Chocolate, pecans, and bourbon all come together in a flaky pie crust to make this classic Kentucky Pie. It’s super easy to make, keto friendly and grain free.
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The Kentucky Derby is right around the corner and that means that here in Louisville the food temptation is EVERYWHERE. There are derby parties, chow wagons, parades and all sorts of other festivities that involve food.
One of my favorite concoctions in the Kentucky Derby Pie. There are several different versions, but the most popular (and in my opinion, the best) is essentially a pecan pie with chocolate and bourbon.
The bourbon flavor is mild and goes SO well with the other flavors that you may not ever be able to eat a pecan pie without it again.
Is Bourbon keto or gluten-free?
Straight bourbon has no carbs or sugar so it is fine in moderation on a keto diet. Furthermore, this recipe only uses two tablespoons of bourbon and is then cooked so most of the alcohol is long gone by the time it is eaten.
Bourbon must be made mostly from 51% corn, but the rest can be made from a variety of grains such as wheat, barley or rye – all of which contain gluten. This gluten is removed through the distillation process.
With this in mind, the NIH says that distilled alcohol is considered safe for those with gluten sensitivity. But, since gluten-containing grains are involved the US government prohibits the bottles from being labeled as ‘Gluten-Free.’
So bottom line – you just have to do what is best for you. Depending upon your level of sensitivity you may or may not be comfortable with consuming bourbon and it is probably best to consult your physician if you aren’t sure.
Speaking of bourbon …
My favorite brand is Evan Williams. Not only is it reasonably priced and easy to find in stores, but I also find that it has the best flavor for cooking. I am not a huge drinker, but I LOVE cooking with bourbon.
Evan Williams has a flavor that is smooth and neutral enough to go with a wide variety of dishes, but bold enough to stand up to other strong flavors.
- Bourbon – If you aren’t comfortable consuming bourbon you may omit it from this recipe or try substituting Bourbon Extract. Please note that I haven’t tried bourbon extract myself so if you try it, do so at your own risk.
- Pecans – Many people opt to make their Kentucky Derby Pie with walnuts. I say they are wrong, but they seem to like it so if walnuts are your thing – go for it 😂
- Pie Crust – I am almost as excited to share this pie crust as I am the pie, It’s essentially a riff on my Keto Butter Crackers. Another great option is the pressed in pie crust from Carolyn at All Day I Dream About Food.
- Syrup – I’ve tested this recipe with both sugar-free maple syrup and Choc Zero Caramel syrup. Both work great, but the flavor of the caramel syrup is closer to an original Kentucky Derby Pie.
- The crust for this pie can be made up to a few days in advance.
- DO NOT forget to cover the edges of the pie crust when baking the pie, otherwise, they will burn.
- The pie is best eaten within about 3 days of baking and I recommend storing it in the fridge.
- This pie is on the rich side, so you may be able to get away with serving smaller servings then what I have listed here. I also like to serve it topped with homemade whipped cream or some low carb vanilla ice cream.
- Check out this post from The Spruce Eats for simple ways to crimp your pie crust.
Be sure to check out these other great recipes:
- Derby Pie Cookies | Keto
- Kentucky Hot Brown Casserole | Keto, Gluten Free
- Bourbon Balls | Keto, Sugar-Free
- Low Carb Mint Juleps
- Kentucky Burgoo | Crock Pot, Keto
For the Crust:
- 4 Eggs
- 3/4 cup Brown Sugar Substitute
- 1/4 cup Sugar Free Caramel Syrup (or sugar-free Maple Syrup)
- 1/4 cup Butter, Melted
- 2 tbsp Kentucky Straight Bourbon
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 cup Low Carb Chocolate Chips
- 1 cup Chopped Pecans
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9" pie plate.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ingredients for the crust and mix until it forms a smooth and uniform dough.
- Grease two large pieces of parchment paper and place the dough into the center of one. Top with the second piece of parchment paper and roll the dough out between them to form an approximately 12" circle.
- Peel away the top layer of parchment and place the bottom layer of parchment with the dough into the fridge for at least 10 minutes to harden slightly.
- Once it is chilled carefully flip it over onto the greased pie plate and gently press it into the plate. Don't worry if it cracks - just use your hands and gently press any cracks together.
- Remove any excess dough from around the rim of the crust and crimp the edges if desired.
- Poke holes in the bottom and sides of the crust and bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. (note that in this step we are only partially baking the crust. It will bake further when we add the filling, so don't be surprised when it looks underdone.)
- While the crust is baking begin to prepare the filling.
- In a large bowl combine the eggs, brown sugar substitute, maple syrup, melted butter, bourbon, and vanilla. Beat with electric mixer until the sweetener has melted and the mixture is frothy.
- Stir in the chopped pecans and the chocolate chips.
- Pour the filling into the prebaked crust and place a thin strip of aluminum foil around the crust (or use a pie shield) place in the oven (still at 350).
- Bake for 50-60 minutes or until the center of the pie is no longer jiggly.
- Allow to cool before slicing and enjoy!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 slices Serving Size: 1 Slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 368Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 124mgSodium: 145mgCarbohydrates: 5.5gFiber: 3gSugar: 23gProtein: 6g