Lemon Pie Recipe

6 Min Read

Lemon Pie: The Perfect Slice Of Summer

My lemon pie recipe is a subtle riff off of my classic key lime pie, but the nuances are enough that I felt it was worth sharing on its own, anyway. We eat it on its own often enough here that it warranted its own blog post, and I didn’t feel right withholding this recipe from you any longer.

The crust is a traditional graham cracker crust, which provides a firm shell for the filling and gives way to a buttery crunch between your teeth. The filling is just tart enough to be distinctly lemon, like lemon curd or the tart filling of my lemon cheesecake, but without making your mouth pucker (well, too much, anyway). Its texture is deliriously smooth and creamy, and the topping is my airy homemade whipped cream, a sweet complement that helps combat some of the tartness.

It’s simple, sweet, and nearly as refreshing as a glass of lemonade. Let’s get started.

What You Need

  • Graham cracker crumbs, sugar, & butter. These make up the homemade graham cracker crust. My pie recipe makes too much filling for a store-bought pie crust in a disposable tin, so I recommend making your own (it takes only minutes).
  • Sweetened condensed milk. This gives the filling its creamy texture and sweet taste.
  • Egg yolks. Using just the egg yolks makes the texture of the lemon pie thick and smooth. Be sure to save your egg whites for my angel food cake!
  • Lemon juice. When it comes to lemon juice (and lemon pie, of course), fresh is always better. Fresh juice has a better flavor than lemon juice from concentrate and will give you the best tasting lemon pie. That being said, I’ve definitely taken the easy way out and made it with bottled before 🤫
  • Heavy cream, vanilla extract, & powdered sugar. You’ll need these three ingredients to make a quick and easy homemade whipped cream that’s better than anything you can get at the store.

Remember, this is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why. For the full recipe please scroll down to the bottom of the post!

Making The Crust

For today’s crust I’m using my easy graham cracker crust. This is a versatile, simple recipe that you might’ve used before in my cheesecake or other pies. Note that you could use a traditional pie crust but you would need to follow my instructions for blind baking first.

  1. Combine the graham cracker crumbs and sugars.
  2. Drizzle melted butter over the graham cracker crumbs.
  3. Toss the ingredients together with a fork until combined. All of the crumbs should be evenly coated, the mixture may resemble wet sand.
  4. Press the mixture into your 9.5″ pie plate and transfer to a 350F (175C) oven for 10 minutes to bake.

Because this is a fairly liquid pie filling (at least initially), I like to pre-bake the crust for a few minutes to help keep it crisp. Let the pie crust cool a bit before adding the filling to help keep it crisp.

How to Make Lemon Pie

  1. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. The easiest way I’ve found to do this is simply crack the egg in half and pass the yolk back and forth until the white falls away. Save the egg whites to make another recipe!
  2. Whisk the egg yolks and sweetened condensed milk together until thoroughly combined. While still whisking, slowly add the fresh lemon juice until all the ingredients are combined.
  3. Once the graham cracker crust is baked, remove it from the oven and pour in the lemon filling, and bake for 18-20 minutes.
  4. Lemon pie is finished baking if you jiggle it and the center jiggles slightly but the edges are set. It will continue to firm up as it cools and then chills in the refrigerator.

Easy Whipped Cream Topping

Many lemon pie recipes go through the effort of making the crust and filling from scratch, then top them off with store-bought Cool Whip! In a pinch, sure, you could, but I highly recommend making my homemade whipped cream instead (it’s easy!):

  1. In a chilled bowl combine the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed with an electric mixer until you have whipped cream that is fluffy with stiff peaks.
  2. Add the whipped cream to the cooled lemon pie with a piping bag, or dollop it on with a spoon.
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