This creamy and indulgent French silk pie combines my best flaky pie crust, smooth-as-silk chocolate filling, and fresh whipped cream on top. This recipe uses cooked eggs, so you don’t have to worry about consuming raw eggs.
After many requests, I’m unveiling a favorite French silk pie recipe. I’ve tried a lot of French silk pies and have made several in my own kitchen, but this is definitely my best one yet and I’m thrilled for you to finally try it! Perhaps you’ll even consider adding it to your menu of Thanksgiving pies 🙂
Why This Is My Best French Silk Pie
- Uses my tried-and-true flaky pie crust
- Light as mousse, but much smoother
- Unlike other recipes, there’s no raw eggs
- Filling sets up perfectly
- Garnished with my favorite fresh whipped cream
No Raw Eggs
This characteristic is definitely worth highlighting. Most French silk pie recipes call for raw eggs, but I gently cook them first. This requires an extra step on the stove, but it cancels out any worries of serving raw eggs. Even with this step, we still have the same smooth-as-silk texture—nothing is compromised! So if you’re looking for a classic French silk pie recipe without raw eggs, this is it.
How to Fully Blind Bake Pie Crust
Like my banana cream pie and coconut cream pie, this French silk pie filling isn’t baked, so it requires a fully baked pie crust. “Blind baking” means that we bake a pie crust without a filling inside. Do you know how to blind bake pie crust? Let’s review:
- Make pie dough ahead of time, then refrigerate or freeze until you’re ready to make the pie. Pie dough must chill for at least 2 hours before rolling out. You can use my favorite pie crust or my all-butter pie crust recipe. I prefer the shortening/butter blend in my pie crust, because the shortening promises that prized flaky texture. If needed, you can use a graham cracker crust or even an Oreo cookie crust instead. See recipe Note.
- Roll the dough out, then fit into a 9-inch pie dish. Crimp or flute the edges. Want to know my trick for beautiful pie crust edges? Don’t trim the excess pie dough. See step 2 in the recipe below.
- To prevent shrinking, chill the shaped pie crust for at least 30 minutes. Remember that pie dough must be cold when it hits the oven. You can do this before or after you fill with pie weights (next step).
- Fill with pie weights. As the pie dough bakes, its fat will melt. The melting fat causes the pie crust to shrink down the sides of the pie dish. To prevent the pie dough from completely losing its shape, weigh it down with pie weights. Carefully line the pie dough with parchment paper first, then pour in pie weights or even dry beans. (Note: 2 packs of these pie weights is needed.)
- Bake until the edges are relatively set, about 15 minutes.
- Remove pie weights and parchment, dock the crust with a fork, and then return to the oven until the crust is golden brown (about another 15 minutes). See photo on the right below.
- Cool completely before adding the filling.
4 Parts to Chocolate Pie Filling
Let’s make the chocolate filling as the blind-baked pie crust cools. There’s a few different things going on here. You need 4 separate bowls for different components.
- Heavy Cream: Whip heavy cream into stiff peaks.
- Melted Chocolate: Use two 4-ounce bars of pure chocolate in this recipe. Do not use chocolate chips, which don’t melt into the proper consistency. I prefer and recommend semi-sweet chocolate, but you can use bittersweet or unsweetened chocolate for a darker flavor.
- Eggs + Sugar: I like to whip the cream and melt the chocolate first, so both are ready as I need them. For the eggs, whisk them with the sugar and gently cook them on the stovetop. Use a double boiler or a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water. While constantly whisking, cook until they reach 160°F (71°C), a temperature that kills all possible bacteria. You need an instant-read thermometer for this step. Let this cool for 10 minutes, then stir in the melted chocolate.
- Creamed Butter: Finally, cream room-temperature butter for a couple minutes with a mixer. While this is the last part listed, it’s actually the base of the entire filling. Add the chocolate/egg mixture, then fold in the unsweetened whipped cream.
Above left: cooked eggs + sugar. Above right: combined melted chocolate and eggs.
Below left: creamed butter. Below right: creamed butter with the chocolate/eggs.
Finally, fold in the unsweetened whipped cream and spread into the cooled pie crust. Place the pie in the refrigerator and chill until the filling sets, about 4–6 hours.
This is an excellent pie to make a day ahead of time!
While I have a chocolate mousse pie recipe in my archives, I wanted to share a classic French silk pie. What’s the difference? The mousse pie sits in a delicious Oreo cookie crust and has a sky-high, super thick, airy mousse filling. This French silk pie, however, is served in a traditional pie crust and has a much richer, smoother filling. (Truthfully though… you can’t go wrong with either chocolate pie!)
Use Heavy Cream Again for Whipped Cream Topping
You need heavy cream for the filling AND the whipped cream garnish on top. Pick up a pint of heavy cream or heavy whipping cream and use 1 cup for the filling and 1 cup for the whipped cream on top. (We’re using my favorite vanilla whipped cream!) Finish it off with chocolate curls, mini chocolate chips, or even toasted coconut.
- Review the recipe and notes: Since there’s a few different steps, my #1 success tip is to review the written instructions and recipe notes before you begin. Take your time with each step and you’ll be rewarded with chocolate pie perfection.
- Maintain a smooth filling: Make sure the egg mixture cools down before stirring in the chocolate. Then, make sure the chocolate/egg mixture cools down before mixing into the creamed butter. If these ingredients are still warm, the filling could curdle.
- No substitutions: To ensure the filling sets up properly and maintains the silky texture, I do not recommend any ingredient substitutions.
Or Try This With an Oreo Cookie Crust
Swap the pie dough for an Oreo cookie crust. No pie weights required! See recipe Note below for specific instructions.Print
This French silk pie features my perfectly flaky pie crust, a smooth chocolate filling, and whipped cream on top. Read through the recipe and helpful notes before beginning.
- 1 unbaked Flaky Pie Crust (what I used) or All Butter Pie Crust*
- egg wash for pie crust: 1 large egg beaten with 1 Tablespoon milk or heavy cream
- 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
- two 4-ounce quality bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate bars (113g each), finely chopped*
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
- 2 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar or granulated sugar*
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- optional for garnish: chocolate curls*
- Pie crust: I like to make sure my pie dough is prepared before I begin making this pie. Make pie dough the night before because it needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before rolling out and blind baking.
- Roll out the chilled pie dough: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the discs of chilled dough (use the 2nd pie crust for another recipe!). Turn the dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough into a 9-inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is completely smooth. To make a lovely thick edge, I do not trim excess dough around the edges. Instead, fold the excess dough back over the edge and use your hands to mold the edge into a nice thick rim around the pie. Crimp the edges with a fork or use your fingers to flute the edges. Chill the dough in the refrigerator or freezer for at least 30 minutes—this helps prevent the crust from shrinking.
- Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C).
- Blind bake the crust: Line the chilled pie crust with parchment paper. (Crunch up the parchment paper first so that you can easily shape it into the crust.) Fill with pie weights or dried beans. (Note that you will need at least 2 standard sets of pie weights to fit.) I like to push the weights up against the sides of the pie crust to help ensure the sides don’t shrink down. Bake until the edges of the crust are starting to brown, about 15–16 minutes. Remove pie from the oven and carefully lift the parchment paper (with the weights) out of the pie. Prick holes all over the bottom crust with a fork. If desired for a shiny golden crust, brush egg wash on edges. Return pie crust to the oven and bake for 14–15 minutes, or until bottom has browned. Remove from the oven, and cool on a wire rack completely before filling. You can blind bake the crust up to 3 days ahead of time. Cover cooled crust tightly and refrigerate until ready to fill. (Review this how to par-bake pie crust page if you need extra help with this blind-baking step.)
- Start the filling: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 4 minutes. Stiff peaks hold their peak shape and do not droop. Set whipped cream in the refrigerator (covered or uncovered, doesn’t matter) until step 8. Melt the semi-sweet chocolate. You can melt it in a double boiler or the microwave. If using the microwave: place the chopped chocolate in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 20-second increments, stopping and stirring after each increment until completely melted and smooth. Set aside until the end of the next step.
- Cook the eggs: Whisk eggs and sugar together in a heatproof bowl or the top piece of a double boiler. Place over a pot of simmering water (or the bottom part of your double boiler) on medium heat. Do not let the surface of the simmering water touch the bottom of the heatproof bowl. Whisking constantly, cook the egg mixture until it reaches 160°F (71°C) on an instant-read thermometer, about 10–11 minutes. Do not stop whisking or the eggs may solidify. If the steam gets too hot over your hand, use an oven mitt. Carefully remove from heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes. After cooling, slowly stir in the melted chocolate. To prevent curdling, cool for another 10 minutes before using in the next step.
- Using a handheld or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until creamy, about 1–2 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat on medium-high speed for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl. With the mixer running on low speed, pour in the chocolate/egg mixture and then increase to medium-high speed and beat for 3 minutes. With a rubber spatula, fold in the whipped cream until combined.
- Spread filling into cooled pie crust. (A small offset spatula is helpful for this.) Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4–6 hours or overnight, until chilled and thickened. Pie may be refrigerated for up to 2 days before serving.
- For the whipped cream topping: Using a handheld or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract on medium-high speed until medium peaks form, about 3–4 minutes. Medium peaks are between soft and stiff peaks, and are the perfect consistency for topping and piping on desserts. Pipe or spread the whipped cream on top. Garnish with chocolate curls (see Notes), if desired. Serve immediately, or chill the pie uncovered for up to a few hours.
- Cover leftovers and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: The pie dough can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. There are plenty of ways to make this recipe ahead of time. See end of steps 5 and 9. You can also freeze the pie after step 9. Cover with an extra layer of plastic wrap before freezing. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator prior to topping with whipped cream and serving.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Pastry Blender, Rolling Pin, Glass Pie Dish or Ceramic Pie Dish, Parchment Paper, Pie Weights, Pastry Brush, Instant Read Thermometer, Double Boiler
- Update in 2022: This recipe used to call for 1 cup of butter as well as creaming half of the sugar with the butter. After further testing and feedback from readers, the recipe now uses 3/4 cup (170g) butter in the filling and all of the sugar is now cooked with the eggs.
- Pie Crust: Both linked pie crust recipes make 2 crusts. You only need 1 crust for this pie, so freeze the 2nd half for another use. If using store-bought pie dough, you still need to blind-bake it. If needed, you can use a graham cracker crust or Oreo cookie crust instead of traditional pie crust. Pre-bake either cookie crust at 350°F (177°C) for 12 minutes. No need for pie weights if using a cookie crust. Cool completely before filling.
- Chocolate: Filling will only set if the correct chocolate is used. I recommend using pure chocolate baking bars. You can find them right next to the chocolate chips in the baking aisle. They are sold in 4-ounce bars. I like Baker’s or Ghirardelli brands. I use and recommend semi-sweet chocolate, but you can use bittersweet or even unsweetened chocolate for a darker flavor.
- Sugar in whipped cream: Some bakers swear by granulated sugar in whipped cream; others swear by confectioners’ sugar. If you’re only working with a couple Tablespoons of sugar as listed in the recipe above, it doesn’t really make a difference. Use either.
- Garnish: You can leave the whipped cream on top plain or sprinkle with chocolate curls or shavings, mini chocolate chips, or chocolate sprinkles. To make chocolate curls, run a vegetable peeler down the side of a Hershey’s milk chocolate bar (or similar chocolate bar).
Keywords: chocolate pie, chocolate