October 3, 2023


Food Information

7-Ingredient Key Lime Pie Recipe

8 min read

With its excellent macadamia nut crust, creamy but thick key lime filling, and candy whipped cream on prime, that is really the most effective key lime pie I’ve ever had. And after 1 chunk, I believe you’ll agree. You want 4 components for the crust, and solely 3 components for the filling.

overhead photo showing slice of key lime pie being removed from glass pie dish.

Key lime pie will endlessly be considered one of my favourite desserts, and I do know I’m not alone! This Florida specialty has been profitable over hundreds of thousands for years. Between the buttery crunchy crust, contemporary and tangy custard filling, and the important creamy topping—no dessert can rival this one!

However can we make a great factor even higher? Sure.

One reader, Valerie, commented: “I’ve made this recipe a number of occasions and it’s at all times an enormous hit! The macadamia nuts within the crust actually give it that further ‘one thing’ that individuals love however can’t fairly pinpoint. One in every of my favourite recipes out of your web site… ★★★★★

What Makes This the Finest Key Lime Pie?

  • Additional thick and nutty crust
  • 3-ingredient filling
  • Straightforward to make
  • Completely refreshing
  • Main key lime taste
  • Topped with do-it-yourself whipped cream
  • Candy, salty, citrus-y, buttery, creamy, and tangy multi function
key lime pie slice on silver plate with whipped cream on top.

One reader, Ellen, commented: “My son and I made this pie collectively for Thanksgiving. It’s the first time we now have ever made a key lime pie earlier than. We adopted the recipe precisely! Sally, it was the BEST PIE EVER! Completely scrumptious. Everyone liked it and we are going to certainly make this once more. Right now I’m grateful for leftovers! ★★★★★

Right here’s How You Make This Key Lime Pie

This pie requires just a few easy steps. A lot of the “work” is hands-off as the important thing lime pie units up within the fridge, so it’s good within the summertime. (Loads of readers make this straightforward pie for Memorial Day weekend, Father’s Day, 4th of July, summer time birthday events, and Labor Day gatherings.)

  • Make the Crust: Use a meals processor to mix the macadamia nuts and graham cracker crumbs. Mix with melted butter and sugar, then press tightly right into a pie dish.
  • Pre-Bake the Crust: Pre-bake the crust for about 8 minutes earlier than pouring in the important thing lime filling. Pre-baking solidifies the crust and permits for straightforward slicing as soon as the pie is able to serve.
  • Make the Filling: Whisk collectively the three filling components—it will likely be thick! Pour into the nice and cozy crust.
  • Bake the Pie: It normally solely takes about 18–20 minutes within the oven. Let it cool utterly, then cowl and refrigerate the pie for no less than 1 hour previous to serving.
  • Garnish and Serve: That is further scrumptious with contemporary whipped cream on prime. By the best way, in the event you’re in search of an alternate option to serve it, attempt my particular person the wrong way up key lime pies. Mainly the identical filling as this pie.
ingredients on counter including 2 sweetened condensed milk cans, egg yolks in bowl, melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, and sugar.
key lime juice in a glass measuring cup

Graham Cracker Macadamia Nut Crust

Key lime pie is historically made with graham cracker crust. It’s probably the most fantastic crunchy, candy, and buttery mattress for the contemporary key lime filling. However you gained’t consider the distinction macadamia nuts make. I take advantage of about 1/2 cup of macadamia nuts instead of a number of the graham cracker crumbs and the result’s pure pie bliss. Macadamia nuts are sometimes missed within the baking world, in favor of different nuts. Why, although? They’re so good!

You want 4 components for this crust:

  1. Macadamia Nuts (I like to recommend salted)
  2. Graham Crackers
  3. Melted Butter
  4. Sugar

Pulse the macadamia nuts with graham crackers, then combine with melted butter and sugar. As a result of key limes are somewhat sweeter than common limes, you’ll love the candy/tangy key lime filling with the salty graham cracker macadamia nut crust.

graham cracker crust pressed into glass pie dish.

3-Ingredient Filling

Sure, you want simply 3 components. (!!!) Should you’ve tried my key lime pie bars or mini key lime pies, you’ll discover that at present’s filling is somewhat totally different. I sometimes add somewhat cream cheese to these recipes for stability and construction. Nonetheless, for a basic and custard-y pie, we’ll skip it. You simply want egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, and key limes.

My success tip: Do your self a favor and purchase a bottle of key lime juice from the shop. There’s a model of bottled key lime juice that I like known as Nellie & Joe’s in most main grocery shops subsequent to the bottled lemon juice. In any other case you’ll spend 100 years juicing 500 tiny key limes your self. LOL. You want 1 cup (240ml) of key lime juice. (Contemporary lime zest is optionally available for this pie.)

custardy filling in glass bowl and shown again spread in graham cracker crust.

How you can Inform Key Lime Pie Is Achieved

One of the vital frequent and simply remedied key lime pie issues is over-baked pie. It’s tough to know when the pie is finished, however right here’s my secret: bake the pie till the filling is simply barely jiggly within the middle (about 18–20 minutes). It ought to be agency to the contact, however not completely strong. The pie will proceed to set because it cools.

Cool the pie utterly on a wire rack, then cowl and chill for no less than 1 hour earlier than garnishing, slicing, and serving.

How you can Adorn Key Lime Pie

Let the refreshing citrus taste stand out, and preserve the garnishes easy.

  • Home made whipped cream
  • Because you’ll have leftover egg whites, make a meringue topping—you’ll have time to kill whereas the pie chills anyway 🙂
  • Quartered lime slices
  • Lime zest
  • Complete macadamia nuts
  • Graham cracker crumbs

I’ve sampled many key lime pies and I can confidently say that is the most effective one I’ve ever had.

slice of key lime pie being removed from glass pie dish.

Refreshing Dessert Concepts

When the temperatures rise, the very last thing you need to do is spend time in a sizzling kitchen. You’ll admire these easy, scrumptious, and completely refreshing desserts:


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slice of key lime pie being removed from glass pie dish.

Straightforward Key Lime Pie

  • Writer:

  • Prep Time:
    20 minutes

  • Cook dinner Time:

  • Complete Time:
    3 hours, 35 minutes

  • Yield:
    10-12 servings

  • Class:

  • Methodology:

  • Delicacies:


This tangy-sweet key lime pie is deliciously easy with an additional thick and nutty crust. You want simply 3 components for the filling, and make sure to refrigerate the pie for no less than an hour earlier than slicing and serving.

Graham Cracker Macadamia Crust

Filling + Topping


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Make the crust: Utilizing a meals processor, pulse the graham crackers and macadamia nuts collectively into coarse crumbs. A number of bigger items of nuts is OK. Pour right into a medium bowl and stir within the sugar. Add the melted butter and stir till mixed. The combination shall be thick, coarse, and sandy. Attempt to smash/break up any giant chunks. Pour the combination into an ungreased 9-inch pie dish. Use your hand to pat down the crumbs into the underside and up the edges to make a crust. Use medium stress—merely pat down till the combination is not crumbly. Ideas: You should utilize a small flat-bottomed measuring cup to assist press down the underside crust and easy out the floor, however don’t pack down too laborious. And run a spoon across the backside “nook” the place the sting and backside meet to assist make a rounded crust⁠—this helps stop the crust from falling aside if you slice into the pie. For extra shaping method ideas, see the graham cracker crust recipe web page.
  3. Pre-bake crust for 8 minutes. Take away from the oven and depart the oven on.
  4. Make the filling: Whisk the sweetened condensed milk, lime juice, and egg yolks collectively (or use an electrical mixer). Whisk within the lime zest. Pour into heat crust.
  5. Bake the pie for 18–20 minutes or till solely *barely* jiggly within the middle. You need it largely set. Take away from the oven and permit to chill utterly on a wire rack. As soon as cool, cowl and chill for no less than 1 hour (and as much as 3 days) earlier than serving.
  6. Garnish as desired.
  7. Retailer leftovers within the fridge for as much as 1 week.


  1. Make Forward & Freezing Directions: You’ll be able to put together and pre-bake the crust as much as 2–3 days upfront. Cowl and retailer at room temperature. Likewise, you’ll be able to combine up the filling as much as 2–3 days upfront. Cowl and refrigerate, then assemble and bake. Baked and cooled pie freezes nicely as much as 3 months; thaw in a single day within the fridge.
  2. Particular Instruments (affiliate hyperlinks): Food Processor or Chopper | Glass Mixing Bowl | 9-inch Pie DishZester | Citrus Juicer | Whisk 
  3. Graham Cracker Crust: If you are going to buy graham cracker crumbs, you want 1 and 1/3 cups (160g) for this recipe. Although they’re already crumbs, you’ll be able to nonetheless pulse with the nuts. If you wish to skip the nuts, use this graham cracker crust recipe as a substitute and pre-bake for 8 minutes.
  4. Can I Use Common Limes As a substitute? Sure, you may make this pie with common lime juice and lime zest.
  5. Retailer-bought Key Lime Juice: Should you don’t need to juice dozens of small key limes to yield 1 cup (240ml) juice, store-bought key lime juice works too. I actually like a model known as Nellie & Joe’s, and you could find it on the grocery retailer close to the bottled lemon juice.
  6. Leftover Egg Whites: Listed below are all my recipes utilizing simply egg whites, or you may make a meringue topping for the pie.
  7. Key Lime Bars: Right here is my recipe for key lime pie bars. I add some cream cheese to that filling so the bars maintain their form nicely.
  8. Non-US Readers: ​​Don’t have graham crackers the place you reside? Use 180g floor digestive biscuits as a substitute (about 12 biscuits), with the identical quantity of nuts and butter, and add an additional Tablespoon (12g) of sugar. Pre-bake for 10 minutes.

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