Feast your eyes on key lime pie with a chocolate crust. Credit: Sandy Oliver / BDN

At first, chocolate lime pie didn’t sound very appealing to me, fixated as I was on a standard one with graham cracker crust.

Since it is a summery dessert, I wanted to make a lime pie for our Sewing Circle Sale last week. I planned to use Nina Scott’s wonderful filling recipe and a favorite crust recipe I have used for years.

Egad, what to do: I was out of graham crackers! Well, not quite. I had chocolate graham crackers and a peanut gallery in the kitchen with me witnessing my irritation with the situation. They all said that I ought to make a key lime pie with a chocolate crust. I resisted vociferously, but finally looked it up on the web. Sure enough, there is such a thing as chocolate key lime pie, so I said, “Oh, okay, okay.”

“Make two so we can have one, too.”

No, I said, I don’t have enough filling ingredients.

There was wailing and gnashing of teeth. I made the pie, and set it to cool on the kitchen table and that set off fresh howls as the gallery complained about my donating this pie to an entity outside the house.

“I’ll go down in the morning and buy it as soon as you take it there,” one claimed and when I pointed out that they still might not get the pie, he took two 10 dollar bills out of his pocket, and threw it on the table.

“Sold,” he declared.

And so it was.

Interestingly, one sealed cracker package when crushed made the requisite cup and a half. My old crust recipe calls for one package of crackers or a cup and a half. Recent experience, however, has shown that sometimes I have had to add a couple more crackers to the measuring cup as commerce scales back quantities in each box.

Chocolate graham crackers are pretty sweet, so I added two tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder to the crushed crumbs. That helpfully deepened the chocolate flavor. My crust recipe calls for one-quarter to one-half cup of confectioner’s sugar, and I have always gone with the smaller quantity. You can safely use more if you prefer a sweeter mix.

Nina’s filling recipe has the great virtue of slicing neatly which is why I like it so much. I offered the recipe here back in 2009. Even if you clipped the recipe then, you may have misplaced it after a dozen years, so here it is again, following the chocolate graham cracker crust I worked up.

Feel free to garnish with whipped cream or chocolate shavings.

Since the pie ended up tasting so good, the peanut gallery couldn’t resist saying, “I told you it would be good.”

I suppose I ought to call it Chocolate Key Lime I-Told-You-So Pie.

Key Lime Pie with a Chocolate Crust

Yields 1 pie


1 1/2 cups crushed chocolate graham crackers

2 tablespoons baking cocoa

6 tablespoons melted butter


2 cans condensed milk

1/2 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt

3/4 cup lime juice

Grated rind of one lime 

Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix together the crushed crumbs and cocoa powder. Stir in the melted butter and mix until all is incorporated.

Press the crumbs into a 9-inch pan, pressing them against the sides and evenly over the bottom.

Bake for 10 minutes, and remove to let cool briefly before adding the filling.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the condensed milk, sour cream or yogurt, juice and rind. Pour into the pie shall.

Slide the pie into the oven and bake for 8 minutes. Then chill until set.

Sandy Oliver, Taste Buds

Sandy Oliver Sandy is a freelance food writer with the column Taste Buds appearing weekly since 2006 in the Bangor Daily News, and regular columns in Maine Boats, Homes, and Harbors magazine and The Working...