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Coconut Cream Pie

No baking required to make this incredible and rich coconut cream pie with a walnut graham cracker crust, fresh homemade whipped cream, and toasted coconut to top it off.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword coconut cream pie
Prep Time 25 minutes
Chilling Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 25 minutes
Servings 10 slices
Calories 494 kcal

Ingredients

Crust

  • 11 whole (171g) graham cracker sheets
  • 1/2 cup (51g) walnuts
  • 5 tablespoons (70g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (56g) dark brown sugar, packed (light works ok)
  • Tiny pinch fine sea salt

Filling

  • 4 large egg yolks, discard the whites or save for a different recipe
  • 4 and 1/2 tablespoons (36g) cornstarch
  • 1 can 13.66 ounces (403g) full fat coconut milk (canned; in Asian section of grocery store)
  • 1 cup (219g) heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup (146g) white granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons (25g) unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
  • 1/4 to 1 full teaspoon coconut extract (to taste; intensity will vary depending on the brand you use!)

Topping

  • 1 cup (219g) heavy whipping cream
  • 2-4 tablespoons powdered sugar (add to desired sweetness)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Instructions

  1. CRUST: Gently grease a deep 9-inch pie pan. Add graham crackers and walnuts to a (powerful) blender and pulse until coarsely ground. Do not over-blend, just until everything is crumb consistency. Add in melted butter (slightly cooled), brown sugar, and salt. Stir until well combined and the crumbs are completely moistened. Use hands if needed. Press into the bottom and sides of prepared pie pan. Press the crust in firmly to compress. Place in the fridge to chill while preparing the filling. (Note 1)

  2. FILLING: Give the can of coconut milk a good shake and then pour into a medium-sized pot. Add the heavy cream, sugar, and salt. Stir until smooth over medium heat. Stirring occasionally, bring the mixture to a very gentle boil. Switch to a whisk and whisk near constantly for 2 minutes watching carefully the mixture doesn't boil over. If the mixture rises, barely reduce the heat. Reduce the temperature to medium low heat. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks and cornstarch together with a fork until completely smooth. Pour a tiny bit of the mixture from the stovetop into the yolks while whisking the eggs constantly. Add a bit more to add about 1/3 cup total. Continually whisk the eggs so they don't scramble. Now the eggs are tempered! Pour them in a slow and steady stream into the coconut milk mixture whisking constantly.

  3. FILLING CONTINUED: The mixture will begin to bubble and thicken. Stir constantly and watch carefully for bubbles that come to the surface and burst. Whisk near constantly cooking over medium heat for 1 and 1/2 minutes. Remove from heat and immediately add in the butter. Stir until smooth. Add in the vanilla and coconut extract (add to taste, adding slowly).

  4. FINISHING PIE: Pour warm filling into chilled pie crust. Cover tightly with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding (to prevent a skin from forming) and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight until chilled and thickened. Add whipped cream (see next step) to the center of the pie and topped with toasted coconut (see next step).

  5. WHIPPED CREAM AND TOASTING COCONUT: Pour heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar (add to sweetness preference; we like 4 tablespoons), and vanilla into the cold bowl (attached to a stand mixer) and whisk on low speed to combine. Gradually increase to high speed until medium to stiff peaks form, about 1 minute. Watch carefully to avoid over-beating. Near the end of the minute, taste and adjust sugar to taste (adding more if needed). Keep cream as cold as possible at all times. To toast coconut: add the 1 cup unsweetened coconut to a large skillet. Cook over low-medium heat, stirring frequently, until the flakes are mostly golden brown. This takes 3-6 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a plate immediately. Let cool completely before adding to the pie.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: You can completely prepare the crust 24 hours in advance of filling and cover with plastic wrap to make your pie making even easier!