Wet Bottom Shoofly Pie

April 19, 2010
2 Ratings
Photo by Jenny Huang
  • Prep time 10 minutes
  • Cook time 40 minutes
  • Makes one pie
Author Notes

As a young bride from New York City transplanted to Lebanon, PA, my mother was slow to embrace Pennsylvania Dutch cooking. In culture shock, she couldn't even communicate with the landlord, who spoke "Dutch". Nonetheless, over the years she developed this delicious recipe that still gets a laugh when I refer to it by name. A classic Pennsylvania Dutch favorite, it "schmeckt gut", tastes good! - Lizthechef —Lizthechef

Test Kitchen Notes

The sweet molasses custard is wonderful with the warm spices used in the topping. The technique of sprinkling the crumbs over the very wet filling results in a great pie with a gooey center and a crumbly topping. I used a 9-inch pie pan and the crust puffed up to reach the edges in the oven. - Stephanie —The Editors

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
Wet Bottom Shoofly Pie
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup unsulphured molasses
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons room temperature butter
  • 1 9-inch pie shell, unbaked
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Beat the egg yolk in a small bowl. Blend in the molasses. Add the boiling water once you have dissolved the soda in it. Set aside.
  2. Combine dry ingredients. Add butter and work into crumbs with your fingers. Pour liquid into pastry crust and evenly sprinkle crumbs on top.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes at 400°F, then lower heat to 325°F and bake for another 30 minutes. NOTE: If I had an 8-inch pie plate, I think it would be a better fit for the recipe, but this is how my mother wrote it out.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Angela Elizabeth Melito
    Angela Elizabeth Melito
  • dymnyno
  • Blissful Baker
    Blissful Baker
  • Sagegreen
  • Lizthechef

19 Reviews

Angela E. August 16, 2020
I'd never had or made this before but my parents said they like this kind of pie. Sadly, neither I nor my mom like this recipe. It's not at all sweet enough and almost had a burned taste even though it definitely wasn't burned.
dymnyno October 28, 2013
I love the name of this pie, and it sounds delicious. Isn't this pie considered Southern too?
Lizthechef October 29, 2013
I don't know, Mare, it's pure PA Dutch where I grew up...
Blissful B. February 15, 2011
This recipe fascinates me. I must try it!
Lizthechef February 15, 2011
Thanks, my husband is just home after a heart attack last Friday - he is doing better than I - let's talk...It's a simple recipe that works.
Blissful B. February 16, 2011
What a scare! I'm glad he's doing well & you will soon, too.
Sagegreen December 4, 2010
Love the headnote as much as the recipe, if not more!!!
firenze April 29, 2010
beautiful pie, great story.
Lizthechef April 29, 2010
Thank you, Stephanie. Today is my 60th birthday and you have given me a great gift by awarding my mother's shoofly pie an EP. A New Yorker, she would had gotten a big kick out of an award for a "Dutch" recipe.
Oui, C. April 20, 2010
Wow, what a beautiful woman, and a great sounding recipe. I've never had shoofly before, I think it's time.
Lizthechef April 21, 2010
It's a simple recipe made easier if you buy the crusts that come in red boxes in the deli section of the grocery store. My Mom didn't like the taste of pie crust and neither do I - but don't tell anyone...;)
student E. April 19, 2010
aw, i love this! i was actually thinking of posting my mom's shoo-fly pie too, but now will pick a different recipe. got to love the pennsylvania dutchy roots! glad to see you are in the wet bottom camp =)
kitchenartist April 19, 2010
Shoofly pie is my favourite of all pies! Delighted to see someone else share the deliciousness of what is known, in our family, as "foofoo pie".
Lizthechef April 19, 2010
Thanks, everyone - this has been such an emotional day for me, and I know I'm not alone here...Maybe this Mother's Day will feel easier.
WinnieAb April 19, 2010
Shoofly pie completely fascinates me- yours looks delicious- and wow your mom was so stunning!
AntoniaJames April 19, 2010
Okay, I simply must ask . . . did your mother also make Apple Pan Dowdy? Or did she ever mention it? I always associate the two . . . ;o)
WinnieAb April 19, 2010
I love apple pandowdy...I make it for Thanksgiving every year!
MrsWheelbarrow April 19, 2010
I love the photo! Your mother was so glamorous! The recipe looks fantastic and I'm putting it in my saved file right now.
TheWimpyVegetarian April 19, 2010
What a beautiful photograph of your mother. I'm so enjoying all the stories about our moms. What a gift this is to all of us this week. And I LOVE the recipe and have added it to my "to cook" list.