Discover the magic of water pie. A Great , it takes simple ingredients to create this deliciously creamy and buttery pie. You won’t believe one of the main ingredients is water!
Water pie is one of those magical recipes that came out of the depression era where cooks with little to nothing figured out how to make delicious dishes for those they love. This Depression era pie recipe was shared with me by Kay West and I published it in my third cookbook, Sweetness: Recipes to Celebrate the Warmth, Love, and Blessings of a Full Life.
This recipe belonged to Kay’s grandmother, who had eight children and made her family of 10 three meals from scratch every single day. During leaner times, she developed this recipe so that her family could still enjoy dessert from time to time, no matter how hard their days were. These recipes are such a special treasure to us!
I think you’ll really enjoy the simplicity of this water pie. It has a creamy buttery taste, similar to a or warm vanilla cookie once it’s chilled and sliced. Half the thrill will be telling your family the name and that the main ingredient is water!
You know when a recipe was created to make something out of nothing, it’s going to be simple on the ingredients.
- A deep-dish pie crust (see tips for success at the bottom of this post).
- Vanilla extract
Begin by pouring water into your deep dish and unbaked pie crust, which should be in a . You can either use a pretty ceramic one like this or a disposable one like this doesn’t have to be , either – just straight from the tap is fine.
In a , stir together flour and sugar.
Sprinkle the flour mixture over your water in the . The original recipe called for doing this with a spoon so I’m showing you that way but I usually just use my hand to sprinkle it because I feel like I can get it more even that way.
This is our water with flour/sugar sprinkled over. Don’t stir.
Drizzle vanilla over this. Don’t stir.
Place pats of butter on top.
Place your pie plate in the oven at 400 for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, reduce temp to 375 and cover the edges of the flaky crust if need be to prevent burning. Cook for another 30 minutes once you have reduced the temp.
The pie will be very watery in the center when you remove it from the oven. Allow to cool completely and then refrigerate for several hours before cutting.
Enjoy this creamy buttery pie recipe that came about from good-hearted cooks wanting to bake up something sweet for their loved ones during hard times!
You can store pie leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.
- I use a Pillsbury all vegetable frozen deep-dish pie crust, unbaked, for this recipe. I suggest a store-bought deep-dish pie crust because homemade pie crusts in your own dish are going to vary in terms of depth and may result in the filling not getting fully done in the prescribed amount of time.
- Before you begin making this pie, tear off a piece of foil large enough to cover your pie dish. Cut an X in the center and peel back the X. This will make it quick and easy to cover your pie should the edges begin getting too dark and will keep you from losing valuable heat during the baking process.
- The pie will be bubbly and could be watery in some spots when you pull it out of the oven. It will gel fully as it cools. It is best if you allow this pie to cool completely and then cover and refrigerate until chilled before cutting.
What is the difference between a water pie and a Sprite pie?
A Sprite pie is basically a modern-day version of the water pie. It became famous in 2020 when TikTok took the world by storm. They both taste very similar, like a delicious sugar cookie. If you’d prefer to make a Sprite pie instead of a water pie, simply substitute the water for 1 can of Sprite. Follow the same instructions and ingredients in the recipe card and voila, you have yourself a Sprite pie!
Because you can never have too many great pie recipes:
Peanut Butter Pie Recipe: Made the Old Fashioned Way
- 1 9-inch deep-dish pie crust, unbaked
- 1 1/2 cups water (that is one and a half cups)
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 5 tablespoons butter, cut into 5 pieces
- Preheat oven to 400 and set empty pie crust on a baking sheet.1 9-inch deep-dish pie crust, unbaked
- Pour 1 + 1/2 cups water into the pie crust.1 1/2 cups water
- In a small bowl, stir together the flour and sugar. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the water in the crust. Don't stir.4 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 cup sugar
- Drizzle the vanilla over the water in the pie crust. Place pats of butter on top of this.2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 5 tablespoons butter, cut into 5 pieces
- Bake at 400 for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 and cover sides of crust if needed to prevent burning. Continue cooking for an additional 30 minutes.
- Pie will be watery when you pull it out of the oven but will gel as it cools. Allow to cool completely and then cover and place in the fridge until chilled before cutting.
I was obsessed with the TikTok redbull pie, so used this recipe and subbed out redbull for the water. Turned out great!
Glad you loved it! Thank you for the comment and the rating 🙂
I love this recipe! I have made it a few times and it is amazingly simple, yet delicious. I have played with the recipe and have made a few variations which turned out great. I have used the Readycrust graham, shortbread and chocolate as a quick substitution. They get a little chewy and almost caramelized, but delicious. Most recently, I added a teaspoon packet of instant espresso and 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. That made a delicious chocolate pie. Thinking of trying brown sugar in place of some or all of the white sugar to see if it might be a caramel or butterscotch flavor. This is a great recipe and so much fun, thank you for posting it!
So glad you love it. Thanks for the suggestions. They are great!
DOES THE FLOUR HAVE TO BE ALL PURPOSE
That’s what I used but you could try something different. If you try something different please let me know how it worked 🙂
I used self-rising and it was perfect! Delicious recipe!
Thank you kindly Linda. Appreciate your comment and rating 🙂
I also added finely crushed pecans to mine.
Can this be made gluten-free?
I have not made it gluten free so I can’t let you know how it would turn out but if you make it that way please let us know how it goes.
The only ingredients are water flour sugar… no this can’t be made gluten free.
I haven’t tried it with gluten free flour but if anyone does, let me know how it goes.
Just did a gluten free bagged pie crust mix for a pie crust last night – i couldnt even get it off the counter, crumbled to dust – i made my standard hot water recipe instead – I love this bizarre recipe. I will try it sometime
It absolutely could!! Use a gf pie crust, and instead of flour, use 3 Tablespoons of cornstarch.
Hello! I made this last night. I followed the recipe exactly as written and even weighed my ingredients to ensure proper baking. However, the pie just turned out super runny (I refrigerated overnight, and it’s still liquid). There is some hardened butter on top, as the recipe said don’t stir at any point. And the rest sorta congealed into a watery goo. It’s unsliceable. But the flavor is good! Minus the solid butter on top. What did I do wrong? It looked exactly like the photos throughout the whole process. Thank you!
Sounds like it didn’t get hot enough. Since ovens vary in how they hold temperatures that is my guess but it’s always hard to say since I can’t be there to see what happened. I would giver her another shot and either bake longer or at a slightly higher temp.
I froze my butter then grated it with a cheese grater so that I could sprinkle it and cover the entire top of the pie and I got a more even browning and it came out fantastic. When I did it with a large pots of butter I too ended up with weird little spots that didn’t quite look the same and didn’t have the same texture as everything else in the pie.
Just wondering if you have modified this recipe for mini shells
I did it, you’ll need 2 dozen shells, and I used the exact temperatures, but halved the timings, so 1 minutes stead of 30