Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (2024)

Once you’ve prepared this delectable old-fashioned chocolate pie recipe from scratch, there’s simply no turning back to store-bought or instant pie fillings. This velvety, smooth, and decadently delicious dessert is bound to become a beloved staple in your home. Let’s explore the history behind my old-fashioned chocolate pie recipe and delve into the details of creating this mouthwatering treat.

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (1)

Jump to Recipe

In This Article show

The History of My Old fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe

This cherished recipe has been handed down through the generations in my family, originating with my great-grandmother, Ma Horton. I learned the art of making this chocolate pie from my Aunt Helen when I was a young mother, and let me tell you, that was eons ago!

Back in the day, when my husband and I first met, he claimed he didn’t particularly care for chocolate pies. However, I managed to persuade him to give my old-fashioned homemade chocolate pie a try, and to this day, he insists it’s the only chocolate pie worth eating.

I have fond memories of family reunions and “dinners on the ground.” For those unfamiliar with the term, “dinner on the ground” referred to the shared meal during a church’s anniversary celebration, known as a homecoming. We’d lay out quilts or occasionally a few folding chairs, and each family would bring an abundance of food to share.

All the food was placed on boards laid out between trees, sawhorses, and an occasional table, and you went around fixing your plate with whatever you wanted. You better get your dessert on the first go-around, or it would be gone.

One thing was for sure: Ma Horton’s chocolate pie recipe was always a coveted item at these gatherings. Made with rich cocoa powder and encased in a golden brown homemade pie crust, it was often referred to as the “French silk pie of heaven” – a title I wholeheartedly endorsed. We knew it as her chocolate pie with meringue.

When Ma Horton could no longer prepare this pie for such occasions, my grandmother and Aunt Helen carried on the tradition. Aunt Helen, in particular, earned the illustrious title of the “Queen of Chocolate Pie.”

It’s no wonder that this old-fashioned chocolate pie from scratch has become one of the most requested dishes in our family. It graces the table at birthdays, holidays, and whenever we seek the comforting embrace of familiar flavors. Your family is sure to fall in love with it too!

FAQ About My Chocolate Pie Recipe

1. Why Don’t My Grandmother’s Recipes Taste The Same When I Follow Them Exactly?

It’s important to note that the ingredients used by most of our grandmothers were quite different from what we have available today. It took me a long time to figure out this problem with my great-grandmother’s and Granny’s recipes.

They often used freshly ground flour, farm-fresh eggs, unrefined real salt, and unpasteurized, raw A2A2 milk. Back then, there were no GMOs, pesticides, or herbicides in the food chain, which contributed to the distinct flavors of their recipes.

While it can be challenging to replicate the exact taste, using organic, non-GMO ingredients can help you come close. Even if you don’t have access to yard eggs or raw milk, you can still create a delicious pie that will quickly become a family favorite.

2. Should an old-fashioned chocolate pie be refrigerated?

Allow your pie to cool on the counter until the pan is no longer hot to the touch. Refrigerating a hot pie can lead to cracks and excess condensation, resulting in a soggy bottom crust. Once it has cooled to room temperature, you can safely refrigerate it, although there may not be much left for leftovers!

3. Why does my homemade chocolate pie get watery?

If your pie is topped with meringue, this is probably the cause. To prevent a weeping meringue, consider the following tips:

– Don’t overbake the meringue, as excessive baking can cause the egg whites to shrink and release moisture.

– Check the meringue at the minimum recommended baking time, and watch it closely. Meringue can quickly overbake or burn.

– Make sure that the sugar in your egg whites is fully dissolved during mixing. Begin at low speed to eliminate any graininess before whipping at high speed into stiff peaks. Using caster sugar or superfine granulated sugar can help.

– Prepare the meringue before you start on the pie crust and filling, allowing it ample time to chill. This helps it spread more easily and reduces the likelihood of shrinking during baking.

– When spreading the meringue on your pie filling, extend it all the way to the crust’s edge and seal it securely.

4. Do You Make this old fashioned chocolate pie recipe with cocoa Powder?

While you can use either cocoa powder or cacao powder interchangeably, I personally prefer using cacao powder. Both are derived from the cacao bean, but there are differences in their processing.

Cacao is made from fermented cacao beans processed at low temperatures, retaining more nutrients, enzymes, and minerals. It has a slightly bitter taste compared to cocoa.

Cocoa is made from fermented cacao processed at higher temperatures, leading to a loss of most nutrient value. Many cocoa products include added sugar to offset the bitterness, so check labels to avoid excess sugar.

Ma Horton’s Old-Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe

To recreate this beloved family recipe, start with your choice of pie crust (whether it’s homemade or store-bought) and set it aside to cool. Personally, I make an Einkorn pie crust, but you’re free to choose your favorite.

NOTE: Once you begin cooking the filling, you cannot leave the stove for any reason. It will scorch and pop bubbles that will scald you if you leave it.

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (2)

Ingredients For Pie Filling

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 1/2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt – I use real salt
  • 4 Tablespoons cocoa powder or cacao powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 10 ounces heavy whipping cream
  • 6 ounces milk – I use A2A2 whole milk
  • 4 ounces of water
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2-3 teaspoons vanilla extract flavoring to taste

Ingredients For Fluffy Meringue

  • 3 Egg whites (separated from yolks used in the pie filling)
  • 5 Tbs fine grain sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Ingredients For Whipped Cream Topping: Yields 2 1/3 cups of whipped topping

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 Tbs fine grain sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions For Chocolate Pie Filling

  1. Mix the dry ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. Separate three eggs and put the egg yolks in amedium saucepan.
    • If you want to make meringue for your pie instead of whipped cream, put the egg whites in the mixing bowl you’ll use to make your meringue and refrigerate them. (I make my meringue first and refrigerate it while I’m preparing the filling.)
  3. Whisk the egg yolks together in the saucepan, then add the liquid ingredients to the saucepan.
  4. Whisk these ingredients together well.
  5. Cook over medium-high heat on the stovetop while using a long-handled wooden spoon to stir constantly until begins to boil.
  6. Once the mixture reaches a low boil, add the dry ingredients to the pot. I whisk them to mix well and then go back to stirring with the wooden spoon.
  7. Add the butter and continue to stir continuously.
  8. Cook for 5 minutes over medium heat until the desired thickness is reached. It needs to be thick like pudding.
  9. When the filling is thickened, remove from heat and add 2-3 teaspoons of vanilla (I use 3 because we like vanilla)
  10. Pour the filling into your prepared pie crust.
    • See the directions below if you want chocolate pie with meringue
  11. Let cool on the counter until the pie plate is not hot to the touch.
  12. Then over with parchment paper or plastic wrap to prevent skin from forming on top of the pie while cooling.
  13. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

NOTE: If you want a meringue, add it to your pie before you refrigerate.

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (3)

Instructions To make the meringue recipe

  1. Whip the egg whites in a large bowl on high speed of an electric mixer using your whisk attachment until fluffy.
  2. Reduce speed to low and slowly add the sugar one tablespoon at a time until all 3 Tablespoons are added.
  3. Beat on low until the sugar is fully incorporated into the eggs (the graininess will be gone).
  4. Return the mixer to the highest speed and continue beating until stiff peaks form.
  5. Spread the meringue over the freshly cooked pie and brown under your broiler. Remember to watch it carefully, the meringue will brown and burn before you know it.
Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (4)

My family prefers homemade whipped cream on their pie.

Instructions To make sweetened whipped cream

  1. Put 1 cup of heavy whipping cream into a chilled bowl.
  2. Using the whisk attachment on your mixer, whip at the highest speed of your electric mixer until the cream begins to stiffen.
  3. Gradually add 3 Tablespoons of sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until stiff peaks form.
  4. Store in refrigerator until ready to use. I put mine in a glass jar or bowl with a tight-fitting lid.

You can make the whipped cream any flavor you like. For this old fashion chocolate pie recipe, we like vanilla flavoring. To flavor, after you’ve added the sugar, add 1 teaspoon of flavoring to heavy whipping cream, and beat as directed above.

Notes for My Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe

If you don’t have the time to make the homemade flour crust you can make a graham cracker crust in your pie pan or use a store-bought prepared crust to pour the hot filling into to make your own old-fashioned chocolate cream pie.

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (5)

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe

Once you’ve made this old fashioned chocolate pie recipe, there’ll be no going back! Sometimes you’ll make it just for yourself! It’s old-fashioned, velvety smooth, and decadently delicious.

4.2 from 59 votes

Like this recipe? Give it a star rating to help other cooks find it!

PrintPin

Course: Dessert

Cuisine: American

Prep Time: 25 minutes mins

Cook Time: 14 minutes mins

Preparing Pie Crust and Cooling Time: 2 hours hrs

Total Time: 2 hours hrs 39 minutes mins

Servings: 8 pieces (unless you want big pieces and who doesn’t)

Calories: 295kcal

Ingredients

Pie Filling Ingredients

  • A deep dish pie crust, baked. - You can use a shallow crust but it will be very full
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 ½ Tbs all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp real salt
  • 4 Tbs cocoa powder or cacao powder
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 10 oz heavy whipping cream
  • 6 oz milk
  • 4 oz water
  • 1 ½ Tbs unsalted butter
  • 2-3 tsp Vanilla flavoring

Meringue Ingredients

  • 3 Egg whites (separated from yolks used in the pie filling)
  • 5 TBS fine grain sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

For Whipped Cream Topping: Yields 2 1/3 cup whipped topping

  • 1 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 3 TBS Fine grain sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla

Instructions

  • Mix the dry ingredients in a small bowl.

  • Separate three eggs and put the egg yolks in a medium saucepan.

    If you want to make meringue for your pie instead of whipped cream, put the egg whites in the mixing bowl you’ll use to make your meringue.

  • Whisk the egg yolks together in the saucepan, then add the liquid ingredients to the saucepan.

  • Whisk these ingredients together well.

  • Cook over medium heat while using a long-handled wooden spoon to stir constantly until begins to boil.

  • Once the mixture reaches a low boil, add the dry ingredients to the pot. I whisk them to mix well and then go back to stirring with the wooden spoon.

  • Add the butter and continue to stir continuously.

  • Cook for 5 minutes or until desired thickness is reached. It needs to be thick like pudding.

  • When the filling is thickened, remove from heat and add 2-3 teaspoons of vanilla (I use 3 because we like vanilla)

  • Pour the filling into your prepared pie crust.

    If you are going to top with meringue, do that now.

    Once the meringue is cooked, let the pie cool on a cooling rack until the pie plate is not hot to the touch.

  • Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

  • If you are going to top with whipped cream:

    Cover with parchment paper or plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming on top of the pie while cooling.

    Let the pie cool on a cooling rack until the pie plate is not hot to the touch. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving

Instructions To Make Meringue

  • Whip the three egg whites on high-speed of an electric mixer using your whisk attachment until fluffy.

  • Reduce speed to low and slowly add the sugar one tablespoon at a time until all 3 Tablespoons are added.

  • Beat on low until the sugar is fully incorporated into the eggs (the graininess will be gone).

  • Return mixer to highest speed and continue beating until stiff peaks form.

  • Spread the meringue over the freshly cooked pie and brown under your broiler. Remember to watch it carefully, meringue will brown and burn before you know it.

Instructions To Make Sweetened Whipped Cream Yields 2 1/3 cups whipped cream

  • Put 1 cup heavy whipping cream into a chilled bowl.

  • Using the whisk attachment, whip at the highest speed of your electric mixer until the cream begins to stiffen.

  • Gradually add 3 Tablespoons granulated or powdered sugar one tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until stiff peaks form.

  • Store in refrigerator until ready to use. I put mine in a glass jar or bowl with a tight fitting lid.

  • You can make the whipped cream any flavor you like. For chocolate pie, we like vanilla flavoring. To flavor, just add 1 teaspoon flavoring to heavy whipping cream, after you’ve added the sugar, and beat as directed above.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe

Amount per Serving

Calories

295

Calories from Fat 162

% Daily Value*

Fat

18

g

28

%

Saturated Fat

11

g

Trans Fat

1

g

Polyunsaturated Fat

1

g

Monounsaturated Fat

5

g

Cholesterol

118

mg

39

%

Sodium

121

mg

5

%

Potassium

122

mg

3

%

Carbohydrates

31

g

10

%

Fiber

1

g

4

%

Sugar

26

g

29

%

Protein

4

g

8

%

Vitamin A

710

IU

14

%

Vitamin C

1

mg

1

%

Calcium

61

mg

6

%

Iron

1

mg

6

%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Wrap Up

In the end, the journey through my old-fashioned chocolate pie recipe takes us on a delicious trip down memory lane, with roots that stretch back through generations of family tradition. This timeless dessert, born from the cherished recipes of my great-grandmother, Ma Horton, and lovingly passed down through the years, holds a special place in our hearts.

The story of this pie is a testament to the power of homemade goodness and the enduring magic of family gatherings. From family reunions to the memorable “dinners on the ground,” it’s a recipe that has consistently brought joy and comfort to our lives. Every bite of Ma Horton’s chocolate pie recipe is infused with the warmth and love that transcends time.

So, the next time you make this old fashioned chocolate pie recipe from scratch, remember the history behind it. The care and quality of ingredients may have evolved, but the essence of this cherished recipe remains the same.

Whether you choose to serve it with a fluffy meringue or a dollop of sweet whipped cream, you’ll be creating a dessert that embodies tradition, nostalgia, and the pure delight of savoring a slice of the past. As you share it with your family, you’ll be adding another chapter to the story of this beloved recipe, making it a treasured part of your own family’s history.

I hope you enjoy making and sharing this old fashioned chocolate pie recipe as much as I have throughout the years. It’s a testament to the enduring power of home-cooked meals and the love that goes into every bite.

As always, I’m here to help with any questions or guidance you may need on your journey. Happy baking!

You may also like

Easy Einkorn Flour Pie Crust Recipe

More From Scratch Recipes

Coconut Cream Pie Recipe

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (6)

Join TFL Community on Social Media

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pie Recipe From My Great-Grandmother • The Farmer's Lamp (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jonah Leffler

Last Updated:

Views: 6260

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (45 voted)

Reviews: 92% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jonah Leffler

Birthday: 1997-10-27

Address: 8987 Kieth Ports, Luettgenland, CT 54657-9808

Phone: +2611128251586

Job: Mining Supervisor

Hobby: Worldbuilding, Electronics, Amateur radio, Skiing, Cycling, Jogging, Taxidermy

Introduction: My name is Jonah Leffler, I am a determined, faithful, outstanding, inexpensive, cheerful, determined, smiling person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.