SMiLes by Meg

Lime in the Coconut Pie

This post starts with a new Saturday morning tradition. Last week was the first time we tried this, but since its been two weeks in a row, I’m calling it a tradition. I start a run from my parents’ new house and my mom starts to walk. I go out around to the beach and back, and it times out perfectly (like, arriving-at-the-door-at-the-exact-same-time perfectly) that we meet at the bakery we always used to go to from their old house. 

Yesterday morning, we continued this tradition. Normally, we just get coffee and walk back to the new house, but, as you all know by now, my mom really likes coconut. And it just so happened that French Memories had a new coconut pastry out: “Put the lime in the coconut”. It was a coconut meringue base with banana mousse and lime mousse layers. I am sure it is delicious as it sounds.

So, in our Gemini natures, we went back and forth as to whether the four mile round trip walk justified a slice of cake for breakfast. I, naturally, supported such a cause (I believe pastries should be more of a diet staple than they currently are – they have fruit!), but my mom decided she didn’t need one and would get it for dessert on Sunday instead.

However, later that day, she changed her mind and we went back to French Memories to retrieve the dessert. But it was all gone! Devastating, really. My mom was a champ about it, but we all know how terrible it can be to have a dessert craving and the dessert is for some reason unavailable. Or at least I know.

Which leads me to this week’s post: my own take on the “Put the lime in the coconut.” I instead decided on a key lime pie, with the twist of putting coconut in the crust and on top (thus literally having the lime in the coconut). Through a little bit of Pinterest research, I was able to tie together a couple of recipes to get what I wanted. As an added bonus, this particular recipe is gluten-free!

I’m not sure it was exactly the substitute my mom wanted for the French Memories version (because, really, who ever settles for a substitute to a craving?), but it was still good enough to be banned from the house, which I consider a win.

First, crush the graham crackers in a plastic bag using a rolling pin. You could also use a mini-chop for a more uniform texture, but the gluten free Schar graham crackers lent themselves well to this method.IMG_2897 IMG_2898Combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, coconut flakes, and melted butter in a small bowl with a wooden spoon.IMG_2899 IMG_2900Press the graham mixture into a 9 inch pie pan. Bake at 375°F for 7 minutes. Allow to cool.IMG_2901As the crust is cooling, whisk together the egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, unsweetened coconut milk, and lime juice in a medium bowl until smooth.IMG_2902Pour the mixture into the cooled pie crust. I had a little extra because my pie dish was particularly shallow, but as a rule try not to go about the crust.IMG_2903 IMG_2904Bake at 325°F for about 40 minutes, or until filling is set except for a slight wobble in the middle. Allow to cool 2 hours at room temperature and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.IMG_2905Just before serving, make the whipped cream by putting the cold heavy cream and confectioners’ sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat at high speed until stiff peaks form.IMG_2906 IMG_2907Spread whipped cream over pie and serve immediately. We didn’t end up getting them, but a company called Dang makes dark chocolate-covered coconut chips that would be an excellent garnish.IMG_2908 IMG_2909Fun fact: Key Lime Pie is only green if you dye it that way. Otherwise, its a way prettier (and more natural) yellow from the egg whites.IMG_2912We are hoping it keeps overnight with the whipped cream so my parents can bring it to work tomorrow, but if you can you should get rid of it all in one serving – generally whipped cream doesn’t do well on top of something overnight.


Lime in the Coconut Pie 


  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free graham crackers, crushed
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  •  6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 7 large egg yolks
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 13.5 ounces unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup key lime juice
  • 2 cups heavy cream, cold
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • dark chocolate coconut chips, for garnish


  1. Combine crushed graham crackers, sugar, coconut flakes, and melted butter in a large bowl with a wooden spoon.
  2. Press graham mixture into a 9 inch pie pan.
  3. Bake at 375°F for 7 minutes. Cool crust.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, unsweetened coconut milk, and key lime juice until smooth.
  5. Pour mixture into crust and bake at 325°F for 40 minutes until set except for slight wobble in middle. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours before chilling in refrigerator for at least 3 hours.
  6. Just before serving, combine heavy cream and confectioners’ sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on high speed until stiff peaks form.
  7. Spread whipped cream over pie and sprinkle with dark chocolate coconut chips as garnish.