Classic Key Lime Pie


Key Lime Pie has always been one of my favorite summer desserts. I think the rich and luxurious texture has the perfect combination of tangy and sweet. A fun fact about this pie is that traditional recipes always call for sweetened condensed milk. No fresh milk, no refrigeration, and no ice was available in the Keys until the arrival of tank trucks with the opening of the Overseas Highway in 1930. Because of this lack of milk, local cooks had to rely on canned sweetened condensed milk. Key lime may be the star ingredient of the key lime pie, but it is the sweetened condensed milk that makes it so smooth and delicious.

My parents made a trip to visit Ann Arbor last weekend and I made this pie for dessert. This was no coincidence because it also happens to be one of my dad’s favorite desserts as well! He gave it two thumbs up, which is high praise coming from a food lover like him.

So let’s talk about this pie a little bit. This Key Lime Pie recipe uses condensed milk and sour cream. It is a fabulously easy way to whip up a summertime favorite dessert in under an hour. You can even use bottled key lime juice to save some additional time. Don’t forget to garnish with whipped cream as this helps cut the tartness of the lime.


Key Lime Pie Recipe
Makes approximately 8 servings

1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust
3 cups sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup key lime juice
1 tablespoon grated lime zest

Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine condensed milk, sour cream, lime juice, and lime rind. Mix well and pour into graham cracker crust.

Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes, until set and tiny pinhole bubbles burst on the surface of pie. Be careful not to brown your pie. Remove from oven and chill pie thoroughly before serving. Garnish with lime slices and whipped cream if desired.

Heather’s Helpful Hints
If you have time, a homemade graham cracker crust is even better for this pie. Check out this quick and easy three-ingredient recipe for a crust that will be done in 15 minutes.



29 thoughts on “Classic Key Lime Pie

  1. I saw this on Facebook Heather when Tracy shared it and so glad to come over here and get the recipe. I’ve never made key lime pie, and love that you use sour cream, I had no idea! I can’t wait to try this and will let you know when I do! Key Lime Pie is very ‘Americana’ to me, and if it’s okay with you, I would like to link to this post in my next Five Photo/Five Story Challenge post, part of which is about my experiences with American food and baking terms when I first moved to California!


    • This was actually my first time making Key Lime Pie as well! It has always been one of my favorite desserts and it definitely is an American classic. I didn’t know much about the history before I did a little research for my blog post! I’d love to have this recipe be a part of your post on American food :) What a treat, thank you so much for asking Sherri!


  2. Pingback: Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge Day Five: The Parsley Incident | A View From My Summerhouse

  3. I can still taste this one, Heather. What a treat to have it in your fridge when we last visited. It tastes just as good as it looks. Thank You for the TREAT.


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