So it occurred to me that I’ve never made you a real pie.

Sure, I’ve made pie pops. And whoopie pies. And little pecan pie “cups”.  I’ve made “cherry pie” bars and apple pie popsicles. And yes there was a tart. And crack pie. And this vegan, gluten-free pumpkin pie. I even wrote a whole blog post about a place that JUST SERVES PIES.

But a legit, old-fashioned, sitting-on-the-windowsill-to-cool-pie recipe post?

Not a one.

And there are reasons for this. First, as you know, I HATE rolling out dough. Second, I’m not a fan of fruit. Or chocolate. Or nuts in my desserts. So that eliminates basically, like, all the pies.

And I was fine with that.

But Pi Day was coming and I wanted to make you a pie. And then I remembered that there WAS a pie that I loved.

Shoofly Pie.

shoofly pie

As you know, I had my own landscape design business for many years. And my partner in the business became a very good friend. Bob’s that guy that you can call on the phone, and in 10 minutes he’s there at your door with whatever you need done/saved/fixed/help with. He’s a true blue friend and I cherish him and his wife more than they know.

Bob likes to visit Amish country, and about 10 years ago returned from a trip with a gift of shoofly pie for me. I had never seen one before, didn’t know anything about it (other than that song), and – from the looks of it – was highly doubtful that it was going to be something that this not-so-much-a-fan-of-pies girl was going to like AT ALL.

shoofly pie

But I served myself a slice – you know, to be polite.

And within minutes I was looking for a place to hide the rest from my family.

I’ve not had it since, and never thought to make it myself till now – but here it is!

shoofly pie

So what IS shoofly pie?

This is one of those oldey-fashioned recipes that harkens back to the days when pantry staples with a long shelf life were the predominant ingredients in baked goods. Shoofly pie is straight-up sweet, with a distinct molasses flavor and a filling that magically bakes up into three layers in the oven – a sticky, molasses-y bottom layer, a cake-like middle and a crumb topping.

shoofly pie

It’s super easy – and super addictive – and I could eat this pie for breakfast, I kid you not.

Check out Serious Eat’s post for more facts and history; how are you celebrating Pi Day?

shoofly pie

Shoofly Pie
slightly adapted from whats4eats

one unbaked 9″ pie crust
1 1/3 cups flour
1 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup molasses
1 beaten egg
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup boiling water

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Combine flour, brown sugar and butter in a medium bowl and – using your fingers, two knives or a pastry cutter – work into small crumbs.

In another bowl whisk the molasses, beaten egg and baking soda. Whisk in the boiling water till smooth. Stir in half the flour mixture and pour into your pie crust. Sprinkle the remaining flour mixture on top.

Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes (the center of the pie will be set and the edges will be puffy).

Cool completely on  a wire rack before serving. Keep covered, at room temperature.

(print this recipe)

This delicious recipe brought to you by Sheri Silver


  1. yasmara on March 14, 2016 at 3:06 pm

    This is in my oven right now!! Looking forward to it.

    • sherisilver on March 14, 2016 at 7:46 pm

      Yay! Please let me know how it comes out! 🙂

  2. Keira on March 21, 2016 at 11:19 am

    I made this very quickly with pre made whole wheat pie crust from Fresh Direct and my family loved it. So easy to make too!

    • sherisilver on March 21, 2016 at 12:22 pm

      I’m so glad! It’s almost TOO easy which can be a problem around here – glad you enjoyed! 🙂

  3. Diane on December 6, 2016 at 10:23 pm

    My grandmother made this all the time to eat at the table while drinking coffee and talking. She would always put the crumbs in first then pour the molasses baking soda mixture over the top and only lightly run a fork through it without actually stirring it. The liquids on top would sink throughout the crumbs during baking and The final product was more like a cake with marbled gooey veins of molasses goodness running through it.

    She passed away around 15 years ago and I’m planning on making several this holiday season to give as gifts to friends and relatives that remember sitting and talking for hours at her table while eating this as well as the many other wonderful creations she would bake.

    • sherisilver on December 7, 2016 at 11:42 am

      I love this story – thank you so much for sharing! I, too, have a cherished recipe from my grandmother – and anyone who remembers her and those cookies has a special fondness for them. Thanks for writing! 🙂

  4. brian on December 12, 2016 at 4:59 pm

    I am 70 and remember waiting all year for my grandmothers Christmas pies. She could only get 4 slices per pie I guess that’s why she made so many.

    • sherisilver on December 12, 2016 at 8:11 pm

      4 slices??They must have been huge! 🙂

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