simply delicious key lime pie

simply delicious key lime pie served in a glass pie pan with glazed strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and mint leaves.

Years ago, our kids discovered key lime pie when we were cruising in the Caribbean. We started rating the dessert at restaurants we visited and decided that it is hard to make one that’s not delicious. Graham cracker crust is mandatory, along with the combination of tangy limes and sweetened condensed milk. The flavors of this pie are pretty intense, so most of the time just a small slice will do. (Prep hint: To save yourself time squeezing the tiny Key limes*, cut them in half and extract the juice using a very clean garlic press.)

simply delicious key lime pie

Serves: 6-8


  • 10 full-size graham cracker sheets
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 6 tablespoons butter, (¾ stick) melted
  • 2 teaspoons Key lime zest
  • ½ cup fresh Key lime juice
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • Lime slices, berries, and mint leaves, for garnish



Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil a 9-inch glass or ceramic pie dish.


Using a rolling pin or the bottom of a small, heavy saucepan, crush the graham crackers until they’re finely ground. You should have about 1½ cups of crumbs.


Combine the cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt in a bowl, stirring well to combine. Drizzle the butter over the crumb mixture; toss with a fork until the crumbs are evenly moist. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the pie pan.


Bake for 8 minutes; let the crust cool on a wire rack.


To make the filling, whisk the lime zest, lime juice, condensed milk, egg yolks, and the remaining salt in a bowl until smooth. Pour the mixture into the cooled crust. Bake for 15 minutes, then insert a knife into the filling. If it comes out clean, the pie is ready to remove from the oven.


Let the pie cool for 15 minutes. Refrigerate for 2 hours, or until set. Add the garnishes as desired; slice and enjoy.


*Named for the Florida Keys where they flourish, Key limes are smaller than traditional limes. Look for them bagged together in the grocery store. They are thin-skinned and contain few seeds. When green Key limes (an immature fruit) ripens to a yellow color, the acidity goes down and a sweeter flesh is the result. You can substitute lemon zest and lemon juice for Key lime for a lemon pie.

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  • Reply
    MaryBeth Mitchell
    July 19, 2017 at 4:25 am

    Was hoping you would add this recipe after having it at your cabin! I didn’t realize it had condensed milk, yet it is not heavy/dense…Instead it is refreshing and light! Made a lemon tart this past weekend and while it turned out well, it made us all pucker and I think my family will love this recipe more! Thanks so much!

  • Reply
    August 4, 2017 at 9:13 pm

    Carol, This was the first key lime pie I have made and it turned out beautifully and was delicious. I will definitely make it again. The graham cracker crust was so easy and so good. I would advise putting the key limes in the microwave for about 10 seconds and definitely using a garlic press to juice the limes! Thank you for this recipe.

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