Chocolate Icebox Pie: confessions of a pie burglar

For those of you who are frequent visitors to this blog, you know one of my favorite eateries is our local diner. Nothing is better than ending a week with a plate of fresh fried chicken, REAL mashed potatoes and gravy and, of course, a piece of chocolate cream pie to go. The slice of pie is at least 4″ high, with three layers of chocolate and cream. It’s a sight to behold, and often takes me 2 days to finish.

Not long ago, as my husband and I were leaving with our treasure of pie, we ran into Deb, a KAF coworker, and her two little girls. We chatted for a bit, and I showed the girls my slice of pie and told them to be sure to get one before they left. We said our goodbyes and headed out the door.

Imagine my horror and chagrin the next day when Deb told me that when the girls ordered their pie, they were told it was sold out for the night. In fact, we had just walked out the door with the last two pieces! Bitter tears they cried, and I’ve felt like a pie thief ever since.

Well, Deb, the time has come for me to make a pie, a chocolate creamy pie. No boxed pudding mix here. This pie will have real dark chocolate, and plenty of real cream. You tell me when, and I’ll deliver this piece of pie perfection to your little ladies.

In case you too have found yourself in a pie predicament, follow along with me and we’ll make Chocolate Icebox Pie.

Preheat your oven to 375°F.

In a small bowl, mix together one batch of King Arthur Flour Graham Cracker Crust mix, OR 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar, and 5 tablespoons melted butter. If you like a cinnamon crust, feel free to add 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon as well.

Combine the crumbs, sugar, and butter until well moistened. Pour into a greased 9″ pie pan.

Spread the crumb mixture evenly in the pan before pressing the crust down with your fingers. This saves you from having to pry up sections of crust to cover bare spots.

To prevent over-browning, freeze the crust in the pan for 15 minutes. Bake in the hot oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack while you work on the filling.

In a medium-sized bowl mix together 1/3 cup hot water, 2 tablespoons of King Arthur All-Purpose Baking Cocoa or Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa, and 1 tablespoon vanilla. Whisk until smooth.

On the stove top or in the microwave, melt 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate. I’ve used our Merckens bittersweet bar and our Belcolade bittersweet discs in different pies, and both were amazing. Deep, rich, and full of powerful chocolate flavor.

For milk chocolate lovers, I’m sure our Merckens milk chocolate bar would work beautifully too.

Combine the melted chocolate with the water/cocoa mixture, and blend together. It will slosh around and not combine at first, but keep at it.

There you go! It will be the consistency of thin chocolate pudding. Set aside until the mixture is room temperature or cooler.

If you want to jazz up your filling, now’s the time to add 1/2 teaspoon extract or 1/4 teaspoon extra strong flavor. The chocolate-raspberry pie we made with our natural raspberry flavor was a showstopper for sure.

When the chocolate has cooled, whip 1 1/2 cups heavy or whipping cream  with 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1/8 teaspoon of salt to soft peaks. Detach the whisk and fold in the chocolate by hand until no streaks of white remain.

Scrape the chocolate cloud-y goodness into the cooled crust.

It fills the crust right up to the top; pictured above is only half of the batch. Good thing I only stopped to take one photo, as test kitchen maven Sue Gray would have made off with the rest of my filling!

Spread the filling evenly over the crust, right up to the edges. Chill the pie for 1 to 2 hours before serving, or up to overnight.

I’m not sure where my mind was this particular morning, as I spaced out and forgot the whipped cream topping layer! The sweetened cream definitely helps cut the richness of the filling, so be smarter than me and add that topping post haste.

Okay, so maybe we couldn’t resist and cut the pie a little early. The filling is still slightly soft, but delightfully fluffy and airy. At first bite, your mind is transformed. Everything you think you know about chocolate cream pie has changed. Not too sweet, not too bitter, just the right blend of creamy with the finish of crispy, crunchy crust.

I will say this pie is much richer than other cream pies. I made one for my husband and myself while our daughter is in France. We only managed small slivers over a couple of nights, and the leftovers came to work with me to share. Talk about how to win friends and influence people!

Next time you’re thinking deep, dark chocolate, give this pie a try. You’ll wind up in chocolate cloud heaven with a halo of good pie karma around you.

Please make, rate, and review our recipe for Chocolate Icebox Pie.

Print just the recipe.

MaryJane Robbins
About

MaryJane Robbins grew up in Massachusetts and moved to Vermont 20 years ago. After teaching young children for 15 years, she changed careers and joined King Arthur Flour in 2005. MaryJane began working on King Arthur Flour's baker’s hotline in 2006, and the blog team ...

comments

  1. Pat Templeton

    I have a moral decision to make here. I promised the dog a fresh batch of his favorite KAF dog biscuits today. One does not easily break one’s promise to a 65 pound dog with soulful eyes. But then there’s this pie. Oh, the temptation. But the pie must wait til tomorrow. As a reward for keeping my word to the dog, I plan a pie filling experiment:
    There are (in Texas) Mexican dark baking chocolates filled with finely ground dried peppers. The types of dried peppers available vary from mild to scorching hot. I’ll sub some Mexican chocolate for some of the melted chocolate in the filling and let the peppers be my extract. Dark chocolate, hot peppers, and lots of cold, cold whipped cream–sounds like it has potential. If this works out I’ll write again about the brand of chocolate, proportions, etc. This combo of chocolates is based on a classic Mexican chocolate cake. Plus I’m sure the peppers’ heat will eliminate all the pie’s calories!

    Reply
  2. dharrisc

    awesome pie … some changes, though: a *regular* crust {no graham cracker crust — makes the pie too sweet!!!} … and I need a lot for a potluck dinner tomorrow night so im going to double the recipe and going to do this in a 9X13 pan lined with parchment paper …

    I think this will totally work …

    darlene

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Our fingers are crossed! We hope it works well and feeds your crowd with a smile. 🙂 Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  3. lee rosenthal

    My question is whether this can be made with almond or cashew milk for the lactose intolerant in my family.

    Thank you

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We haven’t tried this, Lee. I fear that the lower fat milks won’t provide as creamy of a pie. Perhaps you can try a full fat coconut cream instead? Jon@KAF

  4. lanettedykman

    A friend used this recipe for GF cupcakes. She took GF chocolate cookies (said she used pamelas, but I’m trying MI-DEL chocolate sandwich cookies), put some in each cupcake wrapper for the crust, then spooned the filling on-top. They were INCREDIBLE!!!! I’m making them today for a party and will likely put a dollup of whipped cream on top and freeze them.

    Reply
  5. MealPlanningMoms

    Combining whipped heavy cream, bittersweet chocolate and graham cracker crumbs can’t produce anything short of delicious, but this pie is amazing. In fact, the words “amazing”, “incredible”, and “wow” actually came out of the mouths of my family, when they weren’t (literally, in the case of one of my children) licking their plates clean. We made this recipe as part of our Meal Planning for the week:
    http://www.mealplanningmoms.com/2012/08/chocolate-ice-box-pie/

    Hey, glad the whole family enjoyed this pie. We get the exact same reaction here, whenever it appears in the test kitchen – plate licking galore! Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm, and your blog – PJH

    Reply
  6. Louise Chowanski

    Where is the local diner you talk about? I live in New London and frequent the area regularly and I haven’t seen a diner near King Arthur Flour. I hope you answer me as I would like to try it.

    I’m guessing it’s the Fairlee Diner up in Fairlee, VT, but I’ll wait for MJ to confirm or deny. MJ? PJH
    Yes, you’re right. Fairlee Diner on Rt. 5 North, just up from exit 15 I-91. Say hi to Ray and Elsie when you go. ~ MJ

    Reply
  7. Lauri

    I have to say, I really enjoy this blog and I love that you all comment on our posts. It makes the site feel very friendly, like sharing recipes with your friends and family. This icebox pie sounds great! I love the idea of spending the extra time to make a real chocolate pie.

    http://pinnedlife.blogspot.com/
    Thank you for sharing your blog with us, Lauri! I really enjoyed learning about your interests and inspirations. I hope you dive into that icebox pie- it is amazing! ~Amy

    Reply
  8. imsharduff

    I don’t think you are rude at all…..however, most bingo players are women and I know they will love the pie, as it is all about rich, gooey.calorie laden desserts. I will suggest the name to the kitchen workers!!!!!
    Maybe Whipped Cream Moose Patty Pie 🙂
    Sharon
    Awesome! Be sure to let us know how it goes over. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  9. imsharduff

    As I write this, my pie is in the refrigerator chilling. My husband got to lick the mixing bowl!!!!! This will go to our local Moose lodge bingo tomorrow..

    We are going back up to the 90″s tomorrow, so I think I will freeze it for a while to get it safely there. Will let you know how it turns out. I have never had one of King Arthur’s recipes fail!!!
    I’m SO not trying to be overly rude, but would the lodge fellows get a kick out of it being called Moose Patty Pie? It’s the first thing that came to my mind when I saw Moose! ~ MaryJane

    Reply

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