Desserts · Fall (Halloween & Thanksgiving)

Chai Carrot Pie

Cooking Light Carrot Chai PieDid you know that February is National Carrot Month? Neither did I, until I was asked to take part in an online “Carrot Party” with my fellow bakers and bloggers on Instagram.

I decided to step out of my comfort zone a little, and instead of doing one of my tried and true carrot recipes, like my Carrot Cake Cheesecake or my Carrot Loaf with Cream Cheese frosting, to try a carrot pie! Yes, you read that correctly.  Carrot pie!

If you’re thinking that sounds kind of strange, you’re not alone.  But I will tell you that the texture and taste is super similar to a pumpkin pie.  The carrots are slightly sweeter and a little less “squash” tasting.  This particular recipe is a chai one, and those flavors combined, along with the cream cheese, turn this into something that tastes exactly like a cross between a carrot cake and a pumpkin pie.  It’s out of this world.

Next time you want to try something new and exciting, give this one a spin.  If you try it, comment below and let me know what you think.

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light

Ingredients:

  • 1 9 inch pie crust, unbaked (I used Marie Saba’s all butter pie crust for this beauty.)
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 9 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
  • 3 large eggs, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1/2-in. pieces
  • 6 cups water
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Directions:
Prepare your pie crust and place it into a 9 inch pie pan.  Crimp the edges and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Prepare the filling: Beat cream cheese, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and 1 egg with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Chill until ready to use.

Bring carrots and 6 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Boil until carrots are tender, about 25 minutes; drain well. Place carrots, evaporated milk, brown sugar, orange juice, vinegar, 3/4 teaspoon salt, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, fennel seeds, remaining 5 tablespoons granulated sugar, and 3/4 teaspoon vanilla in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure lid on blender, and place a clean towel over opening in lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Transfer carrot mixture to a bowl. Whisk in remaining 2 eggs.

Transfer chilled cream cheese mixture to prepared crust, smoothing with a rubber spatula. Carefully spoon carrot mixture over cream cheese mixture, making sure not to mix into the cream cheese; smooth into an even layer.

Bake at 375°F for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F; sprinkle almonds over pie. Bake just until set, 40 to 45 more minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack, about 45 minutes; chill 2 hours before serving.

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