Chocolate Cream Pie

November 23, 2021

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A rich and luscious Chocolate Cream Pie recipe! It’s made with a tender, flaky blind baked pie crust, a thick and perfectly chocolatey custard pudding filling, then it’s mounded high with billowy whipped cream and garnished with thin and curly chocolate shavings.

It’s supremely delicious and destined to be a highlight of any dinner or celebration!

Close up photo of single slice chocolate cream pie that's made with a homemade pie crust, topped with whipped cream and finished with chocolate curls.

Upgraded Old Fashioned Chocolate Cream Pie

This is one of the dreamiest pies with its trio of layering, its silky smooth texture, and its abundant decadence of chocolate flavor. You’ll find it’s even a step up from the traditional old classic since chopped chocolate is included as well rather than just cocoa powder.

It tastes just like chocolate pudding but in pie form!

Sure during the holidays we all love our fruity pies but some sort of chocolate pie is always a welcome change and definitely deserves a place in the line up. Chocolate lovers will thank you.

It will be savored down to the last creamy topped crumb and may likely become a repeatedly requested tradition each holiday season!

There are a few steps to it, especially if you prepare the homemade pie crust but it’s worth every bit of effort and overall it is a straightforward easy method to follow. A critical step is just that you ensure the filling is thickened well over the stovetop so you’re pie will be firm enough to hold up when sliced.

If you find you are short on time to make this completely from scratch pie you could try my easy chocolate mousse pie instead (then save this recipe for when time allows). It’s super fluffy and equally as tempting!Whole chocolate cream pie decorated with fluffy whipped cream and chocolate curls. One slice is cut from the pie to show the filling.

Photo of ingredients needed to make chocolate cream pie.

Chocolate Cream Pie Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 fully blind baked pie crust, recipe here (you’ll need butter, flour, sugar, salt and ice water for it)
  • 4 oz. bittersweet chocolate (60 to 65 percent), chopped
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 1 Tbsp pieces
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar, plus 2 1/2 tbsp
  • 1/4 cup Dutch process cocoa powder (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3 cups whole milk, divided
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Wondering what to make with the leftover egg whites? Check out these recipes here.

Can I Use Regular Cocoa Powder?

If you are having a hard time finding dutch process cocoa powder you can use regular unsweetened cocoa powder here in it’s place. It will just be a little less deeply flavored.

What About Adding Espresso Powder?

Yes you can definitely add some instant espresso powder to this pie for that nice background flavor. Just add 1 tsp with the sugar (it has a very concentrated flavor).

Collage of eight photos showing how to prepare chocolate pudding filling for chocolate cream pie.

How to Make Chocolate Cream Pie with Homemade Filling

  1. Add chocolate and vanilla to a bowl, top with a sieve: Place chopped chocolate and in a large mixing bowl, pour in 2 tsp vanilla. Set a large sieve over the bowl and set aside.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients in pan: In a 3 quart saucepan whisk together sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt until well blended.
  3. Blend in yolks and milk: Mix in egg yolks and 1/2 cup of the milk until well combined. Mix in the remaining 2 1/2 cups milk.
  4. Cook mixture, let boil 1 minute: Set mixture over medium heat and cook whisking constantly (don’t forget to scrape along the bottom corners and edges of the pan while whisking) until mixture boils. Let boil 1 minute while whisking constantly.
  5. Strain mixture over chocolate: Pour the mixture into sieve set over chocolate mixture, then press with a rubber spatula against sieve to remove lumps.
  6. Stir to melt: Stir stained mixture with the chocolate and butter mixture until everything is melted.
  7. Pour pudding filling over crust: Pour into pie crust then spread into an even layer. Spray a piece of plastic wrap with non-stick cooking spray and press it against the surface of the custard mixture (don’t wrap snug around the pie or you’ll steam and soften the crust up some, just loosely drape over crust).
  8. Chill to set: Transfer to the fridge and chill at least 4 hours to let it cool and set.
  9. Make the topping when ready to serve: Pour the cream in a large mixing bowl. Add sugar and vanilla.
  10. Using an electric hand mixer whip the mixture on high speed until stiff peaks form.
  11. Top it over finished pie: Spread over the chocolate cream filling. If desired garnish with chocolate shavings or dust with cocoa powder. Cut into slices just as serving.

Collage of eight photos showing how to stain pudding mixture for the pie, spread into a baked crust then finish with whipped cream once it's chilled and set.

Helpful Tips for the Best Chocolate Cream Pie

  • I highly recommend that you stick with the homemade pie crust, it will make a world of difference.
  • Use good quality cocoa and chocolate.
  • Chop the chocolate small so it will melt easily into the custard filling.
  • Stir constantly when cooking it over the stovetop and stir well. Don’t do a slow whisk here and there. Sure we strain it after but the less lumps the better, plus you don’t want to scaled on bottom.
  • Don’t forget the bottom corners of the saucepan when while whisking.
  • As mentioned before be sure to adequately cook the filling long enough so it thickens up well. You can refer to the photos above for a guide, watch for those bubbles along the surface and keep boiling for 1 minute.
  • Be sure to allow enough time for the pie to set up in the fridge. No freezer short cuts.
  • Wait to make and top the pie with whipped cream until ready to serve. It won’t keep well on the pie (it does absorb in some and doesn’t stay as fluffy the next day).

Storage

  • This pie is best served within 24 hours of preparing but should hold up (without the whipped topping) for about 3 days in the fridge.
  • Freezing is not recommended as the consistency won’t be the same upon thawing.

Two slices of chocolate cream pie on small white dessert plates set over a blue cloth on a marble surface with chocolate chunks and curls in the backround.

More Delicious Chocolatey Pie Recipes to Try

 

Chocolate Cream Pie

The perfect pie! It's made with a tender, flaky blind baked pie crust, a thick and perfectly chocolatey custard pudding filling, then it's mounded high with billowy whipped cream and garnished with thin and curly chocolate shavings.
Servings: 8
Prep25 minutes
Cook10 minutes
Ready in: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 blind baked pie crust, recipe here
  • 4 oz. bittersweet chocolate (60 to 65 percent), chopped small
  • 3 Tbsp (42 g) unsalted butter, cut into 1 Tbsp pieces
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup (136 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (24 g) Dutch process cocoa powder (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1/4 cup (33 g) cornstarch (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3 cups (710 ml) whole milk, divided

Topping

  • 1 1/4 cups (295 ml) heavy cream
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp (30 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • For the pie crust: Prepare and bake the pie crust as directed. Let it cool completely.
  • For the pie filling: Place chopped chocolate and in a large mixing bowl, pour in 2 tsp vanilla. Set a large sieve over the bowl and set aside.
  • In a 3 quart saucepan whisk together 2/3 cup sugar, the cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt until well blended.
  • Whisk in egg yolks and 1/2 cup of the milk until well combined. Mix in the remaining 2 1/2 cups milk.
  • Set mixture over medium heat and cook whisking constantly (don't forget to scrape along the bottom corners of the pan while whisking) until mixture boils (bubbles should be over the top surface not just the edges). Let boil 1 minute while whisking constantly.
  • Pour the mixture into sieve set over chocolate mixture, then press with a silicone spatula against sieve to remove lumps.
  • Stir stained mixture with the chocolate and butter mixture until everything is melted.
  • Pour into pie crust then spread into an even layer. Spray a piece of plastic wrap with non-stick cooking spray and press it against the surface of the pudding mixture (don't wrap snug around the pie or you'll steam and soften the crust up some, just loosely drape over crust).
  • Transfer to the fridge and chill at least 4 hours to let it cool and set.
  • For the topping*: Pour the cream in a large mixing bowl. Add 2 1/2 Tbsp sugar and the vanilla.
  • Using an electric hand mixer whip the mixture on high speed until very stiff peaks form.
  • Spread over the chocolate cream filling. If desired garnish with chocolate shavings** or dust with cocoa powder. Cut into slices just as serving.
  • Keep pie stored in the fridge.

Notes

  • *Wait to make and add the whipped cream to the pie until you are almost ready **For the chocolate shavings I just take about a 1 1/2-inch piece of a chocolate bar, heat it in the microwave for about 10 seconds then shave off the edge with a vegetable peeler.
  • Nutrition estimate includes crust, filling and whipped topping.
Nutrition Facts
Chocolate Cream Pie
Amount Per Serving
Calories 641 Calories from Fat 387
% Daily Value*
Fat 43g66%
Saturated Fat 26g163%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 179mg60%
Sodium 231mg10%
Potassium 308mg9%
Carbohydrates 58g19%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 32g36%
Protein 9g18%
Vitamin A 1358IU27%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 154mg15%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.