With flavors that match the childhood classic sandwich, this pie will surely bring you back in time. A dense peanut butter custard filling is baked inside of an oat shortbread and topped with fluff (either homemade or store-bought) for a nostalgic taste everyone will love.
Peanut Butter and Fluff Pie
I am a New Englander, through and through. Which means fluff was a big part of my childhood. I actually grew up in Lynn, Massachusetts where they still make fluff to this day. It was only in adulthood that I realized that not everyone grew up eating fluff, or fluffernutter sandwiches.
A fluffernutter sandwich is usually made with fluffy white or oat bread, peanut butter, and fluff. It's sweet, and sticky, and hardy, and just so good. Peanut butter and fluff is such an iconic flavor combination that I just had to make it into a pie.
This Fluffernutter Pie has a crumbly and sweet oat shortbread, a creamy and dense peanut butter custard filling and it's topped off with either homemade fluff (it's easier than you think!) or store-bought fluff. The flavor combination and texture are everything you'd want in a Fluffernutter Pie and more.
Here is an overview of the ingredients needed for this recipe. The full recipe is listed below in greater detail.
- quick cooking oats
- creamy peanut butter (see below for specifics)
- brown sugar + granulated sugar
- half and half
- vanilla extract
- cream of tartar (only if making fluff)
- marshmallow fluff (if not making fluff)
Types of Peanut Butter
Something I have learned over the years as a recipe developer is that not all kinds of peanut butter are created equal. In fact, the most commonly purchased peanut butter in grocery stores is not technically peanut butter, but instead "peanut butter spread". This is because it contains a lot of other ingredients such as oil and sugar, that help stabilize and homogenize the peanut butter so it's ultra-creamy. I'm referring to popular brands such as Jif or Skippy. It's sometimes called spread, or sometimes just referred to as "creamy peanut butter". Because most people buy this type of peanut butter, and because nostalgically it's what I grew up on, it is what I have tested this recipe with.
I have not tested this recipe with peanut butter made from only peanuts and salt. I suspect it should work just fine, but if possible, stick with creamy peanut butter that does not need to be stirred together before using.
Steps for Making Fluffernutter Pie
There are a few steps needed to make this pie. Some can be done ahead of time!
- Make and blind bake the oat shortbread. This can be done up to 1 day ahead of time.
- Mix together and bake the peanut butter custard.
- Make the fluff and top the pie or buy the fluff and top the pie! You choose!
How to Make the Oat Shortbread
First off, I baked this pie in a tart pan. The reason for this is because like the traditional fluffernutter sandwich, it's rich and dense in flavor, so a slice of a tart is a better fit than a thicker slice of pie.
The oat shortbread crust is relatively easy to make in a food processor, but uses an unusual technique by spreading it into a tart pan instead of rolling it out.
Because I wanted to simplify the steps here, I found that the shortbread could be spread into the tart pan using a small offset spatula. Alternatively, you could also pat it into the pan. This means that you don't need to wait to chill and roll out the dough.
Making the Peanut Butter Custard
Making the custard only requires a bowl, a spatula, and a whisk. The recipe instructs you to mix together the yolks, peanut butter, and sugar first, which should help loosen up the peanut butter. Be careful not to overmix as peanut butter can seize up.
Then, you slowly whisk in the half and half, a little at a time. Take your time here, because if you dump all the half and half in at once, it might be tricky to get the custard smooth.
If you find you're having trouble getting all the lumps out of the custard mixture, you can always use an immersion blender or pour the custard into a blender to smooth it out.
To Make the Fluff or to Buy It
This here is a personal choice! Making the fluff isn't as hard as you might think and has a really delicious vanilla flavor. It also holds up better as leftovers when compared to store-bought.
However, using store-bought fluff gives it that super nostalgic taste and it's quite frankly a lot easier.
The fluff that we are making is actually a swiss meringue. While the recipe gives all the instruction you need for making it, if you've never made a meringue before, check out this Swiss Meringue recipe for more guidance.
Serving Fluffernutter Pie
This pie should be consumed right after adding the fluff. If you wanted to make it partially ahead of time, you can make the peanut butter custard and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
If you do have leftovers, store them in the fridge. I found that homemade fluff held up better as leftovers than store-bought fluff. The store-bought fluff disintegrated in the refrigerator after 1 day.
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