Sour Cream Raisin Pie is a delightfully nostalgic dessert with a wholesome, old-fashioned appearance and flavor. Thick creamy custard topped with pillowy meringue and plump raisins… every bite is mouthwateringly tangy and smooth. Each spoonful leaves you hungry for more!
The original raisin pie recipe dates all the way back to the early or mid-1900s.
The spices used change a bit from family to family and from state to state, but I like to keep things as simple as possible.
Sour Cream Raisin Pie
Just beneath the fluffy meringue lies a vanilla custard filling dotted with sweet raisins, all wrapped up in a tender pie crust.
This thick and creamy meringue pie is simply scrumptious!
I’m something of a homemade pie connoisseur… meaning I love pies, and I have a recipe for all of my favorites!
Try my fresh strawberry, pecan pumpkin, and French silk pies. Something sweet, something for the holidays, and something for your chocolate cravings!
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Sour Cream – Be sure to use full-fat sour cream – it makes for a tangier and richer custard pie.
- Raisins – You can use dark or golden raisins. Traditional raisins give you a classic presentation, while golden have a touch more sweetness.
- Egg Yolks and Whites – Keep those whites and yolks separate. You’ll need one more egg white than yolk, using 4 eggs in total.
You could use just 3 egg whites and save an egg, but you won’t have as much meringue.
Pull the eggs out of the fridge 30-45 minutes before you start baking, so they come to room temperature.
- Cream of Tartar – This ingredient helps create high, stiff peaks in your meringue. Though not really necessary for meringue, it’ll really help it hold up.
Something else acidic can be used as a substitute: lemon juice or white vinegar are your best options.
- Deep Dish Pie Crust – Homemade or store-bought – your choice.
But I do recommend using a deep dish crust so there’s enough room for the custard and the towering baked meringue on top.
How to Make Perfect Meringue
I’m often asked how to make a good, solid meringue. It really isn’t difficult! You just need to be sure to follow these important tips:
- Use room temperature eggs. It will absorb the sugar and whip up more easily.
- Eliminate any traces of fat. Wipe down your beaters and the inside of your mixing bowl with vinegar.
The extra acidity removes excess fat – your arch enemy when you’re whipping egg whites.
Raisin Pie FAQ
Some bakers like to add cornstarch to the egg whites to help them thicken. For the best possible texture and body, we use cream of tartar, which has acidity that helps to stabilize the whites.
Also, avoid over or underbaking the pie. Either will ruin the meringue you worked so hard to make! Finally, the whites need to be very stiff, so don’t stop beating until the peaks can stand up on their own!
Unfortunately, no. Custard pies don’t freeze well, and meringues don’t freeze well either — those are the two main players in a raisin pie!
Serving and Storing Sour Cream Raisin Pie
A classic raisin pie generally isn’t served hot out of the oven. It’s either cooled to room temperature or chilled in the fridge for a couple of hours.
I like to go the fridge route – I think it makes for a firmer, more pleasant custard – but your call!
Cover any leftovers and keep them in the fridge for up to 4 days.
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours.
Other Sensational Holiday Pies
Sour Cream Raisin Pie
- stand mixer with whisk attachment OR electric hand mixer
- 2 cups sour cream
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 1/2 cups raisins
- 4 egg whites, room temperature, See Notes
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 deep dish pie crust
- Preheat the oven to 350°F., then bake the pie shell for 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Add 1 tablespoon white vinegar to a clean rag and thoroughly wipe the beaters and inside of a stainless or glass mixing bowl. This will remove any fat, eliminating problems when you whip the egg whites. Set aside.
- Place a 3 or 4-quart saucepan on the stovetop, over medium-low heat. Add the sour cream, sugar, flour, and egg yolks. Using a heat-resistant rubber spatula, stir contents to combine.
- Add the raisins to the pot and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add the egg whites to the clean mixing bowl. Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat on high speed until whites are frothy.
- Add the cream of tartar and continue beating on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, slowly add the sugar. Continue beating until stiff peaks form, about 2-3 minutes.
- Pour the custard into the pre-baked pie shell and spoon the meringue in a dome shape over the filling.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove pie from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool for at least 1 hour. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours after that.
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.
Originally published October 2022
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