This pie was probably my favorite pie growing up. My brother and I argue about who favorited it first (as if it matters)! The original version was also called Heavenly Berry Chocolate Pie and can be found somewhere in the pages of one of the 1980’s issues of Southern Living cookbook. I don’t know which one. Some of you may know those cookbooks well, if you’re from the south.
I re-wrote this recipe for a grain-free crust and didn’t have to do much else other than swap out the white sugar for a lower glycemic index coconut or date sugar and take care to purchase quality dairy items and dark chocolate chips with no soy or high fructose corn syrup in them.
The entire pie, including the crust, only has 1/4 cup of coconut sugar, 2 Tbs of honey and a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips in it. This, plus any berries or chocolate drizzle you put on top is all the sugar you’re adding. I didn’t realize how straight forward and low-sugar this pie was when I was young. Until I prepared it myself for the first time as an adult, I also didn’t realize how easy it is (or that there are no actual berries in the pie itself… the tang from the cream cheese is what gives the filling that chocolate-covered-strawberry flavor. Yuuummmm.)
In our photos we split one recipe into two, half-size pie dishes but, of course, you can put the entire recipe in one standard size pie dish. We thought it would also be fun to put this recipe into small ramekins, a spring form pan (like you would use to make a cheesecake) or even make mini, individual pies in muffin tins. Just press the crust down into the bottom of each space. This could even be the easiest way to make this recipe, actually. As long as you butter the dish you’re using, the little pies (or pieces of pie), should come out pretty well.
Remember, while we do post recipes, including dessert recipes, that use real food ingredients the sugar in the particular recipe is still just that – sugar. Although the sugars we use are usually the lower glycemic index varieties of sugar, they are still blood sugar-spiking foods and should be eaten in moderation. We aren’t writing these recipes in such a way that they can be consumed as often as your veggies, healthy fats and pasture-raised or wild-caught proteins.
Some time this summer, though, I do hope you can enjoy this one!
- 8-10 oz organic pecan halves or pieces (this will make 1 1/2 – 2 C pecan meal)
- 4 Tbs butter , melted
- 2 Tbs honey
- 1 Tbs coconut flour , optional
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon , optional
For the filling:
- 1 package (8 oz) full fat cream cheese, preferably organic and w/o additives like carrageenan, softened
- 1/4 to 1/2 C dark chocolate chips , melted, (we like SunSpire or Enjoy Life brands)
- 1 C full fat heavy cream , whipped, (we prefer raw, grass-fed cream OR Kalona brand)
- 1/4 C coconut sugar (or date sugar)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- garnish with sliced , fresh strawberries or other berries
- – melt a few extra tablespoons of chocolate chips and a tiny tab of coconut oil together. Using a spoon drizzle it on top of the berries on your pie. So pretty and , more chocolate!
First, make your crust:
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Thoroughly butter a pie dish (or whatever dish(es) your’e using to hold the pie.)
- In a small sauce pot set your 4 Tbs of butter over medium heat so it can melt while you’re working with the pecans.
- Using a food processor, pulse 8 to 10 oz pecans (halves or pieces – organic is best) until you have a meal about the consistency of heavy sand. Stop twice or so to scrape down the sides of the bowl. You want to see how course the pecans still look and make sure you aren’t making pecan butter!
- In a medium size mixing bowl place your fresh pecan meal, salt, cinnamon (optional), coconut flour (if using – it just helps to bind), melted butter and honey. Mix with a spatula until thoroughly combined. It will feel like course, very wet Play-Doh.
- Dump the mixture into the middle of your buttered dish and use your hands to press it into a thin (you know, normal crust thickness) layer from the center out and up the sides. Watch our crust-making video above to see how I do it.
- Place your crust into the oven for 18 min. You can check a few minutes early but this shouldn’t over cook it unless you have some very thin spots. Even so, it will just be a bit browner. Nothing to worry about. The crust will firm up as it cools.
- Your crust does need to cool completely before putting in the filling so you can make it earlier in the day or the day before and just wait to make your filling when you’re ready to put it in the crust. It doesn’t take long
Make your filling:
First, in a medium size mixing bowl mix the softened cream cheese, vanilla and the coconut (or date if you don’t do coconut) sugar until combined and smooth. I do this with an electric hand mixer like this one. You could use a stand mixer as well.
- Set that aside and melt your chocolate chips in a small metal or glass (or other heat proof) bowl over a small pot of boiling water on the stove. This is a make shift double boiler and keeps your chocolate off of direct heat where it could burn. We don’t recommend the microwave for heating food.
- Add the melted chocolate to the cream cheese mixture and mix that up until combined.
- Set that aside and whip your heavy cream – In a separate medium size bowl place the 1 C of cold heavy cream and, using the hand mixer or your stand mixer, whip it until stiff. This takes a few minutes. Start slow so you don’t slosh the cream everywhere. Once it start to thicken you can turn the speed on the mixer up more.
- Now, again using the mixer, combine 1/3 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture. Once its smooth add another 1/3 of the whipped cream. Mix. Add the last 1/3 and mix until smooth. If you do this my hand it is hard to get the lumps smoothed out.
- Pour the filling into your cooled pie crust and use a flat spatula to even it out if needed.
- Put the pie in the your fridge for at least 2 ours. Once chilled you can garnish the top with strawberries or any other berry. Keep in the fridge until time to serve. Cover and store in the fridge as well. Melt a little extra chocolate and drizzle it on top for extra pizzazz 😉