This decadent Chocolate Pudding Pie is nestled in a crushed pretzel crust covered in a chocolate ganache and topped with fresh whipped cream. The rich chocolate custard filling pairs perfectly with the salty pretzels for a chocolate-covered pretzel pie dessert.

Sweet Chocolate Pudding Pie is the perfect recipe to add to any dessert table. It is easy to make, and it’s a real crowd-pleaser. If you love this pie recipe, be sure to try our Easy Pumpkin Pie, Upside-Down Apple Pecan Pie, No-Bake Lemonade Pie, and Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie!

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chocolate cream pie with a pretzel crust on a white plate

You’ll Love Chocolate Pie With A Pretzel Crust

This is not your ordinary chocolate pie. This homemade chocolate pudding pie starts with a pretzel crumb crust lined with chocolate ganache, filled with smooth and creamy chocolate custard, and finished with fresh whipped cream.

You’re in for a real treat with this sweet and salty combo!

overhead shot of chocolate cream pie with pretzel crust in pie dish

Chocolate Pudding Pie Ingredients

Made with simple everyday ingredients, this chocolate cream pie with pudding is so easy to make. Get out your shopping list and jot these ingredients down!

  • Pretzels– I use pretzel sticks and crush them up in a food processor. However, you can use any pretzels you like to crush up. 
  • Brown sugar– You will need brown sugar for the crust as well as for the filling. When measuring, only lightly pack the brown sugar into your measuring cup. 
  • Butter– Be sure to use real butter not margarine. The butter helps to hold the pie crust together. 
  • Cornstarch– Cornstarch is a thickener. It makes your pudding thick and creamy. Be sure to measure carefully. You don’t want too much or too little. 
  • Unsweetened Cocoa– You will add your own sweeteners so make sure to get unsweetened cocoa for this recipe. 
  • Milk– I often use 2% milk, but whole milk will make the pudding even thicker. 
  • Egg Yolks– Yolks will give the pudding a richer taste and velvety texture. 
  • Chocolate– This recipe calls for both bittersweet chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate. Use the best chocolate you can afford.
  • Heavy whipping cream– heavy cream allows for a sturdier whipped cream that can hold peaks.
  • Vanilla extract– A little bit of vanilla helps give chocolate that delicious flavor. Be sure to use pure vanilla extract.
  • Confectioners sugar– This is the same thing as powdered sugar. Do not use regular, granulated sugar. 

chocolate pudding pie filling in a sauce pan

How to Make Chocolate Pudding Pie

(full printable recipe at the end of this post)

It’s rich. It’s decadent. And, you only need your oven for the pie crust. You will be amazed at how easy this chocolate cream pie is to make. 

PREP: Preheat your oven to 350℉.

PIE CRUST: Crush the pretzels, butter, and sugar and press the crumb mixture firmly into the bottom of a 9-inch pie pan. Bake the crust in the oven for 10-15 minutes. 

CHOCOLATE CUSTARD: Heat brown sugar, cornstarch, cocoa, salt, and milk in a medium saucepan. Add egg yolks and cook until the custard thickens and just boils. Remove the custard from the heat and stir in the bittersweet chocolate and vanilla extract. Then, place the pan in a bowl of ice water, stirring occasionally until it cools. 

CHOCOLATE GANACHE: Place the chopped semi-sweet chocolate in a medium bowl. Then, heat heavy whipping cream in the microwave for about 30-40 seconds. Pour the warm cream over the chocolate and stir until melted. Pour the chocolate ganache over the pie crust. Use a rubber spatula to help spread the chocolate up the sides and over the entire bottom of the crust. Then, place the crust in the refrigerator or freezer until set. 

ASSEMBLE: Pour the custard into the cooled crust with hardened ganache and press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding. Chill until firm, 4 hours or up to a day. ​​

GARNISH: Finally, whip your cream and confectioners sugar until soft peaks form. Spread it over the pie and garnish it with extra pretzels or chocolate shavings. 

Serve and Enjoy!

slice of chocolate pudding pie, with a bite on a fork

Sweet And Salty Pudding Pie FAQS

How do I know if the pie filling is set?

If the pie custard is flowing in a wavy movement from the center to the edge, it isn’t quite done yet. Keep it in the refrigerator. When it is done, the center will give you just a little jiggle, but the edges will be stable. 

How do you keep a pudding pie from getting watery?

A pudding pie should be kept cool at all times. If you need to transport the pie, use a cooler bag with ice blocks. Avoid leaving it out of the fridge for too long before serving, especially in a warm kitchen. 

How do I store leftover custard pie?

Any leftover pie should keep if covered with plastic wrap or foil in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

Can I freeze it?

Cream pies can be frozen, but I do not recommend it. After you freeze it, the thawing process can cause the filling to become watery and the pie looks very unappetizing. 

chocolate cream pie with pretzel crust in pie dish

Pro Pudding Pie Tips

Pretzel crumbs: You will get fine pretzel crumbs with just a few pulses in a food processor. Or, a plastic zip-top bag and a rolling pin will work if you don’t have a food processor.

Make sure the crust is golden: Be sure to remove the crust from the oven when it becomes fragrant and just slightly golden brown.  

Garnish: Use a bar of chocolate and a vegetable peeler to make chocolate shavings. Or you could just sprinkle some mini chocolate chips over the pie.

Chill until firm: You want your pie custard to be firm before topping it with whipped cream. For best results, plan ahead to chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Pretty pie slices: Use a large, sharp knife to cut the pie into slices for serving and wipe the knife between each slice for cleaner servings. 

chocolate cream pie with pretzel crust

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Tools Used To Make This Chocolate Pudding Pie:

Pie Dish: This white pie dish is the perfect bakeware for creating delicious sweet and savory pies. The white dish is my choice for any holiday or family gathering, but it comes in several colors!

Food Processor:  Break up the pretzels and place them in the bowl of a food processor along with the butter and sugar. Pulse to break the pretzels further and then process continuously until the pretzels are crushed until they resemble fine crumbs.

Sauce Pan: A quality saucepan is a kitchen essential. 

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chocolate pudding pie in white pie dish and a slice on a plate

Originally posted in November 2011. UPDATED November 2021. We spiffed up this post with more info and better pictures! No changes to the original recipe.

chocolate cream pie with a pretzel crust on a white plate

Chocolate Pudding Pie

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Chill Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours

A crust made from crushed pretzels pairs deliciously with a rich chocolate custard filling for this sweet and salty Chocolate Pudding Pie.


  • 4 ounces (3 cups) broken pretzel sticks
  • 3/4 cup lightly packed light brown sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk (I used 2%)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces semi sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1¼ cups + 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners sugar


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In a food processor combine pretzels, 1/4 cup brown sugar, and butter; blend until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Press mixture firmly into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie pan. Bake crust until fragrant and just turning golden, 10 to 15 minutes; cool.
  2. In a medium saucepan whisk together 1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar, cornstarch, cocoa, salt, and milk. Place over medium heat and stir until sugar is just dissolved, about 2 minutes. Whisk in egg yolks. Cook, stirring constantly, until custard thickens and just boils, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in bittersweet chocolate and vanilla. Place pan in a bowl of ice and water and stir occasionally until custard cools.
  3. While custard cools, make a chocolate ganache to cover pie crust. Place chopped semi sweet chocolate in medium bowl. Heat 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream in microwave about 30-40 seconds (just until boils). Pour warm cream over chocolate and stir until melted. Pour over cooled pie crust, using rubber spatula to help spread chocolate up the sides and over entire bottom of crust. Place in refrigerator or freezer until set.
  4. Pour custard into cooled crust with hardened ganache and press plastic wrap directly onto surface. Chill until firm, 4 hours or up to a day.
  5. Whip cream and confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form, spread over pie and garnish with extra pretzels and chocolate shavings.


Recipe adapted from Ladies Home Journal.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 380Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 106mgSodium: 245mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 4gSugar: 31gProtein: 8g

Nutrition information is estimated based on the ingredients and cooking instructions as described in each recipe and is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Please note that nutrition details may vary based on methods of preparation, origin, and freshness of ingredients used.

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close up of chocolate pudding pie with a pretzel crust on a white plate