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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Key Lime Pie

From Cooks Illustrated, Published March 1, 1997.


Lime Filling
  • 4 teaspoons grated lime zest
  • 1/2 cup lime juice from 3 to 4 limes
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

Graham Cracker Crust
  • 8 graham crackers , processed to fine crumbs 
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted

Whipped Cream Topping, optional
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 lime , sliced paper thin and dipped in sugar (optional)

1. For the Filling: Whisk zest and yolks in medium bowl until tinted light green, about 2 minutes. Beat in milk until smooth, then add lime juice.  Cover and set aside at room temperature to thicken about 30 minutes.

2. For the Crust: Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Process graham crackers in a food processor until fine, even crumbs (about 30 seconds).  Sprinkle the sugar and butter over the crumbs and pulse to incorporate. Pour mixture into 9-inch pie pan; press crumbs over bottom and up sides of pan to form even crust. Bake until lightly browned and fragrant, about 12-15 minutes. Transfer pan to wire rack.

3. With the crust still warm, pour the thickened lime filling into crust; bake until center is set, yet wiggly when jiggled, 15 to 20 minutes. Return pie to wire rack; cool to room temperature about an hour. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 3 hours. (Can be covered with lightly oiled or oil-sprayed plastic wrap laid directly on filling and refrigerated up to 1 day.)

4. For the optional whipped cream: Up to 2 hours before serving, whip cream in medium bowl to very soft peaks. Adding confectioners’ sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, continue whipping to just-stiff peaks. Decoratively pipe whipped cream over filling or spread evenly with rubber spatula. Garnish with optional sugared lime slices and serve.


  1. This looks yummy! I missed Pi day, but I might have to make some other excuse to try this recipe out.

  2. Made it yesterday for Pi day 2013. Amazing! Limey and just enough sweetness. My "cupcake cutie" (self named 6 yr old) helped me and it turned out great!