Low Sugar Fresh Strawberry Pie

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie.  Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice.  It’s a perfect summer treat!  

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie. Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice and topped with whipped cream. It’s a perfect summer treat!

Fresh Strawberry Pie

My first memory of Fresh Strawberry Pie comes from the days when Poppin’ Fresh Pie restaurants were all over the Midwest!  As penny-pinching newlyweds, my husband and I would stop in there for a “budget” dinner out, splitting a dinner and single piece of pie — two if we were feeling indulgent!  

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie. Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice and topped with whipped cream. It’s a perfect summer treat!

Not collapsed 🙂

So when I saw pictures of Fresh Strawberry Pie floating around the internet (I hear this version originated at Cooks Illustrated), I had to give it a try. 

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie. Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice and topped with whipped cream. It’s a perfect summer treat!

Start with the pie crust of your choice

Unfortunately, the first pie I made promptly fell apart.  As the berries sat in the pie, touching the sugary gel coating, the sugar drew moisture from the berries and re-liquified the gel.  Collapse!  Day 2 was even worse. 

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie. Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice and topped with whipped cream. It’s a perfect summer treat!

Closeup

Now I don’t know if my farm fresh organic berries are different and it would have worked with dry old store berries… But I’m not changing my berries, so I knew the recipe had to change. 

Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie. Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice and topped with whipped cream. It’s a perfect summer treat!

Mmmm

In version two, I replaced cornstarch with tapioca, because I’ve generally had better luck with that in berry pies.  But my main change was to macerate the berries first (halve them and sprinkle them with sugar to draw out some of the juice).  Finally, I reduced the sugar a bit.  ‘Cause who doesn’t want a beautiful piece of pie with just 235 calories per slice! 

This lengthened the working time, but it was still super easy and, in the end, I had a pie that held together. Even on day 2. 

After that it was gone. 

Wild strawberries

Backyard wild strawberry plants

Fresh Strawberry Pie
Serves 8
Fresh Strawberry Pie brings together the goodness of berries and the fun of pie.  Ripe strawberry halves are placed in a crust then held together with thickened berry juice.  It’s a perfect summer treat!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
4 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
4 hr
234 calories
39 g
1 g
8 g
3 g
2 g
205 g
124 g
22 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
205g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 234
Calories from Fat 76
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g
13%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 1mg
0%
Sodium 124mg
5%
Total Carbohydrates 39g
13%
Dietary Fiber 4g
15%
Sugars 22g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
163%
Calcium
3%
Iron
8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. • 1 pie crust of your choice
  2. • 2 quarts fresh organic strawberries, rinsed and hulled (see note)
  3. • 1/2 cup sugar
  4. • 1 1/2 teaspoons Sure-Jell for low sugar recipes (pink box)
  5. • 2 Tablespoons Instant Tapioca, ground finer in the blender
  6. For serving, whipped cream (optional)
Instructions
  1. Bake a pie crust of your choice. This can be blind baked (baked using pie weights) or pricked and baked for this recipe.
  2. Clean and halve berries and place in a strainer over a bowl. Sprinkle the berries with a couple tablespoons of sugar and let drain, saving juices. Continue sprinkling the berries with remaining sugar, a couple tablespoons at a time, and stirring gently to get more juice out. I did this over the space of about 3 hours.
  3. Keeping the juice separate, pour cut, macerated berries into the crust, trying to guide the nicest to the top. Turn the berries on the top layer cut side down for a professional look.
  4. Measure strawberry juice, then transfer to a small saucepan. You should have a scant 1 cup of juice; mash a couple berries finely and add if you are short. Whisk tapioca & sure gel into the juice mixture
  5. Bring the juice mixture to a full boil, whisking as needed so that no lumps form. Simmer a full minute; mixture will begin to thicken (and will thicken more as it cools). Pour over the berries in the crust reserving a couple tablespoons. Brush any dry top berries with the remaining juice mixture so they look shiny. Chill until set, a couple hours, then serve with whipped cream.
Notes
  1. This fit a 9-inch, medium-depth pie pan. When in doubt, you can double check a pan’s capacity by filling the empty pie pan with berries. Just remember that these berries will shrink some when they macerate.
  2. I always buy a third quart of berries when I make this. Then if there are a few more bad berries, or I can’t stop myself from munching, or if the pie pan is a bit bigger, I am covered.
beta
calories
234
fat
8g
protein
3g
carbs
39g
more
Art of Natural Living https://artofnaturalliving.com/

9 thoughts on “Low Sugar Fresh Strawberry Pie

  1. David

    Oh, I have had that “weeping” problem, too…. so annoying especially when you have guests coming! Thanks for the tips to help keep that from happening, Inger!

    1. Inger Post author

      I had read other comments about too much moisture so I knew I wasn’t the only one. I’ll have to say it was fun perfecting this 🙂

    1. Inger Post author

      Thanks Thao. I don’t mind putting in a little extra time–especially when it is really just waiting (and an occasional sprinkle and stir) time!

  2. Louise

    Thanks for sharing this recipe Inger! I find it of the upmost importance to PIN it right now!!! Thanks for sharing, it sounds sooooooo yummy!!! And strawberry season is still in full swing!!!

    1. Inger Post author

      Thanks Louise! I got 3 15-pound cases of berries last week and am enjoying them so much (plus freezing for winter)!

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