Rhubarb Chess Pie


Chess pie, a classic Southern custard dessert, only gets sweeter with the addition of sliced fresh rhubarb. Don't forget to add a healthy scoop of ice cream or whipped cream on top!

Rhubarb Chess Pie
Photo: Andy Lyons
Prep Time:
35 mins
Bake Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
35 mins


  • Pastry for Single Crust Pie

  • 2 cup 1-inch pieces fresh rhubarb

  • 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar

  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten

  • ½ cup whipping cream

  • ¼ cup butter, melted

  • ¼ cup lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

  • 1 tablespoon cornmeal

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • Vanilla ice cream

Pastry for a Single-Crust Pie

  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ cup shortening

  • ¼ cup butter, cut up, or shortening

  • ¼ cup cold water


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare Pastry for Single Crust Pie. Line pastry with a double thickness of foil. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes more or until set and dry. Meanwhile, arrange rhubarb in a single layer in a shallow baking pan. Bake alongside the pastry for 10 minutes or until rhubarb is tender. Remove from oven; cool. Sprinkle rhubarb with 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar. Toss to coat. Place the rhubarb mixture in the bottom of the pre-baked pastry. Set aside.

  2. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, remaining 1 cup granulated sugar, cream, butter, lemon juice, cornstarch, cornmeal, vanilla, and salt. Pour filling over the rhubarb in pastry. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until center is just set, covering loosely with foil the last 10 minutes of baking, if necessary to prevent overbrowning. Cool on a wire rack for 2 hours. Cover and chill up to 24 hours. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

Pastry for a Single-Crust Pie

  1. In a medium bowl stir together flour and salt. Using pastry blender, cut in shortening and butter until pieces are pea size.

  2. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the water over part of the flour mixture; toss with a fork. Push moistened pastry to side of bowl. Repeat moistening flour mixture, using 1 tablespoon of the water at a time, until flour mixture is moistened. Gather flour mixture into a ball, kneading gently until it holds together.

  3. On a lightly floured surface use your hands to slightly flatten pastry. Roll pastry from center to edges into a circle about 12 inches in diameter.

  4. Wrap pastry circle around the rolling pin. Unroll into a 9-inch pie plate. Ease pastry into pie plate without stretching it.

  5. Trim pastry to 1/2 inch beyond edge of pie plate. Fold under extra pastry even with the plate's edge. Crimp edge as desired. Do not prick pastry. Fill and bake as directed in recipes.

Frozen rhubarb:

Substitute 2 cups frozen cut rhubarb (8 ounces), thawed, for the fresh rhubarb. Prepare as above.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

600 Calories
35g Fat
65g Carbs
8g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 600
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 35g 45%
Saturated Fat 19g 95%
Cholesterol 193mg 64%
Sodium 396mg 17%
Total Carbohydrate 65g 24%
Total Sugars 43g
Protein 8g
Vitamin C 5.5mg 27%
Calcium 121mg 9%
Iron 1.8mg 10%
Potassium 255mg 5%
Fatty acids, total trans 1g
Folate, total 63.6mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.5mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

Related Articles