key lime pie

I'll be the first to admit, I've never been a key lime pie person. There are very few desserts that I don't love, but key lime pie, along with lemon meringue pie and flan, have never been at the top of my list for whatever reason. I would just typically choose something chocolate, caramel, nutty, or spiced over a citrus-based dessert. Not one to hold a bias, I decided to whip one up for a good friend (who happens to love it!) for her birthday! I can safely say after making one myself, that I thoroughly enjoyed this pie. I love a graham cracker crust, and I personally think toasted coconut is a wonderful addition to almost any dessert. It ends up complementing the fresh, tropical flavors in this pie perfectly. Because I was transporting this pie into the city for dinner, I baked it in a disposable pie dish. But it ended up looking so bright and pretty that I really wish I baked it in one of my pretty ceramic pie dishes! Next time ;)

Key Lime Pie:

Crust:

  • 10-12 full graham crackers (or about 1.5 cups crushed graham crackers)
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons finely grated lime zest
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2/3 cup fresh lime juice (about 12 key limes or 4 regular limes)

Topping:

  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup flaked coconut, toasted
  • lime zest

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine graham crackers, brown sugar, and salt in a food processor, and pulse until combined. Pour in coconut oil, and pulse a few more times until mixture is uniformly crumbly and moist. Press crust mix into the bottom and up the sides of a standard 9-inch pie dish. Bake crust until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Set on cooling rack while you prepare filling. 

Zest limes into the bottom of a medium bowl until you have 2 tablespoons (reserving a bit for topping). Beat zest and egg yolks in a stand mixer (or use an electric hand-held one) until pale and thick, about 5 minutes. Add sweetened condensed milk and beat until well incorporated, about 3 minutes more. Whisk lime juice into yolk mixture until combined. Pour into graham crust and bake pie for another 10-12 minutes, until center is just set. Let pie cool completely before adding topping.

In a medium bowl of stand mixer, beat cream and sugar until soft peaks are formed. Spread over top of chilled pie. Sprinkle with toasted coconut and extra lime zest. If possbile, chill pie for another 2-3 hours so that topping can fully set. Slice and enjoy! Pie will stay fresh in the fridge for 5-7 days.

*Adapted from key lime pie by Smitten Kitchen

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