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Fresh Strawberry Pie

Fresh Strawberry Pie

When I was a kid, I liked to dip fresh strawberries into a little bit of sugar before I ate them. When they were still damp from being washed, the sugar clung perfectly to the berries and having a little bit of sugar made not-quite-perfect berries taste amazing. I didn’t use a lot, just enough to kiss the berries. I would eat the strawberries that looked the sweetest and darkest without sugar. This fresh strawberry pie reminds me of eating those sugar-sprinkled berries, made with fresh strawberries that are lightly glazed with a sugar-kissed strawberry sauce that holds everything together.

This is a recipe that I first made several years ago after finding it on the back of a box of cornstarch. I like it because it doesn’t use gelatin, which I tend to think takes away from the flavor and texture of the strawberries, but is frequently used in no-bake strawberry pies. The strawberries are layered into a pie crust – I like graham and shortbread, but any 9-inch crust will work – and topped with a sauce made from strawberry puree and sugar. The glossy red of the pie looks great and it tastes very fresh. The topping tastes great and doesn’t have a gelatiny feel to it, although it does a wonderful job of holding the berries in place and making the pie easy to slice.

You can’t use frozen berries for this pie, since they just don’t have the same texture as fresh. That said, you can actually use frozen berries to make the topping portion of the recipe and use fresh for the bulk of the pie. It goes without saying that you should use the best tasting fresh berries you can find for this pie, since they’re mostly unadorned. Wash and dry them well before using. And, if you’re anything like me, you’ll want to pick up some extra strawberries when you’re at the market, because if they’re ripe and sweet enough to put into the pie, I guarantee you’re going to want to snack on some while you work!

Fresh Strawberry Pie Slice

Fresh Strawberry Pie
1 9-inch graham cracker crust (store bought or from scratch)
2 pints fresh strawberries (2 lbs)
3/4 cup sugar
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/3 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract

Wash and dry the strawberries, then remove the hulls (green leafy tops).
Take 1 1/2 cups of the berries and puree them in a food processor to make approximately 1 cup puree.
Combine puree with sugar, cornstarch and water in a medium saucepan and whisk to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a boil. Boil for about 1 minute, then remove from heat, add in the vanilla extract and whisk the mixture steadily (doesn’t need to be fast, just to prevent the sauce from sticking to the pan) while it cools down for about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice the berries in half (unless they are small and you can leave them whole) and arrange them in the pie crust. When the strawberry sauce has been cooled for 5 minutes, pour it over the sliced berries, trying to cover them as evenly as possible.
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until ready to serve. This pie is best eaten the day it is sliced.

Serves 6-8

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  • Michelle
    June 24, 2009

    This looks wonderful! It reminds me of a fabulous strawberry pie that a local restaurant chain serves. Is the strawberry sauce thick and gooey or more set like a jello?

  • Jillian
    June 24, 2009

    Nicole! This looks amazing! This will definitely be on the 4th of July menu. Thank you!

  • Fallon
    June 24, 2009

    Now is the pie crust one of the store bought crusts? I noticed you said to bake it, but that doesn’t make sense to me?

  • jenn
    June 24, 2009

    that sounds so yummy. i am not a fan of gelatin and so always avoid fresh strawberry pies even though i love the berries. i just made a raspberry cream pie tonight but i’m going to make this tomorrow. my teenage daughter has a few friends coming over tomorrow night. i’m sure they’ll love to help eat them both 🙂

  • Serene
    June 24, 2009

    This is exaclty what i was looking for because i’ve got a tub of frozen strawberries and fresh ones in the fridge and i don’t know what to do with them!
    love the idea of using strawberry sauce instead of gelatin. it sure looks YUMMY!
    btw, is the pie crust a ready-made one from the supermarket? Or do i have make the crust from scratch?

  • Nicole
    June 24, 2009

    You can use a store-bought crust (which comes already baked) or make your own from scratch, pre-baking it and letting it cool.

  • tracue==ieMoo
    June 25, 2009

    wow.. looks really pretty.. too bad strawberries over here would cost me a bomb.. =(

  • Eliana
    June 25, 2009

    This looks amazingly DELICIOUS!

  • Nicole this looks truly amazing and delicious. It’s definitely something you could eat on a nice summer’s evening.

  • Laura
    June 25, 2009

    A thin layer of whipped cream cheese is a nice addition to the bottom of this pie! and you can substitute in just about any soft fresh fruit, I’ve used blackberries, blue berries, peaches and mangos to make it!

  • Pam Renovato
    June 25, 2009

    Absolutely perfect for a hot summer day. I think it is a million degrees today!

  • Tom in Boston
    June 25, 2009

    I’m assuming vanilla gets stirred in while you’re cooling the strawberry mixture? Don’t see it usage in the recipe.

    Thanks for the recipe; love your blog.

  • Anna from BC, Canada
    June 30, 2009

    Thank you for this recipe. I went out with my kids today and picked some fresh strawberries (just in the nick of time, strawberry season is almost over here) and I made this pie. It was so delicious. Everybody asked for seconds. Mine didn’t slice very well though. maybe it needed more time in the fridge? Nevertheless, it was amazing. I’ll be counting down the days until next years strawberry season when I can make it again!

  • Sunflower Michelle
    July 3, 2009

    WOW! I made this last night… what an amazing dessert for so little effort! I used a prepared shortbread piecrust from the grocery store, made up the strawberry sauce using the least fresh berries and cut up the freshest berries for the pie. I even cut back the sugar to 1/2 cup and didn’t use the vanilla and WOW! This pie is amazing!! Definitely a keeper and will go into my book of favourites. Thanks for sharing!

  • Kristin from Edmonds, WA
    April 4, 2010

    Whipped up this yummy pie for Easter. WOW it was a hit with the family. Thank for sharing with us.

  • LEED Certification
    May 5, 2010

    wow, its an delicious recipe. Strawberry is one of my favorite fruit. I really love this dish. Thanks for this awesome food.

  • pippi
    May 10, 2010


  • deb
    July 3, 2012

    this pie is delicious, I made 5 or 6 last year and about to make my first of the season tomorrow. love it!

  • Joan
    June 23, 2014

    Made two of these pies, and everyone loved them! Very tasty! Thanks for a great recipe.

  • April
    June 20, 2015

    I just made this and it is in the fridge, cooling. I am disappointed because mine looks nothing like yours. Mine does not even look good. LOL. The sauce part I pored over the berries is pink. I followed your instructions to the T. Maybe the strawberries didnt get pureed enough. I hope it still tastes good. Maybe I will put some whip cream on top 😉

  • Vicki
    November 28, 2018

    I made this pie to have for dessert today. Delicious, BUT ours fell apart the minute we sliced it 🙁 I don’t know what I did wrong. It chilled for about 6 hours before we cut into it. I was actually worried that my sauce was too thick because I practically had to spoon it out. Bummer but still delicious.

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