My Mom’s Key Lime Pie

My mom always tells this story. Back in the 1980s, she and my dad went to dinner at an old Austin restaurant and, for dessert, ordered Key Lime Pie. As they ate, they both agreed this was the best Key Lime Pie they’d ever had.

So the next day, my mom called the restaurant and asked for the recipe. The restaurant declined to give it out, but said the recipe was once featured in a cooking magazine. With two toddlers in tow, my mom tracked down that magazine at the Austin Public Library and quickly scribbled down a shorthand version in the back of her Joy of Cooking cookbook.

The binding of her old cookbook fell apart, but I saved the back page and have been making my version of that Key Lime Pie for years. I can’t wait for you to try it. And while I don’t want to totally oversell it, multiple friends have said this pie is literally “the best pie they have ever had.” I know my mom agrees! Would love to hear what you think, too!

My Mom’s Key Lime Pie


1 pie crust, homemade or store-bought


1 cup sugar

3 Tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1/3 cup fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest

¼ cup unsalted butter

1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream


1 cup heavy whipping cream

¼ cup sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

¾ cup sour cream


  1. Preheat oven to 425° F. Make pie crust according to recipe instructions and fit into a standard 9- or 10-inch pie plate. Using tines of a fork, prick bottom and sides of crust so it doesn’t bubble when baking. (I like to use a disposable pie plate, fitted inside the crust, to hold the crust in place while baking for the first 8-10 minutes.) Bake crust for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown.
  2. In a saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch. Stir in heavy cream, lime juice, lime zest and butter. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until mixture is thick. Cool to room temp. Fold in sour cream. Spread into baked crust.
  3. For topping, in a small bowl, beat whipping cream for 2 minutes on high. Add sugar and vanilla; beat again until firm. Fold in sour cream. Spread over filling. Refrigerate 4 hours before serving.

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Hi! I’m Marie. Mama, wife, homebody. I’m a self-taught chef and cookbook author. 

I love sharing fast, fresh, family-friendly recipes that will, hopefully, make your life a little easier.

Above all, I love spending time in the kitchen with family and friends. Come join us!


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