Today is my sweet Mom’s birthday! We live in different cities, so I won’t get to see her today, but we were able to celebrate together last weekend. For her birthday, she requested a coconut cream pie with a graham cracker crust. I decided to try a new coconut cream pie recipe, and it was amazing. I would even go as far as to say that this is the BEST coconut cream pie I have ever had. I hesitate to use the term “best” because I know that it’s subjective and that we all like different things, but, I can’t imagine that anyone would argue with me after one taste of this pie.
I have made quite a few coconut cream pie recipes and they have all been good, never a complaint, but after trying this one, it will be the only one that I make from here on out. There are two things that set this pie apart from others that I’ve had. First, the crust is made from graham cracker crumbs and toasted coconut (yes, coconut in the crust!). Second, the coconut filling is made with coconut milk, rather than plain milk only. Using the coconut milk in the custard gives the pie a perfect subtle coconut flavor that you can’t get from shredded coconut alone. I reduced the amount of sugar in this recipe just slightly, so it’s not overly sweet. Simply put, it was perfect!
Enjoy your special day today, Mom. I love you!
Craving coconut cream pie but not in the mood to make a whole pie? Try my coconut cream pie dip – it’s easy & delicious!
Coconut Cream Pie with Graham Cracker Crust
- 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 9 whole graham crackers
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- One 14 ounce can coconut milk well shaken (not cream of coconut)
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 egg yolks
- scant 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Whipped Cream Topping:
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream chilled
- 3 tablespoons powdered sugar or granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract optional (but so good!)
For the crust:
Preheat oven to 325°. Spread the 2/3 cup of shredded coconut on a sheet pan and toast in the oven until golden brown, about 5-9 minutes. Keep a close eye on the coconut so that it doesn't burn. Stir it several times during baking to help it toast evenly. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Break up the graham crackers and place them in a food processor. Add half of the toasted coconut (1/3 cup), to the food processor. Reserve the other 1/3 cup of toasted coconut for garnishing the pie. Process the graham crackers and coconut into fine crumbs. Pour into a large bowl and stir in the sugar and melted butter. Once all of the graham cracker crumbs are moistened, press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch pie plate. Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, until lightly toasted and golden brown. Cool the crust while making the filling.
For the filling:
- Put the coconut milk, whole milk and coconut in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk sugar, salt, egg yolks and cornstarch. Once the milk is simmering, slowly pour a cup of the warm milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly as you pour (this will help slowly bring up the temperature of the eggs). Slowly add one more cup of warm milk, whisking continuously.
Pour the egg mixture into the remaining milk in the saucepan and bring to a simmer. Alternate whisking and stirring with a rubber spatula. After 3-5 minutes, the mixture will be bubbling and thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and butter.
Allow the filling to cool to room temperature, and then pour into the crust. Cover the pie and refrigerate until completely chilled and firm, several hours.
Once the pie is chilled, prepare the whipped cream topping. Beat the heavy cream, sugar and extracts just until stiff peaks form. Spread the whipped cream over the pie and garnish with reserved toasted coconut. Refrigerate the pie after assembly or serve immediately. Any leftovers can be stored tightly covered in the refrigerator.
Recipe adapted from Brown Eyed Baker