A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

Recipe Pin
9 hours 45 minutes
6 servings

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This graceful custard pie is crowned with lemon curd and embellished with brilliant early spring sliced strawberries and edible flowers. Beyond being scrumptious, it’s undeniably stunning.

This strawberry lemon pie recipe adapted from The New Pie: Modern Techniques for the Classic American Dessert

overhead photo of A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie
Why Does This Recipe Work?

Looking at the number of steps in this strawberry lemon pie method may be putting you off, but you really should take a closer look. The payoff is simply outstanding and you can opt to “do things up” or save yourself time by swapping out both ingredients as well as steps.

For example, exchange having to blind bake a pastry crust by swapping it for a simple store-bought graham cracker crust. If guilt is getting the better of you, meet half way and make your own graham cracker crust and add crushed salted pretzels for a sweet and salty base. Toasted pecans work great incorporated into graham cracker crusts, too.

The steps are able to be made in advance as well. I prefer to make the lemon curd and cut my strawberries the day before. That means when it’s time to bake the custard, I am focused only on the custard. Additionally, I am now only looking at about an hours worth of time versus several.

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If you love spring and summer fruit recipes, tackling this lemon strawberry pie says a lot about how far you’ll go to achieve dessert greatness. And yes, the effort is different from just scooping yourself a big bowl of ice cream…

My mother refers to this as the strawberry lemonade pie. It’s really because this is a lemon pie filling twice over. Layer number one is a strawberry lemon cream made with delicious fresh strawberries and a a fresh lemon juice enhanced custard. Layer number two is an easy lemon curd which is whipped up in minutes. Refrigeration is the key to this pie’s success. If not made enough in advance and given ample time to set, the custard will likely be runny. If I know I plan to serve this pie, I prepare the lemon curd the day before. I also wash and hull and halve all of the strawberries so that I am focused only on the custard when it comes time to bake.

So, is it a strawberry pie, or a lemonade pie…?

Despite this being a multi-step pie recipe, it’s ridiculously easy. I think the biggest issue for me is the time in between steps. But in order to get the biggest payoff for the time invested, this one you just need to know has to be taken slow. The type of pie crust is entirely up to you. I think it depends on how formal or informal you wish for this to be, and who will be enjoying it.

I have used a store bought graham cracker crust on several occasions. I’ve also made my own crushed pretzel and graham cracker crust and had this turn out incredibly delicious. But if preparing to serve to company, even if it’s just my neighbors, I always use a blind-baked pie crust. You can make your own pastry dough in this case or purchase ready made.

overhead photo of A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

Just as it sits, this gorgeous dessert is considered complete. A beautiful cream pie consisting of lemon and variations of lemon custards. Strawberries add both color and sweetness. If you wished to serve the slices with whipped cream, it’d be a very nice addition though I’d recommend using fresh heavy cream to whip it myself. I might also then recommend short sprigs of mint or chocolate mint leaves to garnish. Additional berries would also be pretty.

Once the custard layer is baked, the pie must cool completely on the counter for several hours before being popped into the fridge for additional setting time. I go 6 hours AFTER allowing a 2 to 3 hour counter cool down. Only then do I add the lemon curd. The berries are last and only about ah hour or two before serving so the juices do not run and weep into the lemon curd. Brushing a warmed thin layer of strawberry jam or jelly atop the cut sides of the strawberries ensure they will not turn an off or brownish color. The sugar the jam lends is also welcome amidst the tartness of the lemon.

overhead photo of A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

Opt to use any kind of pie crust you like. Here, I am using a ready made refrigerated pie crust which I am both attempting to make appear ‘rustic’ by crimping and blind-baking prior to filling.

Do you have what is required to make A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie? Check the list!

9-inch single pie crust
fresh strawberries
fresh lemons
sweetened condensed milk
unflavored powdered gelatin
unsalted butter
strawberry jelly
edible flowers, optional but very pretty!

overhead photo of A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

All images and text ©Jenny DeRemer for Not Entirely Average, LLC

overhead photo of A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

A Sweet Sunshine By The Slice Strawberry And Lemon Pie

Jenny DeRemer
This recipe adapted from The New Pie: Modern Techniques for the Classic American Dessert, Copyright © 2019
This beyond scrumptious strawberry lemon pie is crowned with lemon curd and embellished with sliced strawberries and edible flowers.
5 from 7 votes
Servings: 6 servings
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Cooling and Refrigeration 8 hours
Total Time 9 hours 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 527 kcal


  • 9-inch pie plate
  • fine mesh sieve
  • candy thermometer or other kitchen thermometer


for the strawberry lemon custard

  • 1 ½ cups strawberries fresh, hulled and quartered
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 2 large egg yolks room temperature
  • 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • pinch salt
  • ½ cup lemon juice fresh, about 1 large lemon or 1 1/2 small lemons

for the homemade lemon curd

  • ½ teaspoon unflavored powdered gelatin
  • ¼ cup + 1 teaspoon lemon juice fresh, about 1/2 small lemon
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest freshly grated
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk room temperature
  • cup granulated sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter very cold, cut into 8 pieces

pie crust and garnish

  • 1 9-inch pie crust may be graham cracker, or may be a pastry dough blind-baked
  • 2 cups strawberries whole or hulled, halved and some quartered
  • edible flowers optional


for the pie crust

  • Heat oven to 350°F. Have a pie crust at the ready. If using pastry dough crust, blind-bake while preparing the strawberry lemon custard.

prepare the strawberry lemon custard

  • Add the strawberry chunks to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until only small pieces remain but the mixture is not completely pureed, about 3 to 4 pulses. Pour the berries into a sieve and allow to drain.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolks, condensed milk, and salt. Whisk in the lemon juice and the drained strawberries. Pour the mixture into the crust and smooth the top if necessary.
  • Bake until the filling is set, about 25 to 30 minutes. The center of the filling should jiggle slightly when it is jostled. 
  • Cool the pie to room temperature on a wire rack, about 3 hours, before chilling completely in the refrigerator, at least 4 to 5 hours or overnight.

prepare the lemon curd

  • Sprinkle the gelatin over 1 teaspoon of the lemon juice in a small bowl to stand and set aside. 
  • In a nonstick saucepan, whisk together the remaining lemon juice, the lemon zest, egg, egg yolk, sugar, and salt. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens slightly. The mixture should read around 165°F before removing the pan from the heat. Whisk in the cold butter until it has completely melted and the curd is very shiny.
  • Whisk in the reserved gelatin mixture until very well incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to press and strain the mixture slowly through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl. Allow to cool tot room temperature, stirring occasionally. Once the mixture is cooled completely, use an offset spatula to spread the lemon curd evenly over the top of the cooled custard layer. Refrigerate the pie for at least 2 hours or up to overnight to allow the curd time to set.

garnishing the pie

  • No more than 2 hours before serving so as not to allow the strawberry juice to weep into the lemon curd, arrange the strawberry halves, points outward and upward, by leaning them on the crust at the outer edge of the filling. Continue arranging the slices in layers slightly overlapping them like shingles. You can choose to cover the entire top of the pie with strawberry slices or leave some of the lemon curd exposed.
  • Warm the strawberry jelly in a saucepan over low heat until the jelly is loose and thin but not hot. Use a pastry brush to gently dab a thin layer of jelly all over the strawberry topping. Garnish with edible flowers or blossoms, if using. Refrigerate until ready to serve. 


The lemon curd may be made a day in advance and refrigerated until ready to use.
The strawberries may also be hulled and halved/quartered a day in advance. Rinse and drain well before using.
If there is no time to assemble and bake a pastry crust, consider using a store-bought graham cracker crust or a homemade graham cracker and pretzel crust.
This pie is best eaten on the day the fresh strawberries are added as garnish to the pie, and only added 2 hours before serving so as not to allow the berry juice to weep into the lemon curd.

The nutrition value can vary depending on what product(s) you use. The information below is an estimate. Always use a calorie counter you are familiar with.

Please note that table salt and iodized salt are NOT substitutions for Kosher salt. Do not deviate unless otherwise specified.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 527kcalCarbohydrates: 72gProtein: 12gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 187mgSodium: 251mgPotassium: 472mgFiber: 3gSugar: 52gVitamin A: 518IUVitamin C: 64mgCalcium: 232mgIron: 2mg
Did you love this recipe?Leave a comment and Let me know how it was!

Get Your Pie On With These Delicious Pie Desserts!

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Recipe Rating


  1. This was an amazing pie! The fresh berries and lemon curd were perfect together. It was easier to make, too, so thanks for your tips!5 stars

  2. What a gorgeous pie this is. I did a test run, bcause I want to make this for our Easter lunch, and it came out beautifully. Thank you!5 stars

  3. I love the combination of strawberry and lemon in this recipe. I would have never thought of this on my own. Also, the images are so pretty and really helped me as I was making this myself.5 stars

    1. Cynthia, this is so, so kind of you to say! I have this slated for a photo re-shoot shortly. Maybe I will pop one of these oldies at the bottom just because 😉 x – Jenny

  4. It looks so vibrant and scrumptious that I had to try it! I totally fell in love with the flavors. I used a homemade graham cracker for the crust and it really went well with the filling. I can’t wait to try it again!5 stars

  5. This pie is a family favorite! We usually make it for the holidays, and I’m excited to make it again this Easter. It’s as delicious as it looks, and I would definitely recommend it!5 stars

    1. Kristelle, this is so kind of you to say! This post is in the throes of being re-campaigned and re-photographed. You’ve just inspired me to keep going with it 🙂 x – Jenny

  6. This sounds delicious and looks absolutely gorgeous with the sliced strawberries and edible flowers. Thanks for linking it up with #CookBlogShare5 stars

    1. Thank you Miss Helen! And thank you for allowing me to link up with such a talented and lovely bunch 🙂