As you enjoy pumpkin-flavored treats and jack-o’-lantern carving on fun fall days, know that the squash is grown all over the country. However, it’s iconic to one Midwestern state in particular: Illinois. In 2018, the state harvested 500 million pounds, followed by the second-largest producer, Texas, with 200 million.
From mini pumpkin cheesecakes to pumpkin kale lasagna, there are plenty of uses for the festive favorite as Halloween, Thanksgiving and winter holidays roll around.
If you have a slice of pumpkin pie though, it’s likely the pumpkin came from Illinois, where over 80% of pumpkin acres are for pie pumpkins. The remaining space is used for the decorative variety found in the best pumpkin patch in your state.
Pie pumpkins don’t necessarily even look like the ornamental kind. The kind Costco uses, dubbed Dickinson, is more squash-like. It’s tan and oblong, the flesh is hearty and thick, and it has major flavor. That, and so much more, makes the chain’s $5.99 pumpkin pie one of the best seasonal eats in the game.