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All the best recipes are the ones handed down.

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

And this here pie? Well it’s one of my absolute favorite recipes made by my grandma…aka Nonnie.

You guys remember the recipe books that your mom had when you were a kid, right? The ones with a plastic binder and paper smeared with butter, chocolate and who knows what else?

Yeah, well this one in the below photo was my moms. She used it all the time, but mostly for one sole recipe. My grandma’s Kentucky Derby Pie.

I’m not sure why it has taken me so long to share this recipe, but with the Kentucky Derby coming up next week I thought that now would be just the perfect time.Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Growing up, my Nonnie would make this pie all the time. My brothers would never touch it because of the pecans, but I was the odd kid that loved a pie loaded with pecans…and a little bourbon too.

Just like most of my grandma’s recipes, this pie is simple, but also the BEST. It’s sweet, loaded with chocolate and pecans, and so super gooey.

While the original reason for this pie was to celebrate the Kentucky Derby, my Nonnie made this year-round. It’s just too good to enjoy only once a year, you know?

Speaking of the Kentucky Derby, my mom’s Godmother’s daughter will be attending, and I hear there’s a decent chance she will be seen in the winners circle with a horse named Irish War Cry. So are any of you guys having any fun parties to celebrate? I’ve never done anything for the Derby, but I feel like it would make such a great excuse for a cool party. Kentucky Hot BrownsCorn Pudding, Blackberry Bourbon Smash, and pies?

Um, yes please! Maybe this year…feeling the need for a little fun!

Sidenote: As I type, it is a complete whiteout outside my window with snow forecasted through May 4th!

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

OKOK, anyway!

Like I mentioned, this pie has been a favorite of mine since I was a kid. Both my Nonnie and my mom made it, and now I make it. Typically around Christmas and then maybe once again in the summer. But this year I made it for the Derby!

I haven’t changed much about my Nonnie’s recipe, but over the years I did make two small changes. I reduced the sugar a bit and swapped the corn syrup for pure maple syrup. Both very good swaps in my opinion and ones that I know my Nonnie would love…which has me thinking, I think I will have to send her one!

Plus, I think maple just adds to the whole “southern” pie experience don’t you think?

The rest of the pie is simple, simple. Butter, sugar, eggs, maple, a little bourbon, some vanilla, lots of chocolate chips, pecans and a pinch of salt. Pantry ingredients.

Of course you’ll also need a pie crust. I use this recipe, but my grandma is super smart and knows that a store-bought crust is never a bad idea either, so if that’s easier for you, go for it!

The one important thing to note about this pie is the cooking time. It will need to bake for fifty to sixty minutes, but guys don’t worry if the pie is just slightly jiggly in the center when it comes out, that’s OK. The pie will sink and set as it cools and in turn you will be left with the most perfect pie.

Ever.

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

When Nonnie makes this pie, she serves it up with a simple dollop of whipped cream. I like to do the same…only I add just a splash of bourbon to my cream for a little extra flavor. I mean, it is a Kentucky Derby Pie after all, so I feel like the more bourbon the better…good thing it’s on a Saturday. 🙂

This pie is always the crowd favorite. I have yet to meet a person who does not LOVE it, and to this day it’s both of my parents favorite pie.

We like to eat this when it’s still a little warm, topped with that bourbon cream. Trust me though, the leftovers are just as good the next morning…ooops I mean day. Right, right.

PS. this smells amazing while baking in the oven…just saying.

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings: 8 servings
Calories Per Serving: 507 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

Bourbon Cream

Instructions

  • 1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
    2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until incorporated. Add the maple syrup, bourbon, vanilla, and salt and mix until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. 
    3. Press your pie crust into an 8-9 inch pie plate. Pour the batter into the pie crust. Transfer to the oven and bake for 55-60 minutes. It is OK if the pie is a little jiggly in the center. Let cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature alongside the bourbon cream (below). 

Bourbon Cream

  • 1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Add the bourbon and maple syrup and whip until combined. Serve alongside the pie.

Nonnie's Kentucky Derby Pie | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Here’s to Friday night pie making! Whoop, whoop.

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Comments

    1. Hi Chloe,
      Yes, you can skip the bourbon. I hope you love this recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  1. Just wondering how long you would bake this using convection oven? Do you ever use convection when baking? Thanks!

  2. I made this recipe twice before baking. The first time the eggs seems to have been too cold and curdled the batter. The second time I made sure the egg and butter was at room temperature but the batter still curdled again. Is it possible to over mix the egg and butter batter and it be over emulsified and just look like it was curdled? Before pouring it was a very liquidy mixture with a grainy layer of the egg and butter on the top. Could you possible post photos of what your mixture looks like throughout the process.

    1. Hi Brie! I think your batter is actually totally normal. Everything should come together while baking. Did you ever finish the pie? How did it turn out? Mine usually looks curdled, but then comes together in the oven!

    1. Hey Emily,
      I would warm at 300 for 10-15 minutes. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions. Happy Thanksgiving! xTieghan

  3. Hi!! Can you omit the chocolate chips on or will it be too runny? Or would you suggest to add another ingredient to replace them, such as more pecans? Thank you!

    1. Hi Erin! I think you can just omit the chocolate chips. The pie should still be great! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! And Happy Thanksgiving!! xTieghan

  4. Heyaaa I totally made this today and I’m not sure if the butter and chocolate were supposed to be fully melted beforehand? It looks a bit funny to me and that’s the only reason why I’d think it looks that way. Otherwise the whipped cream is AMAZING.

    1. Hey Naomi,
      Thank you so much for giving the recipe a try! So for the butter you want that to be at room temperature, the chocolate does not need to be melted, just solid chocolate chips. Maybe this was your issue? Let me know if this helps! xTieghan

    1. Hi Christy! I am sorry to hear that! Please let me know if there is anything I can help with! xTieghan

  5. 5 stars
    I made this pie over the weekend using GF pie crust and it came out amazing!! The gooey center is the best part. Just one thing to note- I initially tried making it with cold eggs and the mixture didn’t turn out well so I tried it again with room temp eggs and it was perfect.

  6. 5 stars
    Currently eating this amazing ness, another in the oven! Can’t wait to take your family recipient to derby party tomorrow! Thank you for sharing 🙂

  7. It looks delicious!! I just made it and it also smells amazing!!! First I love you and all of your recipes. You rock! Everything is delicious!!

    Second, I should have asked this before I made it… I made it tonight But I wasn’t planning on serving it until tomorrow. Will it keep well?? Should I refrigerate it??

    1. Thank you, thank you! You are so sweet! 🙂

      I just leave this on the counter, covered in a cool, dry place. It keeps great overnight!! Hope the pie is a hit!

  8. Wow, it looks amazing. Now that I think about it, I haven’t had pecan pie in forever… I think it’s about time I changed that 🙂

  9. You actually make it appear really easy with your presentation but I find this
    matter to be really something which I feel I’d never understand.
    It kind of feels too complicated and extremely large
    for me. I am looking forward on your subsequent post, I’ll try to get the cling of it!

  10. I am making this for the Derby this weekend. I wondered if you could give me some tips on how to get my crust to look like the one you have in the picture (specifically the ribbon look)? Thanks so much!

  11. I would love to try making this again!❤ The filling actually was very much a liquid rather than doughy when I poured it in the shell…btw, used your pie crust recipe and it was amazing! But anyway, perhaps the different temperatures of the ingredients? Could my eggs, maple syrup, butter not be as mixable unless they are all a similar temp? Or too much liquid somehow. Hmmmmm…Would love to hear your thoughts!

    1. Hey Gia! Your eggs are best at room temp and your butter should be pretty soft (not melted, just soft). The maple should be room temp. The batter is supposed to be liquid before baking, but should firm up once fully baked! Was there clumps of egg and butter? Do you think they did not get mixed?

      1. Thank you so much for your kind responses!❤And yes, I tried this again and it worked out!!! I kept ingredients the right (room) temp and baked it a little longer second time around. My pie crust initially got too dark too early, and I think that’s when I panicked & removed the pie from the oven quickly. Second try was perfect! (Guess I could protect crust with foil if it gets too dark too fast!) And please re-write the notes concerning this delicious pie: serving size 2…1/2 of the pie one night, the other 1/2 the next. Yummmmm!???
        P.S. Made your Belgian waffles and coupled it with your fried chicken, topped with black peppered maple syrup & vanilla bean butter for a Kentucky Derby dinner to accompany Nonnies pie- amazing! Love you Tieghan!❤Can’t wait for every single recipe you share!!!

        1. Hi Gia! haha! I agree, 2 servings sounds about right! So happy you LOVE the pie! And oh mu gosh, those waffles sound INCREDIBLE! wow and YUM! Thanks again and have a great rest of the week! 🙂

  12. Made this yesterday and it was awesome. The bourbon cream is a must. In order to get the third egg fully incorporated, however, there was a little “froth” on top which formed a light crust when baked. (I’ll try to post a picture) It didn’t change the taste, but certainly did change the appearance. I also found that after stirring in the chips and nuts, when I poured them into the shell, the chips all came out in a clump from the bottom of the filling bowl. I had to use a wooden spoon to spread them around more or less evenly. I’ll try the pic in another comment so it won’t mess this one up if it doesn’t work. 🙂

    1. Sounds like you figured out a pretty good technique! Wish I could see the picture! Hope it was yummy!

      1. Here’s a picture of mine. Also read another comment that the filling was “more liquid than doughy” or something like that. That’s certainly true, but it baked up just fine and solid in the 50 minutes you suggested. So … here ‘s a link to the photo:

        https://1drv.ms/i/s!Agbr5UiF5s2u_BU7aYDoRyJrU6aP

        Let me know if that works!

  13. Help! Made this but it did not turn out for me…the center/filling was very “eggy” tasting and inconsistently thick. What did I do wrong? Don’t worry, I did eat the candied pecans off the top and dipped them in the bourbon cream- yum! Can Nonnie come over and make this right?❤

    1. Hi Gia! OH NO! How long did you bake it for? Was the butter fully mix when you add the maple? The filling should be moist and doughy, but not taste eggy in anyway. It’s possible you just needed bake it longer? So incredibly sorry for the trouble. Hope I can help make it right for you! 🙂

  14. Oh my gosh, as soon as I finish with finals and have free time in my life again….this pie is so happening. YUM. I can’t wait!!

  15. My husbands from New York but I’m from Alabama and spent most of my life in Kentucky. He’s never been a fan of pecan pie but was impressed at Christmas when I used maple syrup and bourbon. I think adding the chocolate this time will win him over for good.

  16. I never liked pecan pie as a kid but have totally taken to it as an adult. This is a family recipe worth sharing for sure!

  17. love that this is your Nonnie’s Kentucky Derby Pie! One day, you can pass this down to your kids! it’s gorgeous!

    1. Hey Sarah! No need to blind bake the crust. Please let me know if you have other questions. Hope you love this pie!

  18. This is one of your prettiest recipes to date. I’ve lived in the south my entire life and never made pecan pie…I’m inspired!! It’s gorgeous!

  19. LOVE Derby pies and it’s not just because of being a Kentuckian gal through and through.

    Been reading your recipes for months and Tieghan, you are truly inspirational! Keep it up!

  20. Hi Tieghan! This looks sooooo good!! Any issues with baking this at altitude as written? I live at 7800′ and have had limited luck (so far) with pecan pie but I am determined to succeed. Love your blog and your photos are always stunning. Thanks!

    1. Hey Ann! I am at 9,000 feet and have NO issues with this recipe. Just be sure to cook it for 55-60 minutes and it is OK if it’s a little giggly when the pie comes out. It will set as it cools. Let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love the pie!

  21. I love derby pie! I like to go all out decorating, so I am setting up the buffet this weekend, my friends and I all throw $5.00 into a bucket and each bet on the winner, of course the person or persons that bet correctly get the money, makes it a little more fun, plus always good food.

    1. Hey Charlotte! Thank you so much for catching that! It is 1/2 cup, but feel free to use 1 cup, that will be great! 🙂 Hope you love the pie!

  22. YES!! I agree Tieghan…handed down recipes are the best ones. This pie looks so yum!

  23. I think I need to make this pronto! And you’re the only other person I know who calls her grandma “Nonnie”! And we spell it the same as well!

  24. That ‘B’ word. 🙂
    It was Bacon….. everything is better with Bacon…NOW it is Bourbon !!
    I even found a recipe with Bourbon in the cole slaw for pulled pork Sands. Yummo
    Have not made a pecan pie for quite a while..so on the list for today.
    Thank you!!
    btw it snowed a tad overnight….again….sigh.

    1. Also the photo did not print of the pie this time. it has been doing that lately, but not this morning.

      1. SORRY! Photo is there now! Still getting used to adding it…just keep calling me out if it is not there! 🙂

  25. The check-out ladies at the grocery story will be all a-buzz today because I’ll be buying some bourbon as soon as the sun is up. Today is MIL’s birthday and I’m going to make this for her. I need pecans and chocolate chips, but that won’t be quite as noteworthy. And it just happens to be my wife’s favorite pie, so I’ll be a hit all around.

  26. This looks incredible, like pecan pie with a twist. Can’t wait to try it! I love family recipes; thanks for sharing one of yours.

  27. Oh, yum. My mom made a version of this growing up, too! I haven’t had it in years (my brother in law is allergic to nuts and so we stopped making desserts with nuts when he’s around!) but I need to remedy that ASAP and try your version. It’s going to be hard to go eat toast for breakfast because this is literally alllll I can think about now… ?