The Most Popular Thanksgiving Pie in Every State, According to Instagram

Pumpkin didn't do so well.

Thanksgiving pies
Photo: Adobe Stock

For my money, pumpkin pie is the official pie of Thanksgiving—with maybe sweet potato or pecan as acceptable secondary choices. But what do I know? I’m just one person. Meanwhile, Instagram has around one billion users. So, the photo-driven social media network set out to determine which Thanksgiving pies were the most popular in all 50 states, once and for all.

It turns out that eight pies vied for the top spot … and, suspiciously enough, pumpkin pie didn’t even fare that well.

Looking at the number of states won—the electoral college of pies, one could say—cranberry pie is actually America’s leading Thanksgiving pie, at least according to Instagram. Fourteen states—Kansas, Massachusetts, Iowa, Rhode Island, Vermont, Minnesota, Oregon, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Washington, Illinois, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Montana—all had cranberry first.

Sweet potato finished second with support from Virginia, Ohio, Mississippi, the District of Columbia, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Delaware, Maryland, Georgia, and Tennessee. And, in fact, cherry, pecan, blueberry, and strawberry all scored better than pumpkin—which was only tops in three states: California, Nevada, and Arizona. Finally, Apple brought up the rear thanks to Connecticut (and Connecticut alone).

With such unexpected results, you may be thinking, How did Instagram come up with this? Their methodology: “The app sourced the data based on the likes and mentions of pie flavors over the last month from in-feed and Instagram Story posts—and concluded these as the favorites for each state,” an Instagram spokesperson explained. And even they called the “surprising” results a “very 2020-esque twist.”

On Facebook, where Instagram posted the results, users seemed equally miffed. “Lived in Illinois all my life and have never seen a cranberry pie, much less eaten one at Thanksgiving,” one person commented. “I'm a 75 year old 'foodie' from Wisconsin and have never even heard of cranberry pie!!!!!!” replied another. Maybe can we get TikTok to chime in on all of this?

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