Chill

Peanut Butter Cream Pie

August  9, 2021
4.4 Stars
Photo by Rocky Luten
Author Notes

I suppose there will always be some barrier to me feeling fully part of the United States, even after all these years. While I no longer see peanut butter as the Dark Lord, I still can’t get behind other popular American foods like chewy chocolate chip cookies or grilled cheese with Kraft Singles. But that’s okay. I’ve got a whole slew of other American favorites I’d rather eat—like Cuban pizza in Miami, legim in Little Haiti, and now peanut butter pie. —Carlos C. Olaechea

Test Kitchen Notes

This easy, no-bake peanut butter pie is made with a delicious combination of graham crackers, cream, and molasses for the crust and filling, plus raisins, walnuts, and rum for the topping. It's a very forgiving recipe that will have you and your guests clamoring for another slice. It can also hang in the fridge for a few hours, or even up to overnight without the topping, so it's a wonderful make-ahead dessert that is perfect for entertaining and holidays. With just 15 minutes at the stove and the fridge doing the rest of the work, this is the kind of dessert we can all get behind.

Carlos C. Olaechea, who developed this recipe, wrote about its journey and history. He says, "I found myself daydreaming of recipes for peanut butter desserts I wanted to try. But there was a problem: Too many of the recipes I encountered were a little too basic for my tastes and one-dimensional. It was hard to find an elegant take on the peanut butter dessert, one that appreciated the spread for what it was, but also transformed it. Despite my newfound love of peanut butter, I could never be content with mixing it with whipped topping and dumping the concoction on some crushed sandwich cookies. So I decided to come up with my very own special peanut butter pie...The end result was a dessert that could simultaneously be served as the grand finale to an elegant meal while also enveloping you in that warm gooey hug that only peanut butter can give. Exactly what I wanted in a PB dessert." —The Editors

Watch This Recipe
Peanut Butter Cream Pie
  • Prep time 5 hours 20 minutes
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Serves 1 (9-inch) pie
Ingredients
  • Peanut Butter Pie
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon plain gelatin powder
  • Crunchy Praline Topping and Assembly
  • 1/2 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. In a large bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter, and granulated sugar until the mixture is the consistency of wet sand. Transfer the mixture to a 9-inch pie plate and tightly press into the pan, using a measuring cup to smooth the bottom and your fingers to smooth and pack the crumbs up the sides of the pan. Place in the refrigerator to set while you prepare the filling.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, cook the cream, peanut butter, molasses, and brown sugar, whisking vigorously, for about 10 minutes, until the mixture is smooth and starts to simmer.
  3. Meanwhile, in a very small pan, stir the water and gelatin. Wait for 1 minute, then gently heat over medium-low heat until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Add the gelatin to the peanut butter mixture, whisking to incorporate.
  4. Pour the filling into the cooled crust. Let cool to room temperature, then cover with foil and chill in the refrigerator for 5 hours or up to overnight.
  5. For the praline topping, in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the brown sugar and rum to a rapid simmer. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thick and syrupy. Add the walnuts and raisins and stir to coat. Spread the walnut mixture over the chilled pie and place in the refrigerator for 5 to 10 minutes to set.
  6. In a medium bowl, whip the cream and granulated sugar to soft peaks. Top the pie with the whipped cream.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Carlos C. Olaechea
    Carlos C. Olaechea
  • DocSharc
    DocSharc
  • Emily
    Emily
I was born in Peru to a Limeño father and a Texan mother. We moved to Miami when I was five, and I grew up in the "Kendall-suyo" neighborhood—often called the 5th province of the Inca Empire because of its large Peruvian population. I've been writing about food since I was 11 years old, and in 2016 I received a master's degree in Gastronomy from Boston University. A travel columnist at Food52, I'm currently based in Hollywood, Florida—another vibrant Peruvian community—where I am a writer, culinary tour guide, and consultant.

3 Reviews

DocSharc July 9, 2019
My family is obsessed with this pie...which is awesome, because it's so easy to make and stores in the fridge really well. :) We all love the deep molasses flavor that comes through. My two year old is literally unable to wait 30 seconds for the pie to come to the table...the rest of us aren't much better.
 
Emily May 30, 2019
Is the peanut butter supposed to be the no-stir variety or the 100% peanuts (plus maybe some salt) variety?
 
Author Comment
Carlos C. May 31, 2019
Hi Emily. To be honest, you can use either. I just used the cheapest one I can find for this one, which is the no-stir kind I got at Walmart. I save my fancy peanut butter for having on its own LOL.