Scenic view of trees at camp

Thanksgiving Pie Recipes

by Pine Cove


Even if you have not been a camper or staffer at Crier Creek in Columbus, you have probably at least heard of the legendary Mama Mia’s hospitality and delicious cooking skills. Vikki “Mama Mia” George served as the Food Service Director for our Central Texas camps for several years. Her food was so good, in 2015 we released a cookbook she helped curate with her own recipes and others submitted by campers and other friends of Pine Cove.

The cookbook is still sold exclusively in the Crier Creek camp store, and it’s fittingly titled “Crier Creek’s Elk-cellent Cookbook.” In the spirit of Thanksgiving, also known as the eat-all-the-pie holiday, we picked out a couple unique pies from the cookbook you and your family can try next week. Enjoy!

Ancho Chile Chocolate Pecan Pie

By Vikki “Mama Mia” George


  • 9-inch Unbaked pie shell
  • ½ cup Butter
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • ½ cup Flour
  • 1 cup Mini chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 cup chopped Pecans
  • 2 tsp. Minced, rehydrated ancho chile pepper or ⅛ tsp. Ground ancho chile pepper

Heat oven to 350. Cream butter in mixing bowl. Add eggs and vanilla and blend well. Combine sugar and flour, then add creamed mixture. Stir in chips, pecans, and pepper. Pour into pie shell and bake 45-50 minutes or until set and golden brown. Serve topped with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Note: Chocolate goes well with a little spice. The ancho chile adds just enough heat to make this pie unusual and tasty. This is a much-requested recipe.

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie

By Christin Pivero of Kingwood, TX


  • 1 cup Apple Butter
  • 1 cup Fresh or Canned Pumpkin
  • ½ cup Packed Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • ¾ tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp. Ground Nutmeg
  • ⅛ tsp. Ground Ginger
  • 3 Eggs, slightly beaten
  • ¾ cup Evaporated Milk
  • 1 9-inch Unbaked Pie Shell
  • Sweetened Whipped Cream for Garnish

Preheat oven to 425. Combine apple butter, pumpkin, sugar, salt, and spices in a bowl. Stir in eggs. Gradually add milk and mix well. Pour into pie shell. Bake for about 40 minutes or until set.

Note: if the crust begins to burn, place tin foil around the crust and lower the temperature of the oven. A tasty topping for this pie is praline pecans.

Nutter Butter Frozen Peanut Butter Pie

From Valeri Harder of Richmond, TX


  • 24 Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies
  • 5 T. Butter, melted
  • 1 8-oz. Pkg. Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
  • ¾ cup Sugar
  • 1 T. Vanilla
  • 1 8-oz. Tub Cool Whip Whipped topping, thawed, divided

Crush cookies in a resealable bag with rolling pin or in a food processor. Mix cookie crumbs and butter. Press onto bottom and up the side of a 9-inch pie plate. Mix cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Gently stir in 1 ½ cups of the whipped topping. Spoon into crust. Freeze 4 hours or overnight until firm. Let stand 30 minutes or until pie can be cut easily. Garnish with remaining whipped topping.

Note: This is great as is, but even better if you drizzle chocolate syrup on top.

Posted Nov 14, 2017

Pine Cove

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