Cooking Tips

Why You Should Temp Your Pies 

When baking pies, keep your instant-read thermometer close by. Here’s why.   

Published Nov. 14, 2022.

Let’s talk pie equipment. Here’s what you need:

Rolling pin? Pie plate? Kitchen shears? Check.

You’ll also want an instant-read thermometer. To temp your pies, of course.

Sign up for The Thanksgiving Success Series

Be Thanksgiving-ready with the help of the Test Kitchen experts.

Why should you take your pie’s temperature? In short, for foolproof results.

Thermometers aren’t just for candy making. They also take the temperature of a pastry cream, fruit curd, or caramel, or judge the doneness of custard-based pies.

A digital instant-read thermometer—rather than a slow-registering stick candy thermometer—will provide you with an accurate reading almost immediately.


Bake beautiful, foolproof versions of the corner bakery classics and French patisserie favorites—plus a host of whimsical, modern pies and tarts of all kinds with sky-high meringue pies, uniquely flavored fruit pies with intricate lattice-woven tops, and lush elegant tarts.

This is especially important with egg-based fillings, which can quickly overcook into a curdled mess. Nobody wants a scrambled egg pie.

Temperatures to look for:

  • Pecan Pie: 185-190 degrees 
  • Cream Pies: 180 degrees
  • Pumpkin Pie: 175 degrees
  • Curd Pies: 170 degrees

Take the stress out of eyeballing the doneness of your pie. Temp it instead.

Here are some temp-worthy pies to get you started:

This is a members' feature.