Traditional Chess Pie with Cornmeal Recipe

Chess Pie
Rusty Hill/Photolibrary/Getty Images
  • 70 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 60 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings

The earliest printed reference to the "chess pie" was in a cookbook published by the Fort Worth Women's Club in 1928. There are many theories for the name of this pie, along with a few interesting stories, but the origin remains a mystery to this day.

A typical chess pie is made with a filling of eggs, sugar, butter, and a little flour, and some include cornmeal and a little vinegar and flavoring. This one is made with cornmeal and part brown sugar.

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What You'll Need

  • Pastry for a 9-inch pie, purchased or homemade
  • 4 ounces butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon cornmeal

How to Make It

  1. Heat the oven to 350° F .
  2. Prepare the pie pastry and line a 9-inch pie plate. Flute the edge. 
  3. In a bowl, combine the melted butter with the brown and granulated sugars. Add the beaten eggs, vinegar, vanilla, and cornmeal; stir until thoroughly blended. Do not beat.
  4. Pour into the pastry-lined pie plate and bake for 1 hour, or until set and crust is browned.