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Wonderfully light and airy, this strawberry chiffon pie is a no-bake delight! With a graham cracker crust, it’s the ideal dessert for hot summer days.
The other day I realized I don’t make nearly enough pies in the summertime.
I don’t have a good reason for this, so I’ve decided to make this summer of pie at my house, starting with this fluffy strawberry chiffon pie.
Chiffon pies fell out of favor a bit, but these airy desserts are wonderful on a hot day when you want something sweet but not heavy.
Instead of using gelatin or flavored Jello, I’ve made a jammy strawberry sauce and stabilized whipped cream, all folded together with fresh berries.
You’ll love this strawberry chiffon pie as part of your summer recipe bucket list!
Why you’ll love this recipe
No bake – Who wants to turn the oven on when it’s hot outside? Even the crust doesn’t require baking!
Simple ingredients – I almost never have gelatin on hand, but I do have cornstarch! We use cornstarch to thicken the strawberry sauce to a jammy consistency.
Easy homemade whipped cream – Instead of frozen whipped topping, we beat heavy cream and powdered sugar until stiff. You can’t beat the flavor of fresh whipped cream!
What is chiffon pie?
Chiffon pies are light and airy pies, most often made with a Swiss meringue and gelatin. Lemon chiffon pie and pumpkin chiffon pie are some of the most popular versions.
Chiffon pies were invented in 1926 by “The Pie King” Monroe Boston Strause, who also came up with the graham cracker pie crust.
With the creation of flavored gelatins, the strawberry chiffon pie became a summer favorite.
For my version, I use fluffy whipped cream for the most airy pie I’ve ever eaten!
How to make graham cracker crust
I love making pies with graham cracker or cookie crusts because there’s no rolling involved. You don’t even need to bake them, if you like!
You’ll first need to crush graham crackers into fine crumbs. I use a mini food processor for this, which makes quick work of the task.
Measure 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs and pour into a bowl. Stir in granulated sugar, then add melted butter and stir until the mixture starts to form clumps that look like wet sand.
Dump the crumbs into a deep-dish pie pan or springform pan and press them evenly into the bottom and up the sides.
I use the bottom of a small glass or flat measuring cup to help press the crumbs in, but you can use your hands. Don’t press too hard, or you’ll end up breaking a hole into it.
If you want to bake the crust, put it in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes, then chill completely.
Or, simply pop the pan into the refrigerator until you’re ready to pour in the filling.
How to make the strawberry sauce
If you’ve ever made strawberry jam, this sauce will be a cinch, because it’s even easier!
First, set a kettle or pot of water to boil.
Remove the tops from your strawberries and place 1 ½ cups of berries into a blender. Puree them until broken up.
Then, add sugar, boiling water, and cornstarch and puree until completely smooth. Be sure to keep your blender or processor vented so the steam from the water can escape.
Pour the mixture into a saucepan. We’re going to heat it over medium and stir constantly until it starts to bubble.
Once it’s boiling, cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. The mixture will be visibly thicker and look jammy.
Remove from heat, stir in vanilla, and let cool. If you like, transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely, but make sure it stays pourable.
How to stabilize whipped cream with powdered sugar
In order to make this strawberry chiffon pie light and airy, we need to whip up some heavy cream.
Whipped cream can often lose its shape in storage, so we’re going to stabilize it with some powdered sugar. It also sweetens the cream perfectly, so we’re solving two problems at once!
Pour your chilled heavy cream into the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a bowl with an electric mixer) and beat until soft peaks form.
Then, while mixing, gradually add the powdered sugar and continue to beat until the whipped cream has formed stiff peaks that don’t collapse.
Chill the whipped cream while you prepare the rest of the strawberries.
Making strawberry chiffon pie
Slice the rest of your strawberries. I like to cut them vertically into 4 or more slices, depending on the size of the berry. You can also cut into smaller pieces if you prefer.
Add the strawberries to a large bowl, then pour in the chilled strawberry sauce and stir until the berries are evenly coated and mixed.
Then, carefully fold in the whipped cream until evenly mixed and no streaks remain. Pour into the crust, smooth top, and chill for 4 hours until ready to serve.
How to fold
Folding ingredients is an important step for many recipes. It’s a single movement that sounds difficult, but after a few practice folds is easy to master.
Using a silicone spatula, scrape along the bottom of the bowl toward you, then slide it around the side of the bowl. Finally, scoop the mixture over the top.
Repeat, rotating the bowl as needed, until the ingredients are evenly mixed. Be sure to fold, not stir, to preserve the airyness of the whipped cream.
This strawberry chiffon pie recipe is best served within a day or two. Note that due to the fresh berries, you might notice some juices in the pie plate after cutting and storing leftovers.
Don’t forget to try my raspberry cream pie too!
Strawberry Chiffon Pie
For the crust
- 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
For the strawberry sauce
- 1 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup boiling water
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the whipped cream
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/3 cup powdered sugar
- 2 cups sliced strawberries
- In a medium bowl, combine graham crackers and sugar, then stir in melted butter until clumps form and mixture looks like wet sand. Press into the bottom and sides of a deep pie plate or springform pan. Chill.
- To make the sauce, place berries into a blender or food processor and puree. Add sugar, boiling water, and cornstarch and blend until smooth.
- Pour mixture into a saucepan over medium heat and stir constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Once boiling, continue to stir and cook for 3 minutes until visibly thicker and jammy, then remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Let cool, placing in the refrigerator if needed.
- To whip the cream, pour heavy cream into the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a bowl and hand mixer). Whip until soft peaks form, then gradually add powdered sugar and continue to whip until you have stiff peaks. Chill.
- To assemble the pie, stir together sliced strawberries and cooled sauce. Then, carefully fold in the whipped cream until no streaks remain. Scoop into prepared crust, smooth top, and chill for 4 hours or until set.