This classic recipe for coconut cream pie features a buttery, flaky pie crust and coconut pastry cream filling all topped with homemade whipped cream and toasted coconut. This pie is bakery quality and is sure to impress!

Sliced coconut cream pie


There are four pastry components to coconut cream pie: pie crust, coconut pastry cream, toasted coconut, and whipped cream. These components are simple to make on their own and, when layered together, make a seriously delicious coconut cream pie.

There are two things that make this coconut cream pie recipe extra special

  • First, I like to use full fat coconut cream for the pastry cream filling. Using coconut cream (instead of coconut extract) creates an incredibly creamy, coconut-y pastry cream.

  • Second, I toast the unsweetened coconut flakes that we use in the pastry cream as well as the pie topping. Toasting the coconut brings out an incredible depth of flavor and using unsweetened coconut (instead of sweetened) balances the flavors.

Variation Ideas

Graham Cracker Crust: Make a graham cracker crust instead of a flaky pie crust. Follow my graham cracker crust recipe in its entirety (you can choose to bake the crust or leave it unbaked – completely up to you). Then, skip making and blind baking the pie dough for this coconut cream pie and continue with making the coconut pastry cream and toasted coconut topping.

Chocolate Coconut Cream Pie: Chocolate and coconut is a classic flavor combination. For the filling, make chocolate pastry cream following the recipe notes in the pastry cream post and fold in the toasted coconut flakes.

How to Make Coconut Cream Pie

1. Make & Bake the Pie Crust

pie crust that has been fully blind baked

I highly recommend making your own pie crust to make this the best coconut cream pie. I know that making pie crust can seem daunting if you aren’t familiar with the process. This pie crust tutorial is a great place to start to help you gain some confidence.

For an easy coconut cream pie recipe, use a store-bought pie crust.

It’s important to note that this pie filling does not need to be baked in the oven. Because of this, the pie crust needs to blind bake before assembling the pie. Allow the crust to cool while you prepare the other components.

2. Make the Coconut Pastry Cream

Pastry cream going through a strainer

For this recipe, we start with my classic pastry cream recipe and swap some of the milk with full fat coconut milk.

After the pastry cream is made, strain it through a fine mesh sieve to ensure that it is silky smooth. Allow the pastry cream to cool slightly before assembling the pie.

3. Toast the Coconut

Toasted Coconut Flakes

While totally optional, toasting the coconut for this pie really enhances the coconut flavor and turns a homemade pie into a bakery-style pie. I highly recommend this extra step!

4. Make the Whipped Cream

Whipped cream in a bowl

Real homemade whipped cream is the absolute best (and most classic!) topping for coconut cream pie. Because whipped cream is so simple to make yourself, I don’t recommend using store-bought whipped cream. It just isn’t the same!

If you’d like to make the whipped cream in advance, make a stabilized version that contains gelatin. My recipe for stabilized whipped cream can be made up to 4 days in advance.

Sliced homemade coconut cream pie

Tips, Tricks, & Techniques

  • The components for coconut cream pie can be made days before you want to assemble and serve the pie. Store pre-made pie crust and pastry cream in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and store toasted coconut at room temperature. However, it’s best to wait until the day of to whip the cream.
  • It’s important to read through the entire recipe from start to finish before you begin. With four parts to coconut cream pie, this will help you understand the workflow and steps required for each component.
  • Use this recipe as a template for other coconut cream pie variations! Sliced bananas can be folded into the filling for a Coconut Banana Cream Pie or consider adding melted chocolate or mini chocolate chips to the pastry cream for a Chocolate Coconut Cream Pie.


Surprisingly, coconut cream pie is a great make-ahead recipe – most of the components can be made a couple days before you plan to assemble and serve the pie.

Pie Crust: Store premade pie dough in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Store a baked, un-filled pie crust in the refrigerator for up to 3 days (wrap tightly in plastic wrap before refrigerating). 

Pastry Cream: Store coconut pastry cream in an airtight container (with a piece of plastic wrap touching the pastry cream surface) in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

Toasted Coconut Flakes: Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Whipped Cream: I don’t recommend making whipped cream ahead of time. It’s best to wait until you’re ready to assemble and serve to whip the cream.


If you enjoyed this recipe, you might like to try these other delicious pie recipes.

A slice of coconut cream pie
Yield: 10 Servings

Coconut Cream Pie

Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 52 minutes
Chilling Time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 37 minutes

This classic recipe for coconut cream pie features a buttery, flaky pie crust and coconut pastry cream filling all topped with homemade whipped cream and toasted coconut. This pie is bakery quality and is sure to impress!


For the Crust

  • 180 grams (1 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 85 grams (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cold
  • 30 grams (2 ½ tablespoons) shortening
  • 57-85 grams (4-6 tablespoons, 60-90 milliliters) ice water

For the Coconut Pastry Cream Filling

  • 192 grams (6 large) egg yolks
  • 100 grams (½ cup) granulated sugar
  • 30 grams (¼ cup) cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 454 grams (2 cups, 480 milliliters) whole milk
  • 120 grams (½ cup) full fat coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • 28 grams (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

For the Toasted Coconut Topping

  • 112 grams (2 cups) unsweetened coconut flakes (*see notes for using sweetened)

For the Whipped Cream

  • 352 grams (1 ½ cups, 360 milliliters) heavy cream or whipping cream, cold
  • 60 grams (½ cup) powdered, confectioners, or icing sugar



  1. Read through this recipe in its entirety to get a feel for the workflow. 
  2. Measure out all of the ingredients.
  3. Cut the cold butter (85 grams/ 6 tablespoons) for the pie crust into small pieces, about ½-inch (1 cm) size. Make sure it is very cold. If it has started to warm up, you can place it in the freezer for a few minutes before starting. 
  4. Cut the butter (28 grams/ 2 tablespoons) for the coconut pastry cream filling into small pieces and set aside at room temperature.

Make the Pie dough:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour (180 grams/ 1 ½ cups), salt (½ teaspoon), and sugar (1 teaspoon).
  2. Add the shortening (30 grams/ 2 ½ tablespoons) and cold butter to the bowl and toss with your hands so all of the fat is coated with flour. Use the tips of your fingers and thumbs to press down on all of the pieces of fat, creating little sheets of fat throughout your mixture. If it feels like the fat is starting to melt, pop the bowl in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes before continuing. Continue working the fat through the flour until all of the fat has been worked through and ranges in size from peas to walnuts throughout. 
  3. Add the ice water (57-85 grams/ 4-6 tablespoons) little by little into the mixture. Fold the mixture gently with a silicone spatula to incorporate. Use a light hand to slowly hydrate the flour as you add more water. You may not need all of the water. Once large clumps of dough start forming, gather the dough up and press it together. If it crumbles then you need to add a little more water. If it holds together then you are ready to chill the dough. 
  4. Bring the dough together on your counter and press into one mass and knead very gently for one or two turns to bring it into a cohesive dough.
  5. Press flat into a round disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 30 minutes to allow the gluten to relax and the flour to fully hydrate. While the dough is chilling, make the coconut pastry cream.

Make the coconut pastry cream filling:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks (192 grams/ 6 large) with the sugar (100 grams/ ½ cup), cornstarch (30 grams/ ¼ cup), and salt (¼ teaspoon) with a whisk until foamy and about double in size. This will ensure a smooth pastry cream.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat the milk (454 grams/ 2 cups) and coconut milk (120 grams/ ½ cup) on medium heat until it starts to boil. 
  3. Temper the egg yolks by slowly pouring about half of the milk into the egg/cornstarch mixture while whisking continuously. It can be helpful to nestle the mixing bowl in a damp kitchen towel to stabilize the bowl while you whisk and pour.
  4. Pour the milk/egg mixture back into the pot with the remainder of the milk and cook over low heat, whisking continuously, until the mixture thickens and starts rapidly bubbling. Do not rush this process. 
  5. Pour the hot pastry cream through a fine mesh sieve.
  6. Add the butter and vanilla extract or paste (1 teaspoon) and whisk in. 
  7. Place a piece of plastic wrap right on top of the pastry cream and refrigerate until ready to use.

Blind bake the pie crust:

  1. Preheat the oven at 400°F/205°C.
  2. Lightly flour a clean work surface and place your chilled dough on top. Lightly flour the top of the dough and your rolling pin. As you roll the dough, lift it up, turn it, and redistribute flour underneath it every few rolls to prevent sticking. Roll the dough out to about 1 ½ - 2-inches (4 -5 cm) wider than your pie dish all the way around. This is important so that your dough doesn’t need to stretch to fit down into the plate, which can cause it to shrink.
  3. Set the rolling pin in the middle and fold the dough in half over the rolling pin. Gently transfer it into the pie plate, unrolling it off the rolling pin. 
  4. Lift up on the sides of the crust to allow it to fall naturally into the pie plate without having to stretch it. 
  5. If there are places that don’t have quite enough dough to hang over the edge, you can patch it with pieces from the other side. 
  6. Trim the excess dough leaving about ½-inch overhang all the way around the pie plate. Fold the extra dough under, creating a lip all the way around and crimp the edges. Using a fork, dock the crust a few times on the bottom and up the sides. 
  7. Place a piece of parchment paper over top of the pie crust and fill it with dry beans, rice, or pie weights; they should fill the pan all the way to the top. This will help the crust hold its shape and not shrink while baking. I typically use dried beans for this and save them to reuse. 
  8. Optional: I suggest placing your crust in the freezer for at least 10 minutes or in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to firm up before baking to prevent shrinkage. 
  9. Bake in the bottom third of the oven for 20 minutes. 
  10. Remove the parchment paper and pie weights from the crust. Return the crust to the oven and bake for another 12-15 minutes, until the bottom is golden brown and fully set. Let the crust cool on a wire rack.

Make the toasted coconut topping:

  1. Pour the coconut flakes (112 grams/ 2 cups) into a dry skillet over medium/low heat. Stay close by and stir occasionally until the coconut starts to smell toasted and turns a light brown color. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. When the pastry cream has cooled down (it can still be warm but not hot), take it out of the refrigerator. Add about 1 ½ cups of the toasted coconut flakes to the pastry cream and stir together until evenly distributed. The remaining coconut flakes will be sprinkled on top of the whipped cream.
  3. Pour the pie filling into the cooled pie crust. Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of the filling and refrigerate until completely cool- at least 2 hours.

Make the whipped cream:

  1. Wait to make the whipped cream until right before serving. Place the cream (352 grams/ 1 ½ cups) in the bowl of a stand mixer fit with a whisk attachment or in a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer. 
  2. Begin whipping on medium speed until soft peaks begin to form. 
  3. With the mixer still running, slowly add the powdered sugar (60 grams/ ½ cups) and mix until medium peaks form. Be careful not to over whip the cream. It will start looking curdled if you go too far, as it begins turning into butter. 
  4. Top the whipped cream over the filling and spread out using the back of a spoon or offset spatula. Sprinkle the remaining coconut flakes on top. Serve immediately.
  5. STORE: Coconut cream pie should be stored covered in the refrigerator and will keep for up to 4 days.

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