Creamy Peanut Butter Cup Pie

The Pie Academy’s Tailgate Pie of the Week: Week 8

When it comes to peanut butter, I never grew up, not even close.

I have three peanut butter crackers with my morning coffee…and my “real” breakfast typically consists of peanut butter on apple slices, peanut butter sauce on hot oatmeal, or peanut butter on whole grain toast.

Three guesses what my favorite candy is.

If you or someone you love shares my unabashed fondness for peanut butter, why aren’t you already in the kitchen getting started on this pie?

In case you’re wondering what – if any – difference there is between this filling and, say, peanut butter cheesecake, let me help you out: there’s almost none. The fillings are virtually identical – sweet, peanutty, and creamy – only this is made in a pie pan and not a springform pan. My pie version is perhaps a tad firmer than the ultra-creamiest peanut butter cheesecake I’ve had, but that only makes it more suitable for transporting and holding its shape when sliced.

How’s this rate as a tailgate pie? (Remember, this is week 8 in our parade of tailgate pies.) Quite well, I think, provided you make provisions for keeping it cool and not trashing the top of the pie since you’ll be going to pains to make it look pretty. You can simply cover it with tented foil, if that’s all you have.

And since you never want to underestimate the impact of a great crust, I’ve included my recipe for Peanut Graham Cracker Crumb Crust. Check it out.

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CRUST NOTE: You may use a large packaged graham cracker crust here, but my preference is for the Peanut Graham Cracker Crumb Crust.

Creamy Peanut Butter Cup Pie

Ingredients

  • 1 Peanut Graham Cracker Crumb Crust
  • FILLING
  • 12 ounces cream cheese (not reduced fat), at room temperature
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
  • TOPPING & GARNISH
  • 1/2 cup heavy or whipping cream
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 8 to 10 full size peanut butter cups, coarsely chopped

Instructions

  1. Prepare the crust as directed, pressing it into a 9 1/2" to 10" deep-dish pie pan. Prebake as directed and cool on a rack. Set the oven to 325°.
  2. Combine the cream cheese and peanut butter in a large mixing bowl. (If you have one, a stand mixer works well here.) Using an electric mixer, cream the ingredients on medium speed. Gradually add the sugar, beating until evenly blended and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Blend in the eggs and yolk, one at a time, until evenly blended. Blend in the sour cream and vanilla. Blend in the chopped nuts.
  3. Scrape the filling into the pie shell and smooth the top with a spoon. Place on the center oven rack and bake for approximately 50 minutes. When done, the filling will have puffed slightly and the center will be wobbly, but "set." The very center may have a shiny finish but the rest of the surface will have a dull appearance.
  4. Transfer the pie to a rack and cool thoroughly. Cover loosely and refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight.
  5. The next morning, finish the pie with the chocolate topping and garnish. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until the surface shimmers. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Let sit for 7 or 8 minutes, then whisk to smooth.
  6. As the chocolate cools, it will start to thicken. When it is still thin enough to drizzle but has a fair amount of body, drizzle half of the chocolate over the surface of the pie with a large spoon. Distribute the chopped peanut butter cups here and there over the chocolate, then drizzle the rest of the chocolate over the top. Refrigerate until serving. Cover with tented foil for extended refrigeration. Makes 10 to 12 servings.
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