HIGH POINT, N.C. (WGHP) – A High Point University Poll says you have an eye for a certain holiday pie, and that piqued our palate to challenge your choice.

In a poll of 1,015 adults in North Carolina conducted Nov. 10-17, exactly 1 in 4 respondents (25%) said pumpkin pie was their favorite holiday pie.

HPU’s annual poll (HIGH POINT POLL)

That’s right, using online polling and seasoning with the usual data weights, HPU is saying that the light-orange concoction that some serve with whipped cream is the favorite.

HPU says the plus/minus on this poll is roughly 3.2 percentage points, but there really was no doubt: The second choice at the dessert table was pecan, at 17%, followed by sweet potato – we would argue that this is almost the same as pumpkin – at 16% and All-American apple (15%).

HPU declared pumpkin the winner for the second consecutive year, but all of this made us wonder if there was other polling about this topic, like there is for college football and basketball. The media and the coaches surely disagree on the best holiday pies, too.

So we looked through the menu at Google, and our search yielded 41.3 million responses. That’s a lot of flavors to taste.

As with many things in life, the sweetness of a pecan pie varies according to each baker. It’s traditional in the south to bake a pie sweet enough so the fillings in your teeth hurt.

Taste these

So we just chose some that seemed the most popular (but we don’t vouch for the methodology in any of these rankings). We could guess they are apples and oranges in some cases, but that’s more likely apples and pumpkins. And a lot of other things:

  • Insider says the top 3 are apple, pecan and pumpkin.
  • Venerable Real Simple magazine kept it real simple: pumpkin, apple and pecan.
  • Premise rates pumpkin first with a resounding 34%, followed by apple and pecan.
  • A place called Spoon University – that should have clout, right? – ranked apple, peach and pumpkin.
  • The Daily Meal liked pecan best, but then it went off the grid for chocolate chess and tart cherry amaretto.
  • Country Living Magazine touted making the perfect pie dough, then ranked brule’ed pumpkin pie, German chocolate pie and brown butter apple pie as its top 3, although we wonder where in the country anyone knows how to brulee anything.
  • The editors at Delish opted for cranberry pie as their first choice, followed by pumpkin and something called no-bake banana caramel pecan pie.
  • An outlet called Insanely Good Recipes might be named appropriately – the “insane” part – because it chose mincemeat first. We would argue that stuff doesn’t even qualify. Pumpkin and pecan were next.
  • A blogger named Katie at Wilton Cakes ranked sweet potato pie No. 1 and followed it with a Kentucky bourbon pie and classic pumpkin.
  • Not to be outdone, Pioneer woman chose Mississippi mud pie as No. 1, followed by pecan pie bars and Oreo pie. You had to get to No. 8 to find a perennial – apple – and pecan was No. 11 followed by another apple recipe and then another pecan. Pumpkin cream pie (no need to add the squirt on top) was at No. 15.
  • Midwest Living went with chocolate cream as its favorite, followed by something called “Pecan’t Pie,” which replaces the nuts with pretzels and cuts down on deadly allergies. A more traditional “black bottom pecan” was No. 8. Pumpkin chiffon and toasted marshmallow sweet potato also made the list.

Creative conclusion

HPU’s polling didn’t include any exotic concoctions. Its top four were followed by chocolate (9%), cherry (5%), blueberry (2%), peach (3%) and strawberry (2%). The best choice might be the 3% who said “unsure,” because, of course, there are too many options.

To that point, Insanely Good Recipes took its lead from mincemeat and had by far the most creative top 10, which included candy cane pie (fourth, actually) as well as macadamia nut tart, German chocolate pie, treacle tart (our treacle tree was bare this year), eggnog pie, hazelnut pie and salted caramel pie.

Those sounded more like a cross between the seasonal lineups at Starbucks and Ben & Jerry’s.