Why You Should Let Your Pie Sit Before Slicing

Pie is one of the most classic and comforting desserts. It's one of the oldest, too, with Chatter Bug stating the earliest pies can be dated back to 6000 B.C., ancient Egypt. And it's a staple dessert for any major holiday, no matter the season — a pumpkin or sweet potato pie is just as welcome at Thanksgiving dinner as apple pie is at a Fourth of July cookout.

There are countless ways to make pies and even more recipes. Each procedure is going to vary slightly — from preferring a flaky crust over a pâte brisée, a whole crust over latticing, what you decide to fill it with, and so on (via Ashlee Marie). 

However, there is one step that every baker, home and professional alike, should be sure to follow when it comes to baking their crispy golden works of art. And all it takes is just a little patience.

Letting your pie sit allows the filling to thicken

A good pie not only tastes delicious but it's structured well — so as eager as you may be to dive right into your steaming hot dessert as soon as it's out of the oven, you should let it rest for a little bit. While a flaky crust and flavor are essential, these qualities may not meet their potential if the pie falls apart. The filling should be cooked through and cohesive in shape right up to the moment you serve a slice (via Just Pie). Meaning when you cut into your pie, you don't want the filling to flood out. 

This is true for pureed pie fillings like pumpkin and chocolate, as well as whole-fruit mixtures like apple, blueberry, rhubarb, cherry, and so on. One issue could be that your filling is too watery or doesn't have enough thickening agents. For this, EatingWell recommends adding a little bit of cornstarch or flour to the filling before baking. 

However, the culprit likely has to do with your temptation to dig into the dessert — letting your pie rest for up to an hour allows the ingredients to really bind together and settle down. It will still be warm when you finally serve it, and the pie filling will have had enough time to thicken and give your tastebuds the hearty bite you've been waiting for.