Frozen Strawberry Margarita Pie (Or How To Make Friends & Influence People)


I’m not sure how it came about but the hubster’s nursing staff have been clamoring for pie and not just any pie, frozen strawberry margarita pie. So how did they find out about this delectable cold concoction? Apparently Dr. Blabberovsky someone who shall remain unnamed showed them pictures of one of our summer deck parties. The fact that it’s been in the low 30s with forecasts for freezing rain has deterred no one which makes sense cuz frozen booze-flavored desserts are just that good. The first time I saw this recipe was in the impulse aisle checkout line at the grocery store while drooling over that month’s issue of Gourmet (when it was still in print). And while I succumbed to practiced marketing techniques and popped the issue in my basket it took me years before I actually tried it which may have been good for my waistline but my tastebuds feel cheated. The tangy strawberry with the zesty, tart lime and a soupçon of tequila and Cointreau really do make you think some genius turned a delicious drink into an differently delicious dessert. They may look cloyingly rich and sweet but don’t balk at the condensed milk and whipping cream, they add necessary sweetness to counterbalance all that tang and zest as well as a creamy backdrop reminiscent of classic frozen dessert pies. I’ve made some alterations to punch up the flavor, mainly increasing the lime juice to give you more tart contrast with the sweetness, doubling the booze cuz the original amount really didn’t give you much margarita taste (okay, I admit it, I’m a lush [hic!] ;)) and frozen instead of fresh strawberries cuz you’re going to freeze this anyway and with all the doctoring from booze & lime the strawberries don’t taste frozen/bland at all. So to say, “Thank you,” for putting up with all the ADD taking care of the medical incarnation of the Tasmanian Devil, I give his staff you cocktail on a plate with spoons 🙂

If you needed to know just one thing…
1) Wouldn’t it be easier to use a pre-formed graham cracker crust from the store? It even comes in it’s own portable pie tin! While you could easily do that the only caveat is that you won’t be able to use a lot of that delicious strawberry filling as you can’t mound it up like with a springform pan and then freeze it. Also, the springform pan version is mighty purty while allowing you to be a glutton. Just sayin’.
2) Okay, 2 things. If you don’t have a zester or feel that the 5-7 minutes spent zesting limes is not something you want to do with your time, I’d say pass this recipe by cuz unlike many instances, the lime zest here really is necessary to give you a flavorful pie. Sadly, this pie has been panned on recipe review sites cuz it really does need the extremes of flavors to make it taste, “Wow!” instead of “Blah.”

Graham Cracker Crust
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs ~ 9 (2 1/4 x 4 3/4-inch) crackers, finely crushed
2 tbsp sugar
5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350F.


Combine all ingredients in a large bowl till it is well combined and looks like wet sand. Press firmly into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake till golden-brown ~15-20 minutes. Using a silicone springform pan with a glass base and convection it takes me 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Frozen Strawberry Margarita Pie
1 lb strawberries, frozen
1 tbsp lime zest (~2 small limes)
6 tbsp lime juice (~ 3 limes)
14-oz can sweetened condensed milk (I prefer brands sold at Asain grocery stores like Parrot or Longevity which are less sweet)
4 tbsp tequila
4 tbsp Cointreau
1 1/2 c heavy cream, chilled


In a blender or food processor blend strawberries, zest, juice, condensed milk, tequila and Cointreau till smooth.

In a large bowl whip cream till it has stiff peaks. Fold 1/2 of cream into strawberry purée till just combined then repeat with remaining cream. Pour strawberry mixture into cooled springform pan with graham cracker crust and smooth over top. Cover with cling film and freeze for at 4 least hours till the filling is firm. Transfer to the refrigerator 30-40 minutes before you’re ready to eat so it will be soft enough to cut (unless you want to chip out pieces with an ice pick :(). Makes 8-10 servings. Happy National Pie Day 🙂

**Where 1 serving is 1/8th of a pie.

About Cam

Enjoying the hippie life in Portlandia :)


  1. As tasty and calorific as this looks , I think I prefer my tequila in a margarita glass with a salt rim- just saying 🙂

    • Cam

      There’s nothing to say that you can’t double fist 😉

      Although I must admit that I’m tempted to stop posting the nutritional info on my desserts. I exercise so I can eat what I want and dessert is a reward for good deeds so it shouldn’t count against you, right?

  2. It’s a little too chilly here for a frozen dessert but, come Summer, this pie will be a big hit. And I’ve no problem setting this pie on a table next to a fresh pitcher of margaritas. The two belong together. 🙂

    • Cam

      If you’re ever in PDX (when it’s not below freezing although the nurses loved it despite the freezing rain [shakes head]) I’ll make it for you 🙂

      How was your Bday bash? Do you feel all mature and worldly wise 😉

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