Pies/ Recipes

My Cherished Canadian Recipe: Flapper Pie

Flapper Pie

My Grandma’s classic Canadian prairie flapper pie recipe was the first recipe that came to mind for the latest installment of the Canadian Food Experience Project.

Flapper pie is a graham crumb crust pie filled with a decadent, creamy custard filling topped with a meringue. It’s so unique to the prairies that if you didn’t grow up here you most likely haven’t ever heard of it. Indeed, perhaps even not many Albertans have heard of flapper pie, this is a Manitoba recipe straight from the family archives, one that would have been passed around the farms!

I called my recipe Flapper Pie- The Lost Prairie Pie when I wrote it up and it since has become one of the most popular posts on my site.

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Flapper pie seems to have been popular with my grandma’s generation……then just plainly died out. My mom never made it. I never had it at my friends houses. When I asked around, so few people have heard of it. Even fewer have ever baked it! What once was a staple in prairie kitchens is now a rarity to find, unless you are lucky enough to still find an older generation baking it in their cafe or restaurant, such as the one in Pine Lake.

Flapper Pie is a cherished family pie, however it isn’t one that I grew up eating. Now, isn’t that funny to go and pick a recipe that doesn’t have any real special meaning to me for this project? I promise, my choice will make sense in a moment.

The cherished part of the recipe comes from my retrieving the recipe from my Grandma’s archives and creating my Mom’s favorite pie from her childhood, making it all the more special because it was for someone else and not myself that I brought to life this old and treasured recipe.

Flapper Pie

My parents were just up this weekend, actually and I baked this pie up fresh last night for my Mom and Dad.

Flapper Pie

Those beautiful peaks of meringue and the cinnamon laced graham crumbs are so very divine on this pie.

Flapper Pie

No matter how many times I make this pie – and it’s only a few special times a year – the whole family enjoys remembering how much they love this recipe.

Flapper Pie

There is always inevitably a discussion about my grandma, my mom’s childhood and how much she loved this pie as a child growing up in Manitoba. My husband is always thrilled when I bake this up, it’s a new pie in his repertoire – him being an Easterner and never having this pie as a child, poor thing-  and the smile on his face when he hears we are having it for dessert also is a reason why it’s one of my favorites.

Flapper Pie

The other reason that my flapper pie recipe is one of my most treasured Canadian recipes was the response from all of you readers. My recipe has evoked such emotion, memories and happiness from so many people that it makes my heart so very darn happy reading all the comments from you all!

A few of those treasured comments from you are:

-Thank you for posting this – I’m thrilled to share a little bit of the prairies with my NB family 🙂

-I also grew up on Flapper pie, it is still my favorite.My mother used the recipe that used to be on the back of the graham cracker box, when they took that off the recipe got lost, I am very happy to have found recipe that is just as good as I remember.

-My mom made it all the time and since she passed I haven’t seen it so went searching and found your site. Am going to make it myself as it was a favorite of mine 35 yrs ago Thanks Kevin

-So excited to see this recipe.  Had my first and only slice of Flapper Pie when I was 10 and have been longing for a second ever since.  Now, 35 years later, I have a recipe and a plan to bake this weekend.  THANK YOU

How can comments like these not thrill me? I brought the recipe back to life for my Mom and it obviously was a childhood memory for so many of you, making this truly one of my most cherished recipes.

I am so glad to share this recipe again on my site and re-visit how much this prairie pie seems to mean to everyone! I have changed one thing, I bake the graham crust for 10 minutes before I fill it. While this is not in the original recipe, it helps with creating perfect slices of pie!

Happy Baking everyone!

Love,

I Think I Sill Have a Slice in My Fridge For Lunch Today Magpie

** Remember to join ZIPLIST to create your own online recipe box and then click SAVE on my recipe below to add it! I use my online recipe box ALL the time! **

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My Cherished Canadian Recipe: Flapper Pie


  • Author: Karlynn Johnston
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Total Time: 20 min
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: pie

Description

Classic Canadian Prairie Flapper pie recipe!

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1 1/4 cups graham crackers
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar

dash of cinnamon

    Filling:

    • 2 1/2 cups of milk
    • 1/2 cup of white sugar
    • 1/4 cup of cornstarch
    • 3 egg yolks
    • 1 tsp vanilla

    pinch of salt

      Meringue Topping:

      • 3 egg whites
      • 1/4 cup of sugar
      • 1/4 tsp of cream of tartar

      Instructions

      1. Mix all the crust ingredients together, save about 2 tbsp to the side and press the rest into a 10 inch pie plate, in the bottom and up the sides. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes..
      2. Combine the filling ingredients together and cook on a medium heat until it boils and thickens, making sure to stir constantly! Set aside to cool while you make the meringue.
      3. Beat the meringue ingredients together until they form stiff peaks.
      4. Pour the filling into the crust and top with the meringue, making beautiful little spikes that will brown up all lovely on top! Sprinkle the rest of the crumbs on the top and slide into a 350 degree oven.
      5. Bake until the meringue browns like below, around 10 minutes but watch it carefully! All ovens are different!
      6. Cool in the fridge and eat the same day. This isn’t a pie that is going to last a few days, meringue topped pies get slimy between the layers. This is best made mere hours before serving.

      Nutrition

      • Serving Size: 6

       

       

       

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      55 Comments

    • Reply
      Carole Watson (nee Janzen)
      January 5, 2018 at 3:37 am

      My parents grew up in Saskatchewan and my mother brought her love of this pie to B. C. with her. We grew up loving when she baked this so I also baked it for my children. My children now make it for family and friends. That’s four generations minimum and it’s become our Christmas dessert. I wish I knew where it originated from. My parents were first generation Canadians whose family emigrated from Germany.
      Thanks for bringing this recipe to more people.

    • Reply
      Nakella
      December 16, 2017 at 9:54 am

      I received your cookbook as a gift and have made a lot of the recipes, but the flapper pie is the family Fave! I probably made it 15 times this year! I add an extra egg to make the meringue higher and cut a couple tbsp in total of sugar out when I remember, but the original recipe is perfect!! Great cookbook!

    • Reply
      Jean Bota
      August 7, 2017 at 9:36 am

      Karlynn I made your Flapper Pie for my company last night…

      So simple to make and such a success, wow ! as one guest from NB stated: totally a Prairie recipe !!

      I purchased your cookbook last fall and love it, the recipes’ are so easy to make, so delicious.. and your raspberry and Saskatoon jam are to die for …. so are the Saskatoon scones… yummy !!!

      Actually am going to purchase your cook book for Christmas presents this year….

      thanks again for all that you do…

    • Reply
      Michael
      May 22, 2017 at 6:05 am

      I grew up in montreal and graham wafer pie was a staple in our home..
      always surprised at how few people are aware of it..!!

    • Reply
      Moira Shannon
      May 17, 2017 at 3:03 pm

      This was my sister’s favorite our grandmother made it. She lived in Medicine hat and it was very popular.I will make it for her this weekend, she will be so excited.

    • Reply
      Linda Herron
      January 25, 2017 at 4:28 pm

      Flapper pie was a childhood favourite. This nostalgic reminder makes me want to head to the kitchen and whip up a flapper!

    • Reply
      Brandy Ross
      January 25, 2017 at 3:20 am

      My Mom makes this!

    • Reply
      Arleigh Gladwin Stockwell
      January 25, 2017 at 12:26 am

      I accidentally bought eight dozen eggs this week. I think I can make this.

      • Reply
        Terri Haug
        January 25, 2017 at 12:31 am

        I love me some Flapper pie! I will come and help you eat this if you make it!

      • Reply
        Arleigh Gladwin Stockwell
        January 25, 2017 at 12:32 am

        I was thinking of you when I saw this, Terri Haug!

      • Reply
        The Kitchen Magpie
        January 25, 2017 at 4:12 am

        Interesting accident lol!

    • Reply
      Betty Ann Mykietiak
      January 24, 2017 at 11:27 pm

      I still have the recipe that I cut from the graham wafer box for this pie and make it often

    • Reply
      Barb Thompson
      January 24, 2017 at 11:10 pm

      My grandma used to make this and then my mom eventually took over cause it’s one of my dad’s favorites….but I’ve never known anyone else outside our fam who’d heard of it…til you!

    • Reply
      Joanne Patton Steinley
      January 24, 2017 at 10:58 pm

      Living in Pennsylvania now but grew up in Alberta. My sister -in -law sent me your cookbook for Christmas. Flapper pie is one of my favorites. All the recipes remind me of my mom and my southern Albertan Grandmother.

      • Reply
        The Kitchen Magpie
        January 25, 2017 at 4:11 am

        Aw that’s wonderful!!!

    • Reply
      Tania McDonald
      January 24, 2017 at 9:53 pm

      My grandma used to make this and is my sister’s favourite. True story…. one night she woke up in the middle of the night and finished the flapper pie because my grandpa told her he was going to beat her to it \U0001f60a.

    • Reply
      Gail Paton
      January 24, 2017 at 8:29 pm

      we lived in Saskatchewan and Alberta when i was a girl and most people we knew had heard of flapper pie. My Mom used to make it for special occasions 🙂

    • Reply
      Eric Balcom
      January 24, 2017 at 8:16 pm

      The best pie ever .

    • Reply
      Shanleigh Rice
      January 24, 2017 at 7:32 pm

      My sister loves this pie so much that when she was living out side of Seattle WA and was pregnant she made her than husband drive to a bakery outside of Vancouver BC to go get her a pie twice….

    • Reply
      Carol Turton
      January 24, 2017 at 7:20 pm

      Love it, My mom and baba made it always but called it Cream Pie, Love it,

    • Reply
      Margaret Kufuor-Boakye
      January 24, 2017 at 7:01 pm

      Thanks for sharing. I am a 60 plus lady and I forgot about this delicious pie that was a popular dessert growing up. I will definitely use your recipe and pass it on to my daughter who is the family baker.

    • Reply
      Janet Watson
      January 24, 2017 at 6:50 pm

      Haha. I am nearly 80 and this is a pie my Mom was making when I was a little girl. I am sure that recipe didn’t travel from Canada to the mountains of N.C. .

      • Reply
        Margaret Kufuor-Boakye
        January 24, 2017 at 7:02 pm

        Not impossible at all!

      • Reply
        The Kitchen Magpie
        January 24, 2017 at 7:32 pm

        Oh, odds are good! Recipes were traded, shared and treasured back in the day. I’ve been told this is “cream pie” in the southern states!

      • Reply
        Janet Watson
        January 26, 2017 at 1:36 am

        It is wonderful even if it came over on the Mayflower! LOL

    • Reply
      Pamela
      November 21, 2016 at 3:29 am

      Just to let you know this recipe is indeed a maritime recipe as my grandmother made it, my mother made it, my sister still makes it and now seeing your recipe posted I am going to dig out the recipe and make it for my husband as he was from Alberta and never had it. This recipe does bring back lots of memories, good times!

    • Reply
      Pamela
      November 20, 2016 at 8:29 pm

      Just to let you know this recipe is indeed a maritime recipe as my grandmother made it, my mother made it, my sister still makes it and now seeing your recipe posted I am going to dig out the recipe and make it for my husband as he was from Alberta and never had it. This recipe does bring back lots of memories, good times!

    • Reply
      Gwhissell
      June 10, 2016 at 12:21 am

      Can you double this recipe??

    • Reply
      Chris
      March 16, 2016 at 8:51 pm

      My husband grew up with his Mother’s Flapper Pie……..her family was from Czechoslovakia and lived on Vancouver Island. 

    • Reply
      Phillipe
      January 9, 2016 at 12:10 am

      My grandmother also used to make this pie also on holidays. Their family was from a large farm in southern Saskatchewan where I believe this recipe of hers originated.

      My mouth is watering looking at your picture. That is exactly the flapper pie I remember. Yum!

      • Reply
        thekitchenmagpie
        January 10, 2016 at 12:57 am

        @Phillipe It’s such a prairie pie, isn’t it! Ingrained in our culture.

    • Reply
      Kathy Christiansen
      December 9, 2015 at 4:47 am

      Just heard about this pie. Will give it a try.

    • Reply
      mel250
      May 29, 2015 at 12:51 pm

      My mom made this all the time, just the words “Flapper Pie” make me happy. But she always made it without the meringue layer. To each her own!

    • Reply
      acolleenjones
      May 14, 2015 at 7:55 am

      Thank you sooooo much for posting this! I grew up in Winnipeg, and my grandma used to make this for us. Loved it! I had tried making it once but didn’t quite get it right. Now I’m in Ireland where we don’t have graham wafer crumbs, but I have a recipe for making graham wafer cookies, so I can probably cobble together a pie. Cheers! Colleen 🙂

    • Reply
      TammyBarker
      November 29, 2014 at 8:11 pm

      This is my favorite pie….my Grandma used to make it for me….brings back so many memories : )

    • Reply
      ACanadianFoodie
      September 26, 2013 at 3:31 pm

      My dad has always loved this pie – I know mom was making it before I was born – but I would bet it came out on the back of a graham cracker box post war… or something like that. I cannot find any origin information, yet… and looking. Two of you chose this for your most cherished recipe for Challenge Four of The Canadian Food Experience Project, yet I have NEVER made it. We will have to change that right away! I am comparing both of your recipes with my mom’s and we’ll see what I come up with – when dad is out of the hospital. He is really improving. FINALLY! Haven’t heard a BOO from you in days. You must have your head in your computer, instant kraft dinner beside the key board and a doughnut or something crumbing up the keys… Wrote a message to you while in Drumheller and am dying to hear how it went.

      🙂
      V

    • Reply
      Colleen at The Food Blog
      September 15, 2013 at 9:36 pm

      I just tried my first slice of Flapper pie, ever, a few weeks ago. It was delicious. This recipe looks like it would be even better!

    • Reply
      Shelley Taylor Alexy
      September 10, 2013 at 12:45 pm

      haven’t made in years might have to make 2 lol

    • Reply
      Shelley Taylor Alexy
      September 10, 2013 at 12:42 pm

      I have family in Pine River, Swan River & Winnipeg

      • Reply
        thekitchenmagpie
        September 11, 2013 at 11:03 pm

        @Shelley Taylor Alexy My Grandma grew up around Pine River as well.

    • Reply
      The Kitchen Magpie
      September 10, 2013 at 12:14 pm

      Aw thanks Cheryl!

    • Reply
      Karen Drabyk
      September 10, 2013 at 11:43 am

      interesting, I grew up with this but we just knew it as graham wafer pie. Didn’t have the recipe though, thanks!

    • Reply
      Cheryl Clyne
      September 10, 2013 at 3:46 am

      I was born in Boissevain. Small town. Love your posts! I feel like you’re a kindred spirit!

    • Reply
      The Kitchen Magpie
      September 10, 2013 at 2:17 am

      Cheryl I was born in Winterpeg but spend a ton of time in Dauphin with my grandparents.

    • Reply
      Barb Overton
      September 10, 2013 at 2:10 am

      Hi Karlynn,.

      Thank you for the background information about Flapper Pie.

      This pie is still served proudly in the Salisbury House restaurants in Winnipeg, where it is known as Wafer Pie. Here’s a link to the dessert page in their menu:

      http://www.urbanspoon.com/cities/332/restaurants/1416454/menu_photos/41829

    • Reply
      Heather Cushing
      September 10, 2013 at 1:00 am

      I’ve never heard of this pie… will have to try it!

      • Reply
        thekitchenmagpie
        September 11, 2013 at 11:04 pm

        @Heather Cushing Oh, do! It’s so darn good!

    • Reply
      Cheryl Clyne
      September 10, 2013 at 12:51 am

      Cant wait to try it. Where in Manitoba is your family from? I’m a Manitoba transplant too!

    • Reply
      The Kitchen Magpie
      September 10, 2013 at 12:39 am

      It’s perfect when company comes! We had one slice left last night. Hmmm. Wonder where that piece went…..

    • Reply
      Alison Arsenault
      September 10, 2013 at 12:35 am

      Love it but don’t make it frequently, ate the whole thing myself the last time I made it. Good thing I have a good metabolism 🙂

    • Reply
      karacooks
      September 10, 2013 at 12:26 am

      I would say that the NAME was unique to the prairies, maybe, but not the pie itself. :D 

      My grandmothers both made cream pies with almost identical recipes – often topped with whipped cream instead of meringue, but sometimes “fancied up” with meringue for special occasions. 

      It’s also the base of the recipe that I’ve always used for banana cream pie. One of my favorites! 

    • Reply
      The Kitchen Magpie
      September 10, 2013 at 12:16 am

      Shelley Taylor Alexy Oh yes! What a great change of pace for Thanksgiving dinner! Or make both pumpkin and flapper pie! Everyone is always SO excited when I make this pie, more than any other I find. It’s so unique and rarely made that it’s a big treat!

    • Reply
      Shelley Taylor Alexy
      September 10, 2013 at 12:13 am

      Absolutely love flapper pie…..made lots back in the days. Might have to break out my recipe for thanksgiving

    • Reply
      Rambling Tart
      September 9, 2013 at 10:07 pm

      I have never had a flapper pie before, but I LOVE the looks of it. 🙂 I’m so enjoying this series of Canadian recipes. 🙂

      • Reply
        thekitchenmagpie
        September 10, 2013 at 12:15 am

        @Rambling Tart Oh, you need to bake it! It’s so easy, and simple, and yummy!

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