Buttermilk Pie is a classic Southern pie recipe that has a sweet baked custard filling. It’s a little bit like a chess pie and it’s so good. If you’re looking for a new pie recipe, try making this one. We love how simple it is to make and how good it tastes!
I’m the self-proclaimed pie queen (and, well, people think of me that way too since I call myself Crazy for Crust) but until recently I’d never had a buttermilk pie. *hangs head in shame*
I’m so glad I finally decided to make this because it’s so good. It’s kind of unassuming looking but it packs some serious flavor!
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What is Buttermilk Pie?
It’s a custard-like pie that originated in the United Kingdom. This southern classic is an old-fashioned custard pie that’s similar to Chess Pie, but different enough that it has it’s own name. I’ve also heard it called Sugar Cream Pie – so many names, one delicious recipe.
In other words, it’s sweet heaven.
Ingredients in Buttermilk Pie
The best part about this pie is how easy it is to make. It has just a few ingredients and doesn’t need any special equipment. With one bowl and a whisk you can have it into the pie shell in under 10 minutes.
This pie has the following ingredients:
- Butter: gives the pie a nice rich flavor
- Sugar: for sweetness
- Flour: all-purpose flour makes the pie stable
- Eggs: needed for the custard-like texture of the pie
- Buttermilk: hence the name! This gives body to the custard and a bit of tang to the flavor.
- Lemon Juice, Salt, Vanilla, Nutmeg: the classic flavorings of this pie
If you’re wondering what the difference is between chess pie and buttermilk pie, you’re not the only one. The main difference is that chess pie has cornmeal in it and often uses milk instead of buttermilk. Otherwise they’re very much the same.
A Classic Buttermilk Pie has a custard-like crust with a creamy filling. I find the filling in this pie to be a little closer to that of a pecan pie than a chess pie. A chess pie is more smooth and creamy, where this one has a little bit of texture to it.
The taste is sweet and creamy and perfect paired a pastry crust.
How to make Buttermilk Pie
Prepare the Crust: Place pie crust in a pie plate and crimp edges as desired. Chill while you make the filling.
Make the Filling: Start by whisking the butter, sugar, and eggs. Then whisk in the vanilla, salt, flour, and nutmeg, followed by the buttermilk.
Fill the Pie: Place pie crust on a cookie sheet. Fill with filling. Place strips of foil around the edges of the crust or use a pie crust shield.
Bake: Place pie in the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until the top is golden brown (it looks like creme brûlée on top) and only slightly jiggly in the center. Cool completely before slicing.
Storing and Serving
Store: Store the pie covered, in refrigerator. It slices easiest when it’s been chilled and tastes delicious cold or room temperature!
Freeze: You can freeze the entire pie baked or freeze slices.
Learn how to freeze desserts. Mine is in the freezer for the holiday!
Serving: The pie is best plain or with whipped cream. I like it room temperature or even slightly warmed!
What if you don’t have buttermilk but want to make this pie?
I have a whole post about how to make your own buttermilk! You can do that if needed but since buttermilk is one of the main ingredients I highly recommend buying it at the store and not substituting it.
Buttermilk comes in low-fat and non-fat varieties and I’ve seen it at almost every grocery store (as well as Target and Walmart) so it shouldn’t be hard to find.
What crust goes best with custard pie?
You can use a graham cracker crust if you want, but the traditional crust is a regular pie crust.
There’s no need to preface the pie; it’s in the oven long enough that the crust will bake up just fine. I suggest using a pie shield (or covering the edges with foil) so they don’t brown too much.
Is Buttermilk Pie supposed to be runny?
No, it’s not. If it’s runny there’s a good chance it wasn’t baked long enough.
When this pie is done baking, you’ll notice three things:
- The top will be dark golden brown, like a creme brûlée.
- The top will look a bit puffed.
- The center will be a teeny bit jiggly, but not wet or runny looking.
Another reason it’s runny could be because you didn’t let it cool enough. Make sure the pie is completely cool before slicing. I even recommend chilling it first.
The pie does weep a bit overnight, but it shouldn’t be runny.
If you like this pie, try some of my other favorite classic pies:
Serve this pie after dinner:
Have you made this recipe?
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Buttermilk Pie Recipe
- 1 9-inch pie crust , from scratch or a refrigerated pack of two
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Place pie crust in a pie plate and crimp edges as desired. Chill while you make the filling.
- Whisk the rest of the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
- Place pie crust on a cookie sheet. Fill with filling. Place strips of foil around the edges of the crust or use a pie crust shield.
- Place pie in the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until the top is golden brown (it looks like creme brûlée on top) and only slightly jiggly in the center. Cool completely before slicing.
- Store, covered, in refrigerator. It slices easiest when it’s been chilled and tastes delicious cold or room temperature!
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
A classic Buttermilk Pie is the perfect custard pie recipe! It’s an easy old fashioned pie with a sweet creamy filling that pairs perfect with a pastry crust.
Last Updated on November 4, 2020
All text and images © DOROTHY KERN for Crazy for Crust. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe. Disclaimer: Nutrition information shown is not guaranteed to be accurate.
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Published on: November 10, 2019