Happy Weekend, friends! This S’mores Chess Pie has been on my to-bake list for SO LONG because my s’mores obsession is too real and I finally made it this past week! It 1000% lived up to my fudgy gooey toasted marshmallowy expectations. And it’s so fun for summer! It’s like a giant s’more with a super thick chocolaty center.
Chess pie is so good. The peanut butter chess pie from my cookbook is one of my all time favorites, but there are so many other versions of it I want to make. Like I saw a lemon chess pie somewhere on the internets the other day added it to my list. Also really want to make some cozy autumn versions later this year.
Chess pies are very homey and comforting and nostalgic and I love that.
graham cracker crust
I believe pies of the chess variety usually have an actual pie crust, but we’re doing an easy graham crust here because of the s’mores factor and also a heavy emphasis on the word easy. The marshmallow topping is the most involved part of this recipe so I wanted to keep everything else stress-free.
chocolate chess filling
Most chess pie recipes I’ve come across include evaporated milk in the filling. I was flipping through my little recipe box of my grandmother’s recipes and found one for buttermilk chess pie. While making my list of ingredients to pick up, I already had buttermilk in the fridge so I decided to give the buttermilk version a shot!
This filling comes together quick and easy! No mixer required or anything. It’s made with cocoa powder and some melted chocolate so you get plenty of chocolaty flavor in each bite.
the marshmallow topping
Obviously the star of the show here is the marshmallow topping. It’s technically Italian meringue and not a true homemade marshmallow, but Italian meringue has a very marshmallow-like texture and is significantly easier to make. (And makes a fraction of the mess.) You’ll mix together some egg whites, cream of tartar, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a double boiler (I used my metal stand mixer bowl over a pot of simmering water) it until it reaches 120°F on a candy thermometer. Then you’ll whip it real good with an electric mixer until stiff and ~glossay~ peaks form.
Also obviously, the easiest and simplest way to toast the topping would be with a kitchen torch, so feel free to do that if you have one! I don’t have a kitchen torch, so I toasted mine under the broiler in my oven. The key here is to put your oven rack in the middle of the oven so your pie won’t be too close to the broiler. Then I literally stood there with the oven door cracked open and watched it toast to make sure it didn’t burn. It is very important that you do not walk away from your oven during this step! Once things start toasting, they really start toasting!
And that’s that! Once your topping cools, your perfectly toasty S’mores Chess Pie is ready for consumption! I’m so obsessed with this thing. Seriously, it’s so good and probably my favorite thing I’ll make all summer even though I was super into this strawberry cake and this strawb skillet blondie. Summer produce is some of my favorite but s’mores will always have a special place in my heart.
S'mores Chess Pie
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
- 6 tbsp butter melted
Buttermilk Chocolate Chess Pie Filling:
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 4 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 large eggs lightly beaten
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup butter melted
- 2 oz chopped chocolate (about ¼ cup), melted
- 3 large egg whites
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ tsp cream of tartar
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the graham cracker crust:
- Stir together graham crumbs and butter until all crumbs are evenly coated. Press into and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Set aside.
For the pie filling:
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Combine sugar and cocoa powder in a large bowl; add eggs and buttermilk, stirring until blended. Stir in vanilla, melted butter, and melted chocolate. Pour into the prepared graham cracker crust.
- Bake for 45 minutes, tenting with foil after about 20 minutes of baking. Let pie cool completely.
For the marshmallow topping:
- Fill a medium to large pot with 1-inch water and bring to a simmer. In a heat-safe bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar, and salt.
- Place the bowl over the pot, making sure the bowl does not touch the simmering water. Cook egg white mixture, whisking constantly, until sugar dissolves and mixture reaches 120°F on a candy thermometer.
- Remove from heat and whip mixture on high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form.
- Spread topping over the cooled pie, creating large swoops with a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon.
- In your oven, place the rack in the middle; preheat broiler. Place pie under the broiler and let it toast the top of the marshmallow topping for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Do not walk away from your oven! (I cracked the oven door and watched it the entire time it was toasting.)
- If you have a kitchen torch, feel free to toast the topping that way!
- Once toasted, allow the pie to cool before serving; pie is best served warm. Store covered in the refrigerator.
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