The Perfect Key Lime Pie

Key Lime PIe

With the few inklings of Spring we have been having (that means we have actually seen the sun here in the NW), tulips in the grocery store and everything green on Pinterest I have been totally craving key lime. Maybe the fact that a Caribbean vacation sounds really good right about now too has added to the key lime craving.

In order to curb that craving I made a key lime pie this weekend.  I have to say it is pretty amazing.  And it may just be the Perfect Key Lime Pie or at least until I really can get myself to the Florida Keys and taste the real thing!!

Today I’ve got a step by step tutorial for you – it’s pretty and easy and so worth the effort!
A key lime pie starts with a graham cracker crust.  Now you can buy a premade one at the store but one made from scratch is SO MUCH better!  You don’t even have to crush your graham crackers you can find graham cracker crumbs in the baking aisle.  Just combine that with some butter and sugar and you’ve got a homemade graham cracker crumb.  The perfect base for a key lime pie.  You do not need to bake the crust before you fill it.

Now a key lime pie is called key lime pie for a reason – it uses key limes.  Key limes can be found in your grocery store, sometimes.  They are tiny little things and it takes about 30 of them to make enough juice for a pie.  I have always used key lime juice from Nellie & Joe’s and it works great.  It can easily be found in the juice aisle at the store.  The juice is combined with some sweetened condensed milk and sour cream. Yep -that’s it.

key lime pie tutorial

Pour that into your graham cracker crust and it only bakes for about 10 minutes!

You want little bubbles to form just underneath the surface of the pie .  Look to the left side of the pie and  you can just see them.

Key Lime PIe

I then turn off the oven and let it sit in the warm oven for another 30 minutes or so.  You don’t want the pie to start to turn brown.  Then it goes into the refrigerator over night.

Key Lime PIe

I know – torture!  Having to wait until the next day to enjoy a piece.  But I promise, it’s worth the wait.

Key Lime PIe

I like to top the key lime pie with a little whip cream that I sweetened with some powdered sugar and vanilla.  I put it in a decorating bag and with my biggest star tip I pipe a pretty little border around the pie.

Key Lime PIe

Sprinkle a little lime zest onto the whipped cream and you’ve got perfection.  Now all you have to do – is take a bite!
Key Lime PIe

Now just close your eyes and you can almost imagine yourself in the Florida Keys!

Key Lime PIe

For other yummy key lime flavored recipes try:

Key Lime Pie Ice Cream – Key Lime Cake - Key Lime Bundt Cake

PicMonkey Collage

The Perfect Key Lime Pie


  • 1 1/4 C graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 C sugar
  • 5 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 2 14 oz. cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 C sour cream
  • 3/4 C key lime juice
  • grated lime zest for garnish
  • Whipped cream for garnish


  • Combine crumbs, sugar and butter. Mix until blended
  • Press crumbs into bottom and sides of a 9 inch pie pan
  • Pie
  • Combine sweetened condensed milk, sour cream and key lime juice. Stir until smooth
  • Pour into pie pan
  • Bake for 10 minutes in 350 degree oven, until tiny bubbles form on the surface.
  • Turn off oven and let pie sit in oven for 30 minutes - do not allow to brown.
  • Chill before serving
  • Garnish with shipped cream and lime zest

Recipe adapted from allrecipes.


Leigh Anne

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  1. 1
    Mary Lynn says:

    Wish I had a piece of pie right now. Need a taste of Spring here. Winter will not leave. Since we never did officially celebrate Greg’s birthday, this would be perfect for him.

  2. 2
    Liz says:

    Delicious pie. Thanks so much.

  3. 3
    Ellen says:

    Interesting!!!! Thanks for sharing this!!!!! I’ve always made it with egg yolks as it says on Nellie and Joe’s bottle but this sounds great for those skirmish about raw eggs. This is my favorite dessert, only when made with the real juice. If it’s green, you know it’s not the real deal…..gotta be yellowish to know you’re getting real key limes. Yummmm!!!!! More snow is coming down right now….anywhere warm and a piece of this pie sounds perfect. Can’t wait to eat some!!!

  4. 4

    my mouth literally started watering when i saw your beautiful photos! I LOVE Key Lime Pie but have never made one before! will have to try your recipe very soon!!!

  5. 5

    This really does look like the perfect key lime pie! We went to Key West for our honeymoon and ate lots of pie like this. Thanks for the fun memory!
    Jocelyn @BruCrewLife recently posted..Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana Cake

  6. 6

    Wow! This looks amazing!
    Amy at Living Locurto recently posted..Adorable Girl Birthday Party Ideas

  7. 7
    Jennifer says:

    I’m excited to try this… it’s sitting in my oven right now. If it tastes half as good as the batter, it’s going to be a real treat! Thank you for sharing this easy recipe!

  8. 8
    Janet T says:

    Yum! I have to make this beautiful pie today!

  9. 9

    This pie looks amazing! I can feel the neediness of something sour right now on the tip of my tongue! Can’t wait to try it with limes instead of simple lemons.
    Indre @ cupcakesnmiracles recently posted..Muffins with spring onions and bacon

  10. 10

    Hi Leigh Ann, This is both my middle daughter & my favorite pie. I ‘ll have to try your recipe. It looks amazing! It will be torture waiting for it to set.
    Theresa @DearCreatives recently posted..Life Moments #Free Shopper Planner & Coupons for New Moms #ShopperIncite

  11. 11
    Patty says:

    This looks so delicious! I am here visiting you from the SITS link up. I love key lime pie!!
    Patty recently posted..Pottery Barn Knock Off {Place Card Holder}

  12. 12
    Rachel says:

    Key lime pie is one of my absolute favorites! I haven’t made it in a while so I don’t know how my recipe compares to yours but I will say the quality of the key limes makes all the difference. I have had a few turn out too bitter or sour if the limes were not right. Also, it is a pain to juice all those key limes. I haven’t tried the nellie and joe’s juice. That would save my hands! Thank you for sharing.

  13. 13

    love the pie and your photos are mouth watering thanks for sharing visiting from link party palooza have a great day
    lorraine williamson recently posted..Meat Shopping Trip at Savemart with Tips

  14. 14

    My mouth watered when I saw that gorgeous pie! It looks delicious. Pinned the recipe to try soon. Thank you!
    Donna McMorrow recently posted..A Good Land

  15. 15

    Perfect indeed Leigh Anne!! This pie is exactly what I need to chase away the winter blues. It looks absolutely delicious. :)
    Lisa@ Cooking with Curls recently posted..Baklava Cookies & dessert challenge

  16. 16

    This pie is just beautiful! I can’t wait to make this! Pinned:)
    Shannon {Cozy Country Living} recently posted..Pepper Jack Scalloped Potatoes

  17. 17
    marcie says:

    I’m a key lime fanatic, so this pie just looks amazing! I love the addition of the sour cream, and your photos are just incredible. :)
    marcie recently posted..Cooking School Week 21

  18. 18
    lisa says:

    Just stopped at Publix and got all the stuff to make this! my first key lime pie from scratch!! yay!

  19. 19
    lisa says:

    Finally got to try it today (after keeping it in the fridge all night). WOW it was PERFECT! I even made an extra one to give to my neighbor. Thanks for the recipe!!

  20. 20
    Barbra says:

    Just pulled our pie out of the oven; not sure we will be able to wait for it to chill overnight to enjoy! I substituted plain Greek yogurt for the sour cream. We’re looking forward to it and it was so simple to make!

  21. 21
    Ruth says:

    I made this pie for a party I attended yesterday and it was a hit! I’ve tried many key lime recipes, and have been let down having lived in Florida. This was so easy to make……I encourage you to try it, you won’t be sorry!

  22. 22


  23. 23
    Judy Rhoades says:

    I’ve always used the recipe on the bottle of nellies, and it doesn’t call for sour cream, sounds like a good addition, plus it makes it of more substantial depth.

  24. 24
    Kathy says:

    Made this today – amazing!

    My husband – who isn’t typically a big key lime pie fan – told me this was better than restaurant pie (while polishing off his second piece).

    Thank you for posting!!

  25. 25
    Yvonne says:

    This recipe is wonderful and so easy to make! I made it for a friend’s birthday in May, and have been requested to bring two to his 4th of July bbq. I think the addition of the sour cream is what really makes it special and tempers the sweetness of the condensed milk. Thanks for sharing!

  26. 26
    Ashley says:

    Such a great recipe! It was a total hit at my house. Any suggestions for making it as a mini version in a muffin tin?

    • 26.1
      Leigh Anne says:

      Ashley, So glad it was enjoyed. Should be easy enough to make in a mini version. Not sure on the baking time though – would just watch it.


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