Old Fashioned Coconut Meringue Pie (My Favorite)


Today I’m bringing you a recipe for one of my all time favorite pies. I’ve been wanting to bring you this recipe for a while now but I can’t bring everything at once, gotta pace myself because I plan on keeping this website going for at least another generation or two.

You often hear tales of pregnant women and their cravings and I was no different with both of my children. With Brady, I wanted extra sour lemonade and chicken noodle soup. I was working on my degree at the time and the local Chik-Fil-A saw me pull through their drive through at least three or four times a week. With Katy Rose, all I wanted was this pie. Thing is, you can’t go to the grocery store and buy this pie. Sure, they have coconut pies for sale in the freezer section but the only resemblance they bear to a true old fashioned coconut pie is their name. This is one of those pies that, if you find yourself craving it, you’re just gonna have to make it yourself.

But don’t worry, it’s easy to do and you probably have everything you need on hand already except for the coconut.

Here is my recipe. Hope you enjoy it!

You’ll need: Sugar, vanilla, flour, milk, margarine, eggs, and some sweetened flaked coconut.

That little bowl is a Jewel Tea bowl, same pattern as the plate in the final photo of the pie. Raise your hand if you remember Jewel Tea from your childhood!

I’m using my mix in the pan pie crust. It’s in the cookbook and on Southern Plate as well. Click here to see the tutorial. This pie plate is a bit larger than usual so I’m doubling the recipe and will end up with a nice thick crust. I prefer the taste of this crust to a store bought crust but you just do whatever is easiest for you. In other words, feel free to make your own or use store bought – your pie is still gonna be just as good so don’t you dare feel bad if you don’t make the crust from scratch!

I have a rule: If someone complains, they don’t get to eat my cooking again.

Ain’t had a complaint yet!

Place your margarine in a sauce pot.

Add sugar.

and flour

and your salt

and your milk…

now separate your eggs, yolks from whites.

Make sure you don’t get any yolks into your whites because we’re going to whip those up into a meringue later and if there are yolks in there the whites won’t whip up like we need them to.

There are lots of ways to separate your eggs. I think a lot of folks use an egg separator. Some folks use their hands by dumping the egg in and letting the white slip out through slightly spread fingers. I just crack my egg and gently tilt the shell until the white all falls out.

However you prefer, do it that way.

Pour your yolks into the sauce pot, too.

Look what a happy little family we have there!

With a wire whisk, beat up your eggs a bit and break up the margarine some.

Okay so you don’t have to break up the margarine because it will melt on it’s own in the pot but I had fun beating at it a bit with my whisk. You know, kinda how a kid can’t resist kicking a can as they walk up to it..

Isn’t my whisk beautiful? A couple of weeks ago Chef Bobby of The Big Green Egg came to my house to give me a lesson on how to make the perfect steak in a Big Green Egg cooker.

While he was here, I was admiring his toolkit and all of the lovely knives and spoons and such he had. I fell in love with this gorgeous whisk. The handle fit just right in my hand and was large enough that it was easy to hold even if your hands were tired. I admired it and planned on trying to track me down one just like it. The next day Bobby sent me a message telling me to check the drawer to the right of my oven and when I did, this whisk was in there!

Now let me tell you what, that tickled me to death! Felt just like Christmas. :)

Stir stir stir stir, cook, cook, cook, cook.

Don’t stop stirring because you don’t want it to scorch.

When it coats the back of the spoon like this, it is done BUT we are going to cook it a little bit more, about two minutes after that.

Go ahead and turn your heat off, though.

Now see, this is how thick I like it.

If you cook it until you can swipe at the bottom of the pot real fast and see a trail like this, it will  be thick enough that your pie will set up a little firmer and you can cut prettier pieces.

Don’t get me wrong though, I’ll gladly eat a runny coconut cream pie!

Now stir in your coconut.

This is where I forgot to put my vanilla in but I don’t beat myself up about things like that.

You try to remember to put it in, though. It’s in the recipe at the bottom.

Pie turned out just fine :)


Thank you for noting that!

Spread filling into your pie shell.

It usually isn’t this yellow but it all depends on the eggs. I must have gotten me some rich eggs this go around!

Now lets make us some meringue, or “Calf Slobber” as my Mama calls it…

Place your egg whites in a mixing bowl.

Make sure your bowl is really clean because if your bowl or your beaters have any oily residue on them that will interfere with your meringue as well so it never hurts to wash them again before this step. I wash mine in the dishwasher on high temp so we’re good.

Whip it until nice and frothy and light.

You can whip it to soft peak stage but I like to stop here and add my sugar so it has plenty of time to dissolve.

With so many things in cooking, there isn’t really a set “right” way unless you are in a culinary class.

When you’re cooking in your home, however you want to do it is the right way. ~grins~

~pours in her sugar~

~dumps in a little vanilla~

~Beats the living mess out of the egg whites until they are at stiff peak stage.~

I know this isn’t stiff stiff peaks, but its soooooooooooo much easier to spread if you don’t beat it too much.

Besides look at this whisk when I turn it upside down…

See? that’s a stiff peak!

Spread that over your pie, being careful to make it touch on all sides.

If you don’t spread it and make it touch on all of the sides it will pull back and shrink up a bit as it bakes.

Sprinkle some coconut on top of that.

Ooh did I tell you to get a little extra coconut? Well of course you should know that. I mean, you can’t actually make a coconut pie without eating some coconut along the way! I get a bag of sweetened flaked coconut, take out a cup, and nibble on the rest the whole time I’m making the pie!


Here is our pie all ready for the oven.

Bake this at 325 for about ten minutes, or until golden.

I usually cook my meringues for about fifteen minutes but you have to go a little shorter with this one so the coconut on top doesn’t burn.

Oh now that is a thing of beauty!

I got this pie plate and the little carrier thingie for it at Marshall’s for about ten dollars.



Old Fashioned Coconut Meringue Pie (My Favorite)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • ½ cup milk
  • stick margarine or butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1 heaping cup coconut, sweetened flaked
  • 9 inch pie shell, baked (Or my Mix In The Pan Pie crust)
  • 3 egg whites
  • ¼ C sugar
For the Pie
  1. Mix flour, sugar, salt, margarine, milk, and egg yolks in large saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wire whisk until thick. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and coconut. Pour into baked pie shell. Top with meringue.
For the Meringue
  1. Whip egg whites until foamy. Add sugar. Continue beating on high speed until soft peaks form. Pour onto top of pie and spread to edges to seal well. Sprinkle additional coconut on top. Bake at 325 for ten minutes or until top is golden. Refrigerate until completely cold before serving.

Hey Everybody! Time for a heart to heart about this pie recipe. I want to clarify a few things based on the comments (I am writing this on April 14, 2015). 

  • 1. There are no type-o’s. This is a family recipe and the exact one we use to make this pie. I repeat, there are no type-o’s. 
  • 2. The pie pictured in the photograph was made using this recipe.
  • 3. Yes, the filling is thick, yes, there is a lot of filling in this pie (as pictured, because that pie was made using this recipe).
  • 4. If you like a thinner filling, you can add more milk if you like. Some folks in the comments have mentioned adding 1/2 cup more and some even 2 cups more! That is totally up to you. Many folks have commented that the pie turned out perfectly using the 1/2 cup called for in the recipe. My pie, the one photographed, was made using this recipe and turns out perfect every time. This is my favorite pie so I make it fairly often and each time, I go back to this recipe to do that.
  • 5. If you choose to tweak the ingredients or amount of milk, you’re on your own but it will probably be fine. :)
  • 6. At the end of the day, you got pie!

Some of the Comments from folks who have made this pie as successfully as I have: 

  • What I love about this pie, is that I can make it with all organic ingredients. We try to eat only organic—but still have a sweet tooth! I’ve made it 5 times since Thanksgiving; doubled for my large family.
  • My husband loves the coconut pie at our local barbeque place, so for his birthday, he requested I make one instead of a cake. All I remembered about my mom’s coconut pie was that she used a double-boiler–and I wasn’t about to go to all that trouble! So, I did an online search and lo-and-behold found your pie! It’s amazing! It tastes exactly like I remember my mom’s and sooo easy to fix!
  • Thank you, thank you, thank you for this coconut meringue pie recipe!!! Let me start with a disclaimer: I am a pretty good cook, but NOT a baker. That said, I helped my grandmother (aka, Maw-Maw) make pies every Thanksgiving from the time I was a little girl standing on a step-stool, until my late-twenties when she passed away. Even after I moved from Louisiana to Texas, I went “home” for Thanksgiving to help her bake. Every year I can recall, she tried to make a coconut meringue pie for my dad (his favorite!). Every year that pie turned out runny. Back then I left all the recipe searching and ingredient purchasing to Maw-Maw, and she was limited to recipes she had in her cookbook collection. Since she passed away, I continue to prepare her Thanksgiving menu each year and my family now travels to Austin for the holiday. The first year I purchased a coconut cream pie from a local pie shop, which was very good, but it was not what Dad wanted. Last year, I made a half-hearted attempt using Jello Cook-n-serve pie filling – total fail. So, this year, considering that I now find nearly every new recipe I make online, I decided to search online for a coconut meringue pie recipe. Your recipe looked to be the most promising, and it turned out to be THE coconut meringue pie I had been searching for! Dad loved it, and I believe my Maw-Maw would be proud.  Thanks again!!!
  • I made this pie for Thanksgiving. It was easy and SO delicious! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

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~Susan Rabin. Submit your quote by clicking here.


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  1. Robin says

    Christie, I made 2 of the coconut pies along with the mix in the plate pie crusts. I’ve never made from scratch crusts before. They were super easy and delicious. I don’t know what happened to the coconut mixture. Both pies were too salty to eat. I used the listed 1/2 tsp salt. Was that a misprint or what did I do wrong. I love coconut pie and was so disappointed when they didn’t turn out. Please help!!!

      • Peggy says

        Could it be the AP flour vs SR? I am about to make pie and thought I would leave the salt out. Need someone who knows. Thanks.

        • christy says

          Hey! I’ve never had this problem I’m afraid, and I’m so sorry you did! The crust that I make myself does have salty taste to it, which is really great with sweet pies. However, you can certainly lessen or even omit the salt from the crust. With regards to flour, self rising does have salt in it so if you use this in place of all purpose, you will have a good bit of additional salt. Hope this helps!

    • becca givens says

      I tripled the recipe for 2 pies … but only use 1/2 the salt. I felt it was still too salty. In hindsight, I do not remember if I used salted or unsalted butter. I think my next batch — I will use unsalted butter and use a pinch of salt. Otherwise it was delicious.

  2. Beth says

    I want to try this recipe, and will check back to see if there is an answer about the salt. On another subject…the Jewel Tea pattern. I had no idea that was the origin. My mom had a few pieces of this. I guess the didn’t survive, no one seems to remember what happened to them. But, I have 2 ramikins that were purchased at a local Amish thrift store. Will this pattern replace my love of Pyrex?? nahhh….LOL But it’s a close second.

  3. Dia Frazier says

    I have never enjoyed simply reading a recipe so much.. it was so cute, entertaining, and informative… thank you for your simple joy! My husband requested a homemade coconut meringue pie for his birthday this Friday, so I am going to make this one, but will be mindful of the possible salt issue, thank you to the ladies who have tried it and posted their concerns so I will know to go easy on the salt! God Bless all of you!

  4. BethSherrill says

    Christy, have you ever tried making this pie with splenda instead of sugar? I would love to know if it will work.

  5. Tommie says

    Thanks for the recipe Christie! I have many old recipes for Coconut Pie but I will try your this next week. It sounds easier than mine which shows cooking the pudding mixture first and then adding the egg yolks and letting it cook into the mixture. Also the Crust is very different from my old stand-by. I’ll try it! I have always used Crisco and Butter. Sounds like the Oil may be easier. Thanks again for your thoughts and informative words of Wisdom. God Bless you and the family!

  6. sheila miller says

    Just made a coconut custard w/ Bisquick earlier this week. That means, YES, there is coconut in the house so I can make this for the weekend…YUM! And to think I don’t have to go to the store to get one thing. That’s why I love you so, Christy. You’re real!

  7. Patsy Young says

    Can you put the little blue save recipe box on the Coconut pie. My family loves coconut pie and I am certainly going to try the pie crust. This would be a good one for my grand daughters to use. Thanks a bunch!

      • minnie says

        Im sorry to say , this recipe will not work right. I just made this pie, but I had to add 1 and a half more cups of milk, 1/2 cup milk is not enough, it got so thick so fast it was like biscuit mix. But I added the milk and the adjustment worked. It has a good flavor. It is for a young man’s birthday so I hope he likes it. It was the last pie crust in the house and the last of the coconut so I could not start over.

        • Kathy says

          I tried your recipe using 1/2 cup milk and the mix was thick as paste. I too had to add another cup and a half of milk. I see you replied to this post already that you use only 1/2 cup. That is strange.

            • says

              No Type-O, Kathy was right, I only use the 1/2 as stated in the recipe and in my other replies. This makes a nice thick custard that yields a pretty slice of pie when cut. However, like Kathy did, you can add more milk if you prefer. Feel free to modify any of my recipes to your own tastes and preferences.

  8. Amby says

    I make my fillings for pies in the microwave. Super easy and fast; no having to watch and worry about burning. Will try the recipe using this method. I do not add salt to anything but pie crust as hubby has high blood pressure

    • says

      Hey! Is there a trick to doing that? I’ve tried it twice and it was a big globby flour mass in the middle of my liquid. I had to run it through a strainer a few times. Maybe you stir every thirty seconds?

      • Michelle Garringer says

        Christy as always a lovely post! i’m so happy for you and your book and your story about Katy Rose brought happy tears to my eyes for you and your fmaily. i’m a book writer too but not published and i’m so happy one day i was hungry for cream gravy and googled and found your site!. ps. you can cook the pudding in the microwave when i found homemade pudding- if i remember correctly it was 4 minutes- i stirred every 30 seconds for the first couple minutes and then let it go one minute for the last couple and it turned out just fine. hope that helps!

      • becca givens says

        Christy — melt the butter first, then with a wire wisk, add the sugar, mix well, then follow with the flour — still well until smooth. Once smooth, slowly add the milk and eggs (I blended them together) to make sugar the yolks didn’t get too hot too fast. It turned out very smooth.

        • Martha says

          my eggs became lumpy. I had always been taught to first add sugar, salt, and a portion of the milk. After that got hot take the egg yolks and flour and whisk together; slowly add hot mixture to it. This creates a non lumpy filling.

          • Martha says

            and then add the egg yolk and flour mixture to the pan and cook on low stirring frequently until it thickened.

            • says

              I add it all at the start so that the eggs are mixed up well while the mixture is cool and don’t have a chance to accidentally cook by adding them to a hot liquid. Either way, it requires a lot of stirring to keep the whole mixture smooth but lumps are usually flour lumps or where the custard has scorched on the bottom if it got too hot without stirring enough.
              Having said that, though, whatever works best for you is the best thing for you to do! :)

  9. Ginger Chambless says

    I love your recipes and stories about the recipes. I am a sucker for cook books with stories. I feel a connection to the recipes with reading the stories. I was so amused at your statement about your Mama calling the meringue “calf slobber” My grandmother called it that. I had never heard it called that before of since. Small world. I am anxious to try your version of coconut pie. It is my husbands favorite.

    • says

      Thank you so much Ginger, you are just too kind. It does my heart good to know that you are enjoying the recipes and the stories. Thank you so much for letting me know, we all need a little encouragement now and then. I hope you have a blessed day!!

  10. Diana says

    I believe your ingredient list for 1/2 cup milk should be at least 2 cups. When making this and adding only 1/2 cup milk I felt this was probably a typo so I used 2 cups of milk and it turned out great. The ratio of flour to milk is critical and typos are so easy.

      • minnie says

        well I have been cooking a long time and your pie must be really really thin on filling. I had to add milk also and then it worked fine.

  11. becca givens says

    I made 2 pies for NY Day — to make sure I had a nice thick filling, I tripled the recipe (for 1 pie — I would make 1 1/2 the batch). I felt tripling the amount of salt was too much, and I am glad I cut it to 1 teaspoon. It still had more of the aftertaste of salt than I would like. In hindsight, I do not remember if I used salted or unsalted butter — as that could have contributed. So next time, I will only a pinch for 1 1/2 batches (1 pie). The custard was very thick with the smaller amount of milk — I liked the consistency; however, I do wonder if the amount of milk was correct for the amount of flour. Since Coconut Cream Pie is a favorite, I may try the higher ratio of milk/flour to experiment, but again, I liked the thicker consistency!! It is a definite “do over” in my house!

    • says

      The butter, like you said, would have made a difference if salted but it may have also been the salt in the pie crust if you used my pie crust recipe. It has a bit of a salt bite, which goes really well with most sweet pies, but you may want to lessen it if using it with this pie. thanks for pointing that out!

  12. Caren says

    My husband loves the coconut pie at our local barbeque place, so for his birthday, he requested I make one instead of a cake. All I remembered about my mom’s coconut pie was that she used a double-boiler–and I wasn’t about to go to all that trouble! So, I did an online search and lo-and-behold found your pie! It’s amazing! It tastes exactly like I remember my mom’s and sooo easy to fix! Not only that, but now I’m in love with your web site. Thanks!!!!

  13. Susie Kelly says

    I would like to email the Old Fashioned Coconut Meringue Pie recipes to myself, but didn’t see a link. Also, if you have one for Old Fashioned Chocolate Meringue Pie, that would be great.

  14. Janet says

    What I love about this pie, is that I can make it with all organic ingredients. We try to eat only organic—but still have a sweet tooth! I’ve made it 5 times since Thanksgiving; doubled for my large family.
    We bought a farm in Cullman 6mo ago, and just had our 1st calf. We are bottle feeding, and milking the Angus/Jersey mom….your mother is so right about the calf slobber!