Caramel pie is my favorite pie.
Okay, so I might say that when I eat apple pie, too. Each one is my favorite when I have it. And when I have to choose between the two of them . . . well, I usually go for a small bit of each!
But there was no apple pie today, just caramel. That is not a complaint! I am so happy with my pie. Haha
My mom has been ridiculously busy at work this week and will be for the rest of the month. She is an attorney and has a trial coming up so she’s been working past eight or nine every night. I decided to make her a pie I knew she would like.
I searched the cabinets and pantry for pie ingredients. I thought about making pecan pie – it’s her favorite, but we only had a handful of pecans. I thought about lemon, but I didn’t have enough eggs or butter. So, I settled on caramel pie. It is super, super easy to make and I had all the ingredients (or so I thought; I had to go get whipped topping).
This pie is a great pie to make if your family calls and says they’ll be over for dinner or friends decided to come for a visit at the last minute. Most of the cook time is boiling, so you can clean, cook other things, or relax while it is being made.
All you need is 2 – 4 cans of sweetened condensed milk, one 8” or so graham cracker crust, one tub of whipped topping, and any garnishes you like (nuts, chocolate chips, etc.). Try and get the cans with the pot tops. It will make it much easier – and less messy – when it comes time to open them.
The pie takes about 5 hours to make start to finish but prep time is roughly 5 – 10 minutes depending on how organized you are. The amount of milk you need depends on how big your pie is going to be. 2 cans usually will fill the normal size pie crust. I usually boil an extra one to have to make fruit dip.
Peel the labels off the cans and fully submerge them in a large pot of water. Boil the cans for roughly three hours. I turn my cans every 30 minutes to prevent the milk/caramel from burning. Shorter boiling time produced a runnier caramel while a longer time produces a thicker caramel.
While they are boiling, make sure to keep the cans covered. I have heard of cans exploding on people if they aren’t completely covered in water! Luckily, that has never happened to me.
After the cans are done boiling, remove the pot from the heat. Fill the pot the rest of the way full with cold tap water. This will help the cans cool. After 30 minutes, remove the cans from the pot and sit on a folded towel to finish cooling. You should wait to open the cans until you can touch them without any pain.
When opening the cans, be extra careful because the filling can get everywhere! If you don’t have the pot top kind of can, use one the can openers that removes the entire lid if possible. The filling will start to ooze out of the opening and it can get super messy if you have one of the ones that just pokes the hole in the can.
After opening the cans, spread the caramel into the crust until it is even with the lip of the crust or just lightly higher. Chill the caramel pie in the freezer for 15 – 30 minutes until the caramel is no longer warm. Once it is cool, spread the whip topping over the pie. Use as much or as little as you like.
Sprinkle your toppings onto the pie. This time, I just used crushed walnuts and mini chocolate chips. You can drizzle caramel or chocolate syrup on, top it with diced apples or cherries, or any combination. Get creative!
If you need to serve the pie soon, return it to the freezer until time to cut it. If you don’t need it for several hours, put it into the fridge. The pie is always best served cold.
Boil milk about three hours
Pour into crust
Whipped topping & garnishes
I love this pie! I often request it instead of a cake for my birthday. So yummy; it kind of tastes like O’Charley’s caramel pie if you have ever eaten it.
I love to enjoy this pie with a cup of strong coffee. Yum 🙂
Have you guys tried this pie before? Any suggestions on different garnishes?