Pies with a Purpose in Louisville, Kentucky

dawn and family

You can thank Pinterest – as well as a combination of family and friends’ various recipes – for the success of Georgia’s Sweet Potato Pie Company in Louisville, Kentucky.

Founder Dawn Urrutia, a self-taught baker, said she became the queen of sweet potato pie largely by accident. For a family gathering about 15 years ago, she brought a pie she created by synthesizing various recipes from family, friends and Pinterest. It was such a hit that she became the go-to person for pies at every event going forward.

The idea to monetize her creations was born out of the desire to raise money for charities in her community, and pies were an effective way to do that. It’s why she named the bakery in honor of her notoriously charitable grandmother. Although many people incorrectly assume that the recipes at the bakery were passed down through generations, it’s the gift of giving that Uruttia really inherited.

mini pies

“My grandmother was a lover of people,” she said. “First of all, she loved God more than anything and then she loved her family, she loved her community and she loved good food.” That love for philanthropy (and good food) is what drives Georgia’s Sweet Potato Pie Company today.

It’s also why Urrutia, to make her pie company the best it can be, offers something sweet for every palette. Options go beyond the traditional classics to a caramel glaze pie, bourbon sweet potato, purple sweet potato cheesecake, sweet potato fudge brownie and a vegan sweet potato pie. Some, according to Urrutia, were inspired by dreams and others by family members, but they’re all a result of hours in the kitchen researching, testing and perfecting.

Initially, Urrutia and her family sold her desserts at farmers markets starting in 2017 and then donated the revenue to grassroots organizations in the area.

However, as an early childhood specialist by trade, she wanted to focus her time and energy on helping children learn. Whether it’s soft skills like compassion and communication or life skills like entrepreneurship and linguistics, she knew there was a book for everything.

pecan pies

Titled “Pies with a Purpose,” Georgia’s Sweet Potato Pie Co. prides itself on offering a wide array of books to any child that wants them. There’s a library located both inside and outside her pie shop, and, during the pandemic, she even shipped some across the country to anyone who asked.

“I am planting seeds for the generation to come,” she said. “That’s Georgia’s in a nutshell. That is who we are and that is what we will always be.”

AUTHOR

Brionne Frazier

Brionne Frazier is a freelance writer and PR expert based in Boston. She is a graduate of Brown University where she studied International Relations and served as an editor for Brown Political Review. In her free time, you can find her searching for recipe inspiration on TikTok, recording a cappella covers in her room, or binge-watching Real Housewives of New York.

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