This gluten-free key lime pie is a simple yet decadent dessert. It's a buttery gluten-free graham cracker crust filled with a sweet, creamy, and perfectly tangy key lime filling and topped with homemade whipped cream.
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There's nothing like the accomplishment of whipping up a homemade dessert in no time that tastes as if you ordered it fresh from the fanciest restaurant in town.
This Gluten-Free Key Lime Pie has a short list of ingredients that comes together to make the tastiest dessert. Just a little bit of hands-on time, a short time in the oven, then a few hours in the fridge.
Plus is it uses my favorite homemade gluten-free graham cracker crust recipe.
This easy recipe is the perfect dessert for any occasion!
📖Why This Recipe Works
- Simple ingredients. This recipe is made with a 4-ingredient graham cracker crust, a 4-ingredient filling, and a couple of garnishes. So easy and so delicious.
- Amazing texture. Combining whipped egg yolk and sweetened condensed milk creates the best velvety, smooth, and creamy texture.
This decadent dessert is made with super simple ingredients: a graham cracker crust and a 4-ingredient key lime pie filling!
Key Limes- You can juice your own fresh key limes or find bottled key lime juice at most grocery stores. If you can't find anything key lime, regular limes or regular lime juice will work too. This recipe also uses fresh lime zest giving the pie an extra kick of citrus flavor.
Graham Cracker Crust - You can use a pre-made gluten-free graham cracker crust or make your own using gluten-free graham crackers, brown sugar, kosher salt, and unsalted butter. I have made this recipe using Kinnikinnick and Schar brand graham crackers. You will need one full box to make this recipe.
Egg Yolks - Egg yolks help stabilize the filling to create the perfect velvety, custard-like texture. Make sure you're using just the yolks.
Sweetened Condensed Milk -We are using sweetened condensed milk. NOT evaporated milk. They're not the same.
Whipped Cream - Optional, for decorating. You can use store-bought whipped cream or make your own using heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.
See the recipe card for exact quantities.
- Swap the citrus. Give your pie a flavor twist by swapping the fresh lime juice out for fresh lemon or blood orange.
- Make it not gluten-free. If you're not following a gluten-free diet, this recipe works perfectly with a regular graham cracker crust too!
⏲️How to Make GF Key Lime Pie
This gluten-free key lime pie recipe is so simple to prepare!
STEP 1 - Make the Crust
In a bowl, mix together the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and salt. Add in the melted butter and stir until everything is combined and the crumbs are coated.
Transfer the graham cracker mixture to a regular pie or tart pan. This recipe is for a shallow pan so if you use a deep pie dish you will need to double it.
Use the bottom of a small glass or a measuring cup to press it firmly into the bottom and up the sides to create the crust.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF and par-bake the crust for 10 minutes to allow it to firm up just enough. The crust won't look any different with no additional browning. Let it cool completely as you prep the rest of your pie. Pouring the filling into a hot pie crust will just cause it to melt!
Once the crust is cooled you will notice it has absorbed the butter and will have less shine.
STEP 2 - Make the Filling
While the pie crust is cooling to room temperature you can work on the filling,
Add the egg yolks to a mixing bowl and use an electric stand mixer or hand mixer to whisk on high until pale and thickened. This can take anywhere from 4-5 minutes. It's important that the egg yolks are whipped well to give the key lime pie its structure.
Add the lime zest and condensed milk to the egg yolk and beat for another 3-4 minutes or until nice and fluffy.
STEP 3 - Bake
Reduce the oven temperature to 325ºF, then pour the filling into the cooled crust. Bake the pie for 15-20 minutes or until just set. You can check for doneness by giving the tart pan a very gentle shake. If the custard still jiggles, it needs a couple more minutes.
Once the pie is set, pull it out of the oven and let it cool completely on a wire rack. Once it's cooked, move it to the refrigerator and let it chill for at least 5 hours or overnight to let it set completely.
STEP 4 - Decorate and Serve
Once the pie is completely chilled, it's time to decorate! This part is completely optional.
To make the whipped cream add 1 cup of heavy cream to a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer for about a minute. Add the powdered sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Once stiff peaks form stir in the vanilla.
I like to transfer to a piping bag and do a ring of lightly sweetened whipped cream around the edge and thin slices of fresh key lime.
You can also simply spread the whipped topping on top of the pie and garnish with a little lime zest or lime sugar.
Now slice and serve!
👩🏻🍳 Expert Tip
Can't find key limes or key lime juice? You can swap them out for "regular" limes instead. Keep in mind that using another variety of lime will alter the flavor slightly.
While this key lime pie is likely to go pretty quickly, any leftovers can be stored covered or wrapped in plastic wrap for up to 5 days in the fridge.
It can also be frozen (without the toppings) for up to 3 months. Simply wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then in aluminum foil. When you're ready to serve, thaw it in the fridge, add the toppings, and enjoy.
More Gluten-Free Pie Recipes
💬Frequently Asked Questions
I used a 1 pound bag of key limes to make the key lime pie plus more for the decoration. I recommend grabbing a couple of standard limes just in case you don't get enough juice.
Yes, you can use a standard gluten-free pie crust to make key lime pie. It will be less flavorful. You will need to blind-bake the crust with pie weights for 30 minutes.
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Gluten-Free Key Lime Pie
- Pie plate 9 inch
Gluten-Free Graham Cracker Crust (double for a deep dish pie plate)
- 1 ½ cups gluten-free graham cracker crumbs 8 ounces
- 3 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
Key Lime Filling (double for a deep dish pie plate)
- 5 egg yolks
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk one can or 1 ¼ cups
- ⅔ cup key lime juice
- 1 Tablespoon lime zest
- 1 key lime cut into thin slices for decoration
- 2 cups whipped cream optional - see notes
Gluten-Free Graham Cracker Crust
- Preheat oven to 350 F degrees.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk the graham cracker crumbs with the brown sugar and salt. Add the melted butter and stir until the crumbs are evenly moistened.1 ½ cups gluten-free graham cracker crumbs, 3 Tablespoons light brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up the side of the pie pan. Use the bottom of a small cup to press the crust down and move it into the sides.
- Bake the crust for about 10 minutes, until just set. Let cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 325 F degrees.
Key Lime Filling
- Add the egg yolks to a mixing bowl. Using a stand mixer or a handheld mixer, whisk on high until the yolks are pale and thickened. About 4 to 5 minutes.5 egg yolks
- Add the lime juice and zest and condensed milk. Beat for another 3 to 4 minutes until fluffy.14 ounces sweetened condensed milk, ⅔ cup key lime juice, 1 Tablespoon lime zest
- Pour the custard into the crust. Bake at 325 F degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until just set. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill for 5 hours or overnight.
- Pipe on the whipped cream, or spread it over the top of the pie, and decorate with slices of lime.2 cups whipped cream, 1 key lime
- Place whole crackers in a food processor and pulse until broken up. Or place in a zip-loc bag and crush with a rolling pin.
- A premade gluten-free crust can be used in place of the homemade one.
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