We skipped the cream on top to let the tropical custard filling be the star.

Everyday Food, November 2008


Read the full recipe after the video.

Recipe Summary

30 mins
1 hr


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Press a sheet of aluminum foil onto crust, draping over rim of pie plate. To blind-bake: Fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake until crust is lightly browned, about 45 minutes. Remove beans and foil; let crust cool completely, and set aside.

  • While crust is baking, place a fine-mesh sieve over a large bowl; set aside. In a medium saucepan (off heat), whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Gradually whisk in whole milk, making sure to dissolve cornstarch. Whisk in coconut milk and egg yolks.

  • Whisking constantly, cook over medium heat until the first large bubble sputters, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low; cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Remove pan from heat; immediately pour custard through sieve into bowl.

  • Pour custard from bowl into cooled crust; smooth top with a rubber spatula. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours (or loosely covered, up to 1 day). To serve, let stand at room temperature 30 minutes, then sprinkle with coconut.

Cook's Notes

To toast the coconut, spread it on a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 5 to 10 minutes. Lining unbaked crust with aluminum foil and filling it with dried beans or pie weights prevents the crust from puffing up as it bakes. Store the beans, and use them again the next time you bake a pie.


Reviews (20)

320 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 37
  • 4 star values: 72
  • 3 star values: 124
  • 2 star values: 64
  • 1 star values: 23
Rating: 1.0 stars
Why is this recipe still offered? Two problems: You do NOT bake a pie crust @ 400 degrees for 45 minutes! Right off the bat I knew there was a problem. So I baked my crust @ 380 degrees for about 15 minutes. HOWEVER, the real problem is that like most of your reviewers - the custard turned out soupy!!! What a major disappointment. You need proofreaders for your recipes and adjustments when necessary. I cooked mine for about 6 minutes (plus 1) but still got soup. Did not read the reviews before I started. Should have. What a waste of time and ingredients. Now I have to bake another pie tomorrow for my husband's birthday. Take this recipe DOWN!
Rating: 4 stars
My pie came out fabulous. The filling was super thick and luxurious. Wonderful taste. I did add one tsp of vanilla. The only thing I changed was I left the sugar out of the crust and added another 1/4 C to the filling. I didn't use a sieve either, if you stir all the cornstarch lumps out, you don't need it. Great presentation.
Rating: 4 stars
I used a classic graham cracker crust which added wonderful texture and flavor. Made the custard just as directed, and it turned out smooth, flavorful and very sturdy. If you have coconut extract lying around, a drop or two could help pull out the flavor.Very easy custard to make, with little room for error.
Rating: 4 stars
Just made this last night and I liked the custard just fine. What I did differently was to cook unsweetened coconut flakes in the milk to get the essence. Strain the milk then cook the rest of the ingredients like in the recipe. Like others had said, be patient, keeping stirring the content until it thickens. The custard is very tasty and fragrant. For the crust though, I used Joy of Baking's shortbread crust recipe. The combination of the crust and the custard was awesome.
Rating: 1 stars
Made this and did not like it at all. And neither did my husband, and my son. Try something else.
Rating: Unrated
Love this pie! I add coconut into the custard before pouring into the pie crust. I also use a frozen crust and bake it before filling. Never had any problems with the pie not firming up and the flavor has always been on point. I think adding the coconut makes a big difference!
Rating: Unrated
I was pretty happy to find a recipe for a custard pie that did not need to be cooked in the oven. Have to say, I am a little disappointed in the flavor of the custard. It is very bland. Can't say I will make this again. :-(
Rating: Unrated
I was in the mood for coconut custard pie, so I made this recipe. It was very good. No trouble thickening, just took about 10 minutes. I strained the custard, but it really wasn't necessary. After chilling in the fridge overnight and cutting a slice for breakfast, I found the pie to be more like coconut cream than coconut custard. Next time, I'll try one of the baked coconut custard pie recipes I've seen elsewhere. Still, a very nice pie. Love the coconut milk flavor.
Rating: Unrated
Except for the sieve part, I followed the recipe exactly, and the pie came out very good. I had no issues with the custard thickening. But in past experience when making other custards, I've found that if it cooks too quickly or too slowly, it can cause issues with how the cornstarch reacts...and your custard could be soupy. All in all, leave out the sieve part and be patient when cooking the custard. (Note: I added a dash of vanilla flavoring to my custard, for extra flavor!)
Rating: Unrated
made this recipe twice on different days thinking i did something wrong. it never thickened for me. turned out soupy. ruined my day TWICE ! don't use this recipe ! wait. just read BonoBabe's comment. i poured the filling out of the shell into a pot and reheated it. she's right ! i cooked it for 10 minutes and it finally thickened up. poured it back into the shell and it's in the frig. we'll see what happens. i was wondering when it said to smooth the filling with a spoon. it was too thin befor
Rating: Unrated
Some of you mentioned this to be soupy. i had made this twice. The first tiem I added more starch to thickien it. THe 2nd time I followed the directions exactly however it was more like 10 minutes (not 5min as mentioned) of stirring before it magically turned into a custard. So be patient and constantly stir. Family loved it at Thanksgiving this year and I was happy to have figured it out much better than the first time.
Rating: Unrated
I made this for Thanksgiving. Also found custard to be bland, but you can help this by adding very small amount of salt to boost
Rating: Unrated
I am with you on this one MBR62, very disappointed. Mine came out soupy as well and I followed the recipe exactly. Only mine I did the day before Christmas and I have nothing else for a back-up. Very upset.
Rating: Unrated
Baking the pie shell for 45 minutes at 400 doesn't seem right to me. I checked Joy of Cooking which recommends 12 minutes at 450 and that worked perfectly. Perhaps 14-15 minutes at 400 is what was meant? Filling thickened nicely and had a rich texture, but I found it blander than other recipes, even with extra coconut. I didn't see the need to strain the custard. I recommend cooking custards in the microwave - works perfectly every time. Crocus
Rating: Unrated
Baking the pie shell for 45 minutes at 400 seems excessive and I wonder if it's a typo. Joy of Cooking suggests 12 minutes at 450, which worked perfectly for me. Perhaps 14-15 minutes at 400? Filling had a nice texture and thickened well, but was blander than other recipes I've used even with extra coconut. crocus
Rating: Unrated
I added 1/2 cup of sweetened coconut to custard filling and did not strain... also used graham cracker crust... very good!!
Rating: Unrated
I followed the recipe exactly and after refrigerating overnight the custard was still soupy, not firm at all. A little disappointing on Thanksgiving. Fortunately I had a Libby's Pumpkin Pie in reserve!. What went wrong?
Rating: Unrated
Made this and did not strain and it was great! I can't imagine straining it, it was super thick and delicious!
Rating: Unrated
It is ok to do so but in order to do it you must make sure the cornstarch is fully incorporated so the filling wont be lumpy. in my opinion, cocnut custard tastes better with the bits of coconut in it
Rating: Unrated
Would it be O'K not to strain the final custard and leave in the coconut bits?