When I was a kid, my mom made Grape-Nuts pie fairly often. In fact, I don’t remember having real pecan pie for quite a long time, and when I tasted the real thing for the first time, I thought it was vastly inferior to this recipe.
You may be asking yourself, “Self, why the H would anyone make a pie out of Grape-Nuts?” You are probably especially thinking this if you remember those commercials from the early seventies featuring Euell Gibbons, talking about Grape-Nuts tasting like wild hickory nuts, and being the “back-to-nature cereal.”
One of the reasons my mom liked this recipe, I think, was that pecans are a comparatively expensive ingredient, plus my mom shelled all of her pecans by hand, one at a time. Which is not exactly an occasion for party hats! Anyway, Grape-Nuts pie tastes pretty much exactly like pecan pie, only with the advantage that people who are allergic to nuts can gobble it up without going into anaphalactic shock. I decided to dig out the recipe myownself for two reasons: (1) Dennis cannot eat pecans without getting a migraine. Not even the teensiest speck, and (2) I cannot in good conscience make and eat a pecan pie while Dennis is out of town on a business trip (tomorrow), even if it is National Pie Day!
Today, therefore, in my best imitation of The Pioneer Woman, I give you the recipe for the fabulous Grape-Nuts Pie. (Who knew I would ever have occasion to talk about Grape-Nuts this much?!!!)
Specifically, you’ll need
1 9″ unbaked pie shell (not pictured)
1/2 cup Grape-Nuts cereal
1/2 cup hot water
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 cup dark corn syrup
1/4 cup butter
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
First, soak the Grape-Nuts in the water until the water is absorbed. Voila:
Combine the sugar, syrup, butter, salt, and cinnamon in saucepan. Bring this concoction to a boil over medium heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved and the butter is melted. Just look at this, will ya! You are starting to see why I would make this pie—admit it!
Remove the syrup mixture from the heat. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs until foamy. Add a small amount of the hot syrup mixture to the eggs (this is called “tempering” the eggs; if you add the eggs to the hot stuff, you get chunks of cooked egg almost instantly). Stir constantly as you add. Keep adding until all of the syrup is mixed with the eggs. Stir in the softened Grape-Nuts and the vanilla extract. Pour the whole kit and caboodle into the pie shell. Cover the edge crust with foil to protect it from overbaking. Bake your pie for 45-50 minutes. Cool well before serving.
Unfortunately, I didn’t take a photo of the finished pie in all its glory before we cut into it. I do have a picture of what’s left of the pie, but when I go to post it here, it comes out ginormous no matter what I do, so I’m going to have to leave that photo out. Just trust me, when it’s baked it looks just like a pecan pie made with chopped pecans. And it tastes really good. I mean that sincerely. Dennis is now ready to do my bidding. I caught him sneaking another piece at 9:45, and he has a strict rule for himself about not snacking after 9:00 p.m.!
So get over the idea that any pie featuring Grape-Nuts cereal must taste like tree bark. I mean, if people had had qualms about Chex Mix or Rice Krispie Treats way back when, where would civilization be today? Cereal is not just for breakfast, people!
Filed under: Recipes Included