The One Where Matthew Bakes His First Pie

The fall dessert you will truly fall for


Photo by M. Beyer

Fresh out of the oven, Pumpkin Chai Mini Pies are ready to eat!

Matthew Beyer, Co-Editor in Chief, Columns Editor

Fall has always been my favorite time of year, and this year to start it off right, I decided to bake my very first pie. In the past, I have always seen pies, especially the crust, as difficult to make and have avoided trying to make them.  However, when I saw a recipe for Pumpkin Chai Mini Pies, I knew I was up for the challenge. Pumpkin Chai Mini Pies are a combination of two of my favorite fall flavors, pumpkin pie and chai tea lattes. To start off, you will need a variety of common household ingredients such as brown sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt and vanilla extract. When making the pie dough (, make sure to let it rest in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes, so it is easier to work with. Another tip from my experience with this recipe is to make sure your pie crust reaches a little bit outside of the muffin tin, because the dough tends to shrink some while baking. Baking a pie is not an easy feat, but the most rewarding part is when they have cooled after baking in the oven and are ready to enjoy. Pumpkin Chai Mini Pies are a great treat for any fall occasion.


  • 1 can (15 oz./470 g) pumpkin puree 
  • 1 cup (7 oz./220 g) firmly-packed light brown sugar 
  • 1 Tbs. cornstarch 
  • 3/4 tsp. cinnamon 
  • 3/4 tsp. ground ginger 
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom 
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves 
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt 
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten 
  • 1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream 
  • 1 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract 
  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream for serving 



  1. Lightly coat 24 standard muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray. Using a 4-inch (10-cm) round cutter, cut out 24 rounds and fit them into the prepared muffin cups, gathering the scraps of dough and re-rolling as needed. Trim the edges if necessary, leaving a 1/4-inch (6-mm) overhang. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). 
  3. Bake the crusts until dry to the touch and lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely on wire racks. Leave the oven on. 
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree and brown sugar. Add the cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves and salt and whisk until smooth. Add the eggs and whisk until combined. Add the cream and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Divide the filling among the crusts. 
  5. Bake until the filling is set, 30 to 35 minutes, covering the edges with aluminum foil if they brown too quickly. Let cool completely on wire racks before serving. Serve each mini pie with a dollop of whipped cream. Makes 24 mini pies. 


Recipe courtesy: