Chocolate Pudding Pie with Graham Cracker Crust is an easy no bake dessert that will satisfy even the most serious chocolate cravings.
Simple ingredients transform instant chocolate pudding mix and Cool Whip into luscious layers of rich, decadent chocolate pudding pie filling in a homemade graham cracker pie crust.
This delicious Chocolate Pudding Pie recipe is decadent and super chocolatey and comes together with three layers of creamy deliciousness in a buttery graham cracker crust.
It's an easy no bake recipe you can enjoy chilled or frozen (our favorite way!), and is sure to become a new family favorite.
Why You're Going to Love This Recipe
- Easy no bake chocolate pudding pie recipe with instant pudding and Cool Whip
- Rich and luscious triple layer chocolate dessert true chocolate addicts will devour
- Simple no bake chocolate pie recipe with basic pantry ingredients
- Perfect dessert for holiday gatherings -- it's always a huge hit!
Graham cracker crumbs. You can buy store-bought graham cracker crumbs or make your own. Use any flavor of graham crackers you love -- honey, cinnamon, or chocolate.
Melted butter. Melted butter holds the graham cracker crust together.
Brown sugar. Brown sugar sweetens the crust and helps it keep its shape.
Cinnamon. A little bit of cinnamon is absolutely delicious with chocolate, but it's totally optional.
Easy Chocolate Pie Filling
Instant chocolate pudding mix. Instant Jello pudding mix makes the easy chocolate cream pie filling come together in a snap. You can also use Jello instant chocolate fudge pudding mix.
Cold milk. Whole milk or 2% milk turn instant pudding into a thick and creamy pudding pie filling.
Brown sugar. Just a little bit of brown sugar adds rich flavor to the chocolate pudding.
Espresso powder. Espresso powder amps up the chocolate flavor without tasting like coffee. As a substitute, dissolve up to twice the amount of instant coffee crystals in the milk. You can also omit it.
Chocolate chips. Melted chocolate chips take the pie filling to the next level of chocolatiness and creaminess. I like Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet chocolate chips because they melt smoothly and the bittersweet flavor doesn't make the pie filling too sweet. You can also use a chopped chocolate bar.
Cool Whip. If you're not into Cool Whip, I get it. You can also use Truwhip or whipped cream.
Spices. Try a dash of your favorite warm spices like cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, anise, or chai.
Flavor extracts. Instead of vanilla, try peppermint, almond, hazelnut, or coconut extract.
Cookie crust. Swap out graham crackers for chocolate wafer cookies, gingersnaps, or vanilla wafers. Or use a store-bought or homemade Oreo crust.
Mix graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl.
Step 2: Use a glass or measuring cup with a flat bottom to press the mixture into the pie plate. Be careful not to press too hard or the crust can become hard or stick to the pan.
Chill the crust in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or the freezer for 15 minutes.
Step 3: Melt chocolate chips in the microwave in 15-second increments, stirring in between. Set aside.
Stir pudding mix, brown sugar, espresso powder, and salt in large bowl. Add milk and vanilla. Beat with electric mixer on low until incorporated, then medium for 2 minutes until smooth. Add melted chocolate to the pudding mixture, beat for another minute.
Step 4: Pour or spoon ½ of the pudding pie filling into the graham cracker crust.
Spread the filling evenly with an offset spatula or knife.
Step 5: Fold ½ of the Cool Whip into the remaining chocolate pudding with a sturdy spatula until completely combined.
Do not use the mixer or stir too vigorously or the mixture can become runny.
Evenly spread the chocolate Cool Whip mixture over the pudding layer.
Step 6: Spread the rest of the Cool Whip on top. If desired, use a vegetable peeler to make chocolate shavings with a bar of chocolate and sprinkle on top of the pie.
Chill at least 4 hours up to overnight to allow the pudding filling to completely set.
You can also freeze the pie and enjoy it as a frozen dessert. We love it that way!
- If the no bake graham cracker crust sticks to the pan, dip the pan in hot water for a few seconds, and it will easily release.
- I prefer this pie recipe with a no-bake crust because it has a softer texture than a baked crust, which is nice with the creamy pudding filling. If you prefer a firmer crust, you can pre-bake the crust at 350 for 10 minutes and let it cool completely before adding the filling.
- Fold in the Cool Whip until it is completely combined -- do not use the mixer or stir too vigorously, or the mixture can become runny.
Store leftover pie wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. To protect the topping, place toothpicks into the pie and tent the plastic wrap over them.
Yes. To freeze the pie, wrap it in a double layer of plastic and again with foil. You can enjoy the pie frozen, slightly frozen, or thaw it in the refrigerator.
To thicken pudding mixes for a pudding pie filling, use less milk than you would for pudding. This easy chocolate pudding pie recipe uses half the amount of milk called for on the box.
It depends on the filling and your preference. For this no bake pie, the graham cracker crust doesn't need to be baked. But if you prefer a firmer, crunchier crust, you definitely can bake it for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Just be sure to let it cool completely before adding the filling.
Cool Whip is more stable than fresh whipped cream and it also freezes well, so it will stay soft and fluffy on your pie whether you store it in the refrigerator or freezer.
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Easy Chocolate Pudding Pie with Graham Cracker Crust
Homemade Graham Cracker Crust
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 8 tablespoons melted butter 1 stick
- ⅓ cup brown sugar light or dark
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon optional
Chocolate Pudding Pie Filling
- ⅔ cup chocolate chips bittersweet, dark, or semi-sweet chocolate
- 2 boxes instant chocolate pudding mix 3.9 ounce boxes (4 servings)
- 2 cups milk whole or 2%
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar light or dark
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 8 ounces Cool Whip or Truwhip
Homemade Graham Cracker Crust
- Grind the graham crackers into fine crumbs in a food processor. You can also place them in a ziptop bag and crush them with a rolling pin.
- Mix graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon together and press into a pie pan. Use enough pressure to create a compact crust. Be careful not to press too hard or the crust can become hard or stick to the pan. Use a glass or the bottom of a measuring cup to pack the crumbs into the pie pan.Click here for more tips and instructions to make the perfect graham cracker crust.
- Chill the crust in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or the freezer for 15 minutes.If you prefer a firmer, crispier crust, bake the crust for 10 minutes at 350 and cool completely.
Chocolate Pudding Pie Filling
- Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in 15-second increments, stirring in between, until the chocolate is completely melted and creamy. Set aside.
- Stir the pudding mix, brown sugar, espresso powder, and salt together a large bowl to break up the brown sugar.
- Add the milk and vanilla and mix on low until just incorporated, then on medium for about 2 minutes until smooth and creamy. Add the melted chocolate chips to the pudding mixture and beat for another minute.
- Spoon about ½ of the pudding pie filling into the graham cracker crust. Spread the filling evenly with an offset spatula or knife.
- Add ½ of the Cool Whip to the remaining chocolate pudding and fold it in until completely combined. Do not use the mixer or stir too vigorously or the mixture can become runny.Spoon the chocolate Cool Whip mixture over the pudding layer and spread it evenly.
- Spread the rest of the Cool Whip on top of the pie. If desired, add chocolate shavings.
- Place the chocolate pudding pie in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours up to overnight to allow the pudding filling to completely set.You can also freeze the pie and enjoy it as a frozen dessert. We love it that way!