Chess Pie

classic pumpkin pie on blue table with coffee
Photo: Bryan Gardner
Prep Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
6 hrs 40 mins
Makes one 9-inch pie; Serves 8 to 10

In this classic Southern pie, pantry staples yield a velvety custard filling: sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla, and apple-cider vinegar.


  • ½ recipe Test Kitchen's Favorite Pate Brisee

  • Unbleached all-purpose flour, for dusting

  • 1 ½ cups sugar

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

  • 3 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon apple-cider vinegar

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for serving


  1. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a 12-inch round, about 1/8 inch thick. Fit into a 9-inch pie dish. Using kitchen shears, trim to a 1-inch overhang; fold under. Crimp edges or decorate as desired. Freeze 15 minutes.

  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees with rack in lower third. Line dough with parchment; fill with dried beans or rice. Bake until edges begin to turn golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove beans or rice and parchment; bake until bottom and sides are golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely. (Crust can be made up to a day in advance and covered tightly in foil.)

  3. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla, vinegar, and salt. Pour filling into crust. Place pie dish directly on rack; bake until filling wobbles slightly in center when gently shaken, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Transfer to wire rack; let cool completely. Refrigerate, uncovered, at least 2 hours and up to 2 days. Serve with whipped cream.

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