fun, but…

Watch this time-lapse video (showing only one hour out of the day!) and you will see what we mean. I get tired just watching it! This doesn’t even show you the behind the scenes of cleaning, shopping, prepping, baking and more it takes to run a pie stand.

Missed out on the Pitchfork Pie Stand or craving one of Beth’s pies? Buy her cookbook, “Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bold Tales from the American Gothic House.” All of her pie stand recipes are included.

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See us on ONLY IN AMERICA WITH LARRY THE CABLE GUY (“Larry vs. the Killer Bees” episode). Also see us on IPTV’s IOWA INGREDIENT. And watch our feature on CBS THIS MORNING.

Featured in REAL SIMPLE

Named “Best of the Midwest” 2 years in a row (2012 & 2013) in MIDWEST LIVING’S Annual Travel Guide

Featured in COUNTRY LIVING and on the front page of the LOS ANGELES TIMES.


Do you mean closed for the season or closed forever?
I started the pie stand “for fun” in 2010 and it grew and grew and grew over the next four years until we couldn’t contain it in the little American Gothic House kitchen any longer. I looked at many possible solutions to manage the volume (buy a commercial oven, bake off-site in a bigger kitchen, rent a storefront), but first and foremost I am a writer and it was never my goal to bake this much. My true mission is to encourage others to make and share their own homemade pie, as I believe the act of giving makes the world a better place. At the pie stand I was selling, not giving, and I’ve always been uncomfortable with that. Therefore the best solution — for me personally — was to stop doing the pie stand completely. Then, in September (2014), I moved out of the American Gothic House. So, yes, we are closed for good.

What are you doing now?
After moving out of the American Gothic House (September 2014), I went back to Los Angeles for six months, then traveled around the world for three (Scroll through the WORLD PIECE posts on my blog to read the stories). When I finished circling the globe I moved back to Iowa, September 2015. Once again I am living in a white farmhouse, but this time I’m on a 1,000-acre farm — living with a redheaded farmer!  I still make (and teach) pie for special occasions, but I’m focused on my writing. I’m working on my next book, about my four years living in the American Gothic House and all the crazy misadventures in the rural Iowa tourist attraction. I’ll let you know when it’s published. You can still buy “Making Piece: A Memoir of Love, Loss and Pie” (Harlequin, 2012) and my cookbook, “Ms. American Pie,” filled with essays, photos & of course recipes (Race Point, 2014). Both have made bestseller lists!

What’s happening with the American Gothic House now? Can I rent it?
The house is open to the public for tours. It is no longer be rented out as a private residence. (I ruined it for everyone!) I miss the house every single day and will continue to cherish my memories of living there for the rest of my life. You should definitely go visit it. You can dress up in free costumes (including spectacles and pitchforks) from the visitor center and pose like the painting in front of the house. Check here for visitor center hours.

Do you still sell pies? Can we call and order one? Will you make pies for our special event?
Oh, thanks for asking, but no. I never took orders outside of the pie stand, and now I am not in the business of selling pies at all. But you can make your own pie using recipes from my cookbook.  I believe the world needs more pie. Especially homemade pie. I promise you, when you make your own pie and share it with someone and you will experience the win-win joy that comes from giving and sharing.