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Cranberry Custard Pie

Serves Serves 8-10     adjust servings

This delicious custardy, cranberry pie recipe has everything. Creamy, sweet custard meets bright, tart cranberry, all wrapped up in a buttery, flaky pie crust! This gorgeous make-ahead pie is perfect for the holidays!


For the crust:*

  • 1/4 cup very cold water
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter-flavored shortening
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1/2 egg, beaten

For the pie

  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup flour, spooned and leveled
  • 3 cups raw cranberries (if frozen, thaw them first)
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
  • water, for brushing
  • coarse sugar, for sprinkling
  • Sugared cranberries, for garnish


For the crust:

  1. Measure out 1/4 cup water into a glass measuring cup and stick it in the freezer.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, and salt.
  3. Use a pastry cutter or fork to cut in the shortening and 6 tablespoons butter. Cut until it looks like coarse crumbs. Don't overdo it!
  4. In a small bowl beat one egg. Pour out half (into the sink or into another container, or heck, into a frying pan if you're hungry). You can just eyeball it.
  5. Add the half beaten egg to the cold water that you put in the freezer. Beat it together, then add it to the butter/flour mixture. Stir until it is just coming together, then use your hands to knead it once or twice (only to make it come together). You can add up to a tablespoon more ice water if it is crumbly, though I've never had to do this. Divide the dough in half.
  6. Generously sprinkle flour onto a sheet of parchment paper (or just a very well floured workspace). Roll the dough with a rolling pin into a circle, using as much flour as you need so that it doesn't stick. Invert the parchment paper onto a deep** 9-inch pie pan and gently peel off the paper. Arrange the pie crust and trim edges as necessary.
  7. Repeat with the remaining dough, up until the invert step.

For the pie:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. In a stand mixer or large bowl, beat eggs on medium speed for about 2 or 3 minutes, until they are a light yellow color.
  3. Add the sugar and beat on medium for one more minute.
  4. Add the cornstarch and combine thoroughly, scraping sides.
  5. Add the salt and flour, and beat well.
  6. Stir in the cranberries with a rubber spatula.
  7. Pour into the prepared pie crust. Sprinkle the 2 tablespoons cut butter evenly over the mixture.
  8. Transfer (invert) the top crust over the pie and seal the edges.
  9. Brush the top crust with water and sprinkle with about a tablespoon of coarse sugar.
  10. Use a sharp knife to vent the pie.
  11. Cover the pie completely with foil that has been sprayed with nonstick spray.
  12. Bake on a cookie sheet (in case it bubbles over) in the preheated oven for 55 minutes.
  13. Uncover the pie and continue to bake for about another 15-17 minutes, or until the crust is firm and golden in the center.
  14. Remove from the oven and let stand until room temperature, several hours or preferably overnight. You can speed things up by putting it in the fridge if you want.
  15. Garnish with sparkling sugared cranberries and vanilla ice cream!
  16. Store covered on the counter. Warning: this means you will take bites of it every time you pass through your kitchen. Sorry in advance.