Grasshopper Pie is a crème de menthe chiffon pie with a chocolate cookie crust. It was invented in the U.S. in the 1950s following the popularity of the Grasshopper Cocktail, a dessert cocktail made from cream, green crème de menthe and white crème de cacao.
The drink’s name derived from its green color. While it reputedly originated at Tujague’s, a landmark bar and Creole restaurant in the French Quarter of New Orleans, the story is a bit more complicated.
The recipe, created by Philibert Guichet Jr., owner of Tujaque’s, began as an entry submitted to a cocktail contest in New York City. It won the second place prize. Of note is that the contest was held in 1928—before the end of Prohibition (1920-1933). [Source]
The cocktail gained popularity in the South during the 1950s and 1960s.
In the 1950s, liquor became much more widely available as it filled grocery store shelves across the land. With women doing most of the grocery shopping at this time, the popularity of sweeter, dessert-type drinks increased. By the 1960s, the Grasshopper had become a standard cocktail.
Plan ahead for something green and delicious: Make a Grasshopper Pie for St. Patrick’s Day. Photo and recipe courtesy Taste Of Home.
NEXT STOP: GRASSHOPPER PIE
At the same time the cocktail became a national standard, the pie appeared. Chiffon pies were very popular at that time, and food historians speculate that the recipe was invented by food companies to promote their products.
In the American Century Cookbook: The Most Popular Recipes For The 20th Century, Jean Anderson writes, “I suspect—but cannot verify—that [Grasshopper Pie] recipes descend from one that appeared in High Spirited Desserts, a recipe flier published jointly by Knox Unflavored Gelatin and Heublein Cordials. [Source]
Prep time is 30 minutes plus several hours to chill (or overnight).
An easy frozen version follows the standard version below.
You can play with the garnishes, using chocolate chips instead of chocolate shavings. If you want a more vivid green for St. Patrick’s day, add food color before you whip the cream.