Addictive Recipes from a Self-Taught Baker

Key Lime Pie with Macadamia Nut Crust

Or try my key lime pie bars!

Deliciously simple homemade key lime pie! Macadamia nut crust and only 3 ingredients needed for the filling! Recipe on

Happy Memorial Day! I know you’re off enjoying this blissful long weekend as we remember those who have fallen for our country. Today is the unofficial start of summer: there’s burgers on the grill, watermelon in the fridge, and a whole lot of pie in our baking futures.

I mean, OF COURSE we’re kicking summer 2017 off with pie! Remember how many pies we made last summer? We’re totally rocking pies all summer long again, so get your pretty pie dishes ready.

Deliciously simple homemade key lime pie! Macadamia nut crust and only 3 ingredients needed for the filling! Recipe on

Many of you have been asking me what I’m craving in my pregnancy. I’m very boring, so here’s my answer: fruit. Buckets of fruit. Fruit… and salt. Buckets of salty chips followed by buckets of fruit. All the chips, all the fruit. Balance, right?

But in all honesty, it’s more like tangy/sweet things (lemon, lime) and spicy/salty things (made this salmon the other night and it was MAGIC). Side note: Kevin surprised me with one of those edible arrangement bouquets of just fruit and I ate almost the entire thing myself in 1 day. And it was the large size.

ANYWAY. I made key lime pie the other weekend– it was the recipe out of my cookbook. Have you tried it yet? Key lime pie will forever be one of my favorite desserts. This southern specialty has been winning over my tastebuds for years, ever since I met my friend Amy. It’s her #1 favorite. In fact, her birthday cake each year is key lime pie. She got me hooked. Between the buttery and crunchy crust, tangy custard filling, and the essential creamy topping– no dessert can rival key lime pie.

Can we make a good thing even better though?


Macadamia nut crust for key lime pie on

I made another key lime pie last week and am just going to say it right here, right now: this is absolutely the best key lime pie I’ve ever tasted.

Key lime pie is traditionally made with effortless graham cracker crust. It’s the most wonderful crunchy, sweet, and buttery, bed for the fresh key lime filling. But hey! How about getting a little nutty? You won’t believe the difference a handful of macadamia nuts makes. All I did was sub in some salty macadamia nuts for some of the graham crackers. Macadamia nuts are a gem and, as it turns out, often overlooked in the baking world. Why though? They’re so damn good!!

Just pulse some mac nuts with graham crackers and mix with melted butter and a little sugar. It’s an awesomely thick crust and the salty and sweet/toasty and crunchy combination will blow you away.

How to make EASY key lime pie on

How to make EASY key lime pie on

Do yourself a favor and buy a bottle of key lime juice from the store. Otherwise you will spend 100 years juicing 500 itsy bitsy key limes yourself. You need an entire cup of key lime juice and yes, it will take you 100 years to squeeze them all. But, I don’t know, maybe you’re much faster than I am!!

There’s brand of bottled key lime juice called Nellie & Joe’s in most major grocery stores next to the bottled lemon juice. You can use that. Just make sure you’re using key lime juice, not regular lime juice. Key limes are a little sweeter with a more intense flavor. Yum!

3 Ingredient Filling

This key lime pie filling recipe is a little different from my usual (the recipe in my cookbook). I typically add a little cream cheese to the filing to ensure stability and structure, but decided to do without. I wanted to share a traditional key lime pie here on my blog! So we’ll be using egg yolks, 2 cans sweetened condensed milk, and key lime juice.

Yes, the filling is only 3 ingredients.

(and, um, look how deliciously thick this crust is!)

How to make EASY key lime pie on

Deliciously simple homemade key lime pie! Macadamia nut crust and only 3 ingredients needed for the filling! Recipe on

Make sure you pre-bake the crust for about 8 minutes before pouring in the thick key lime filling. The actual pie only takes about 15 – 20 minutes, so not only are there minimal ingredients– this is a relatively quick recipe! Considering most fruit pies take about triple the time…!

For the topping, you can garnish the key lime pie with whipped cream OR since you’ll have leftover egg whites, make a meringue topping. You’ll have time to kill while the pie chills anyway!

Here’s my recipe for whipped cream and here’s my recipe for meringue topping.

Deliciously simple homemade key lime pie! Macadamia nut crust and only 3 ingredients needed for the filling! Recipe on

Summer of pies starts… now.

Key Lime Pie with Macadamia Nut Crust


Graham Cracker Macadamia Crust

  • 9 (135g) full-sheet graham crackers
  • 1/2 cup (62g) salted macadamia nuts (I used roasted)
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons (72g) unsalted butter, melted

Filling + Topping

  • 2 (14 ounce) cans full-fat sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup (240ml) key lime juice
  • 4 large egg yolks1
  • garnish: lime zest, lime slices, macadamia nuts, whipped cream, or meringue topping


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Make the crust: Using a food processor, pulse the graham crackers and macadamia nuts together into crumbs. A few larger pieces of nuts is OK! Pour into a medium bowl and stir in sugar and melted butter until combined. Press tightly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie dish. Pre-bake crust for 8 minutes. Leave oven on.
  3. Make the filling: Whisk the sweetened condensed milk, lime juice, and egg yolks together-- or use an electric mixer. Pour into warm crust.
  4. Bake the pie for 15-20 minutes or until only *slightly* jiggly in the center. You want it mostly set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. Once cool, cover and chill for at least 1 hour (and up to 3 days) before serving.
  5. Garnish as desired. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Make ahead tip: You can prepare and pre-bake the crust up to 2-3 days in advance. Cover and store at room temperature. Likewise, you can mix up the filling up to 2-3 days in advance. Cover and refrigerate, then assemble and bake. Freezes well up to 3 months-- thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

Recipe Notes:

  1. What to do with all those egg whites? Here are all my recipes using just egg whites or you can make a meringue topping for the pie.

Did you make a recipe?

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

And PS: you’ve tried these key lime pie truffles, right?!


Here are some items I used to make today’s recipe.

KitchenAid Food Processor | Colorful WhiskZester | Citrus JuicerGlass Scalloped Pie Plate

Some of the links above are affiliate links, which pay me a small commission for my referral at no extra cost to you! Thank you for supporting Sally’s Baking Addiction.

This is the BEST key lime pie recipe with a toasty macadamia nut crust and easy 3 ingredient filling! Recipe on


  1. Will this be gross if…
    Will this work if…
    one of the two cans of sweetened condensed milk is low-fat? I accidentally grabbed one that was low-fat…grrrr

    Oh! and how will this hold up at room temperature? I want to make this for a bake sale at work!

  2. Finally! As a huge fan of your blog and your recipes, Sally, (and not liking how my jeans looks on me anymore) I think the only thing missing among all that amazing recipes is the key lime pie recipe.


    • Can we talk about how amazing/hilarious your username is though? Thank you for making my morning 😉 HAHAHA

  3. Hi Sally! Maybe someone has already asked you about this but, is it possible to not use the oven and make the base hard just by using the freezer? Here in Spain we are all about to melt! 🙂

    Thanks a lot!

  4. Hi Sally!! I couldn’t get a hold of key limes and have just regular limes but would still like to make this pie! Should I just add additional sugar to offset the tartness? Any suggestions would be great. Thanks!! 

    • nope, just make the pie as is. 🙂 the extra sweetness in key limes is subtle, so no need to add extra sugar.

  5. Hi Sally, I’ve made so many of your recipes and they are always yummy.  I’m in Australia and we don’t have Graham crackers. I’ve been googling and have seen you can get them Honey or cinnamon flavoured, is this right?  If so what would you recommend for this recipe? My husband goes to the States often for work, so I’m going to get him to bring my some back. (Along with my key lime juice) we also can’t get here.. x
    Many thanks Leanne 

  6. I love that you used macadamia nuts in the crust…and it looks so easy! I’m all about the citrusy things. Lemon, lime anything is my favorite!

  7. I love your macadamia crust – this is the prettiest key lime pie! 🙂

  8. Made it. Loved it. Tagged you on the ‘Gram. I went with your meringue recipe and it was SO good!

  9. Hi Sally! I”m in LOVE with your original key lime pie recipe (with only one can of condensed milk and 4oz of cream cheese). Is this version just less ‘firm’? Or does it become a lot sweeter with the additional can? I want to try out the new crust but am trying to decide which version of the filling I’d like to use.

    • This one is slightly sweeter I’d say– but still just as firm. I think you should try this filling!

      • I did try it and IT WAS SO GOOD! The crust came out a bit moist though… is that normal? I pre-baked it (even an extra 2 minutes).

  10. First time making key lime pie.  So easy and delicious !   Great dessert for hot summer nights.  So refreshing.  I used shortbread crust since we have nut allergy.   Everything I have made from your website is the best!  Thanks Sally !!

  11. Hi,
    I can’t find any lime in my country.. can I maybe use lemons instead?? 
    This looks amazing! can’t wait to bake it! 

  12. Hiii! Looveed this recipe!! But definately a must using the stand mixer. The first time I did it just with a whisk was a total mess it wouldn’t set at all! Totally diferent the second time using the mixer, the texture was perfect. Thankyou Sally for sharing this recipe❤️

    • That’s crazy that the method of mixing prevented it from setting! I’ve never had an issue with a whisk, but I’ll have to try a mixer next time.

      • Sorry I really thought that could have been the reason, maybe I didn’t mix it enough with the whisk. Hope you can help me figure out what im doing wrong with the chocolate chip bonus recipe. Thanku

  13. Hi Sally, Will this freeze well? Thanks for another delicious recipe!

  14. Made mine with lemons (because that is what husband was craving sadly. Otherwise followed recipe exactly) and OMG it was delicious!!! Love the crunchy/salty crust with the silky/sweet pie filling. This is definitely one of my favorite pie recipes ever!! Will have to make it with key lime sometime this summer. Thanks Sally for the wonderful recipe! Found your website for the first time last year and is now my go to anytime I bake.

    • I’m SO GLAD you tried this with lemons! Thank you so much for the thoughtful comment too. I appreciate it!

  15. For anyone looking to make this dairy free, I successfully made it for the 4th of July using “Let’s Do… Organic” brand sweetened condensed coconut milk from Whole Foods with a 1:1 ratio. I also replaced the butter in the crust with coconut oil. It took a little longer to cook (a our 40-45 minutes) and looked a bit liquidy when I put it in the refrigerator but it firmed up perfectly and everyone loved it! 

    • Thank you so much for reporting back about your dairy free version. I know some readers will find this so helpful.

  16. Sally, Thank you for posting this recipie. My mother made the best key lime pies but at 97 she won’t even walk in the kitchen. I made one with cream cheese but can’t wait to taste this one. It sounds so good. I live in Florida and I have a key lime tree. This year I have had 1 lime! I bought Joe and nellys

  17. Hi Sally, thank you for this recipe, I’m so excited to make this pie. However I’m a little confused with the amount of condensed milk i should use. It seems that in my country, 1 can of condensed milk is 14 ounces, so do i stick with using just 1 can, or 2? Sorry for this really noob question! 

  18. Hii Sally would the crust be a mess if a used roasted hazelnuts instead of roasted macadamias?? Thankyou

  19. I have a question about this recipe. I have been researching Key Lime Pie recipes before I settle on which one to make. I love your recipes and your site is always my first go to source! However the proportions seem off… Most recipes call for 1 can of sweetened condensed milk for the same amount of lime juice and eggs. Does that make this pie overly or more sweet instead of tart? Can anyone describe the flavor that this pie yields? By adding the extra can it seems you would end up with a muted like flavor and way more filling too.

    • Most recipes call for half the amount of lime juice– or 3/4 cup. It’s a sweet lime pie, for sure, with a noticeable tangy bite.

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