This margarita pie with a pretzel crust has a creamy and tart, no bake filling; flavored with lime, tequila, triple sec, sweetened condensed milk and lime zest. The pie is chilled, not frozen and sits in an easy, graham pretzel crust.
Cocktails in pie form? Yes please!
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Those who know me well, know I enjoy a cocktail from time to time. Warm days and sunshine make me think of margaritas! Just in time for Cinco de Mayo, a margarita pie recipe.
I first learned about this pie when my brother-in-law and his family were visiting and it was my nephew's birthday. Margarita pie was his request for a birthday cake. I had also made homemade s'mores that week and my brother-in-law said that the graham crackers needed to be made into some other sort of dessert as well. It only took me seven years, but I finally made that happen!
what is margarita pie with a pretzel crust?
Margarita pie has a creamy and tart filling, not quite as dense as a cheesecake, but somewhat similar in texture. Lime juice, lime zest, tequila, triple sec and a little salt give the filling the margarita flavor. Sweetened condensed milk, whipped cream and gelatin are what give the filling the sweetness and creamy texture.
The pretzel crust is made from scratch. It starts with an adaptation from my homemade s'mores graham crackers and uses some ground pretzels to give that pretzel crunch and taste.
is the pretzel crust no bake?
No. The pretzel crust is essentially homemade graham crackers with some ground pretzels incorporated into the dough. It does need to bake for about 12 minutes, but it's the only baking required in this pie recipe.
If making a graham pretzel crust from scratch isn't your thing, or you prefer not to turn on the oven; use the graham pretzel crust from my peanut butter pie recipe.
how to make a graham pretzel crust
Start by crushing your pretzels. Pretzel sticks are the pretzel of choice at my house, but any variety will work. I break the pretzels into small pieces to measure them, but I also give you ounce measurements in the recipe card. You can use a food processor to grind the pretzels. Or place the pretzels in a zip top bag and crush them with a rolling pin or meat mallet. You will want to leave a few small chunks of pretzels.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside. Then beat together the butter, brown sugar and honey.
Once the mixture is fluffy, slowly add the dry ingredients in three additions.
Then, you will roll out the dough and place it in your pie plate before chilling it.
The pretzel crust rolls out much easier when the dough is still warm. Place the dough between two pieces of parchment paper, wax paper or plastic wrap. Don't skip this step as the dough is sticky and you need the paper to flip the dough into the pie pan.
Next chill the dough for one hour.
Then line the dough with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights (you can also use coins or dried beans if you don't have pie weights). Bake the crust for 10-14 minutes. Do not be tempted to bake it longer. If you do, the crust will be incredibly crisp and hard to get out of the pie plate.
You can bake the crust up to a day ahead. Cover it tightly and leave at room temperature until ready to make the no bake margarita filling.
how to make the easy margarita pie filling
Next combine the sweetened condensed milk, lime juice, tequila, triple sec, lime zest and salt. Stir until well combined.
Then prepare the gelatin. Add 2 tablespoons boiling water to 1 packet (just shy of 1 tablespoon) of gelatin. Mix until gelatin has dissolved. You may need to use your clean fingers to work the final bits of gelatin into the water to be fully dissolved. DO NOT let the gelatin set up.
Working quickly, whisk the gelatin into the sweetened condensed milk mixture. Follow by folding in the prepared whipped cream. The gelatin is what allows this pie to stay firm while chilled, without it having to be frozen.
Finally, spread the filling into the prepared crust and chill for a minimum of three hours.
Top with additional whipped cream, lime slices, lime zest and a sprinkle of salt, if desired.
other pie and tart recipes to enjoy
- Almond and Berry Mascarpone Tart
- Blackberry Cherry Pie
- Coconut Cream Pie
- Coconut Pecan Tart
- Peanut Butter Pie
If you make this recipe (or any recipe!) from two sugar bugs please come back and leave a review and a star rating. I read every comment, and I LOVE hearing from you!
Remember to snap a picture and tag me @twosugarbugs on Instagram if you make this margarita pie with a pretzel crust! It warms my heart to see you bring these recipes to life! Thank you for being here and happy baking!
Graham Pretzel Crust
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup (1.5 ounces) pretzels, ground/crushed*
- 3 tablespoons whole wheat flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon honey
Margarita Pie Filling
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- ⅓ cup lime juice
- 2 tablespoons silver tequila
- 1 tablespoon triple sec or orange liqueur
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- 1 tablespoon gelatin**
- 2 tablespoons boiling water
Whipped Cream Garnish
- ½ cup whipping cream
- Lime zest
- Lime slices
- Coarse salt, if desired
- In medium bowl, combine the flour, ground pretzels, whole wheat flour and salt and set aside.
- In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar and honey on medium-high until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Scrape up and down sides of the bowl.
- With the mixer on low speed add the flour mixture in three additions, mixing until just combined after each addition.
- Place the graham pretzel crust dough between two sheets of parchment paper/wax paper or plastic wrap. Roll the dough into about a 12 inch circle. You may have to rearrange the paper a few times during the rolling process and some of the completed circle will not all fit under the paper.
- Once the crust is rolled into about a 12 inch circle, remove the top piece of paper. Butter your pie plate well. Lay the pie plate over the crust and then flip the whole thing over so the crust has flipped into the pie plate. Press the dough into the sides and bottom of the pie plate and then gently remove the paper. If the crust breaks in any areas, just press it back together. Trim any excess crust and use it to fix any broken areas. Chill the crust for a minimum of 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line the pie crust with aluminum foil and pie weights. Bake for about 10 - 14 minutes. The crust will look a little under done, but do not over bake it.
- Allow the crust to cool completely on a wire cooling rack. Crust can be baked up to a day ahead, cover tightly and keep at room temperature.
- Margarita Filling
With a hand-held or stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the whip cream until stiff peaks, about 3-4 minutes. Set in the refrigerator.
- In a medium to large bowl, mix sweetened condensed milk, lime juice, tequila, triple sec, salt and lime zest.
- Add 2 tablespoons boiling water to 1 packet (just shy of 1 tablespoon) of gelatin. Mix until gelatin has dissolved. You may need to use your clean fingers to work the final bits of gelatin into the water to be fully dissolved. DO NOT let the gelatin set up. Once the gelatin is fully dissolved, quickly whisk it into the margarita base. Then gently fold in the whipped cream. Work quickly as the gelatin will start to thicken the margarita pie base.
- Spoon the filling into the prepared graham pretzel crust and top with additional lime zest, if desired. Chill for a minimum of 3 hours before serving.
- If you want to decorate the top of the pie, whip another ½ cup of whipping cream and spoon or pipe the whipped cream on top of the chilled pie. Garnish with additional lime zest and lime slices. Sprinkle with a few pinches of coarse salt, if desired.
*You can use a food processor or you can place pretzels in a zip-top bag and crush with a rolling pin or mallet. The pretzels should be mostly ground with a few small chunks left.
**If using Knox gelatin, just use one packet.
Store covered in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 457Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 193mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 1gSugar: 38gProtein: 7g
The nutrition information is an estimate and may not be entirely accurate.