6 Ways to Host the Perfect Fall Pie Potluck with Your Friends

Move over, pastel: Fall is the time to shine for pastels. With pumpkins and pecans galore, it’s no wonder pie is the most popular treat of the season. As such, there’s no better way to celebrate this delicious dish than with a cake tasting party where you and your friends bake and bring in your favorite cakes. Guests will love sharing their recipes and enjoying sweet treats and sips in a cozy setting, and you’ll love the ease with which it all comes together. Here are nine tips for a potluck party that’s every sweet tooth’s dream.

Make your friends happy with mini cakes.

These little treats are an adorable use for leftover baked pie crust. To Make: Roll out the pre-made pie crust. Then, use a cookie cutter (or upturned glass) to punch out circles. Place in greased muffin tins; fill with canned pumpkin pie filling. Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Top with whipped cream or small fall cookies.

Send guests home with candy.

Make guests feel special with a flavor to go. Just buy mini pies at the grocery store, like Freshness Guaranteed 4-inch Mini Pecan Pies (Buy them at Walmart, $0.74 each), and put them in cute boxes like Censen’s Autumn Bakery Cookie Boxes (Buy them at Amazon, $13.99 for 20 ) that offer a glimpse of the deliciousness. Tie with a ribbon.

Set up a cake bar.

friends action cake bar


A fall pie potluck, like the one above by Giggles Galore’s Mariah Leeson, wouldn’t be complete without a fun and colorful pie bar. To get the look, hang a macrame backdrop or crochet blanket on a blank wall. Push a table or desk against the wall. (Leeson likes a desk because she can store utensils and more in open drawers to free up space.) Install staggered servers and stands; top with cakes. To finish, display a yellow vase filled with wheat stalks, a DIY banner, and colorful pumpkins.

Prepare a seasonal sip.

A batch of homemade apple pie flavored vodka is the secret to tasty cider cocktails. To Make: Fill a large mason jar with apple slices drizzled with lemon juice. Add 2 cinnamon sticks, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon nutmeg. Pour vodka into the top of the mason jar; add lid and refrigerate 24 hours. Before the party, simmer apple cider, sliced ​​apples, cinnamon sticks, and star anise for 10 minutes; pour into clear cups. Add 1 ounce of vodka mix to each cup, stir, and serve.

Pepper in some salty snacks.

Mouth-watering cakes take center stage at the party, but an elegant display board filled with sliced ​​meats, cheeses, and fruit provides a tasty contrast between bites. (Tip for a balanced board: Offer a strong-tasting cheese like blue cheese or sharp cheddar, a soft cheese like Gruyère or Gouda, and a soft, creamy cheese like Brie or goat cheese. Then choose sides to combine with each). Start with a cutting board, then place larger items, like wedges and wheels of cheese, diagonally across the board. Next, fill in the gaps with nuts, figs, cold cuts, and crackers.

Make a pumpkin-geous center room.

Pumpkins are plentiful and inexpensive right now, even the fancier pumpkin varieties in muted hues and interesting shapes. Choose your favorite and use it as a striking vase, doubling the wow factor at a buffet or entrance table. To Make: Cut a hole around the stem of the squash and remove. (Hint: Don’t make the opening too large; a smaller opening brings the stems together for a fuller look.) Scoop out the pulp and seeds from the pumpkin, and then fill it with water. Next, cut the stems of the fall flowers so that they stick out an inch to four inches longer than the pumpkin. Insert the stems, one at a time, into the pumpkin at an angle, forming a smooth mound. Fill in the gaps with branches, berries, or leaves from the backyard. Display on a cake stand.

3 more tips for a sweet day

  1. Rank your favorite cakes.
    A cake sorting competition puts a fun twist on a traditional potluck. Before your party, ask guests to bake and bring their favorite cake. Then, as they arrive, ask them to place their cake on your buffet, and label each one with a number. Give each guest a slip of paper and a pencil, and after everyone finishes tasting, ask them to rank their top three cakes. Count the votes and award the winning bakers a prize, such as an apron, a coffee shop gift card, or even a scratch-off lottery ticket.

  2. Share your gratitude.
    At her cake party, Leeson put up a thank you board, a little touch that touched everyone’s hearts. To Do: Display a chalkboard from a craft store and ask guests to write down a few things they are thankful for. “Take a picture of the board and text it to everyone so they can remember the good times and how they were blessed with friends,” she says.

  3. Pack boxes to go.
    Bakery-style triangular boxes make it easy for guests to pack their favorite individual slices of cake. And pretty fall ones that come with a burlap ribbon and pumpkin-shaped label, like the Pumpkin Pie Slice Boxes with Tags and Bows from Celebrate It (buy at Michaels, $1.99 for two), make the packages to take away are more special. Just place empty boxes on the buffet and let the guests fill them.

This article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.

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