Chocolate Cream Pie

This summer, one of the things that was on my unofficial baking bucket list (which I maintained in my head and never formally put to paper), was to make more pies. I’ve made my fair share in the past, but I really wanted to focus on some of the old-fashioned pies that tend to be neglected nowadays. We make fancy things like strawberry cream cheese crumble tarts, Take 5 candy bar pies, frozen chocolate-peanut butter pies and chocolate bourbon walnuts pies. This summer, I wanted to go back to classic and simple… to graham cracker crusts and whipped cream toppings. I made a key lime pie, a coconut cream pie, a cherry pie and now, finally, a chocolate cream pie. Cool, creamy and filled to the brim with rich chocolate flavor. As summer winds down, it’s the perfect way to give the warm days a proper send-off, and maybe even make the back-to-school transition a little easier.

The pie is constructed of an Oreo cookie crust that’s filled with a chocolate pastry cream and topped with freshly whipped cream and chocolate shavings. I saw a lot of different types of recipes for chocolate cream pie – some that had a traditional pastry crust, some with an Oreo crumb crust… some with a classic pastry cream filling and some that used gelatin as a stabilizer… some with a whipped cream topping and others with a meringue. In the end, I decided more chocolate is always better and went with the Oreo cookie crust over a pastry crust. Homemade pastry cream makes me weak in the knees, so it was no contest when it came to the filling. Finally, I’ll choose whipped cream over meringue any day of the week so that decision was easy as well.

The result is a wonderfully creamy, smooth-as-silk pie loaded with chocolate in every bite. Don’t be surprised if you end up standing over the counter, eating it from the pie plate with a fork. (ahem) Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Two years ago: Toasted Almond and Candied Cherry Ice Cream
Five years ago: Miniature Italian Meatloaves

Chocolate Cream Pie

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Prep Time: 5 hours

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 5 hours

Ingredients:

For the Crust:
24 Oreo cookies, crushed into crumbs
3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled

For the Chocolate Cream Filling:
2½ cups half-and-half
Pinch salt
1/3 cup granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons cornstarch
6 egg yolks, at room temperature
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into 6 pieces
6 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Whipped Cream Topping:
1½ cups heavy cream
4½ teaspoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Make the Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine the Oreo cookie crumbs and the melted butter in a medium bowl and toss with a fork until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Transfer the crumbs to a 9-inch pie plate. Press the crumbs evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the pan, forming a crust. Refrigerate the lined pie plate for 20 minutes. Bake for 10 minutes, until the crust is fragrant and set. Cook on a wire rack while the filling is prepared.

2. Make the Chocolate Cream Filling: Bring the half-and-half, salt and 3 tablespoons of the sugar to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon to dissolve the sugar. Stir together the remaining sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Whisk the yolks thoroughly in a medium bowl for about 30 seconds, until slightly thickened. Add the cornstarch mixture and whisk until the mixture is glossy and the sugar has begun to dissolve, about 1 minute. When the half-and-half reaches a full simmer, drizzle about ½ cup hot half-and-half over the yolks, whisking constantly to temper; then whisk the egg yolk mixture into the simmering half-and-half. Return to a simmer, whisking constantly, until 3 or 4 bubbles burst on the surface and mixture is thickened and glossy, about 15 seconds longer.

3. Off the heat, whisk in the butter until incorporated; add the chopped chocolate and whisk until melted, scraping the bottom of the pan with a rubber spatula to fully incorporate. Stir in the vanilla, then immediately pour the filling through a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl. Using a spatula, scrape the strained filling into the baked and cooled crust. Press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the filling and refrigerate the pie until the filling is cold and firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.

4. Make the Whipped Cream Topping: When ready to serve, beat the cream and sugar in the chilled bowl of an electric mixer at medium speed to soft peaks; add the vanilla. Continue to beat to barely stiff peaks. Spread or pipe the whipped cream over the chilled filling and garnish with shaved chocolate, if desired. Serve immediately.

(Recipe adapted from Baking Illustrated)

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69 Responses to “Chocolate Cream Pie”

  1. Averie @ Averie Cooks on August 21, 2012 at 12:16 am

    Smooth as silk and being tempted to just eat it out of the pie-pan — yes, I can totally see that! And that Oreo crust and whipped topping over meringue – yes! Delish!

    Reply

  2. Laura on August 21, 2012 at 12:18 am

    This looks amazing!! Dumb question – do you take the stuffing out of the oreo’s before making the crust? Laura :)

    Reply

    • Lori Hoch Stiefel on August 21st, 2012 at 10:32 am

      You don’t need to take the stuffing out of the oreos, or at least I never do! I just toss them in whole in my food processor and it comes out super yum:)

      Reply

    • Georgina on August 21st, 2012 at 11:21 am

      I was wondering the same thing :)

      Reply

      • Michelle on August 31st, 2012 at 8:17 pm

        You definitely don’t need to take the cream out of the Oreos. Just crush them up as-is.

        Reply

  3. Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes on August 21, 2012 at 12:23 am

    Wow does this look good! Love chocolate cream pie….even better with the oreo crust!

    Reply

  4. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar on August 21, 2012 at 6:26 am

    I want this for lunch! Mmmmm….

    Reply

  5. Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers on August 21, 2012 at 6:41 am

    Holy Heavens! Oreo crust, whip cream and chocolate, no need to say more! This looks so delicious!! What a wonderful pie!

    Reply

  6. Erin on August 21, 2012 at 7:50 am

    Looks delicious! I went to a camp this summer and they served chocolate cream pie for lots of meals. Now I suppose I need to make one at home. :)

    Reply

  7. Lucia on August 21, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Wow, this looks so good, it looks delicious, I have to try it :)

    Reply

  8. Jen @ Savory Simple on August 21, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Heaven in a pie!

    Reply

  9. Sara on August 21, 2012 at 9:05 am

    This looks soooo delicious!!

    Reply

  10. leslie on August 21, 2012 at 9:10 am

    Nothing like a good ol fashion pie!

    Reply

  11. Ali @ Gimme Some Oven on August 21, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Mmmm….my kind of pie. Looks delish!

    Reply

  12. Sues on August 21, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Yumm this looks incredible. And definitely “smooth as silk!” I love the Oreo crust!

    Reply

  13. ally on August 21, 2012 at 11:07 am

    what a luscious, melt-in-your-mouth pie! divine!
    xo
    http://allykayler.blogspot.ca/

    Reply

  14. Karolien on August 21, 2012 at 11:13 am

    I have a question you say 2 1/2 half and half cups, what do you mean buy this, can you explain it a little so i can try my best to make one ^-^

    Reply

    • Lisa from the 'Burgh on August 21st, 2012 at 12:48 pm

      Hi — Half-and-Half is a half cream/half milk dairy product. Hope this helps!

      Reply

      • Michelle on August 31st, 2012 at 8:18 pm

        Thanks Lisa! If you can’t find half-and-half where you live, you can substitute half whole milk and half heavy cream.

        Reply

  15. Jessica@AKitchenAddiction on August 21, 2012 at 11:23 am

    This pie is simply amazing!

    Reply

  16. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts on August 21, 2012 at 11:36 am

    What a great pie, one of my favorites. Any really, anything with an Oreo crust can’t go wrong!

    Reply

  17. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet on August 21, 2012 at 11:50 am

    Silky chocolate pies are my fav! This one looks so tempting!

    Reply

  18. Jen of My Tiny Oven on August 21, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    TO DIE FOR!!!

    Reply

  19. Bellenza Bistro on August 21, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    I love pies to begin with…but this one looks absolutely scrumptious!

    Reply

  20. Christina @ Sweet Peas Kitchen on August 21, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    OH man…this pie is calling my name!! You can’t go wrong with an Oreo crust! Delicious! :)

    Reply

  21. RavieNomNoms on August 21, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    I am totally OK with your decision to make more pies, so yummy!

    Reply

  22. Julie on August 21, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    This looks amazing!! I have yet to feature a chocolate pie on my site, this one may be the one! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

  23. Riley on August 21, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    This looks too good! Chocolate crust and chocolate filling, yum!

    Reply

  24. Pennie D on August 21, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    Ohhhh, so good. Can’t wait to make this one.

    Reply

  25. Kristen on August 22, 2012 at 12:44 am

    Yum yum yum

    Reply

  26. maddie on August 22, 2012 at 11:52 am

    looks very good

    Reply

  27. Tracy on August 22, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    This pie looks like it could just melt in your mouth! Yum!!

    Reply

  28. Patricia on August 25, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    Well now, this has surely got the salivary glands working overtime… off to market to get some Oreos. Oh, and, maybe ought to get some Andes Mints for that delicious sounding Andes Mint Ice Cream while there.
    You and your CCC have a safe, healthy and well fed vacation and we will catch you in a month.

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 31st, 2012 at 8:20 pm

      Thank you, Patricia! :)

      Reply

  29. Joe W. on August 27, 2012 at 11:29 am

    Wow, that looks delicious! I would like some right now if anyone is sharing. :)

    Reply

  30. Heather F on August 27, 2012 at 5:13 pm

    I made this pie last night! Everyone LOVED IT! It was so good and turned out perfectly. Your receipe was easy to follow & true to the pictures. Thank you. :)

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 31st, 2012 at 8:20 pm

      Hi Heather, So glad you liked it! Thanks for sharing your feedback!

      Reply

  31. Tom on August 28, 2012 at 11:40 am

    Have you ever tried melting some semi-sweet chocolate and pour it on wax paper in a small container or cookie sheet to make a thin chocolate bar. Then freeze it for a few minutes until hard remove and drop the chocolate bar on the counter breaking it up in bite size pieces and inserting them inside the chocolate pie before putting on the final topping for a little extra chocolate surprise.

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 31st, 2012 at 8:21 pm

      Oooh I haven’t tried, but it sounds great!

      Reply

  32. Lina on August 28, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    This looks amazing! Your photographs make all your food seem so delicious.

    Reply

  33. Lindsay on August 29, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    Looking at this pie just makes me feel relaxed and excited for fall! I can’t think of anything more perfect for a send away of Summer than a sweet, creamy, and delicious chocolate pie! YUMMY! Thanks for the recipe, I can’t wait to test it out this weekend ;)

    Reply

  34. Teri on September 15, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    I made this tonight and, wow, was it delicious! My only problem was the crust didn’t seem to hold together well ~ alot of the crumbs got left behind in the pie plate. I crushed them in a plastic bag with a rolling pin and I’m wondering of my crumbs were too big ~ I may have been better off using the food processor to make them finer. Or, perhaps I should use more butter next time ~ any suggestions?

    Reply

    • Michelle on September 25th, 2012 at 3:42 pm

      Hi Teri, I try to use the food processor whenever possible to make crumbs. I’ve done the plastic bag and rolling pin in a pinch, but I always find that my crumbs are too big and chunky. The food processor really gets them to a fine consistency, which is perfect for crusts.

      Reply

  35. joe on November 15, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    can cheese cloth be used as fine mesh sieve. and is the strained filling the stuff in the bowl or on the cloth. Thank you

    Reply

    • Michelle on November 15th, 2012 at 6:16 pm

      Hi Joe, I have never used cheesecloth in place of a sieve, and while I know it can be useful when draining liquid from solid masses, I’m not sure how easily it would be to pass a pastry cream through it. You could try, but it might be difficult. The strained filling is what’s in the bowl.

      Reply

  36. Alma on November 17, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    My son in college is coming home for Thanksgiving and asked if I could make a homemade chocolate cream pie. I think this recipe I found online sounds really good. I am trying to cook ahead because my Wed. is packed with stuff to do already. Will this pie taste good Thanksgiving Day if I make it Tuesday night? I can make whipping cream Thanksgiving morning.

    Reply

    • Michelle on November 20th, 2012 at 11:50 am

      Hi Alma, Yes, you could definitely do that and I don’t think there would be a problem. You might want to bake the pie shell, then store the chocolate cream in a bowl with plastic wrap pressed against it, then fill and top the pie on Thanksgiving so the crust doesn’t get soggy.

      Reply

      • Alma on November 20th, 2012 at 2:26 pm

        Will do. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

        Reply

  37. Courtney on November 20, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    This looks delicious and I am planning on making it the night before thanksgiving I read the comment on what to do when making it the night before but I also wanted to know if I could make the whipped topping a couple hours before and then just put the pie in the fridge until dessert time?

    Reply

    • Michelle on November 20th, 2012 at 5:33 pm

      Yes, you could definitely do that!

      Reply

  38. Mandy on November 21, 2012 at 8:52 am

    Why do you need to strain the filling? Is there much waste? I don’t have a sieve and am tempted to skip this step… Thoughts?

    Reply

    • Michelle on November 21st, 2012 at 4:28 pm

      Hi Mandy, Straining it ensures that it’s silky smooth and that no partially pieces of egg make it into your chocolate cream. There is no waste at all, save for a few cooked pieces that cling to the sides of the pan. If you can get a sieve easily and quickly, I’d spring for one – I use mine a ton. But if not, I don’t think you’ll run your cream without. I’d just be sure to whisk really well to get it as smooth as possible.

      Reply

  39. Paula Todora on November 21, 2012 at 10:24 pm

    Okay, your pie looked so good, it has joined my piefest for Thanksgiving! Here’s a photo of the filling (made a graham cracker crust since I had no chocolate wafers and wanted to avoid the pre-Thanksgiving shoppers. I can’t wait to make the topping tomorrow-the remaining filling in the pan was sooooo good-thanks for the recipe-I’m posting on fb but also posting your link and photo linking back to your site. http://www.facebook.com/pj.todora

    Reply

  40. Kathy McDonald on November 26, 2012 at 11:32 am

    This was one of three pies I made for Thanksgiving and everyone said it was the one pie I shouldn’t bother with. But, my 7 yr old granddaughter LOVES chocolate, so it made the list. I did change up the way I made the filling, whisking together the dry ing, then whisk in egg yolks, then cream and cook, stirring over medium heat. Turned out perfectly! And, was the hit of the deserts!! The crust did fall apart a bit, even though I processed the cookies in the food processor, but no one really minded. I’ve made a few chocolate cream pies in my day, but this one is a true keeper. Silky, creamy and just the right amount of sweetness to not overpower the lovely chocolate. Thanks so much for the recipe. We loved it!!

    Reply

  41. avanti on December 15, 2012 at 11:37 am

    This recipe was brilliant! I tried it on for my friend birthday cake and it turns out just perfect. thank so much (Y)

    Reply

  42. Nabila on December 19, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Im making this to take to a friend’s but it says to serve immediately after adding the whip cream. What will happen if I add the whip cream and not serve it immediately?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 19th, 2012 at 9:05 pm

      Hi Nabila, The whipped cream could get start to get soft/runny if left at room temperature. I would definitely serve it the same day you assemble it, and if you won’t serve it immediately after putting the whipped cream on, I would definitely cover and refrigerate it.

      Reply

  43. Stephanie on December 30, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    Hi! Thanks so much for this recipe. I just made it for a family gathering and it was enjoyed. I ended up not having any chocolate on hand so I had to sub about 1/2 cup cocoa and 1/2 cup extra of sugar to make it chocolate, but it worked and was nice and creamy, thick and chocolatey just like I was hoping it would be!

    Reply

  44. Paula on January 1, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    I made this for a New Year’s Eve party and everyone loved it! I don’t even like chocolate, but the whipped cream helped cut the chocolate taste just enough and even I liked it! This recipe is a definite keeper!

    Reply

  45. Barbara Schechter on February 9, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    This looks delicious- we have an Oreo cookie pie, but instead of an oreo crust we use a butter cookie crust and crush the oreos into the top. Still, definitely need to try making this recipe to compare!

    Reply

  46. Mary on April 13, 2013 at 11:12 am

    I just made this and my pastry cream got super thick super fast. So thick in fact I couldn’t press it through the sieve. Any idea what may have caused that? I am still hopeful that it will be fantastic for my husbands birthday tonight! (and last time I made a chocolate cream pie from a different recipe it didn’t set right. So at least that isn’t an issue!)

    Reply

    • Michelle on April 13th, 2013 at 12:56 pm

      Hi Mary, The heat may have been a little high, that’s all I can think of, unless you inadvertently used more cornstarch than called for.

      Reply

  47. Angele on July 19, 2013 at 11:16 pm

    Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. I made this yesterday. WOW is it good! It’s uber uber chocolately without being bitter. This is definitely a keeper, and will enter the regular repertoire (especially if I’m going to make an omelet or something the next morning with those leftover egg whites).

    Reply

  48. Racela on September 3, 2013 at 1:47 am

    Do you think it’d work if I tried using toasted marshmallows instead of shaved chocolate for garnish? Still have half a bag leftover from attempting to make your six layer cake (and failing miserably, I might add).

    Reply

    • Michelle on September 5th, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      Sure, I don’t see why not!

      Reply

      • Racela Abundo on September 6th, 2013 at 11:08 am

        Stuck to your chocolate shavings cause the toasted mallows made my cream a bit too liquidy. Thank you so so much for sharing! It was amazing.

        Reply

  49. Juli Duck on February 20, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Can this pie be made with dark chocolate? I’ve made it a few times as written and it is Fabulous! I have a friend who is a dark chocolate lover so I wondered if it could be made with even darker chocolate? If so, which chocolate would you recommend?

    Reply

    • Michelle on February 20th, 2014 at 11:02 pm

      Hi Juli, I definitely think you could use dark chocolate! My favorite is Valrhona 72% cacao if you have time to order it; if not, my grocery store brand of choice is Ghiradelli – you can get either 60% or 70%.

      Reply

  50. Amy on December 2, 2014 at 8:38 am

    I just wanted to say that I made this recipe (to a ‘T’) for one of my Thanksgiving desserts and OH MY GOSH, it was HEAVENLY and to die for! I will be making it again for one of my Christmas Day dinner desserts. Everyone loved it and wanted more. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful chocolate cream pie recipe!

    Reply

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