Lemon Chess Pie Recipe

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lemon chess pie recipe

This lemon chess pie recipe garnished with raspberries is not like any lemon chess pie recipe you’ll see. It’s just as sweet, and that’s why this is to be served in very tiny portions. But, it’s a lot more lemony.

At first I was reluctant to make my own unique version, but, then I thought of the words from Margot Shaw, Editor of Flower Magazine.

I attended a private press event the day before the Nashville Antique and Garden Show opened, and I was privileged to hear from a very esteemed panel, including the editor of Veranda Magazine, the founder of Blackberry Farm, and the editor of Flower magazine, Margot Shaw. I was touched and thought about the art of cooking when Margot Shaw said:

“Our lives are extensions of ourselves. You can be yourself or you can be someone else”.

Margot was talking about how we style our homes, but I think this applies to how to prepare our food, create our recipes, and make decisions with ingredients. People are just as afraid to have adventure in their kitchens, as they are to paint their walls with their favorite color.

When I decided to make a lemon chess pie and leave all the lemons IN the pie, I made a style choice. It’s all mine. You can choose another path and that’s okay too, but I think the texture is what makes this pie special.

I crushed all the lemons inside with my vitamix, and I let those lemons soak in sugar for two whole days! When someone took their first bite, they thought it was a chess pie, although this is very close to a lemon shaker pie.

Lemon Chess Pie Recipe

Venture into your kitchen and take a gander at this unique lemon chess pie recipe. You can leave the raspberries out and make it your own. You can make mini-tarts, (recommended) a whole big pie, a larger round tart, or a rectangular tart like this.

So tell me, what is your biggest kitchen fear? Mine used to be pie crust and I overcame it. What’s yours?

Print Recipe
4 from 2 votes

Lemon Chess Pie Recipe

A cross between Lemon Shaker Pie and Southern Chess Pie, it's so lemony and garnished with raspberries, on a delicious tart crust.
Prep Time1 day
Cook Time45 minutes
Total Time1 day 45 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8
Author: Angela Roberts


  • 4 organic lemons
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Handful of fresh or frozen raspberries can use blueberries (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar for berries

Pie Crust

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 9 tablespoons ice cold unsalted butter cubed
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons ice cold water might need one more


Filling for Lemon Chess Pie

  • Zest all lemons into sugar.
  • Slice off the white pith of all the lemons.
  • Reserve one whole lemon, and put in freezer for 15 minutes.
  • Slice that lemon and put in separate bowl, with just enough of the zested sugar to cover. Cover with plastic. Refrigerate.
  • Slice remaining three lemons and put into the remaining sugar, making sure all lemons are covered.
  • Refrigerate for a minimum of 24 hours.
  • Refrigerate berries with sugar.
  • Make Pie Dough (below). Refrigerate until ready to use.
  • After 24 hours, remove lemon/sugar mixture from refrigerator. (the one with the three lemons)
  • In a food process or Vitamix type blender, add lemon sugar mixture, eggs, vanilla, flour and mix well.
  • Add melted butter. Mix again.
  • Take pie dough of refrigerator, and roll out into your pie pan or tart pan.
  • Fork holes into pie dough.
  • Prebake pie dough at 400 degress for 10 minutes. You shouldn't have any trouble with it rising off the pie pan. Just gently move it down with back of a spoon if it rises.
  • Pour lemon mixture into the pie crust.
  • Take out the sliced lemon and remove from the sugar. This is garnish.
  • Decorate top with sliced lemons and raspberries.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes at 375 degrees.

Pie Dough

  • Incorporate flour, sugar and salt in food processor. Add butter and count to 10. At this point, you should have pea sized butter. If not, pulse until you do.
  • Add water. Pulse until incorporated. A few seconds at a time.
  • Put in plastic bag. It will come together. (see video)
  • When ready to roll out, leave on counter for 15 minutes.

Please follow me on instagram. If you make this recipe,  please tag me #spinachtiger.

If you love this recipe, please give it five stars. It means a lot. xoxo

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  1. I love lemon desserts. I am more of a copier when making recipe, but I am glad for creative bakers like yourself!

  2. So, once you’ve zested and cut the pith off of 3 of the lemons, then you slice the interior of those lemons and let them flavor the sugar for 24 hours? Is that right?
    I bet that really brightens up the flavor of a chess pie!

  3. This is something I’ve never tried or tasted, but the combination of flavours sounds really good! Thanks for sharing!

4 from 2 votes (1 rating without comment)

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