With the unofficial start to summer just a few weeks away, we’re beginning to see summer grilling displays in every grocery, big-box store, and supermarket. Backyard barbeques have come a long way from the days of simple grills with charcoal, long wooden benches, and citronella candles.
Many people have turned their backyards into five-star outdoor cooking and entertaining areas with gas grills so elaborate it puts the kitchen stove to shame. Then there’s the outdoor brick oven to make pizza, nan, or pitas. Folding lawn chairs have been replaced with sumptuous outdoor living rooms to keep guests happy and the party going.
Nevertheless, there is one area where outdoor cooking falls a little short, and that’s dessert. Granted, ice cream, sorbet, gelato, and smores, are all easy and sweet ways to cap off a meal, but what if you want to make a splash for dessert without overheating yourself or your kitchen?
Try the no-bake dessert route. All you need is a premade graham cracker, or cookie crust of your choice and a filling. What better way to start than with this no-bake key lime pie? It’s quick, easy, elegant, and can be made ahead of time. Your guests will be wowed while they stay cool.
Three Ingredient No-Bake Key Lime Pie by Kirbie’s Cravings adapted by Still A Chick Lit
Makes: 1 8 or 9-inch pie or 12 mini pies
Serves: 10 (pie)
3/4 cup (177 ml) lime juice + 1 tbsp lime zest
- 2 (14 oz) cans of full-fat sweetened condensed milk (vegan sweetened full-fat condensed milk)
- 1 pre-made graham cracker pie crust (Gluten-free graham cracker crust)
Add lime juice and condensed milk to a large mixing bowl. Stir until evenly combined and lime juice is fully incorporated into the condensed milk. Stir in lime zest.
Pour into pie crust. Level the surface with a spatula. Place pie into fridge for several hours or overnight to set. Keep the pie in the fridge until ready to serve. If you want to decorate the pie, wait for the filling to set and then decorate. Then put the pie back into the fridge until ready to serve. You can make the pie 2-3 days in advance.
- You want to leave the pie in the fridge until right before serving because of its creamy filling. When you first take it out of the fridge, the custard will be just firm enough for you to cut through into slices. As the filling comes to room temperature, it will start to soften and won’t be as stable for cutting, which is why you want to keep it chilled until right before serving. If you want a more stable filling, try the cream cheese version.
I have only tested this recipe using fresh squeezed lime juice. You can use regular limes or key limes. Regular limes are easier and you will need approximately 6 regular limes to produce the amount of juice needed. If using key limes, you will need approximately 20 key limes.
- This recipe uses two 14 oz cans of condensed milk, for a total of 28 oz or 794 grams. 14 oz refers to weight, not volume.
- I piped dollops of whipped cream on top and sprinkled on some additional lime zest for decoration.
- I used a 9-inch graham cracker pie crust for this recipe. You can also use a 10-inch pie crust but your filling won’t be as tall (though it will be a little more stable).
- This pie is very sweet but traditional key lime pie is very sweet. If you prefer a less sweet pie, you can make the cream cheese version which will taste more like a lime cheesecake.
- Cream Cheese Version:
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk (vegan sweetened condensed milk)
- 1 block cream cheese (dairy: light cream cheese) (non-dairy- vegan cream cheese)
- 1/2 cup lime juice
- 1/2 tablespoon lime zest
- Bring the cream cheese to room temperature first to soften it, then beat it with a mixer until light and fluffy. Then mix in the condensed milk, juice, and zest. Pour batter into pie crust. Place the pie into the fridge for several hours until set.