This Orange Creamsicle Pie features a creamy and vibrant vanilla orange filling with a sweet and crunchy shortbread crust. It's a no-bake cheesecake-style pie that captures the essence of the classic Creamsicle.
No-Bake Creamsicle Pie
This Creamsicle Pie is what is known as a no-bake cheesecake-style pie. It uses homemade whipped cream and cream cheese to create a base layer that is flavored with orange and vanilla.
Originally published in 2019 as one of the earliest recipes on this website, I decided it was time to update the photos. As I remade this pie, it reminded me of how I initially came up with the idea. At that time, I was freelance testing recipes for a magazine and had a surplus of homemade orange marmalade that I didn't know what to do with. On a whim, I added it with some cream cheese and a few other ingredients, and much to my surprise, it tasted just like a creamsicle! After refining the recipe following that initial test, I realized it was worth sharing on this website.
This pie can be prepared in advance and stored in the freezer until you're ready to serve it. It's ideal for hot summer months when the thought of using the oven feels like too much effort. Or just anytime you are looking for a super easy no-bake delicious dessert, regardless of the weather outside.
Here is an overview of the ingredients needed for this recipe. The full recipe is listed below in greater detail.
- shortbread cookies (this is for the pie crust, see other options below in the "Pie Crust Options" section)
- cream cheese (make sure to use the regular block cream cheese and not whipped cream cheese or a cream cheese spread
- heavy cream
- granulated sugar
- orange marmalade
- vanilla extract
Useful Tools to Make this Recipe
Here is a list of some of the primary tools I used in this recipe. You won't necessarily choose to use them all, but they are exactly what I used here. Any links may contain affiliate links.
- food processor (to make the cookie crumbs
- electric mixer
- off-set spatula
- 9" pie plate
- citrus zester
- kitchen essentials: kitchen scale, measuring cups, measuring spoons, bowl, rubber spatula, etc.
Pie Crust Options
This recipe uses a shortbread cookie crust. Shortbread cookies have a light buttery flavor that pair well with this creamsicle filling and they are a great cookie to crush up and turn into a pie crust.
Crumb crusts are awesome because they don't require much work. They are also a great option because of the contrasting textures they lend to the pie, particularly when it comes to this creamy orange filling.
However, I've also made this with a Graham Cracker Crumb Crust too, and that works well!
A Vanilla Wafer Crust is also a good option!
If you are using the shortbread cookie crust, you do not (and should not) parbake it.
However, if you use the graham cracker crust or vanilla wafer crust, you can parbake it for a better flavor and sturdier crust. Check out the post dedicated to making a Graham Cracker crust for more info on that.
Making the No-Bake Cheesecake Style Filling
There are various ways to make a no-bake cheesecake-style pie, but one stands out in terms of flavor and texture. I want to talk about the various methods, and why I think this recipe results in the best pie.
- One is to use gelatin to help set up the cream cheese and cream filling. This results in a light and airy texture that is a bit more set but a little less creamy. This is a very stable pie and can be at room temperature for a greater period of time due to the gelatin.
- The second is to make a chiffon pie which relies on gelatin, egg whites and whipped cream to stabilize. This is similar in texture and taste to the gelatin set pie. Chiffon pies almost taste like clouds!
- The third method uses whipped cream, whipped to stiff peaks, to stabilize the cream cheese filling. It yields a creamy and tangy result but is slightly less stable than the previous two methods.
This Creamsicle Pie recipe follows the third method, which I believe has the best flavor and texture despite being the least stable.
Here is an overview of how to make it (with the full recipe written below this article in the recipe card):
- whip the cream until stiff peaks form, then set it aside
- whip the cream cheese, sugar, zest and marmalade
- fold the set aside whipped cream into the whipped cream cheese mixture
- "Stiff peaks" have formed when you pick up the whisk, and the whipped cream holds a peak without it moving at all
- Gently fold the whipped cream in, being careful not to deflate it
The assembled pie needs to be chilled in the refrigerator or the freezer to set up. It needs at least 4 hours of chilling time, but letting it chill overnight is recommended for the perfect texture.
To compensate for its less stable nature, I recommend utilizing the freezer. For optimal results, freeze the pie for 30-60 minutes before serving (see How to Serve It for more info on this).
How to Decorate and Garnish
As this is such a simple pie, a simple garnish will suffice! You can top with some orange slices and whipped cream for a pretty presentation.
Similarly, you can zest an orange over the top or use an offset spatula to create a swirl effect.
Or lastly, you could drop some dollops of warmed marmalade on the pie and swirl them around the top to create a marble effect.
How to Serve It
This pie should be served very chilled, either from the fridge or the freezer. It can be made up to 1 day ahead of time if stored in the refrigerator or up to 1 month if frozen. Do not top it with any extra whipped cream until ready to serve.
If serving from the refrigerator, it's suggested to freeze the pie for 30 to 60 minutes prior to slicing. This step isn't mandatory, but it helps to achieve cleaner and more presentable slices.
To serve from the freezer, let the pie sit at room temperature until it’s easy to slice, about 15-30 minutes, depending on how warm your kitchen is.
More No Bake Pie Recipes
I am so honored when you make a recipe from my site! If you make this Creamsicle Pie, please leave a comment and a star rating with your experience! If you have any questions about this recipe, feel free to comment here, too!Print
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