Atlantic Beach Pie

Atlantic Beach Pie

Saltine crackers as a pie crust? Yes!  The combination of salty, sweet, and citrus is a perfect summer dessert.

Read the August 2014 article from Our State magazine to learn how this decade-old pie became an overnight sensation when NC chef Bill Smith from Crook’s Corner restaurant in Chapel Hill improved the recipe. 

For the crust:

·         1½ sleeves of saltine crackers

·         to ½ cup softened unsalted butter

·         3 tablespoons sugar


For the filling:

·         1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk

·         4 egg yolks

·         ½ cup lemon or lime juice, or a mix of the two

·         Fresh whipped cream and coarse sea salt for garnish


Preheat oven to 350˚.

Crush the crackers finely, but not to dust. You can use a food processor or your hands. (I put the crackers in a plastic bag and crushed with a rolling pin.) Add the sugar, then knead in the butter until the crumbs hold together like dough. Press into an 8-inch pie pan. Chill for 15 minutes, then bake for 18 minutes or until the crust colors a little.

While the crust is cooling (it doesn’t need to be cold), beat the egg yolks into the milk, then beat in the citrus juice. It is important to completely combine these ingredients.

Pour into the shell and bake for 16 minutes until the filling has set. The pie needs to be completely cold to be sliced. Serve with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt.

Yields one pie.

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