Homemade Chocolate Cream Pie

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Ditch the frozen pie crust and boxed pudding mixes. You can make a Homemade Chocolate Cream Pie without breaking the bank.

Chocolate Cream Pie | Jessica Fisher

OK, who’s ready for dessert? I am a big believer in homemade pies. Homemade pie crust. Homemade filling. Homemade whipped cream.

Sure, it’s easy enough to buy a few cans and boxes of stuff from the store and throw together an “almost homemade” pie, but that really can’t compete with the real thing.

The beauty of homemade pies is that they are not terribly difficult to make and they taste SO much better than anything store bought.

Don’t even get me started on the pies in the grocery store bakery. You deserve better, baby.

Make your own pies!

There are a few basic categories of pies: fruit, custard, ice cream, and pudding. Fruit pies are basically fresh fruit combined with sugar and spices tumbled into an unbaked pie shell. Typically you might use berries, cherries, apples, or peaches.

Custard pies, like pumpkin, involve a creamy mixture baked into a pie shell. This Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Pie is the bomb.

An ice cream pie involves softened ice cream and/or sorbet piled into a baked pie shell.

And lastly, a pudding pie is a pudding, like chocolate, vanilla, or lemon cooked in a pan on the stove and spooned into a baked pie shell. It’s usually topped with whipped cream or meringue.

This is my homemade version of Chocolate Cream Pie or Chocolate Pudding Pie, depending on what you want to call it. It’s one of my people’s favorites! The crust is flaky; the filling rich and chocolatey, and the whipped cream sweet and light.

You may be familiar with the refrigerated or frozen pie crust, Jell-O chocolate pudding, and Cool Whip version. And that’s fine. But this takes little more work than using those convenience items and it tastes loads better!

Plus, it doesn’t have all those funky ingredients that you can’t pronounce. So, ready to make a pie?

What do you need to make chocolate cream pie?

Lucky for you, the ingredients are pretty minimal. You’ll need

  • pie crust (butter, flour, salt)
  • chocolate filling (sugar, cornstarch, cocoa powder, milk, salt, vanilla, and semisweet chocolate)
  • whipped cream (whipping cream, sugar, vanilla)

Added together, you’re looking at a total of ten ingredients. Boom. Much fewer than would be listed on a commercial pie crust, boxed pudding, and can of whipped topping.

How do you make a chocolate cream pie?

First you’re going to whip up a batch of Gramma John’s Pie Crust. This is practically foolproof since you don’t have to roll out the dough. Just pat it in the pan.

You’re going to blind bake the crust. This means that you’re going to bake it empty. Since the filling is cooked on the stovetop, you won’t be baking the filling, so the crust needs to be baked prior to filling.

Baking the crust empty-empty will risk the dough sliding down the pan or puckering in spots, so you’re gonna get tricked out and blind bake it.

To blind bake the crust, line the pan with the dough and then place a piece of foil or parchment paper over the crust and fill it with beans or pie weights. Bake as directed. When the crust starts to color around the edges, you’ll remove the foil and continue baking until the crust is light brown. Cool it completely on a rack.

Meanwhile, cook up the filling in a saucepan. It takes less than ten minutes! Let that cool a little and pour it into the cooled pie crust. Cool it to room temp and then chill the whole thing for several hours. Top with whipped cream.

And voila! Your own Homemade Chocolate Cream Pie!

entire Chocolate Cream Pie with plates and forks

How to make this good and cheap:

Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:

  • Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. When you see a good price on butter, flour, sugar, and baking chocolates, buy a few extra packages to stash for later. You know you’ll use them.
  • Shop the stores that have the best prices. When I did my big grocery store showdown, I learned that ALDI and Costco have the best prices for a lot of the things I buy. You will naturally save money if you shop the best store for the items YOU buy. This may not be ALDI or Costco, so you’ll need to do your own price comparisons. The time investment as your research it is super valuable!

How I make this recipe easy:

This recipe really couldn’t be easier than it is, but having the right kitchen tools can really make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. Over time, I’ve honed my collection so that they are perfect for my needs.

Here are the tools that I use for this recipe:

  • rolling pin – Necessary for making homemade pie crust.
  • plastic wrap – Too much flour can make your dough tough, but too little makes it stick to your work surface. I use plastic wrap to help me roll the dough easily and transport it to the pan without tearing it. Stretch-Tite is the best, in my opinion.
  • pie plate – obviously 😉
  • Small Kitchenaid saucepan – I got a set of these pans for free in 2004. We still use them!
  • Wire whisk – be sure to get one with a sealed barrel so dishwater doesn’t drip into your food. Yuck.
  • stainless steel mixing bowl – a good set should last you a lifetime.
  • hand mixer – My Hamilton Beach version is going on a decade and still kicking.
  • silicone spatula – I love this two-sided spatula/spoon. It’s great for stirring and scraping. I bought it originally to flip crepes, but I’ve since bought more since it’s so handy.

Homemade Chocolate Cream Pie
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
45 mins
 

Ditch the frozen pie crust and boxed pudding mixes. You can make a Homemade Chocolate Cream Pie without breaking the bank.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate, chocolate cream pie, chocolate pie, chocolate pudding, chocolate pudding pie, pie
Servings: 8
Author: Jessica Fisher
Ingredients
  • 1 batch Gramma John's Pie Crust
  • 2/3 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips or chopped semisweet chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • additional chocolate chips or shavings for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 ° Prepare the pie crust according to recipe directions. Pat into the pan. Line the crust with parchment paper and fill with beans. Bake until edges begin to color, about 15 minutes. Remove paper and weights and continue baking until golden brown.

  2. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  3. In a medium saucepan, whisk together the 2/3 cup sugar, cornstarch, cocoa powder, and salt.
  4. Whisk in the milk, stirring well. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly until mixture begins to thicken, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Whisk in the chocolate chips and vanilla until well blended. Allow mixture to cool slightly.

  6. Pour cooled mixture into baked and cooled pie shell. Cool to room temperature and then chill for several hours.
  7. Prior to serving, whip the cream and the remaining tablespoon of sugar in a medium bowl until soft peaks are formed. Serve with pie.

About Jessica Fisher

I believe you can get great meals on the table -- and still keep that pretty smile on your face.

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Comments

  1. Thank you for hosting. I’m sharing my chocolate french silk pie. Last year I made several pies for Thanksgiving, but this is the one people wanted first and finished up.

  2. Oh, man, this has my mouth watering!! And it looks so easy. My family may be thanking you tonight. 😀

  3. yum, chocolate cream is one of my favorite pies! Thanks for hosting.

  4. Hands down we are a family that likes their pumpkin pie. However, since we’ll be having my mil joining us for Thanksgiving Dinner this year, I’ll be making a gluten-free pumpkin pie, too. Dh makes everything else. 😉

  5. This recipe could NOT have come at a better time! My husband wants a chocolate pie for Thanksgiving (which his momma always makes, but she won’t be able to join us this year) and I was up a creek since I’ve never made one. Then I checked your blog. Woo hoo! Thanks Jessica!

  6. kelly d says:

    did you read my mind jess??sat down with my thanksgiving(simplified)meal plan yesterday. after checking with my 7 peeps(kids) 4 of them voted for chocolate cream pie..checked you out to see if you had any better recipes and here you were!!!my hubby will thank you..one of his favs too!!thanks for all you do..btw, i am awaiting my cookbook delivery today(i am such a nerd..i keep tracking my package on amazon..lol)

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      I’m a nerd right there with you. How fun that everyone will be making chocolate cream pie this year. I had a slice for breakfast. Yummy!

      • kelly d says:

        just wanted to let you know I love your book!!sat down and read as much as possible until my 4 year old realized i was sitting still lol!!we made a batch of your chocolate chip banan bread with oatmeal and its in the oven now!!love to have great smells in the house when the kids get home from school!!thanks again!!cant wait to read some more after work tonite.i get off work at @2:30 am..which is my quiet reading time!!:)i can already tell i will be using soo many oif these recipes!!

  7. I dont have a blog or a link but here is my favorite pie!!!

    Zucchini Sugar Cream Pie

    Zucchini: Peel enough to make 1 1/2 cups
    Cook 5 minutes in microwave

    Combine in blender:
    Zucchini
    1 Cup sugar
    3 Tablespoon flour
    1/2 Tablespoon melted butter or margarine
    1 Cup evaporated milk
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 egg

    Pour into an unbaked pie shell – top with cinnamon

    Bake: 425° for 15 minutes
    350° for 10 minutes or until done (It will set a little after its out of the oven) It also freezes well.

  8. Meagan says:

    This pie will be on my Thanksgiving menu for sure!

  9. this pie sounds amazing!!

  10. It looks yummy! Could you tell me what it means by “fill with beans”. or “pie weight”? so I bake the crust with aluminum foil cover with dry beans on top?
    Thanks! Definitely making it this week!

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      Yes, you need some kind of weight to hold the crust in place while it bakes. Otherwise, the crust shrinks back from the sides of the pan and slides into a puddle in the bottom. You can use dried beans or buy specially designed “pie weights” for this purpose.

  11. Brooke Kingston says:

    Jessica, my five-year old son Charlie and I made this together for Sunday dinner. We had so much fun with the awesome pie dough recipe. It was easy to handle and turned out beautifully after Charlie pressed it into the pie tin. We have a trick from my grandmother that works well for a flaky pie crust: add a pinch of baking powder to the dry ingredients before mixing!

    The chocolate cream is TO.DIE.FOR delicious. Charlie watched while I cooked, and he loved licking the wisk! Thank you for giving us a fun and memorable baking project…this recipe is a keeper for sure!!

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      Thanks for such great feedback. Love it. I am tempted to make it again this week, but we already have three desserts planned. LOL

  12. Momstarr says:

    Do you use semi sweet or milk chic. chips?

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      I have used semi-sweet and dark when I make this. I imagine milk would work fine, too.

  13. I had a few dozen broken mint chocolate shortbread cookies (I’ll try again next year, lol!), so I used those to make a crumb crust for this pie. Added some mint extract instead of the vanilla. Fabulous. I’ll have to try it again as written. I’m making mini ones in muffin tins for our New Year’s Eve party too. Thanks for sharing the recipe. So easy too!

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      That sounds yummy! I’ve made it with the mint extract, but that cookie crust sounds amazing!

  14. Hi Jessica,
    The photo of the sliced pie makes it appear the pie is so firm that it stands alone and doesn’t fall over like a pudding pie would do. Does yours always come out so firm? Mine didn’t and I’m just wondering if I did something wrong.

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      I don’t think it always does. It has to do with how long it cooks down to thicken. I think moisture in the air can affect it as well.

      • Thanks, I feel better about my outcome. This pie is delicious, no doubt! So happy you shared the recipe with us. Thanks again 🙂

  15. I made this for thanksgiving. It tasted awesome but it never really ‘set’. I put saran wrap over before I put it in the fridge so it wouldn’t get that skin in top. Should I have not done that?

    • I have found that you need to keep cooking it until it thickens, even if it’s longer than you would expect. I’m sorry it didn’t set up this time round. 🙁 The plastic wrap trick is fine. My husband likes the skin. Go figure.

  16. Rebecca says:

    Does anyone know if the chocolate cream part would work if I used rice milk? My son is allergic to dairy. I have a pie crust recipe that I use and I can make coconut whipped cream, but I would love to be able to make the filling from scratch.

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