This is the ultimate banana cream pie; rich, silky, and indulgent yet so light and dreamy. Incredible pure vanilla and banana flavor will tickle your tastebuds. You’ll love how the creamy custard, the buttery, flaky crust, and the fluffy whipped cream come together in each irresistible bite! Take it to the next level with a drizzle of Caramel Sauce. Coconut Cream Pie lovers can forget the bananas and add toasted coconut.
I like to make individual tarts that I can fill to order (see notes regarding tartlet pans). The tart shells can be baked ahead as they hold quite well either in a covered container or frozen. And this is REALLY good vanilla custard you can use for various other desserts. Spread it between cake layers or fill cream puffs. Serve in dessert dishes or ramekins with a dollop of whipped cream or a drizzle of caramel sauce.
Old fashioned Banana Cream Pie – so creamy, so decadent, so unforgettable – pure YUM!
Old Fashioned Banana Cream Pie
For the Crust (Makes 2)
- 2 cups flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cold shortening
- ½ cup cold butter
- 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- Ice water as needed
For the Vanilla Cream Custard
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 5 large egg yolks
- 2 cups whole milk 2% milk ok
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ vanilla bean 3” piece split lengthwise or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup cold heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
- Optional: Caramel Sauce
For the Crust
- Mix flour and salt. Cut in cold shortening and butter.
- Add egg/vinegar mixture and mix until dough is formed, adding ice water as needed to hold mixture together.
- Divide in two parts, pat into disks, wrap and chill for one to two hours before rolling.
- Note that the recipe makes 2 (9-inch) pie crusts. If you are making only 1 (9-inch) pie crust, use only half of the pie crust dough. You can freeze the other half to use later.
- After chilling, roll the disk to about 12”. Fit into pie dish and crimp the edges. Dock the crust (prick all over with a fork including the sides). Chill the shaped pie crust for at least 30 minutes. This prevents shrinking. Remember that pie dough must be cold when it hits the oven.
- Preheat oven to 350° convection. Line the chilled pie shell with foil or parchment paper, making sure to cover the edges so it does not burn.
- Fill pie shell with pie weights or dried beans, then bake until the pie crust is very lightly browned, about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove the foil (and weights) carefully and continue to bake the pastry until it is nicely browned and completely cooked, about 10-15 minutes more. If crust begins to puff up and bubble, poke gently with a fork to deflate.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the Vanilla Cream Custard
- Whisk sugar, cornstarch, and salt together in a medium saucepan.
- Combine eggs, milk, and cream and whisk together to combine well. Gradually add to saucepan whisking continuously until well combined.
- Scrape seeds from vanilla bean and add to saucepan along with the vanilla bean pod.
- Cook over medium heat, whisking until mixture starts to thicken and begins to bubble. This will take about 8 minutes. Continue to cook for 1 minute longer, stirring constantly.
- Remove pan from heat. Remove vanilla bean. Whisk in butter, vanilla bean paste (if using) and vanilla extract.
- Pour into a bowl. Put plastic wrap over the filling surface to prevent skin from forming. Cool completely before filling baked pie shell.
- Make the whipped cream using 1 cup of cold heavy cream and 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar.
- Place a layer of sliced bananas in the bottom of the pie crust.
- Spoon the vanilla cream custard over the bananas and spread to cover evenly.
- Spoon or pipe the whipped cream over the custard.
- Slice more bananas and arrange over the whipped cream.
- Optional: drizzle Caramel Sauce (recipe below) over the top.
- One full crust recipe is enough for 8 (4-inch) tartlets.
- Before first refrigeration of the dough, weigh out 2.1 ounces of dough for each tartlet, shape into small balls and then pat into small disks.
- After the first refrigeration of the dough, roll each disk into 5½-inch circles. Fit into tart pans. Then dock and chill for at least 30 minutes.
- The first part of the bake will be about 10 minutes for tartlets.
- After removing the foil and weights, the second part of the bake will be about 5 to 7 minutes.
- After transferring to a wire rack and cooling completely, be very careful when removing tartlets from the pan. They are very delicate and will break if you do not handle gently.
- 1 cup sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 3 tablespoons water
- ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, in pieces
- ½ cup heavy cream
- Whisk sugar, cream of tartar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar.
- Cook without stirring until mixture begins to caramelize in spots. Using a heatproof spatula, stir mixture to ensure even caramelization and continue cooking (stirring occasionally) until mixture is the color of honey, 10-12 minutes.
- Reduce heat and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until caramel is a deep amber color.
- Remove from heat and whisk in butter.
- Slowly and carefully add the cream as it can bubble up and burn you.