Tree in Sunflower Field and North Dakota Skies

Tree in Sunflower Field and North Dakota Skies (photo

Brilliant Yellow Fields!

Brilliant yellow sunflower fields are a common sight in western North Dakota.  In fact, you’ll find these bright yellow fields all over North Dakota each August.   North Dakota Tourism even provides a Sunflowers in Bloom Map when the fields begin to peak in color.   North Dakota continually ranks as one of the top sunflower producing states in the nation. 

Sunflowers Blowing in the Breeze

Sunflowers Blowing in the Breeze (photo

Let Them Eat Pie!

Sunflower fields in bloom are breathtaking!  How can one not smile at the sight?   But they can provide another sensory experience as well.   Taste!   Have you ever heard of Sunflower Pie?   Check out the recipes below, for pie and other baked treats.   When you try them, let us know the results!!  

North Dakota Sunflower Pie

Midwest Living Magazine.

North Dakota Sunflower Pie

  • Makes: 8 servings
  • Prep 20 mins
  • Bake 50 mins
This sunflower dessert has the texture of pecan pie and is so rich you’ll find that a small slice is quite satisfying.


  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons sunflower margarine, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup roasted, salted sunflower kernels
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell


  1. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, brown sugar, corn syrups, sugar, margarine, vanilla, and salt.
  2. Spread sunflower kernels evenly in the bottom of the unbaked pie shell. Pour in the sugar mixture.
  3. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until center is almost set (it will jiggle slightly). Cool on a wire rack. Makes 8 servings.


Double and By Double I Mean Triple Chocolate Cookies

bon appétit magazine

Recipe by Lisa Ludwinski, Sister Pie

Makes about 24 Servings
  • ½ cup raw sunflower seeds
  • 8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 4 ounces white chocolate, chopped
  • 1¾ cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • ½ cup white chocolate chips
  • Flaky sea salt

Recipe Preparation: 

  • Preheat oven to 350°. Toast sunflower seeds on a rimmed baking sheet, stirring halfway through, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Let cool.

  • Meanwhile, heat chopped bittersweet chocolate and white chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water (bowl should not touch water), stirring, until melted. Remove from heat and let sit, stirring occasionally, until cool, 10–15 minutes.

  • Finely grind sunflower seeds in spice mill. Transfer to a medium bowl and add flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, kosher salt, and baking soda; whisk to combine. Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition before adding the next. Beat until mixture is very light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add melted chocolate mixture, followed by dry ingredients; beat just until combined. Mix in coconut and both chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.

  • Using a 2″ cookie scoop or ¼-cup measuring cup, portion out dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing at least 2″ apart (these are large cookies; you probably won’t fit more than 8 per sheet). Flatten cookies slightly with your palm and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until cookies are just barely set around edges but still wet-looking in the center (they will seem underdone, but you don’t want to overbake), 15–20 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks and let cool completely.

  • Do Ahead: Dough can be made 1 day ahead; cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before portioning. Cookies can be baked 2 days ahead; store airtight at room temperature.




    Caramel Apple Oat Squares

    Servings: 16 Bars


    non-stick cooking spray
    3/4 cup SunButter® (we used Creamy)
    1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
    1/4 cup unsalted butter or dairy free buttery sticks, at room temperature
    1 teaspoon lemon juice
    2-1/2 cups gluten free rolled oats
    1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    2 medium apples, peeled, cored, and chopped

    4 tablespoons brown sugar
    1 tablespoon unsalted butter or dairy free butter
    2 tablespoons cream or full fat coconut milk


    Heat oven to 350°F.

    Generously spray an 8×8- inch baking pan with cooking spray. Line the pan with parchment paper so that it hangs over the sides of the pan; set aside.

    In a mixing bowl, stir together the Sunbutter, applesauce, butter and lemon juice until smooth. Add the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla. Stir in the chopped apples. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Level the top with a spatula. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden brown and fairly firm (they will firm up more after cooling but will always be on the soft side).

    Let cool to room temperature then refrigerate for 2 hours or up to a day ahead.

    Remove the bars from the pan by lifting the parchment out. Place on a cutting board and cut into 16 squares.

    In a small skillet or saucepan, mix all the sauce ingredients and cook over low heat, stirring, until smooth and thickened, about 2 minutes. Drizzle over the top of the bars.


How About You?

Do fields of blooming sunflowers evoke memories for you?   Do you have any sunflower photos or recipes to share?  Email us at: or message us on our Facebook page, Beautiful Badlands ND.

Here’s another tasty treat you just might not be able to resist!   Absolutely the BEST Taffy in the West!

Did you say, Ice Cream?   Even if you didn’t, you should check this out!   10  Best Places To Go For Ice Cream in the Beautiful Badlands!

Every August, in addition to sunflowers, you’ll find chokecherries ripe to pick in western North Dakota!  It’s Chokecherry Time!

And there’s so much more!  Subscribe to our blog and newsletter in the upper right hand corner of this page.