There are so many chocolate pies that I want to eat every day, and I’ve posted enough for you to probably eat a chocolate pie every day for a month straight! Some of my favorites are of course, Chocolate Cinnamon Mousse, Chocolate Granola, Double Chocolate Pecan and the creamy dreamy Chocolate Cream, but today I’m sharing one of the easiest chocolate pies I’ve ever made. I think we can all agree that low effort with big reward can be nice sometimes. The pies listed above have varying levels of difficulty, and perhaps some ingredients you don’t keep in stock – but this one is not only easy, all of these ingredients are in your pantry. You can make it any time and you will love the surprise of a custard pie texture with a rich chocolatey taste. Plus, we know how to make a super easy and delicious pie crust now, so chocolate chess pie is on the menu TONIGHT!
Standard 9’Pie Crust – We use a shortening crust, but whatever you prefer will taste great!
(If you’re using a deep dish pie crust go 1 1/2 on this recipe but 2 eggs is still fine)
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 1/2 tablespoons cocoa (if you want to be fancy step up your game and use dutch process cocoa like the valrhona one pictured – hershey’s works fine though)
pinch of salt
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
2 eggs beaten
3 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional, but come on, who doesn’t choose chocolate chips?)
Mix sugar, cocoa, and salt together then blend in the milk, eggs, butter, and vanilla then fold in chocolate chips. Pour filling into crust.
Bake 45-50 minutes, until almost completely set. The filling should just barely wobble in the center when pan is jiggled.
Cool to room temperature on a wire rack. You can serve room temp or you can chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours or overnight before serving chilled. I recommend serving with whip cream or even a scoop of ice cream. If you serve hot, the butter will not set into the filling so painful as it is, it’s best to wait for pie to cool.
Recipe adapted from Mrs. Rowe’s little book of Southern Pies.
Black Bottom Vanilla Cream Pie with salted caramel sauce by twocarolines.com
As my loyal readers have noticed, I have a new habit of slapping a black bottom on every pie I make – it’s my new favorite party trick. I put one on the incredibly delicious peanut butter chocolate pie, my nutella pie, and lately I’m throwing this down on all my cream pies like banana cream and coconut cream pie. This cream pie recipe is one you’ve maybe seen here before, but not when it’s atop a decadent layer of ganache and dripping with salted caramel sauce. This was an experiment that paid off MAJOR! I was so happy with it and it’s not very hard to make! On this pi day I give you this super winning equation of chocolate + vanilla + salted caramel = PIE that will rock your world!
Crust: Traditional pie crust – our recipe is awesome and easy. I made this in a deep dish pie pan, but it would work in a standard 9″ – it would just be really full – you could save some ganache for later if it looks like you’re filling it too full before you get to your cream filling.
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup crisco
4 tablespoons ice water
1 cup chopped chocolate or chocolate chips (I love it with a dark bittersweet chocolate)
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 (scant) teaspoon salt
3 3/4 cup whole milk
7 large egg yolks
4 tablespoons butter (cut into small pieces)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
- To make the crust, mix your flour and salt, then add the Crisco and cut it into the flour with a pastry blender as you add the cold water. It will start to come together at which point you can pull in all the dry parts with your hands and quickly knead it into a ball. Flour your work surface and roll it into a thin circle. Roll it onto your rolling pin and slowly into your (ungreased) pie pan. Make a ridge around the outside and crimp as desired. Poke all over with holes or put beans or pie weights into your crust with parchment before baking. Blind bake at 450 7-9 minutes until lightly browned.
- While crust is cooking and cooling make your chocolate ganache. You can melt your chocolate and cream in a double boiler on the stove, or with my preferred method – Place chocolate and cream in a glass pyrex in the microwave on defrost for a few minutes or in 20 second increments on full power until the chocolate loses it’s shape and you can whisk it all smooth. You don’t want it to get too hot so the key is to heat is slowly. Pour your ganache layer into your (mostly) cooled pie crust and put it into the freezer or fridge so it can harden while you make your filling.
- Put sugar and cornstarch in a large saucepan with a thick bottom. With your burner on medium/high (I keep mine just above medium) slowly pour in the milk and stir until combined then add your egg yolks one at a time, whisking after each until no yellow streaks remain. Now switch to a heat proof rubber spatula and stirring constantly bring to a simmer. Once the bubbles come up and you know it’s starting to boil scrape down the sides of the bowl and whisk until smooth then return to the heat and stir constantly for 1 minute while your mixture slowly bubbles (wear an apron!). Remove from the heat and stir in butter and vanilla until all is combined then pour into your prepared pie crust on top of your cooled ganache.
black bottom vanilla cream pie by twocarolines.com
- Put plastic wrap directly over the top before refrigerating. Be sure to let it cool a solid 4 hours or so before you top it with whipped cream and salted caramel.
- For the Caramel whisk together sugar and water in a medium (heavy bottom) saucepan and cook over medium-low heat until sugar is just dissolved. Add butter and bring to a slow boil without stirring. Continue cooking over medium heat until the mixture turns a deep golden brown, almost copper (DO NOT STIR). Remove from heat and immediately but slowly add the heavy cream. Be careful as your caramel will bubble and steam. Add salt. Whisk the final mixture together well and set aside to cool – it will get thicker as it cools.
- To make the cream, whip heavy cream in a cool bowl and add sugar as it starts to thicken to desired consistency.
- To serve, drizzle caramel over each slice then serve and store refrigerated…if there’s anything left!
Cream Pie recipe adapted from Joy of Cooking vanilla cream pie and Salted Caramel adapted from Four and Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book.
Dark Chocolate Derby Pie pc @summer_elevate twocarolines.com
I first posted this Dark Chocolate Derby pie last spring on the Elevate Everyday blog, and I’m sharing here now because it’s the perfect addition to any holiday meal. My need for things of the chocolate mint variety this time of year is insatiable – and this one is the best versions of chocolate, and mint, plus it has a grown up taste that feels so fancy. With one bite you taste a refreshing hint of peppermint followed by a deep, rich, complex and incredible chocolate flavor that is so smooth and dreamy it just melts in your mouth. If you don’t enjoy rich desserts please move to the next pie recipe on the list, but if you’re a chocolate kid like me, stock up on some serious bittersweet chocolate and get to chopping, this beauty has 12 ounces of that business and I’m loving every bite!
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
12 ounces bittersweet chocolate (I subbed about 3 ounces semi-sweet just to make sure it wasn’t too bitter and it turned out amazing)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract (stick to this – a little goes a long way)
2 tablespoons bourbon (I had never used it before, but you cook it than bake it so you won’t get drunky and it adds a very complex amazing flavor. You could probably omit it and be fine though)
cocoa powder for dusting
- 1 pre-baked 9 inch traditional pie crust. Our recipe is super easy and perfect for this pie. Pre-heat oven to 325.
- Combine the milk and cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring just to a boil. Put your chopped chocolate into a large bowl and once you see those bubbles coming up with your cream mixture pour it over the top of your chocolate. Let stand 5 minutes. Next add salt and whisk steadily until all the chocolate is melted.
- Crack the eggs into a separate bowl and whisk. Slowly stream a small amount of the chocolate mixture into the eggs, whisking as you pour. Continue until the egg mixture feels warm to the touch, and then mix it back into the chocolate mixture. Add the peppermint extract and bourbon (if using) then whisk until smooth.
- Strain the filling through a fine-mesh sieve directly into your pie shell. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30-35 minutes rotating at around 20 minutes for an even bake. The pie is finished when the edges are set about 2 inches in and puffed slightly and the center is no longer liquid but the filling will continue to cook and set after the pie is removed from the oven. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack 2-3 hours. Before serving dust with cocoa powder.
Recipe adapted from Four and Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book 2013
Chocolate Cinnamon Mousse Pie by twocarolines
You guys, I’m about to drop some life altering pie knowledge on you, it’s a gift that is likely to end up being better than anything under the tree. I’m even going to go there and declare this my FAVORITE PIE OF ALL TIME! Chocolate Cinnamon Mousse Pie is legend in these parts made famous first by our sister Kristin, then by me, but originating with Caroline v1.0 who has literally won awards with this pie that trumps all pies. Every time I’ve served it people respond with big eyes repeated by even bigger bites, followed by requests for more and always ending in wide applause. It’s layer upon layer of creamy, chocolatey goodness and I seriously can’t wait for you to try it and become a Chocolate Cinnamon Mousse Pie devotee for life. – CK 2.0
1 deep dish traditional pie crust baked and cooled (try ours! It’s a cinch and flaky perfect every time)
2 eggs separated
½ teaspoon vinegar (white or rice vinegar)
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup sugar
8 ounces chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips
¼ cup + 2 teaspoons water
3 1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Beat together egg whites, vinegar and salt until almost stiff but not dry. Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff. Spread meringue over bottom and up sides of a pie shell (the many layers are why you should use a deep dish pie pan) Bake in 325 oven 15-18 minutes until lightly browned.
meringue layer for chocolate cinnamon mousse pie
Melt chocolate chips over hot, not boiling water, beat together room temperature egg yolks lightly. Thoroughly blend yolks into melted chocolate, add water and mix well. Spread 3 -4 tablespoons of the chocolate mixture over the cooked and slightly cooled meringue. Chill remainder of chocolate until it begins to thicken and set aside. Beat together cream, sugar, and cinnamon until very thick.
Spread ½ of whipped cream mixture over chocolate mixture in pie shell. Fold chilled chocolate mixture into remaining whipped cream (it helps to make a divot in each layer so the layers don’t get too high) Pile the chocolate whip cream layer on top of pie last. Top with shaved chocolate if you wish. Chill at least 4 hours
Caroline 2.0 here with an important pie breakdown for our dear, lovely twocarolines bakers. This is a magical time of year, it’s the time that we celebrate what is probably the dessert we do best – PIE! I wanted to put together a post to give you some ideas for your Holiday meal. If you won’t be the one baking pies, go ahead and send this to the person who will, there’s some really great stuff in here I promise! Once you’ve reviewed our pie crust recipe and tutorial that’s on our Facebook page, it’s time to get baking. You’re going to want to offer guests a nice variety of pies. I’m going to break it down for you in a few categories and give you some of our favorites to choose from to make it easier for you to figure out a show stopping pie offering this week.
CHOCOLATE PIES: Duh – this is obviously the category I start with and you need a pie with chocolate or you’re table is sad 😦 There are LOADS more than what is listed below, but I’m going for favorites here and trying not to loose you with too much info so search chocolate pie for a more complete list.
- Chocolate Cinnamon Mousse – This is one of the pies we are best known for because it is truly both Caroline’s favorite pie and one of the best tasting desserts on the planet. It’s a little more involved than some pies because there is a meringue layer etc. so it will take a little time, but it’s not very difficult and So worth the effort. Every time I make a selection of pies it’s the first gone without fail.
Chocolate Granola Pie by twocarolines.com
- Chocolate Granola Pie – This is another pie we are well known for. I make it frequently because our family can’t get enough of it and it’s a frequent request of friends. I also make it often because it’s SOOOO EASY! It’s almost like a candy bar that was made in heaven, you really need to try it.
- Double Chocolate Pecan – This pie checks two boxes which is why I keep hearing more and more people tell me that they made it and are not absolutely crazy for it. It pops off amazing chocolate flavor and then you get that magical nuttyness you want from your pecan pie, but delivered on a chocolate train. It’s also a cinch and great if you’re serving a smaller table and want something that satisfies the pecan pie and chocolate pie needs all in one.
- Chocolate Cream Pie – This is the quintessential cream pie of your dreams. It always turns out fantastic, even when I don’t have enough bittersweet chocolate so I need to use chocolate chips, or a sub half with unsweetened, or I don’t have whole milk so I use whatever’s in the fridge. It’s just always delicious. It’s not the very easiest pie, so if you’re new to pie making choose one of our crazy easy chocolate pies like chocolate chess or chocolate brownie pie, but you can’t find a cream pie this creamy dreamy delicious anywhere else.
FRUIT PIES: This time of year, there isn’t loads of fruit to be found, but you can use frozen and come out with amazing results if you do it right. Also, lemon is a fruit and you could even check this box with pumpkin or sweet potato if you wanted to.
salted caramel apple pie by twocarolines.com
- Salted Caramel Apple – This is one of the pies people ask me to make the most because when people think of pie they often think of apple pie and salted caramel is such a brilliant choice to compliment apples it’s a slam dunk every time. I love to use granny smith apples and get a nice sour thing happening, but any apples will do. It’s a bit of a time vacuum but so fun to make and a crowd pleaser for sure.
Blueberry crumble pie by twocarolines.com
- Blueberry Crumble Pie – I’m obsessed with this pie, and there are a lot of blueberry pie kids out there just like me. The crumble was my idea and it totally makes the pie in my opinion. The last time I made this it was with almost entirely frozen berries. I did thaw them first, but they came from the freezer section at Trader Joes and the pie set up firm and perfect and tasted absolutely incredible. This pie with good vanilla ice cream is just insanity. You could also do our strawberry streusel pie with frozen berries too as long as you defrost them first and discard all extra juices every change you get – that plus a long bake ensures a pie that sets up with no soupy factor.
- Lemon Cream Pie – This is a year round pie for sure – and at Thanksgiving I would say pile it high with meringue for a delicious and dramatic effect. It’s got such mouth melting sourness and the crust is a crumb crust so there’s zero intimidation factor. It’s a total cinch and will fulfill all your lemon needs.
TRADITIONAL PIES: This time of year people tend to want the flavors of home, so I’m not even mad if you prefer to offer a very traditional selection. I would put Caramel Apple Pie in this selection, but it’s sitting up there in fruit pies so click that link for sure. My husband feels very strongly that Thanksgiving is a total fail without his Mom’s Pecan pie…..speaking of which..
- Caramel Pecan Pie – This is such an amazing and consistently delicious pecan pie. I have been commissioned to make it on multiple occasions and every time someone I know makes it they rave and rave. It’s a King family classic.
Pumpkin Dulce De Leche Pie by twocarolines.com
- Pumpkin Dulce De Leche– I’m making this in the morning and Caroline 1.0 made it yesterday. It’s like traditional pumpkin pie, turned up to 11. If you’re scared of the caramel on bottom, just make the pie filling recipe – you will never buy a Costco pumpkin pie again.
- Toasted Coconut Cream Pie – I include this because it’s the cream pie base for all my favorite and most famous cream pies. I use it frequently to make banana cream pie which is just bonkers delicious and the recipe is the same as this, just add about 5-6 sliced bananas alternating with the filling as you fill your baked crust. A solid cream pie is kind of a must and you can choose from many on twocarolines but this one is such a blue ribbon winner and who doesn’t love coconut!?
Toasted Coconut Cream Pie by twocarolines
: I have to give a nod to some of my very favorite pies of all time that your grandma never made for you. Having a unique pie at your table is a way to show your guests that you know how to have fun in the kitchen and then you will blow doors with flavors they might have never expected to win them over. Trust us.
- Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie – Oh man do I love this pie, like, I love it SO MUCH you guys, and it’s so easy and the ultimate crowd pleaser. It has amazing chocolate peanut butter flavor plus a nice layer of chocolate ganache and just enough salt in the oreo crumb crust to make your mouth flood with satisfaction.
- Maple Lime Custard Pie – This pie came about after a neighbor brought us a bag of limes from her tree and it was such a triumph! It has that magical citrus sourness perfectly balanced by the maple and creams. I thought it would taste to sweet but it’s not at all, this pie sends you off the rails on a flavor train and it’s an easy crumb crust you can do with graham crackers, animal crackers, speculoo’s or whatever is in your pantry. It’s really easy and will surprise and delight your guests.
- Chocolate Nutella Pie – I recently posted this as a guest post on the Elevate-Everyday blog. It kind of blew my mind – I just never knew a big cup of Nutella could add so much rich and complex nutty chocolate flavor to a pie. I went all out and added toasted hazelnuts which took some time but was such a special treat and I have to say this pie ended up on the shortlist of favorites right away.
- S’mores Pie – Who is the person that doesn’t like s’mores and why did you invite them to your holiday feast?! This pie that CK 2.0 posted a few months ago has had such a following because it’s everything that’s right about the perfect s’more wrapped up into a beautiful pie shell and presented as an elegant dessert instead of a campfire sticky finger concoction. Don’t wait until summer to enjoy the made for each other combo of chocolate graham crackers and marshmallows.
King Family Pie Crust – triangle crimp with holes for blind bake by twocarolines.com
It’s the week of pies, this is the week when we ignore our scales, put on our stretchy pants and ride a pie train into the ultimate dessert nirvana. We literally have dozens of pies to choose from as you plan your Holiday feast – but first, we need to break down for you the most essential part of every pie, which is the crust. Pie crust is something bakers are passionate about, maybe even to the point of controversy, the battle of the pie fats is alive and well and in the twocarolines.com kitchen we are leaders of the Crisco crust gang, but we don’t want to fight you, we just want to hang out and eat pie with you.
Here’s the crust Joyce King made famous that both Caroline’s can make blindfolded. It’s fairly easy, consistently delicious and as long as you keep your Crisco supply in check, you will always have these ingredients around. I will often make 3 at a time and freeze two of them all rolled into a pan and crimped so all I need to do is take them out and fill them with something amazing. Obviously double this if you’re doing a double crust pie.
King Pie Crust:
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup Crisco shortening (not generic, not butter flavored)
4 tablespoons ice cold water (give or take for a nice playdough texture)
- Mix up your salt and flour. Add Crisco and cut it in with a pastry cutter, or with this handy mix and masher tool I use all the time. Should look like shaggy crumbs at this point. Add your water and continue to mix in with your tool then get all the dough off of that with a rubber spatula and with that spatula continue to pull the flour off the sides of the bowl and press it together until you take it with your hands and mix it into a nice play-dough-ey ball. It should be malleable, not too dry but not sticky.
- Press your dough ball into a disk on a floured surface (I like to work with a little bit wetter dough and dry it with my rolling surface flour). Keep working with your hands until you have a nice circle, throw a little flour on top of that. Take your rolling pin, and start rolling your dough out into a large thin circle. It helps to have a cover or pastry sleeve on your rolling pin so your dough doesn’t stick. We like our crust nice and thin.
- You may need to cut around if your circle is wompy and fill in or take away until your dough is in a fairly even circle. Pull up one edge onto your rolling pin and slowly roll your dough around the rolling pin then roll it out with about an inch over the sides into your pie pan.
- Next, use kitchen shears to cut where you have excessive hangover and feed that into areas where your crust looks too close to the edge. Then fold your edges under into a ridge and crimp as desired. Be sure when you crimp to press your crust up on the edge of your pan so it doesn’t slip down the sides when you bake it – this is particularly important for a blind bake. Fluted or wavy crimp is the easiest, but I also enjoy a triangle crimp which is achieved by pressing your thumb from the inside of your pan into the edge and meeting it on the outside with your index finger and thumb of your other hand. Don’t be afraid to get creative, there are loads of fun crimp instructions online. But we will be posting our own soon. Check out Facebook page for immediate crimping help.
- A quick note on blind baking. Pies that do not bake such as cream pies or fresh fruit pies need a crust that is already baked or “blind baked” – in this case, we recommend poking lots of holes in your crust with a fork which will prevent bubbles. You can also bake your crust with pie weights or dry beans in parchment, but we find the hole poking method to work just fine. This crust is easy to bake alone, in a 425 degree oven, bake on the top shelf for about 7 minutes or until your crust is a nice light golden brown. If your crust slips into your pan use gloves and a clean dish cloth to push back up. Let cool before filling.
Chocolate Granola Pie by twocarolines.com
I shared this pie almost a year ago as a guest post on one of my friends blogs, but I’ve shared it MANY times with friends for various events and just whenever I want to eat one of the most delicious bakes in my arsenal. I had to post it here today because so many friends have been asking for the recipe with Thanksgiving less than a week away! This pie not only checks all the boxes, crunchy, chewy, chocolatey, nutty, sweet, salty, mouth melty…it also makes the people you serve it to think you’re a total genius in the kitchen. The cool trick is that it’s one of the easiest pies I make, and honestly, the only pie that competes with this for my favorites is chocolate cinnamon mousse, but that’s a much more involved pie so granola pie has become my go to. It’s really good served warm, but I think it’s even better served cold, it’s amazing on it’s own, but heaped high with whipped cream or ice cream and you are winning all the pie awards this year. I implore you to add it to your Thanksgiving line up and share this recipe with your pie loving friends!
Crust: unbaked 9″ Traditional pie crust – ours is easy and always delicious! I sometimes make this in a deep dish pie pan in which case I just go heavy on all the ingredients – you can’t really mess it up I promise!
½ cup butter
½ cup brown sugar
¾ cup light corn syrup
⅛ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
3 eggs (beaten)
4 nature valley oat’s n’ honey granola bars (2 pouches) crushed
½ cup walnuts
¼ cup oats (quick or old fashioned)
½ (rounded) chopped chocolate or chocolate chips
- Prepare pie crust by pressing into pan and crimping as desired. I usually put my unbaked crust in the freezer while I prepare the filling which makes it extra flakey. Preheat oven to 350.
- In large Microsoft waveable bowl melt butter, stir in brown sugar and corn syrup until blended. Beat in salt, vanilla and eggs. Stir in crushed granola bars, walnuts, oats and chocolate chips. Pour into crust lined pan.
- Bake 40-50 minutes or until filling is set and crust is golden brown. During last 15-20 minutes of baking cover crust edge with strips of aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning (if you don’t want to bother, it’s not a huge deal). I use a pie shield that’s handy for pies that have a long bake time. Cool at least 30 minutes before serving. Tastes great warm, room temp or chilled with whipped cream or ice cream. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie, but remaining pie is unlikely.
Recipe adapted from Pillsbury Bake Off winner 2004 Oats and Honey Pie (which I literally watched the winner announced on Oprah back in 2004 and I’ve been making this pie ever since!)