Category Archives: Pies & Pie Bars

Caramel Pretzel Pie

Caramel Pretzel PieHave you ever seen the movie Waitress? It’s one of my very favorites—it’s about a small town pie waitress who is saddled with the worst sort of husband and a lifestyle of which she doesn’t see a clear way out. Her passion is pie, and throughout the film she thinks in pie recipes with very specific names: Marshmallow Mermaid Pie, Bad Baby Pie, Lonely Chicago Pie…you get the idea. I won’t ruin it further. You can and should stream it on Prime for $4.Caramel Pretzel PieAlternatively, you can come to NYC and see Waitress the musical, which has been running on Broadway for three years and is every bit as good as the film that inspired it! I nabbed tickets when my dear friend, Tad, was here a few weeks ago and I already want to see it again.Caramel Pretzel PieWhen we left the theater and headed for the subway, I knew two things:

  1. I wanted to download the soundtrack immediately.
  2. I needed to make pie.

Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieDone and DONE. Caramel Pretzel Pie, y’all. It’s sweet, salty, and full of creamy caramel flavor!Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieOne great thing about Caramel Pretzel Pie? It’s almost-no-bake. I had originally intended for this beauty to be oven-free, but the idea of a slightly-toasty pretzel crust won out. I think you’ll agree that the ten minutes of oven time required to set the crust are absolutely worth it.Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieAnother great thing? This pie is very quick and simple to make, especially if you make your caramel sauce ahead. You could swap in a store-bought caramel sauce if that’s more your speed (I hear Trader Joe’s has a good one), but homemade is super easy to make and is far better than anything I’ve ever found in a grocery store.Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieThe creamy, cloud-like caramel filling comes together in minutes and has a nice tang from a hit of cream cheese.Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieAfter a few hours chilling in the fridge, the pie is finished off with whipped cream, a drizzle of caramel sauce, and a few broken pretzels.Caramel Pretzel PieIt’s so delicious, it’s ridiculous. I always love a salty-sweet dessert, but the toasty pretzel crust, creamy filling, and the teetering-on-the-brink-of-burnt (-but-in-a-good-way) flavor of the caramel really make this pie something special.Caramel Pretzel PieAll it’s missing is a very specific name. Somehow Feminist Movie/Musical Inspo Pie doesn’t sound quite right 😂 Maybe you can come up with something when you make this for every cookout this summer. Believe me–this one is a guaranteed hit.Caramel Pretzel Pie

Caramel Pretzel Pie
makes one 9-inch pie

Pretzel Crust:
1 1/3 cup finely-crushed salted pretzels (I used 63 thin pretzels)
2 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Filling:

3/4 cup heavy cream, very cold
8 ounces (1 brick) full-fat brick-style cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
3/4 cup caramel sauce (recipe below), room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Topping:
3/4 cup heavy cream, very cold
2-3 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
caramel sauce (recipe below)
broken salted pretzels

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a medium mixing bowl, stir together finely-crushed salted pretzels, brown sugar, and melted butter until combined. Transfer mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a pie plate. Bake 10 minutes to set. Let cool completely in the pan on a rack.

Make the filling. In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to whip heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Do not overwhip. Set aside.

In a separate large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar and salt until fluffy. Add caramel sauce and vanilla and mix until combined. Use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to stir in 1/3 of the whipped cream. Working in 2 installments, carefully fold in remaining whipped cream until combined. Transfer to chilled pie crust. Chill for 3 hours or overnight.

Make topping. In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine heavy cream, confectioner’s sugar, and vanilla. Use an electric mixer to whip cream until stiff peaks form. Top pie with whipped cream. Drizzle with caramel sauce and scatter broken pretzel pieces over the top, if desired.

Slice and serve. Leftover pie will keep covered in the refrigerator for a few days. Broken pretzel topping will soften over time.

Caramel Sauce
makes about 1 1/4 cups

1 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt

Place sugar in a 2-3 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk sugar until the sugar melts and turns a deep copper color. Whisk in butter until completely incorporated. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in heavy cream. Caramel will bubble violently, but will quickly relax into a smooth sauce. Whisk in vanilla and salt. Transfer sauce to a jar and let cool to room temperature.

Leftover caramel sauce should be kept in the refrigerator. Microwave in 15 second bursts, stirring in between, to reheat.Caramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel PieCaramel Pretzel Pie

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Fried Pineapple Pies

Fried Pineapple PiesI had big plans for Pi Day, the day on which we celebrate both pie and math, which falls on March 14th (aka 3.14, aka tomorrow). For months, my plan had been to make an Old-Fashioned Pineapple Pie, the sort of southern grandma food that makes my heart sing. I had read about this dessert sometime last year and decided that I would aim to have it perfected by today, but as usual, my plans never play out in the linear fashion that I’d prefer.Fried Pineapple PiesMy attempt at Pineapple Pie was ostensibly fine. The crust was golden, the filling was set, the crimp was maybe my best ever, but when I went to try a slice, all I could think was how…soft…it was. The flavor was good and I suppose I’d prefer that it be soft over crunchy, but still. It was just so…soft.Fried Pineapple PiesI was ready to go back to the drawing board, looking over my (long) list of recipe ideas when I noticed “fried pies” tacked onto my future-pie-inspo. That’s when it hit me: while I may not want an inch-thick layer of pineapple filling, a little bit folded into a crispy southern-style fried hand pie seemed like a very good idea.Fried Pineapple PiesNow, having made these Fried Pineapple Pies twice, I can confirm that they are indeed a very good idea. A phenomenal idea, really. The combination of sweet, tangy, lime- and ginger-spiked pineapple filling and flaky fried crust is one of the best things to come out of my kitchen this year!Fried Pineapple PiesThe crust and filling come together ahead of time—the filling in five minutes on the stovetop and the crust in the bowl of a food processor—and are then combined shortly before frying. Pineapple filling is doled out by the tablespoon before being folded into a triangle. The pies are sealed with egg and crimped with a fork before being lowered into a pot of 350F oil. Two or three minutes later, they are lifted out, golden and flaky and begging for a dusting of confectioner’s sugar before being eaten warm ❤Fried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple PiesA few things about the crust before I get to the recipe:

  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can absolutely make this dough with a pastry blender (or two forks) in a mixing bowl.
  • The dough will stay soft even after a multi-hour chill. This is because there’s a fair amount of buttermilk in relation to the flour and butter, but rest assured that a chill will allow it to roll like a dream.
  • Don’t stress yourself out about keeping the dough cold after you shape the pies. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have space for two sheet pans full of raw hand pies in my fridge. If these were being baked, I’d probably advise you to make a greater effort at chilling before cooking, but I’ve had no issues letting these pies sit at room temperature before they hit the oil. The crust still fries up nice and flaky. Love that.

Fried Pineapple PiesNo need for words on the pineapple filling—it’s basically the same as the filling in my Coconut Pineapple Cake and Pineapple Sweet Rolls! Sweet, tart, jammy, and so deliciously easy.Fried Pineapple PiesWell, I think that covers the pie portion of Pi Day. Maybe someday I’ll figure out how to properly celebrate the math…but probably not.Fried Pineapple Pies

Fried Pineapple Pies
makes 20-22 hand pies

Crust:
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, very cold, cut into pieces
1 cup buttermilk

Filling:
16 ounces (2 8-ounce cans) canned crushed pineapple in juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
zest of 1 medium lime
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

To Seal:
1 large egg, beaten

For Frying:
canola oil, safflower oil, shortening, or other oreferred frying fat

For Garnish:
2-3 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar

One Hour to Three Days Ahead:

Make the dough. Combine flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add butter and process until the largest pieces are the size of small peas. Add buttermilk and process until dough clumps, stopping to scrape down the bowl if needed. Give dough a knead or two before dividing it in half, forming each into a disk, and wrapping them in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 3 days. Dough will remain slightly soft even after chilling.

Make the filling. Combine crushed pineapple in juice, sugar, cornstarch, ground ginger, salt, and lime zest and juice in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until juices are clear and mixture thickens slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Let cool to room temperature before chilling in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

When You Want to Fry:

Line a baking sheet with parchment. Set aside. Line another baking sheet with paper towels and set a cooling rack over the top. Set near where you will be frying.

Flour a surface and a rolling pin. Remove one disk of dough from the refrigerator. Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Use a ruler and a large, sharp chef’s knife to slice the dough into 4×4-inch squares. Stack squares on a plate. Chill scraps and squares while you roll and cut the second disk of dough. Scraps may be kneaded lightly and re-rolled.

Working with one square at a time, roll lightly on the floured surface just to expand another 1/2-inch or so. Drop 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of the square. Brush two meeting-edges with beaten egg and fold the square diagonally to create a triangle. Press to seal with your fingers before crimping with the floured tines of a fork. Place pie on parchment-lined pan. Repeat with remaining dough/filling. Don’t worry too much about dough becoming soft or sticky.

Pour canola oil (or other frying fat) into a very dry heavy-bottomed pot. Heat over medium heat until it reaches 350F.

Working with 2 pies at a time, fry them for 1-2 minutes per side, until golden, before using a frying spider to remove to prepared rack/pan. Repeat with remaining pies, letting the oil return to temperature as needed.

When all pies are fried, dust with confectioner’s sugar. Serve immediately, while warm.

Fried Pineapple Pies are best the day they are made.

Note:

If you do not have a food processor, this may be done in a large mixing bowl with a pastry blender or two forks.Fried Pineapple PiesFried Pineapple Pies

Coconut Custard Pie

Coconut Custard PieIf you’re keeping count, this is my third pie in a row. What can I say? It’s November! And making pie is fun! #sorrynotsorry
Coconut Custard PieToday’s recipe is a new favorite of mine: Coconut Custard Pie! It’s basically exactly what it sounds like—shredded coconut suspended in a soft vanilla custard, all wrapped up in golden brown crust! If you love coconut, this is the pie for you!*

*Also, this one.Coconut Custard PieI won’t lie to you—this pie is a little bit of a diva. For one, the crust has to be partially blind-baked (aka baked without filling). It’s not a difficult process, but it’s fussy.Coconut Custard PieCoconut Custard PieTo put it briefly: roll the dough, put it in a pie plate, crimp it, freeze it, dock it with a fork, line it with foil (2 sheets!), fill it with pie weights/dried beans/rice/seeds/a combination, freeze again, bake just until set (but not anywhere near done), remove pie weights, fill, bake again. WHEW.Coconut Custard PieCoconut Custard PieCoconut Custard Pie
Coconut Custard PieAgain, not difficult, just fussy. Don’t be tempted to skip this step though, unless you are into soft, undercooked bottom crust. I promise that I wouldn’t insist on par-baking if it were not absolutely necessary for stellar Coconut Custard Pie.Coconut Custard PieCoconut Custard PieAnd make no mistake, this pie is stellar. The filling is an easy whisk-and-pour situation, and once it’s baked and cooled, it becomes soft, rich, toasty coconut magic.Coconut Custard PieAdd a little whipped cream, and you’ve got the perfect way to end your Thanksgiving dinner.Coconut Custard Pie
Looking for more pie? Check out my Maple Pecan, Cranberry Crumb, and Silky Smooth Sweet Potato Pies!

Coconut Custard Pie
makes 1 9-inch pie

1/2 recipe Cream Cheese Pie Dough or other good crust
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
2/3 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 cup milk (preferably whole)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut

For serving (optional):
whipped cream

On a floured surface, roll out pie dough to a 12″ diameter. Fit into a deep 9-inch pie plate and trim the overhang to 1/2-inch. Crimp the edges and freeze for 15 minutes.

Place an oven rack in the lowest position, leaving a lot of headroom above. Preheat oven to 375F.

Lightly grease a sheet of foil. Remove pie crust from the freezer. Prick the bottom several times with the tines of a fork. Line frozen crust with greased foil (greased side down). Top it with another sheet of foil going in the opposite direction, so that all the crust is covered. Gently curl the foil down to loosely tent the crimp. Fill the center with pie weights (or dried beans, rice, seeds). Freeze 10 minutes.

Place the prepared pie crust on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until pie crust has “set,” but is far from done. Use foil to lift out pie weights. Let par-baked crust rest in its pan (and still on the baking sheet) on a rack while you prepare the filling.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together sugar and eggs until sugar has begun to dissolve and the mixture is an even light yellow. Whisking continuously, add melted butter. Add dry ingredients one tablespoon at a time, whisking until combined. Whisk in milk and vanilla.

Scatter coconut over the bottom of the par-baked crust. Pour custard over the top. Use a long sheet of foil (~5 feet) to loosely wrap the pie.

Carefully move the pie (still on the baking sheet) to the oven. Bake 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350F and bake for another 25 minutes. Carefully remove foil wrap. Bake pie for another 15-25 minutes, or until the top is light golden, the edges are puffed, and the center is still a little jiggly (not soupy). Turn off oven and crack the door open. Let the pie sit in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove pie to a rack to cool completely.

Coconut Custard Pie may be served at room temperature or cold with whipped cream, if desired.

Leftover pie will keep covered at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.Coconut Custard PieCoconut Custard PieCoconut Custard Pie

Nutella Cream Pie

Nutella Cream PieI suppose this is a year of unconventional Thanksgiving pies here on E2 Bakes.Nutella Cream PieI usually go for traditional pastry crust pies this time of year (and there’s at least one coming your way), but then there was vegan pumpkin pie with toasted pecan crust. And now there’s Nutella Cream Pie.Nutella Cream PieMade with a graham cracker and hazelnut crust, a Nutella pudding filling, and topped with whipped cream and candied hazelnuts, this pie is basically the dessert of my dreams.Nutella Cream PieThis beauty has hazelnut flavor all over the place. We’re talking 2/3 cup toasted and blitzed into a buttery graham cracker crust…Nutella Cream PieNutella Cream PieNutella Cream Pieanother 1/3 cup that are lightly candied and scattered on top…Nutella Cream Pieand a creamy pudding filling that tastes like pure Nutella, but somehow even better.Nutella Cream PieNutella Cream PieNutella Cream PieDon’t ask me to explain how it’s possible to improve the flavor of Nutella—I can’t quite find the words.Nutella Cream PieYou’ll just have to make a Nutella Cream Pie and see for yourself.Nutella Cream Pie
Looking for more Thanksgiving Pies? Check out my light & fluffy Pumpkin Pie, Black Bottom Pear & Almond Pie, and Chocolate Buttermilk Pie!

Nutella Cream Pie
makes one 9-inch pie

Crust:
2/3 cup raw whole hazelnuts
6 full-sheets graham crackers
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly

Nutella Filling:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
2 cups whole milk
3 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup Nutella
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Candied Hazelnuts:
1/3 cup raw whole hazelnuts
3 teaspoons granulated sugar

Whipped Cream:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners sugar

Preheat oven to 350F. Make the crust. Scatter hazelnuts on a dry rimmed baking sheet. Bake 5-7 minutes, or until fragrant and toasted. Do not burn. Let cool 10 minutes.

Combine toasted hazelnuts, graham crackers, light brown sugar, salt and melted butter in the bowl of a food processor. Process until hazelnuts and grahams are broken down and the mixture is the consistency of wet sand. Press on the bottom and up the sides of a deep pie plate. Bake for 10 minutes to set. Let cool on a rack while you prepare the filling.

Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a heavy-bottomed medium-large saucepan. Slowly whisk in milk. Place pan over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking continuously. Boil one minute. Remove from heat. Slowly whisk 1/3 of the mixture into the egg yolks. Return egg yolk mixture to pan. Place pan over medium heat and whisk constantly until mixture boils for one minute. Remove from heat. Whisk in vanilla, followed by Nutella and butter.

Place a fine mesh sieve over a bowl. Push filling through the sieve and discard any solids. Transfer filling to prepared crust. Press plastic wrap to the surface. Chill at least six hours.

Make the candied hazelnuts. Line a plate with parchment and set aside. Place hazelnuts in a dry skillet over medium-low heat. Toast for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant and shiny. Add sugar by the teaspoon, stirring until it dissolves (it may smoke up a bit). When all sugar has dissolved, remove hazelnuts to prepared plate and let cool completely. They will be clumped together. Once cooled, place them on a cutting board and give them a rough chop with a large, sharp chef’s knife.

Make the whipped cream. In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla. Use an electric mixer to whip cream until stiff peaks form. Remove pie from refrigerator and top with whipped cream. Scatter candied hazelnuts over the top, as desired. Slice and serve pie.

Leftover pie will keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Nutella Cream PieNutella Cream Pie

Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}Let me start by saying that I hope you all had a lovely Halloween, and that I’m so glad it’s over so we can talk about Thanksgiving food.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

I got a little head start with Wednesday’s Rosemary-Parmesan Cheese Straws, but now I’m going all-in: (more) appetizers and sides and, most importantly, PIES are coming your way, just in time for the biggest food holiday of the year!

This first pie of the season is a little of what you’d expect and a little…not. It’s Pumpkin Pie, but where that usually entails eggs, cream, and loads of sugar, this one is vegan, gluten-free, and contains less than 1/2 cup of sweetener (mostly maple syrup).

…are you still there?Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

If you haven’t clicked away, never to return…well, good. More pie for us.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

You see, for all the things that this pie is not, it is very much one thing: delicious. Like so good I’m not totally sure why we would eat any other pumpkin pie.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

The filling is soft and sweet and perfectly spiced and the crust is mostly made of ground toasted pecans. GROUND TOASTED PECANS. And it’s a press-in crust—no rolling required. Does it get better than that?

Um, yes. Yes it does.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Both elements come together in the food processor.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

And the whole pie requires exactly nine ingredients.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

And it’s actually best if it’s made ahead, so you won’t have to give up valuable Thanksgiving Day oven space.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

And, again, it’s vegan, gluten-free, and contains just enough sweetener to make it taste like dessert. And make no mistake, it does taste like dessert. I am not the sort of person who is going to get behind a recipe just because it’s “better for you.” Nope. It’s big flavor or go home here at E2 Bakes. If it happens to be somewhat nutritious, that’s just a bonus.Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Have a great weekend, y’all ❤

Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}
makes 1 9-inch pie

Toasted Pecan Crust:
8 ounces (2 cups) raw pecan halves
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted or solid)
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
pinch of Kosher or sea salt

Pumpkin Pie Filling:
1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin purée (I like Libby’s)
3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut sugar (or light brown sugar)
1 tablespoon coconut oil (melted or solid)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
pinch Kosher or sea salt

For serving (optional):
whipped cream (regular or vegan)

Place an oven rack in the bottom position, leaving about 8 inches of space above it. Preheat oven to 350F.

Scatter pecan halves on a dry rimmed baking sheet. Toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes, or until fragrant. Do not burn. Let pecans cool for a few minutes, or until you can handle them.

Place toasted pecan halves, cornstarch, coconut oil, maple syrup, and salt in the bowl of a food processor (or high-powered blender). Process until no large chunks remain, scraping down the sides as necessary. Transfer mixture to a 9-inch pie plate. Press it into an even layer on the bottom and up the sides. Freeze for 10 minutes.

Wipe out the bowl of the food processor.

Make the filling. Combine pumpkin purée, almond milk, maple syrup, coconut oil, cornstarch, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in the food processor. Process until smooth. Transfer to prepared crust and smooth the top.

Place full pan on a rimmed sheet pan. Loosely wrap a 4-5 foot piece of aluminum foil around the pie, securing the ends by crumpling them together (more on that here). Bake pie on the bottom rack of the oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 20-25 minutes, or until turning brown at the edges and firm-looking in the center.

Turn off oven and open door slightly. Let pie remain in the oven for 30 minutes. Do not skip this step.

Remove pie from oven and let cool completely on a rack. Refrigerate for a minimum of 6 hours before slicing and serving. Top with whipped cream, if desired.

Leftover pie will keep in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Pecan Crust {Vegan, Gluten-Free}