margarita icebox pudding pie

Summer is finally here. As I sit at home and wait, fingers crossed, that I will find employment soon, I contemplate my love of summer’s long days. Reading outside in the sun. Tending to my garden. Tipping back a margarita every now and then. Heading down to the local dairy bar for an ice cream treat in the evening. Camping on the weekend. It almost makes me wish that I lived somewhere a bit more tropical, so that I could enjoy these things year round. But if I did – – would I enjoy them so much?

So in the spirit of the season (sorry, Southern Hemispherites), what better way is there to ring in summer than to combine limeade and tequila – the classic flavors of my aforementioned good friend The Margarita – into pie form? Yep, you heard that right – margarita pie.

You have just seen the future, my friend. And the future involves a balmy summer evening, a pretty sunset on the horizon, you, and this pie. Utensils are optional in future scenarioizing.

The tangy lime flavor mixes nicely with the crust, which is made from browned butter and crushed pretzels. Sweet meets savory meets mouth wowing crunchy.

Although this pie began life as a custard, it turned more into a pudding, due to my insistence on packing it full of limeade and tequila. It’s filled with flavor flav, if you will. As such, it doesn’t make for the most beautiful dessert once served. I therefore recommend this: make this dessert in ramequins, with a small amount of crust on the bottom, a generous serving of margarita custard pudding, and a sprinkling of additional crust on top.

Or, if you want to serve this in pie form and have it look classy, do one of two things: reduce the amount of limeade, or fold in some whipped cream. Reducing the liquid will allow a custard to thicken more easily. Folding in whipped cream will add stiffness to the filling, and will keep it in place in the pie plate.

Margarita Icebox Pudding Pie {recipe inspiration here}

Makes 6-8 ramekins or 1 pie (this is deliciously messy – I recommend making it in ramekins)


For the crust

1 3/4 c. pretzels, crushed
7 tbsp butter
1/4 – 1/2 tsp salt, depending on saltiness of pretzels
1/2 c. sugar

For the filling

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 c. limeade concentrate (use 1/2 c. if you want the pudding to become more custard-like)
3 tbsp tequila
1 egg + 3 egg yolks
3-4 drops green food coloring (optional)
1 c. heavy cream, whipped (optional if you want the pudding to be more fluffy and ‘set’)


Preheat oven to 375 F. In a sauté pan, melt the butter and cook until it is browned – this will give added depth to the crust’s salty flavor. Combine in a medium bowl with crushed pretzels, sugar and salt; mix. Press into ramekins or pie plate – if using ramekins, reserve a small amount to sprinkle on top of the filling.

Bake crust for 5 minutes – any longer, and it will become too hardened once baked. Allow to cool.

In a pan over medium low heat, combine sweetened condensed milk, limeade concentrate, and 2 tbsp tequila. Cook until it begins to bubble, then lower heat and add eggs, mixing to combine each one. Continue stirring and cook for ten to fifteen minutes. If using less limeade, look for mixture to thicken somewhat; if using 1 c. of limeade, consistency will not change.

Add food coloring if using, and 1 additional tbsp of tequila (the rest will have cooked out for the most part). Mix well. Fold in whipped cream, if using (I did not).

Pour filling into pie crust. If making ramekins, sprinkle additional crust mixture on top. Chill for at least 5 hours. If pressed for time, chill in the freezer – this will, however, make the crust difficult to remove from the plate. Serve, maybe with a shot of tequila on the side?

And speaking of Flavor Flav… a new Public Enemy song comes out today. But why focus on the present when I can dwell in the past? Here’s one of my favorite P.E. songs, off the 1994 record Muse Sick-N-Hour Mess Age.

This isn’t the album version, and I don’t really like it that much – but apparently, the studio version isn’t anywhere to be found on the world wide web. Regardless, check out how insane Flavor is.

22 thoughts on “margarita icebox pudding pie

  1. Emma, Happy Summer to you! It sounds like you are doing it right. I am dying to go camping – one of the great highlights of summer isn’t it?

    Your pie looks awesome. I kept thinking that the filling looks like creamy margarita curd. Yum!!!!!


    1. Hey Erin, happy summer to you too! I’m trying to do things right – eating pie certainly helps:)

      Creamy margarita curd is just about the best way to describe this filling. I love it. I could drink it down straight.

      Get out there and camp – – your kids will thank you for it;)

  2. oooooh, the color alone is amazing! I have a couple of things ‘pinned’ with a pretzel crust. I need to get on that. Tequila and lime sound perfectly summery.

    1. The pretzel crust was phenomenal. I’m considering making it again, but baking it in chunky pieces on a sheet in the oven. Yummy snacksss!

  3. The closest I’ve come to a Margarita is swiping my finger along the salt rim of Mum’s glass as a kid living in America… and sometimes getting in trouble for it.

    I forgive you, as a Southern Hemispherite, because your photos look like I’m being granted a glimpse into a fairyland with pixie dust and greengreengreen abounds forever. Thank you. xoxo

    1. You must come closer. Margaritas are quite delicious, especially when loaded up on sugary limeade. Tequila is optional, in my mind. I’m in it for the limeysugarlimeysugar. Yum.

      There probably isn’t any pixie dust in my garage, sadly. Just a lot of moose antlers! xoxo

  4. Yeah, yeah, stick your tongue out at those of us enduring winter and no free time!! (I jest of course, my fingers are also crossed for you to find a job, I know it means a lot to you). In the meantime I will vicariously enjoy bike riding, bush walking, sunshine, green tarts and dainty little wild flowers …

    1. I must finance so many large-scale purchases of clothing and shoes, thus, yes, a job is so very important to find:D I kid, but it would be nice!

      Speaking of bush walking, we did some hardcore bushwhacking yesterday. I’m all covered in scrapes as a result! I will make sure to share plenty more of my cheery summer adventures for the likes of you Southern Hemispherites;)

  5. browned butter and pretzel crust? Holy yum. I love that green of the filling, though sadly it’s not natural!

    1. Oooh, now you’ve got me wanting more of that delicious pretzel crust! It was so sweet, but so salty, but so sososososo good. Mmm.

      Yes, sadly not naturally green, but if I hadn’t colored it it would have been a peculiar yellow color from the sweetened condensed milk and you’d be all ‘um is this lime? cause it looks like banana.’ :)

  6. This recipe looks beautiful and sounds delicious! It’s been sunshine-y and hot down here in GA for many-a-month now (90 degrees today, huzzah…), but I believe that any time is a good time for a margarita. Or a margarita pie. Lovely pictures as usual, by the way – I’m in love with your rustic green setup you have above. So pretty!

    Also, I’m liking the idea of a pretzel-based crust. Actually, I suppose anything that keeps me from having to make a “real” pie crust makes me happy. I’m still a pretty serious novice in that department. >.>

    1. If I hadn’t enjoyed the scenery in the northern part of the state so much, I’d be inclined to say that Georgia sounds like nothing but a hot mess. In a bad & sticky way.

      Oh, Mary, we need to get you back on the crust horse (eew?). Although… given that you have months and months of 90 degree weather, it might not be you. It might be the heat – – do ice cubes even stay icy longer than twenty seconds there?

  7. fantastic idea for a cream/custard pie; my mind is already thinking of ways to somehow make this into something more curdy and sandwich it into a random layer cake. or just leave it exactly like it is and eat, eat, eat it. is it wrong that i love the color so much? because i do. it’s gloriously margarita-y.
    i get the same way when the seasons change from spring to summer, but i think for me, i wouldn’t appreciate the fresh warmth as much if i had it year round. i am a girl who likes seasons. all four of them. i’ll complain about all of them as they’re exiting (except fall; i love fall unconditionally), but i do love each one of them when they’re new, summer included.

    1. There are definitely lots of good ways to manipulate this into different dessert forms! I was even thinking of some sort of custard-jello shooter, although that’s not really a dessert, is it? :P

      I love the color too:) People always seem bummed when I use food coloring, but… c’mon, it’s so pretty!

      All of the seasons are wonderful to me. I love them all. The only thing that ever bugs me season-wise is how early it gets dark here in the winter…. but that’s not something I need to worry about for a few more months!

  8. That pie! !!! !!!! I love the colour, I love how ridiculous it is, I love that it has something called limeade in it. I do, however, have very little interest in it at the moment – for me it’s all about the apple crumbles and so on in this weather! Will definitely remember this one for summer though. Will also definitely check out that song, as soon as it’s no longer 6.30am and I’m the only one awake!

    1. Haha, ‘how ridiculous it is,’ that’s a great way of putting it!

      It is a shame about the weather differences between us. The sheer humidity levels of the past week have me imagining any crumbles I might make simply warming up and melting away into a puddle. Which is unappetizing, to say the least.

      Woop woop, Flavor Flav!

  9. MOTHER OF PEARL! I’m very behind on my blog reading. And finally, I have reached this pie. This glorious pie. This glorious pie in my most favourite colour. And pretzels in the crust? FLAVOR FLAV!!!!

    1. Mother of yum, more like. I’m glad you finally reached this pie, although I ate it so long ago now that I can hardly remember what it was like.

      Just kidding, it was heaps of delish! Flavor Flav would have approved.

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