This easy custard pie recipe combines an egg based custard with a store-bought pie crust for a delicious old fashioned pie full of amazing flavor! It’s an old fashioned recipe that’s perfect for any holiday dessert table!
This year we’re adding this old fashioned custard pie to the Thanksgiving dinner table because my family likes creme bruelee, and this is the closest you can get to that when it comes to homemade pies!
This egg custard pie recipe is actually super easy to make, especially compared to something like homemade berry cobbler or even the pumpkin slab pie I posted yesterday (two of our other favorite holiday desserts).
And it’s a nice alternative to the typical fruit and pumpkin pie served at holiday parties with large gatherings of people!
If you’ve never had a classic egg custard pie before, it’s basically a store-bought pie crust (or your favorite homemade flaky pie crust) topped with a creamy custard filling that’s baked to give it a bit more structure than pudding.
It’s a delicious dessert with just a hint of almond in the simple custard filling that gives it a rich and creamy flavor.
I recommend making it the day before you want to serve it so that it can set for long enough to give it the proper interior texture! A good custard pie should be completely set on the inside!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Easy – this is a really simple pie recipe. The hardest part of making this classic custard pie honestly is just waiting to eat it after it cooks so that it has time to completely set.
- Creamy – the filling in this old-fashioned egg custard pie has a unique filling that tastes like a creamy custard pie but still slightly structured, similar to the creme brulee I mentioned earlier that has a hard shell with creamy interior.
- Uses basic ingredients – other than the unbaked pie crust, you likely already have everything you need for to make this classic custard pie already at home. If you don’t, they’re all simple ingredients that are easy to grab at your local grocery store.
- Almond extract – if you don’t like almond extract or are dealing with a nut allergy, you can replace the almond extract with vanilla extract instead. It’ll be a slightly different flavor but still have the same creamy texture.
- Ground nutmeg – this is amazing sprinkled with fresh ground nutmeg on top but store-bought ground nutmeg is fine. Or again if you don’t like nutmeg, you can just omit it entirely or replace it with cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice.
- Eggs – make sure you’re using large eggs, not XL or medium ones, just for measurement sake. I prefer to use high-quality eggs in this since eggs are such a large component but whatever is fine.
- Pie crust – you can use either a store-bought crust or your favorite pie crust recipe in this. If you’re using a homemade pie crust, just make sure it’s unbaked and follow the instructions below for baking. Pro tip: use the other pie crust in the package to make these pie crust cookies!
- Milk – make sure to use whole milk in this recipe instead of something with less fat content like skim, 1%, or even 2%. You want the fat content for the best results with the pie setting.
How to make custard pie
This pie is as simple as pre-baking the pie crust, making the custard mixture, pouring it on top of the crust, and baking everything together!
1 – Bake the Pie Dough
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and put the prepared pie crust into a 9 inch pie plate, making sure to gently press the pie crust into the sides of the pie pan.
Pinch the edges together or use a pie crimper to get a nice crimped look. Put pie weights on the bottom of the pie to keep it from bubbling up and bake for 10 minutes.
Remove the pie weights and bake the pie crust for 5 more minutes then let the crust cool completely. I like to put it on a wire rack to cool but that’s not essential.
Pre-baking the pie crust will help keep you from have a soggy crust that happens often with putting pie filling on top of an unbaked pie shell and baking.
2 – Make the Custard Filling
In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until smooth to make your egg mixture.
Add the heavy cream, milk, vanilla, almond extract, and the salt to the large bowl. Mix everything together until smooth to make your creamy filling.
3 – Fill and Bake the Custard Pie
Add the custard mix you just made into the pre-baked pie crust. I like to start in the center of the pie crust and move out and around in a circle. Once it’s poured in, you can smooth it around with a spatula if you like to get an even layer all over the pie crust.
Just pour the custard mixture into the pie crust until you just barely fill the pie dish. You likely won’t use all of the filling and that’s totally okay – it’s better to waste a bit of the custard filling and get a pie with a nice finish then to ruin the pie because it’s overfilled.
Sprinkle the top of the custard with a little bit of nutmeg or cinnamon if desired. You can skip this step completely, but it does give it a nice finished look and a touch of flavor.
Tent the pie with aluminum foil and place it in the oven to cook for 35 minutes. This will allow the pie to cook completely without burning the top.
Remove the foil after the 35 minutes is up and bake the pie for 5 more minutes or until a knife comes out cleanly.
The pie will still be jiggly as well but a knife should come out clean, not covered in pie filling. I baked for a total of about 40 minutes but baking time can be weird based on ovens so make sure to check it starting around 30 minutes just in case your oven cooks pie filling faster.
Let the pie cool to room temperature, then place it in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours. It’s best if you can chill it overnight but definitely do at least four hours so it’s completely chilled and set before serving.
Slice and serve chilled or at low room temperature along with fresh whipped cream, caramel sauce, or even butterscotch sauce!
It’s also really good topped with fresh berries, making it an ideal summer dessert as well as holiday one! For the holidays, I like to go tradition with just the custard pie or custard pie with a little homemade whipped cream on top.
Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to three days and serve chilled straight from the fridge.
Freeze the pie by wrapping tightly with plastic wrap and freezing for up to three months. Thaw in the fridge when and serve chilled you’re ready to enjoy after freezing. You can either freeze an entire pie or cut into slices and wrap each slice individually.
Don’t have pie weights? Try one of these pie weight substitutions instead.
A cream pie is typically straight cream with no real structure to the filling. It’s typically make with just creamy ingredients like heavy cream, milk, and sugar. A custard pie has more structure to it similar to flan or any other custard dessert. It’s made with eggs, cream, and milk.
Custard pie is better served cold straight out of the refrigerator. I do not recommend eating hot as the creamy custard filling likely will not have set up properly yet to give you the good custard flavor.
More Holiday Desserts
If you like this old-fashioned custard pie recipe, you have to try out these other popular dessert recipe options next time!
- Pumpkin magic cake recipe – this three layer dessert has a creamy pumpkin layer, a cake layer, and a cream cheese frosting on top!
- Striped delight – this has been my family’s favorite dessert for a long time and for good reason!
- Strawberry shortcake – if you want something that uses fresh berries, this strawberry shortcake is always a classic!
- Strawberry thumbprint cookies – these cookies are light and fluffy because of using egg yolk instead of just whole eggs, they’re a holiday favorite!
- Old fashioned poke cake – another vintage recipe that goes perfectly with this custard pie!
Easy Custard Pie Recipe
- 1 unbaked pie crust
- 4 large eggs
- ¾ C granulated sugar
- 1 ¼ C heavy cream
- 1 ¼ C whole milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg optional garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and put the prepared pie crust into a 9 inch pie plate, making sure to gently press the pie crust into the sides of the pie pan.1 unbaked pie crust
- Pinch the edges together or use a pie crimper to get a nice crimped look. Put pie weights on the bottom of the pie to keep it from bubbling up and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the pie weights and bake the pie crust for 5 more minutes then let the crust cool completely on a wire rack.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until smooth to make your egg mixture.4 large eggs, 3/4 C granulated sugar
- Add the heavy cream, milk, vanilla, almond extract, and the salt to the large bowl. Mix everything together until smooth to make your creamy filling.1 1/4 C heavy cream, 1 1/4 C whole milk, 2 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tsp almond extract, 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
- Add the custard mix you just made into the pre-baked pie crust.
- Sprinkle the top of the custard with nutmeg.1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- Tent the pie with foil and place it in the preheated oven to cook for 35 minutes. Remove the foil after the 35 minutes is up and bake the pie for 5 more minutes. The pie is done when a knife comes out clean. It'll likely still be jiggly but should be cooked.
- Let the pie cool to room temperature, then place it in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours.
- Serve chilled