Chocolate Cream Pie

When it comes to pie, there are many different varieties. My Chocolate Cream Pie recipe was originally called Mocha Cream Pie for the hints of coffee laced throughout the chocolate.

chocolate cream pie with text overlay


This Chocolate Cream Pie Recipe is three layers of delicious pie: brownie base, chocolate cream, whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

What is Chocolate Cream Pie?

Cream Pie is a family favorite for Thanksgiving and Christmas. That’s not to say it is a holiday pie, but at our house, we make it two times in two months and we like it that way.

Maybe it is because those silky layers of mocha are the perfect light dessert to be served with a cup of coffee or cocoa bombs on a cold night.

What I do know is that the brownie base almost makes it into a luxurious brownie sundae, but it is also similar to a pudding pie, sugar cream pie or custard pie and even more topped with whipped cream making is a cream pie. This pie might actually have a pretty serious identity crisis.

angle view of cream pie with garnish

Why This Cream Pie Is Different

What makes it different and better than most chocolate pies?

  • The Filling. Most cream pies use an egg custad for the filling and while this is delicious and rich, but ours uses chocolate pudding mix for a light and airy filling. Ours also doesn’t require extra dishes, pans or cooking.
  • The Crust. Instead of a traditional pie crust, oreo crust or graham cracker crust, we opted for a brownie base. A soft sponge to carry the other creamy layers. Although, any of these can also be used.
  • Mocha! Mocha is just a fancy word the combination of chocolate and coffee. Coffee helps bring out natural flavors of chocolate. The amount is so minimal you won’t even notice.
side view of chocolate cream pie layers

Ingredients for Chocolate Cream Pie

The ingredient list is fairly short, as far as baking goes, but they are all used in multiple ways to make a three distinctly different cream pie layers.

  • Coffee or Espresso- Trust me on this, even if you don’t like coffee, the trace amounts doesn’t taste like coffee. Coffee helps to accentuate the natural flavors of coffee. In fact, many chocolate recipe include just a small amount to elevate it. But if you are truly opposed, swap this out for plain water.
  • Brownie mix- I do use a boxed brownie mix for this recipe. You can make your own dry mix, but don’t try to use a homemade brownie recipe, this isn’t tested for it. Fudge brownie mix provides the richest base.
  • Vanilla Bean Paste To add more flavor to this silky pie. Almond extract or vanilla extract is another option. If you really want to play on the coffee undertones, you can also add concentrated coffee extract.
  • Egg Whites– Fluffy whites are used for rise, but not the yolks for richness. Remember, this is a light pie.
  • Milk- Whole milk will make this dish super decadent, but skim or non-dairy milk alternatives can be swapped.
  • Chocolate Pudding Mix – Used for the chocolate cream layer.
  • Whipped Topping- I do suggest using a whipped topping because it is more stabilized. Fat free is perfectly fine if you are going for a lower calorie pie.
  • Chocolate Shavings– For garnish, these are optional.
close up of chocolate cream pie with chocolate shavings

How to make Chocolate Cream Pie

This chocolate cream pie recipe utilizes the same 7 ingredients in 3 layers, so pay attention to how much to use in each layer in the instructions.

  1. Preheat the oven and coat a deep 9-inch pie plate (or 9.5 inches) with cooking spray. I like using glass so while serving, the layers are visible. A deep pie plate is necessary to hold all of this goodness.
  2. Combine a portion of the coffee, brownie mix, vanilla paste, and egg whites in a medium bowl until no dry spots remain. Pour the batter into pan and tap it several times to release air bubbles.
  3. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until it gently springs back when touched in the center. Set aside and allow to cool.
brownie base for a cream pie
  1. Combine a portion of the coffee, milk, vanilla paste and pudding mix in a bowl. Whisk until the mixture thickens and then spread evenly over the brownie base. Refrigerate while making the top layer.
chocolate cream layer of a cream pie
  1. Whisk together the remaining whipped topping and vanilla paste. Spread over the chocolate cream layer. Since the chocolate layer is still soft, pile the last layer in the middle and work it out to the edges, without overworking.
top whipped cream layer of a cream pie
  1. Garnish as desired and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Why Add Coffee to Chocolate Desserts?

Coffee and cocoa (chocolate) are similar flavors. On their own and without sugar, they’re both bitter. But when paired together, they improve on their natural flavors. Coffee is often added to baked goods and desserts to intensify the chocolate flavor and balance the bitter. Espresso is another option for even more amplified flavors.

If you are concerned with caffeine, use decaffeinated coffee.

overhead slice of chocolate cream pie

What is Vanilla Bean Paste?

A concentrated, thick syrup made from vanilla pods, it provides more robust flavor than extract and is more convenient than vanilla bean pods. It is particularly good for recipes that are vanilla forward or will show the little flecks, known as the caviar.

How do I Use Vanilla Bean Paste? Paste can be substituted in any recipe that calls for extract. For extract, it is a 1:1 ratio, so 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract would also be 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste. If a recipe calls for scraping a vanilla bean pod, substitute 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste. 

Where Do I Buy Vanilla Bean Paste? It can be purchased at most high end grocery stores or craft stores and comes in a little tub. It can, of course, be purchased online.

fork digging into a slice of pie


Chocolate Cream Pie can be left ungarnished or decorated with a large array of sauces and toppings. These are our favorites.

  • White chocolate curls
  • Dark chocolate curls
  • Milk chocolate curls
  • Toffee bits
  • Dusting of cocoa powder
  • Chocolate sprinkles
  • Cookie crumbles (chocolate crunchies)
  • Drizzle with caramel sauce
  • Chocolate sauce
  • Toasted coffee beans (yes, they are edible!)
layers of chocolate cream pie

How to Make Chocolate Curls

There are three easy ways to make chocolate curls.

  1. Perhaps the easiest of all, buy them! Premade chocolate curls are available in most grocery stores in the cake aisle or buy them online.
  2. There are two ways to make your own. The first to make shavings, which are more delicate, is the flip over a bar of chocolate and using a metal, straight-edged spatula on it’s side and pull it across.
  3. If you do not have a chocolate bar, use a double boiler and melt down your desired chocolate. Spread it onto a silicone mat on a baking sheet and place it in the fridge to harden for 10-15 minutes. Chocolate will be solid, but still a little soft. Using the same technique as above, pull a flat edged spatula across the chocolate, making curls. You can also use a pastry cutter or offset spatula. Since it is soft, you’ll get thicker curls instead of shavings. For shavings, allow the chocolate to harden for longer.
close up of chocolate shavings

Storage & Freezing

Storage: This cream pie should be kept covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated. It will last for up to 5 days, but is best enjoyed within 24 hours.

Frozen: This can be frozen as a whole pie or a single slice. Freeze the pie unwrapped for covered for 12 hours so the silky toppings harden. Then wrap well in plastic wrap or freezer paper before placing in a plastic freezer bag to store long-term.

To thaw, place in the refrigerator overnight.

chocolate cream pie collage for pinterest

More Pie Recipes

Good pie recipes are heard to come by, but here are a few that are tried and true.

slices of pumpkin pie with whipped cream

Pumpkin Slab Pie Recipe

5 from 4 votes
If you're looking for an easier version of traditional pumpkin pie that will feed a crowd this easy pumpkin slab pie is for you.
See The Recipe!
close up of chocolate lasagna slice

Chocolate Lasagna

5 from 30 votes
An EASY chocolate layered dessert that is also no bake and utterly decadent and delicious! It's the BEST!
See The Recipe!
straight on shot of grape juice pie slice

Grape Juice Pie

4.20 from 15 votes
This EASY Grape Juice Pie (also known as frozen grape pie, concord pie or concord grape pie or jelly pie) is sweet, tart, and creamy!
See The Recipe!
overhead of chocolate cream pie recipe with text overlay
layers of chocolate cream pie

Chocolate Cream Pie Recipe

4.73 from 18 votes
Mocha Cream Pie Recipe is three layers of delicious pie: brownie base, chocolate pudding, and whipped cream top all laced with coffee.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 12



  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and coat a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray.
  • Combine 1/3 cup of the coffee, brownie mix, 1 teaspoon of the vanilla paste, and egg whites in a medium bowl until fully blended. Pour batter into pan. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until it gently springs back when touched in the center. Set aside and allow to cool.
  • Combine 2 tablespoons of the coffee, milk and 1 teaspoon of vanilla paste in a bowl, whisk lightly and then add pudding mix. Whisk until mixture thickens. Using a spatula, fold in 2 cups of the whipped topping until fully blended. Spread over brownie base.
  • Whisk together the remaining 2 cups of the whipped topping with the remaining 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste. Spread over chocolate pudding mixture for the final layer.
  • Garnish desired and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments or star ratings.


If brownie mix is clumped, sift before adding.


Calories: 474 kcal, Carbohydrates: 78 g, Protein: 5 g, Fat: 15 g, Saturated Fat: 5 g, Cholesterol: 16 mg, Sodium: 396 mg, Potassium: 82 mg, Sugar: 50 g, Vitamin A: 160 IU, Calcium: 39 mg, Iron: 2.5 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 474
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: mocha cream pie
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal and more!

Read More About Jessica

Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

Questions and Reviews

  1. Chocolate cream pies are a huge favorite in my house. My Bacon Slayer is a coffee fanatic. A subscription to Citizen Bean would make a great gift!

  2. That’s a beautiful pie! And the coffee sounds amazing. I’m going to look into it.

  3. Those layers! I’m in love! I’m also loving that there is a coffee monthly subscription service! How neat is that!

  4. This is a pie that would be a hit with our family! Love new pie ideas and I’ll be adding this to my must-make pie list!