Traditional key lime pie recipes typically include sweetened condensed milk, made from cow’s milk, and therefore contains dairy. However, it is possible to make a dairy-free version of the key lime pie using non-dairy substitutes. You can enjoy a delicious dairy-free key lime pie by making these substitutions.
Ingredients of Dairy-Free Key Lime Pie
Graham Cracker Crust: A mixture of crushed graham crackers, melted dairy-free butter or margarine, and a sweetener like sugar or maple syrup. It provides a crisp and flavorful base for the pie.
Key Lime Juice: Freshly squeezed juice from key limes gives the pie its signature tangy flavor. Key lime juice adds a refreshing and citrusy taste to the filling.
Sweetener: To balance the tartness of the lime juice, a sweetener like cane sugar, agave nectar, or maple syrup is used. It adds a touch of sweetness to the pie filling.
Non-Dairy Sweetened Condensed Milk: A dairy-free substitute for traditional sweetened condensed milk is used to achieve a creamy texture. Options include coconut milk or almond milk-based sweetened condensed milk alternatives.
Cornstarch or Tapioca Starch: These ingredients are often used as thickeners to help the filling set properly. They ensure a smooth and firm texture for the pie when chilled.
Optional Toppings: Common toppings for key lime pie include non-dairy whipped cream from coconut cream or soy-based alternatives, grated lime zest for a burst of citrus aroma, and extra lime slices for garnish.
Note: It’s important to read ingredient labels carefully to ensure that all chosen products are dairy-free and suitable for specific dietary needs.
Ingredients to Be Substituted For Dairy-Free Key Lime Pie
- Coconut Milk
- Almond Milk
- Cashew Milk
- Soy Milk
- Dairy-Free Margarine
- Coconut Oil
Key Lime Pie Recipe
For the crust
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
- 6 tablespoons dairy-free butter substitute, melted
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
For the filling
- 1 can (14 ounces) of non-dairy sweetened condensed milk
- ½ cup key lime juice (freshly squeezed if possible)
- 4 teaspoons grated key lime zest
- 4 tablespoons cornstarch or tapioca starch (as a thickener)
For the topping (optional)
- Dairy-free whipped cream
- Lime slices or zest for garnish
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted dairy-free butter substitute, and sugar in a mixing bowl. Stir until well combined and the mixture resembles wet sand.
- Press the mixture into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie dish to form the crust.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the non-dairy sweetened condensed milk, key lime juice, grated key lime zest, and cornstarch or tapioca starch until smooth and well combined.
- Pour the filling into the prepared crust, spreading it evenly.
- Bake the pie in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are set and the center is slightly jiggly.
- Remove the pie from the oven and let it cool to room temperature. Then refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, to allow it to set.
- If desired, decorate the chilled pie with dairy-free whipped cream and lime slices or zest.
Serve and enjoy your homemade dairy-free key lime pie!
Tips to Ensure That Your Key Lime Pie Is Dairy-Free
Read Ingredient Labels: When selecting ingredients for your key lime pie, carefully read the labels to ensure they are free from dairy products such as milk, butter, and sweetened condensed milk. Look for specifically labeled dairy-free or vegan alternatives.
Use Non-Dairy Substitutes: Replace dairy ingredients with non-dairy alternatives. For example, use non-dairy butter substitutes like margarine or coconut oil in the crust and non-dairy sweetened condensed milk substitutes like coconut milk or almond milk-based alternatives in the filling.
Double-Check Your Toppings: If adding toppings like whipped cream, choose a dairy-free whipped cream alternative made from coconut cream or other non-dairy options. Read the labels to ensure it does not contain any dairy ingredients.
Avoid Cross-Contamination: To prevent cross-contamination, ensure that all utensils, bowls, and pans used to prepare the key lime pie are thoroughly cleaned and free from any traces of dairy products. Separate them from other dairy-containing ingredients in your kitchen.
Dairy-Free Key Lime Pie Brands
Sweet Loren’s offers a dairy-free key lime tart made with plant-based ingredients and free from dairy, eggs, and artificial preservatives. Their tart delivers a tangy and refreshing key lime flavor without any dairy components.
Daiya offers a range of dairy-free products, including a delicious dairy-free key lime cheesecake. Their key lime dessert is made with plant-based ingredients and is free from dairy, gluten, and soy.
Wholly Wholesome offers a dairy-free key lime pie made with natural ingredients and does not contain any dairy, eggs, or artificial flavors. Their pie is convenient and tasty for those seeking a dairy-free dessert.
Hail Merry is known for their dairy-free and gluten-free desserts, and they have a delightful key lime tart on their menu. Made with wholesome ingredients like almonds and coconut oil, their dairy-free key lime tart offers a delicious and guilt-free treat.
Is Dairy-Free Key Lime Pie Healthier Than Traditional Key Lime Pie?
Dairy-free key lime pie can be considered a healthier alternative to traditional key lime pie for individuals with specific dietary needs or preferences. It eliminates dairy, which may benefit those with lactose intolerance or dairy allergies. However, the overall healthiness of the pie depends on the specific ingredients used and the quantity consumed.
How To Serve Key Lime Pie?
Key lime pie is best served cold to make the filling firm and smooth. You can also serve it with whipped cream, fresh berries, or a fruit sauce, and for a unique touch, try adding a scoop of sorbet or coconut ice cream.
Is Key Lime Pie Vegan?
Key lime pie is not inherently vegan since it traditionally contains sweetened condensed milk derived from cow’s milk. However, a vegan version of key lime pie can be created with suitable substitutions using non-dairy alternatives for milk and eggs.
Is Key Lime Pie Gluten-Free?
Key lime pie is not naturally gluten-free as it typically contains a crust made from graham crackers made from wheat. However, a gluten-free version of key lime pie can be made by using gluten-free graham crackers or alternative gluten-free crust options.
Is Key Lime Pie Vegetarian?
Key lime pie is typically considered vegetarian since it does not contain meat or meat-derived ingredients.
Is Key Lime Pie Lactose-Free?
The traditional key lime pie contains sweetened condensed milk made from cow’s milk and lactose. Therefore, the classic version of key lime pie is not lactose-free. However, a lactose-free version can be prepared by using non-dairy alternatives for sweetened condensed milk.