Pie Day Friday: Frozen Turtle Pie- dairy OR dairy free!

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If you happen to be reading this on the day it was published, you're probably thinking, "uh, Lauren, it's Thursday.  Is that a Freudian slip?"  Not this time!

Last week, Christy Jordan of Southern Plate posted her first "Pie Day Friday" post, and I tried it out that same night/very next day.  Last weekend was when we celebrated my dad's birthday, and the poor man has developed lactose intolerance or an allergy to dairy to the point that he can't have anything containing dairy much at all.  For those who have ever cut dairy out of their diet, you realize how daunting this is.  It cuts out A LOT of foods, including desserts made with butter, milk, cream, etc.  How sad is a birthday without a birthday cake?  When I saw this recipe, a light bulb went off about trying to make the pudding with almond milk rather than cow milk.  I lightly researched it, and discovered that you CAN use pudding mix with almond milk, and it works great in this recipe.  My dad loved it, too, so bonus!  Tasty, easy, quick, and economical, this was a great kickoff to Pie Day Friday, so thanks Christy Jordan!

I'm posting the recipe as I made it (with the almond milk), but you can click on the recipe title to be taken to Southern Plate and the recipe as it was originally posted.  Enjoy!

Frozen Turtle Pie
adapted from Southern Plate

1- 3.4 oz box Chocolate Instant Pudding
1 cup unsweetened plain almond milk
1 lg container whipped topping (16 oz)
1- pre-made chocolate cookie pie crust
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1 jar caramel topping
1 bottle Magic Shell (you'll use for garnish only)

In a large bowl, combine the pudding mix and the almond milk.  Add in 8 oz of the whipped topping and fold with a rubber spatula/scraper until well combined.

Pour approx. 1 cup of the caramel topping in the bottom of your pie shell, until it completely covers the bottom of the pie shell.  Spread about 1 cup chopped pecans, almost completely covering the caramel layer. Pour pudding-whipped topping mixture over the pecans and cover pie.  Freeze until firm, about 4 hours or overnight.

When ready to serve, spoon or pipe a border of whipped topping around the edge of the pie.  Drizzle Magic Shell and caramel topping over pie.  Sprinkle with additional pecans.

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