Your Thread to Keep You Occupied For Today: Friday

It’s Friday! Time for pie! Or, uh, cake.

Your thread to keep you occupied for today:

Cake or Pie: you must choose! One or the other, baby. Yes, I’ve done this one before. But it was years ago. And Cake vs. Pie never gets old.

171 Comments on “Your Thread to Keep You Occupied For Today: Friday”

  1. Pie… sweet… delicious pumpkin pie…

    Cake has its place (weddings, funerals, and generic birthday parties) but nothing beats a nice slice of pie…mmmmmmmmm

    Time to make a phone call to make sure that my co-habitator cooks me some pie to go with my supper…

    “damn it woman!!!… make me some pie!”


  2. Good cake is moist and delicious. Good pie is merely delicious. The experience of good cake can therefore be duplicated by good pie only if it is eaten in the shower, which is rather an inconconvenience. Hence, I prefer cake.

  3. Hmmmmm, Pie. Cake is a special occasion, pie is an everyday “I love you!” with lots of tasty choices.

  4. “Someone left the cake out in the rain
    I don’t think that I can take it
    ‘Cause it took so long to bake it
    And I’ll never have that recipe again
    Oh, no!”

    “So bye-bye, miss american pie”

  5. I would’ve said pie, up until I had my Father-in-law’s homemade German Cheesecake. MMMM… 5 sticks of butter.

  6. Unless it’s my friend’s orange/triple sec/vodka cake, or maaaybe her strawberry/almond/amaretto cake, pie all the way. Except pumpkin pie. Or rhubarb. Or pecan. Or mincemeat. Or that strange abomination where people put cheese on apple pie, that’s right out.

  7. That depends. Are we counting cheesecake as a cake, per the name, or as a pie, per its shape and form? Or is cheesecake some kind of cake-pie hybrid; a bridge, as it were, between two parallel worlds?

    I’ll have the chicken.

  8. Pie. Raspberry.

    And I think the last of the fresh berries got picked last night too – 28 F this morning when I got up.

  9. Pie. Pies can capture the fleeting moments of life and wrap them in buttery flaky goodness:
    The point when one is so rich in blueberries that they can be eaten by the handful and stuffed into pies by the cupful.
    The moment in august when the peaches are in the spotlight– just juicy magnificence with a thin skin, any past mealiness forgotten.
    The time in the fall when the apples are exuberantly diverse: all different flavors and colors and degrees of sturdiness.
    The rhubarb that finally shows up to rescue us from winter and promises color and sweetness…

    Cake is hard to respect. It’s always there. It’s predictable, it’s reliable, it’s delicious, but it has no soul.

    Cake is tasty, but it doesn’t make me savor my life the way pie does.

  10. in general, I go with cake. But if there’s cheesecake or key lime pie, then screw cake, man. I refused to eat pie for the majority of my youth and I was missing out.

  11. Pie is always moist. Cake, only sometimes. If you had to choose between two deserts and the only thing you knew about them was that one was cake and the other was pie, why would you not always choose pie?

  12. Ack. Stoopid crosspost. I knew it was too good to be true that I’d be the first to make the (obvious) Eddie Izzard reference.


    For the record, I actually prefer pie over cake. And death, for that matter.

  13. Pie. Cake is sometimes dry and the frosting is too sugary and it gets hard around the edges. Pie is almost always good.

  14. Grandma’s Florence Cake – the perfect combination. Pie crust filled with yellow cake, topped with a thin layer of white icing (all from scratch).

    And guys, even when it’s cake or death, choose the cake!

  15. Pie – especially if it’s cherry and cherries still have a little body left to them. (I don’t like it when they’re cooked beyond recognition.)

  16. Being an Australian (as I am) both cake and pie have different connotations. “Pie” is generally taken ass to mean “something of the savoury variety”, where-as cake is purely a sweet thing. At the moment, I have had throughly enough of the savoury and am ready to move onto the sweet. So my vote goes with “cake” (although, possibly only because I am drunk, and my housemate won’t appreciate me preparing anything savoury at this time of night).

  17. I would give up all other sweet things forever to have a constant supply of quality cheesecake.

  18. First off, cheesecake is a pie by any reasonable definition. So any vote for cheesecake is a vote for pie.

    And pie is so much better than cake, which is why I always choose birthday pie over birthday cake.

  19. While I would probably drop right down dead if I were told I could never have cake again, I think I’d die more if I could never again have my mother’s apple pie. Yes, die more. It’s possible. You’d believe me if you’d ever tasted my mother’s apple pie.

    Also, I went to two weddings this past summer. One had wedding cake. The other? Wedding pies. And oh my god, those pies. I am not exaggerating when I say they have showed up in my dreams. So very, very delicious.

  20. I made an apple pie last night. My girlfriend liked it – which needless to say is the important part – but I found it entirely too tart. (Serves me right for mixing in a Granny Smith with my Honey Crisp, but whatever.) So at the moment, I must say cake, because pie has recently let me down. Or perhaps I let pie down. It’s a complex relationship.

  21. While I’m a fan of cake, if I had to choose one for the rest of my life I’m going with pie.

    Cake varieties are mostly flavor with a few texture variances.

    Pie incorporates so much more in the way of texture AND flavor plus if we are counting cheese cake as pie it’s all win.

  22. Me like pie. PIE PIE PIE!

    Seriously, folks: How many things can be breakfast, dinner AND dessert? When’s the last time you saw a meat cake?

    That said, I can’t stand the things that often pass for cream pies. They’re far too sweet and sticky. A good lemon merengue or banana is one thing, but something that’s little more than chocolate mousse with a bunch of Oreos and fake whipped cream? That’s not pie.

  23. Pie ftw. The delicious, light, versatile pie. Normal apple pie, Tatin apple pie, blueberry pie, strawberry pie, raspberry pie, peach pie, pear pie, tarte à la rhubarbe, tarte au sucre, tarte au chocolat, tarte aux tomates…
    Cake is good, don’t get me wrong, but it’s just so boringly solid. dense. kinda blend even. I mean, when you think about it, the best part of cake is the glaze, not the cake itself.

    But then one might break the rules of engagement and bring in crust. Ain’t nothing to beat some peach/blueberry crust. Aaaaand now I’m hungry. Plus, blueberry season is over, so I have to wait a whole year for a good crust. Scaaaaaaaalziiiiiii!

  24. Cake looks rich and good on the outside, but inside it’s mostly hot air.

    Pie, on the other hand, looks flat and flaky on the outside, but inside it’s filled with warmth and sweetness and goodness.

    I prefer substance over style. Therefore, PIE.

  25. JustMe@32

    That sounds suspiciously like a Bakewell which is neither pie nor cake, but a tart.


    Yes, pies should be savoury. Like these little beauties. Bought hot from the local chippy, with chips, peas and gravy.

  26. Definitely pie for me. Cake is okay. Sometimes. Cake is usually way to sweet for me. The first thing I usually do with cake is scrape off all of the frosting. It is rare indeed that I like the frosting on a cake. Talk about sugar overload. I mean, even cream cheese frosting, which sounds like it might be less sweet than most frosting, is made with 8 oz of cream cheese mixed with FOUR TO SIX CUPS of confectioners sugar. That is sick.

    But pie, ohhhh my! My lovely wife makes the most stupendous cherry pie! I also like blueberry, key lime, apple, pear, pistchio and others, but. When the black cherries are just perfectly ripe, not to soft, not to hard. It takes some time to pit them all but it is so worth it. And her pie crust. I always thought her crust was great, but recently we had a store bought pie, Marie Challenders I think, at my mother in law’s place and I could not believe how much better a good home made pie crust is than store bought.

    In summary, you can keep the cake and I’ll have the pie.

    Oh yeah. Wedding pies? Why didn’t I think of that!

  27. Pie. Now I have to go re-watch Michael.

    “There’s nothing prettier than pie with scalloped edges and slits in the top for the heat to escape.”

  28. I have always had a preference for cake over pie. Might have something to do with my only brushes with pie having been apple with too much cinnamon, lemon merengue and pumpkin. A really good apple pie, without any cinnamon (yes, you heard me) is excellent, and when you add chocolate, peanut butter and coconut cream pies to the list, pie becomes a much broader player.

    That said, cake is just fantastic. I like it best without any icing, frosting or the like at all. Moist, just a bit crumbly, and perfect with a glass of milk.

    And, for the record, cheesecake is a *custard*.

  29. I would like a sliver of each, please. Nice moist yellow cake with chocolate or coconut frosting, or carrot or banana cake with cream cheese frosting.

    For pie, I would like either cold key lime or lemon (no meringue), or blueberry, peach or apple, warm, out of the oven, with a small dollop of vanilla ice cream.

    There goes my diet.

  30. Pie. Rhubarb/berry pie, apple pie, chocolate pudding pie (only barely qualifies as “pie” but still)… doesn’t really matter the kind of pie, I like it.

    Let us not forget the hybrid, however: Boston Creme Pie: two layers of angel cake with a thick layer of custard between, covered in chocolate. It’s both a cake AND a pie!

  31. Can anyone explain the difference between the two for me?
    They both get translated to Polish as ‘ciasto’ and frankly I just always thought about pie as a special kind of cake.

    Not that I could choose anyway – these categories are too generic. You need to be more specific. For best result please include a picture.

  32. Pie! Cake is fruit and crust and yum! You can have ice cream with it or plain! Hot or cold! Leftovers! PUMPKIN PIE. Cake is amazing and can be a work of true artistry, but it’s always cake. No matter how awesome the cake, it’s still puffy carbs with sweet stuff on it.

  33. There are many, many more types of cake than types of pie, including many forms using chocolate. Plus, as Jeannie pointed out, cakes have icing, and you can sculpt them into the Leaning Tower of Pisa or an X-Box console, which you cannot do with pie. Cakes rule, except for pumpkin pie. And cheesecake is cake.

  34. Even my efforts to master the piecrust have not won me over to pie-side. Cake, all the time, in all ways.

  35. From-scratch German chocolate cake, heavy on the coconut-pecan frosting, with chocolate ice cream on top.

    Failing that…cobbler. Blackberry cobbler.

  36. 16. Jeanne: you’ve got it backwards.
    Cake requires icing it. Pie does not. Easy choice:

  37. Braxis @ 57

    I can see similarities, but Florence Cakes are dry (in a good way) – no fruit or other filling. Just cake in pie crust. Perhaps this is a regional difference, as Grandma was from the Edinburgh area. But thanks for sharing about the Bakewell – it looks really good, too!

  38. Carrot cake. With cream cheese frosting. And all of you are heathens for not suggesting it sooner. *Heathens!*

    Although my brother makes a mean amaretto cheesecake with peaches on top that just might edge out carrot cake on a good day. Maybe.

    But I still pronounce you all heathens. Especially *you*, John. For even having to ask.

  39. Ooh a toughie but although there are some pies that make top of my quality list (Mr Kipling’s individual fruit ones with the little pastry symbol to tell you which one! I don’t bake…) in the end I have to go with cake. I couldn’t live without it wheras I might miss pie but life would go on!

  40. #9 I’m with you. Nothing beats a good cheesecake.

    For me, it’s best served with a black tea or double-shot of espresso!

    I must confess a recent fondness for a no-sugar-added spiced apple pie.

  41. Marie Antoinette said “Let them eat cake,” and her head went missing shortly thereafter.

    Because, as we all know, cake is the opiate of the people.

    Pie! Rise up, workers of the world, and embrace pie! Reject the imperialist lie that is cake!

    (Logs into eTrade: Checks stock in pie companies. Hopes SEC is not watching.)

  42. Pie, pie, pie. Quiche for breakfast! A pasty for lunch! Pierogies for dinner. All are pie, tasty filling contained in a crust. And then there’s cherry pie, nut pie, apple pie, coconut cream pie, lemon meringue pie, even my mother’s mincemeat pie, all are good.


  43. 64# BeVibeon 09 Oct 2009 at 12:40 pm

    58. Darrell – you need an OXO Pitter:

    They are good for pitting cherries and olives, and no cherry or olive lover should be without one.


    Thank you for the link. We actually do have a cheap pitter but it does not work very well. This one looks much better. Maybe I’ll be able to stay ahead of my son with this one. He eats the cherries faster than I can pit them. He’s very regular.

  44. Life is uncertain; eat dessert first!

    In order of preference: 1) Banana cream pie; 2) Chocolate cake with butter cream frosting; 3) Strawberry rhubarb pie with vanilla ice cream; 4) Yellow cake with fruit filling for ‘frosting’.

    I may have gained a pound just writing that list….

  45. My mother’s peach pie. Don’t get me wrong, I love cake also, but there’s just no substitute for that particular recipe. It’s also excellent when made with nectarines.

  46. In daily life, it completely depends on the quality. . . .

    If I have to choose, though, between a perfect (chocolate) cake and a perfect pie, I’ll choose the cake.

    Bad cake, even *average* cake however. .is BLECHKY, and if I’m faced with choosing between average cake and average pie, I’ll take the pie.

  47. Cake, both to eat and to make.

    If I ever snap and head up into the clock tower, it will probably be due to Another Damn Pie Crust(tm) falling apart when I try to transfer it to the pan.

  48. Why you gotta be hatin’ on us diabetics, brother John? Can’t have pie, can’t have cake. No need to rub it in our face.

  49. My brother-in-law wrote a persuasive paper in college, complete with references and testimonials from prominent scientists and doctors (okay, it was me, a biochemist, and his sister, who’s a pediatrician) about how pie was better than cake. It was brilliant.

  50. Cake, baby. With buttercream frosting. And lots of roses. Great big red ones made with more of the same.

    If I lived next to Ele’s I would be the size of my house.

    My partner in crime, who is backseat surfing, puts in a vote for Discworld Pork Pie, so I’m afraid that makes this a null post, vote-wise.

  51. oh man, but pie is good warm and cold… So maybe pie?

    You know what, I’m gonna go get some ice cream now.

  52. @101: “Is there a Schadenfreude cake?”

    Sure there is. It’s cake you eat yourself in front of a younger sibling, with lip smacking and appreciative sounds.

  53. Right now? Cake. Baker’s Square has been have Free Pie Wednesdays all year – my wife and I haven’t missed one yet. I may have not yet had a couple of their pies, but I’ve had the vast majority of them.

    But cake? I had cake last Saturday – Vegan Apple Spice Castle Bundt Cake. Of which there were no left-overs. And in September there was wedding cake made by my sister-in-law. Then I think I have to go back to mid-June for more cake.

    So, Cake. I’m running behind on good cake.

  54. Cake! In my mind I have designed a T shirt that reads ‘The Power of Cake’.

    Pie is food, but cake is pure treat. With frosting. And maybe sprinkles.

  55. Be interesting to know how these breakdown demographically. In my office a quick (and highly scientific) survey showed that women were solidly cake while the men were somewhat, but not exclusively, pie.

    My extensive research (watching TV) also suggests that pies are more central to American life than in, say, Britain or other parts of Europe. Just look how many types of pie have been named here today. I’m sure most of my countrymen would struggle to name more than a couple.

    Personally I prefer crumble to pie.

  56. The supposed conflict is a vulgar error, wickedly fomented by broccolist provocateurs. Correct gourmandizing doctrine mandates that both factions unite for the common good, in the form: poacher’s pie, then hot chocolate fudge cake. You know it makes sense!

    Although I’m kind of a puddingist deviationist, myself…

  57. I enjoy Shepherd’s Pie, but my wife doesn’t like lamb, so she substitutes ground turkey. It still tastes OK, but what to call it? What’s the name for a turkey herder?

  58. There’s a webcomic called Vexxaar where the main character lives on cake and his spaceship runs on it…

    You can buy a T-shirt showing Vexxaar with the logo ‘Surrender Your Cake!’

  59. Now, with 124 comments I knew I would never be the first to reference the classic Eddie Izzard “Cake Or Death” routine.

    But I must say that I’m disappointed that none of the eight previous mentions of the Izzard routine included a link to the wonderful Lego animation of “Cake Or Death”.

    P.S. I’m a little surprised that this thread is already the top Google hit for “pie or cake”; I thought this would have been hotly debated and resulted in many previous pages with high Google ranks.

  60. Maybe tomorrow we’ll be doing “cake or death.” And only Mr. Scalzi will know how much cake there is and how many of us must die.

  61. Oh gosh this really does make one one of the slavering hordes, doesn’t it?? Reine de saba – must make ….

  62. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

    lemon meringue pie with chocolate sauce dribbled over it.


  63. While I love cake, pie generally has fruit filling more often, so I’m going to have to vote for it. Cakes usually don’t have the same proportion of fruity filling to non-fruit bits that pie has, so in my mind pie is ever so slightly superior.

  64. ss: cake
    7-year old son: cake
    Grandpa: pie
    9-year old daughter: cake
    Grandma: pie
    Grandpa – “Is there any correlation between age and pie/cake preference?”
    Apparently, yes, in my family. Perhaps I have failed to expose my children to the wonders of pie.

  65. It has to be Pie, because I’m an atheist and we don’t believe in SKY CAKE!! (tip of the pie plate to Patton Oswalt)

  66. Seriously, this is a no-brainer. Not to imply that I have no brain. I have a brain. It is a good brain. And it prefers….


  67. Right now I’m in the mood for a Banana Cream Pie . . . but an hour from now I might be in the mood for a spice cake with a side of dulce de leche ice cream.

  68. Cheesecake has been misnamed for too long. It’s really Cheesepie. Pies are always moist, always tasty.

    Cakes can be awesome, true. But They’re also just as likely to be dry, boring and flavorless.

    It is far less likely for a pie to be less than amazing.

    Pie all the way.

  69. Cake. You can eat it in big wedges or as cupcakes, with plenty of frosting. What’s not to like about that?

  70. Pie. Hands down, no doubt. ‘Specially my wife’s mixed berry pie with crumb topping.

    The only cakes that come close to competing would be an excellent cheesecake (which I agree is more pie-like) or carrot cake.

    True fact: I love pie so much, once, when my wife was pregnant, I found myself struck with what could only have been sympathetic cravings. I NEEDED Hostess fruit pies. People almost died when the first store I went to was sold out. Scored three at the second.

    They lasted about 5 minutes. Tops.

  71. Up until now, I must admit to stalking here. But the time has come to break my silence and speak out. I’m afraid that in 147 posts, no-one has touched on the central issue of the pie/cake dilemma. This saddens me, you all seem so smart. Perhaps it is necessary to reframe said issue and come around to the mostly unstated subtext.

    Which is. Chocolate. Chocolate cream pie, Chocolate Mousse Pie and their kin are mostly pudding masquerading beneath crusts. Why not have a pudding and a cookie instead? Chocolate CAKE on the other hand comes in so many varieties it would be silly to attempt to list them all here. Personally, I’m rather fond of Devilsfood cake with fudge frosting and raspberry filling, but if it’s cake and chocolate, I’m on board. So I guess you can count me as pro-cake. Though I’m not anti-pie by any means. It’s just not cake. For chocolatey satisfaction, pie just can not hold up to cake.

    And now, back to stalking.
    PS -Cheesecake IS pie.

  72. Coworkers’ birthday today, we had cake.

    I would buy pie at home, if I were having dessert, but I don’t generally do that out of calorie consciousness.

    Equal opportunity. Viva la differance!

  73. I’m going to say pie. Why?

    Because pie is so inclusive. You can have chess pies, lattice pies, meat pies, fruit pies, dutch pies, chocolate pies, etc.

    Cake can come in my flavors, but it still by definition cake.

  74. Cake, duh! Why would anyone want pie when they can have a blend of flour, sugar, butter, and eggs?

    Also, in twisted logic, Pie = Death.

    A or B
    A or C

    A, therefore B = C

    Right? Right.

  75. Definitely cake, personally.
    And on a representstive level, I think I prefer lies over irrationality.

  76. What sort of pie? What sort of cake? These things are important in deciding whether the future will hold one or the other of these items. Are we talking about the old meat pie and sauce here, Apple pie, or one of the apparently endless combinations of fruit/confection that seem to find their way into pies in the US? And cake! Are we to be faced with a plain sponge or something truly worth the effort of eating, like a baked cheesecake or Black Forest cake? I need more information before I can possible make up my mind on such a delicate issue.

  77. Pie everytime. Specifically, flat apple pie. Cake–more pertinently, icing–can go somewhere very far away and not bother me ever.

  78. I’m with Scott – it depends on what KIND of pie, v., what KIND of cake.

    Really moist, flavorful cake – especially orange or
    lemon with a little semi-sweet chocolate glaze – is great.

    But then again there’s key lime pie, tart lemon (like the lip-puckering Shaker lemon chess pie),
    or Fruit Pizza Pie.(note1)

    I feel like the dude in Monty Python – “European
    or African?” “Aaaaaaahhhhh”

    And to Jas@ 60 – I bet you’d like the original Tarte Tatin. It’s apples, butter and sugar for a filling. Like a thin caramel apple. Yum!

    (note1 – my latest Fruit Pizza involved a thin brownie-like crust, a thin sour creme/cream cheese spread, and a variety of sliced berries. I
    call it PIE.)

  79. Rabid Android @47:
    If you’re unable to decide whether a sample cheesecake is a cake or a pie, that’s not a cheesecake at all. Hie thee to a decent German bakery and they’ll explain the difference to you.

  80. Done properly, cheesecake is a member of the set “cake.” Distinguishing features are an absence of separate[ly prepared] crust and use of a cake [baking] form.

  81. Schadenfreude pie, of course!

    Seriously: I sense that Boston creme pie is a weak attempt to sidestep the question — and yet I specifically requested it for my birthday this year, and my wife and mother-in-law came through with (respectively) a spectacular ganache topping and a terrific custard filling. Yum.

    Apart from that, though, pie offers so many more options. As someone else said, if you’re offered cake or pie and know nothing else about the choice, you’d have to go with pie.

    (But then the cake would have been a dark devil’s food, while the pie turns out to be mincemeat or some such. Sigh.)

  82. Christopher Hawley@161

    I have the habit of shutting down all mental faculties when a real piece of cheesecake is sitting in front of me… I tend to agree that it is a cake and that my attempt to classify it as a pie was only an attempt to convince myself that I could possibly choose pie over cake… Carrot Cake and Cheese Cake have suddenly come into play and I have to say that while I always considered myself a pie man, I may actually be a cake guy. I hope my wife never finds out. And if my son had to go to school and tell all of his friends. “Guess what my dad’s likes cake.” The shame.

    I must now go and see if this is true by consuming mass quantities of each.


  83. If pizza is a pie, then pie, else cake. Or pie. No, cake. Unless we’re all out of cake, in which case pie.

    I made a cheesecake out of homemade quark, and iced a pound cake with homemade mascarpone – I seek the Platonic ideal of the cheese pie/cake and will not rest until I have found it.

  84. While Pecan, French Silk and a good Rubarb could tempt me to stray, Jeanne @ 16 has the Right and True answer. Cake is obviously where one finds culinary bliss.

  85. Definitely pie. So much variety:
    Cherry, Apple, Bavarian Cream, Pumpkin, Schadenfreude, Chicken Pot…

    Any flavor of cake I’ve ever heard of has an analog in the pie world, but has anyone ever made a chicken cake?

  86. Warm apple pie, with vanilla ice cream melting over it, eaten by a fire while watching the snow that is starting to fall up here in the upper peninsula of Michigan…..

    that definitely beats any cake.

  87. I think the issue comes down to where you stand on chocolate. Of course there are the delectable French Silk pies, and chocolate pudding pie, but for sheer chocolate delight, you have to choose cake. I will list my favorite chocolate cakes and invite you to add yours too. Plain chocolate cake, cakey brownies with chocolate chips, caramel sauce and lots of nuts, Mississippi Mud Cake that is so rich one bite is almost enough, chocolate cakes with marshmallow frosting, or penuche, or buttercream, or deep coffee-chocolate frosting. There are also the bundt cakes that have that tunnel of fudge. I have to quit now before I go into a severe chocolate craving! Enjoy your cake.

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