Butterscotch Date Custard Pie

My wife has fond memories of butterscotch pie from her childhood – myself, I’ve never had one. When I this recipe among my Grandma’s cards, I thought it might be one to pull out and give a try for a nod to my wife’s inner child.

I didn’t know what to expect, but it’s a very flan-like custard pie. My wife says the butterscotch pie she is familiar with always had meringue on top – my next attempt I will try that variation. Otherwise I recommend coconut whipped cream.

As a side note, I always thought butterscotch was something that naturally had a lot of dairy in it – but the only dairy ingredient (butter) is easily replaced, at least in this recipe, with a substitute like Earth Balance.


  • 1 single unbaked pastry shell
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates + 1/4 cup water
  • 4 tbsp Earth Balance
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups warm coconut milk, full fat
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350o

Yield: one 9” pie

In a small pot, heat the chopped dates and water, bringing the mixture to a soft boil. Cook until dates are soft (about 3-4 minutes) and then remove from heat.

Melt Earth Balance in a pot over medium heat, melting and blending the brown sugar until smooth. Slowly incorporate the warm coconut milk, stirring constantly. Add vanilla and salt.

Next, incorporate the date mixture, continuing to stir over medium heat another 2-3 minutes. Lastly, add the beaten eggs and continue mixing another 5 minutes or so, letting the mixture thicken slightly.

Remove from heat and strain out the fibrous part of the dates. Pour the strained mixture into an unbaked pie shell and bake for 50-60 minutes – until the custard is set and the pastry is fully cooked.

Let sit to cool at least 1 hour before serving. Also delicious served chilled.

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