This no bake chocolate peanut butter pretzel pie is perfect for anyone who loves a bit of savory with their sweets! A pretzel crust is filled with 2 layers of peanut butter and topped with a rich chocolate ganache and more pretzels! You can make this no bake pie in advance, making it a great dessert recipe for entertaining.
Note: this post was originally published in 2019 and updated in 2021 with new photos and improved instructions. The recipe was also modified slightly to improve the texture of the crust.
There is no combo more alluring than salty and sweet. That’s why chocolate covered pretzels are so tempting! This no bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Pie is even more irresistible and will definitely satisfy all of your salty and sweet cravings. (If you really love salty and sweet things, you also have to try my recipe for Chocolate Potato Chip Pretzel Mix!)
This pie has a salty and just a bit sweet pretzel crust. It’s got a thin layer of peanut butter on the bottom that gives an intense jolt of peanut butter flavor. Then a smooth, fluffy, creamy peanut butter filling. All of this deliciousness is then topped with a velvety smooth chocolate ganache. And then more pretzel pieces on the top for another salty, crunchy bite. I promise you will not regret making this pie! Your guests will thank you.
- Chocolate chips: you can use any type, I like using semi-sweet.
- Peanut butter: for best results you need to use “regular” creamy peanut butter to get the right texture (i.e. not natural peanut butter, where the only ingredients are peanuts and salt).
- Pretzels: You can use pretty much any shape you like! The pretzels for the crust are measured by weight to account for variances in the pretzel size and shape. Just avoid using pretzels that are oversized; stick to regular-sized sticks, knots, squares, etc.
Step by step photos
1. Make the ganache by heating the cream in the microwave and then adding in the chocolate chips. After sitting for 2 minutes, whisk the mixture together until it's smooth. Set aside while you go on with the next steps.
2. Now make the pretzel crust. First, blend up the pretzels in a food processor until you have fine crumbs.
3. Then, add in 1 stick melted butter and the granulated sugar.
4. Pulse again a few times to combine these ingredients together with the crumbs.
5. Dump the moistened crumbs into a 9 inch pie plate and press them in with your hands. I like to use the side of my hand to go around the edges. Place the crust in the fridge to start to firm up while you go on the the next step.
6. Now turn to the first peanut butter layer. Mix together 2 tablespoons of the powdered sugar, the remaining softened butter, and ½ cup of the peanut butter until smooth.
7. Then spread it onto the bottom of the pie crust. Put the crust back in the fridge.
8. Ok, now we will make the final peanut butter layer. The first step is to beat the remaining cream to stiff peaks. Stiff peaks mean the cream stands up firmly and doesn’t flop over when you take the whisk out of the bowl, like this:
9. Then you beat the softened cream cheese, remaining powdered sugar, and remaining peanut butter together until slightly fluffy.
10. Stir about ⅓ of the whipped cream into the peanut butter mixture. You don't have to be careful at this stage, just mix it in to help lighten the peanut butter filling.
It will look something like this once that first batch of whipped cream is mixed in:
11. Then, go about carefully folding in the rest of the whipped cream. You will want to be more delicate now to avoid deflating the whipped cream too much. If you need more instructions on how to fold in whipped cream, here is a nice guide with step by step photos.
If there are a few streaks remaining, that’s fine, and actually better than overmixing and deflating the whipped cream!
12. Once your filling is done, spread it evenly on top of the first peanut butter layer.
13. Then, add the ganache on top (it should no longer be warm at this point!). Spread it evenly across the top of the pie and then place the pie in the fridge to set up for at least 3 hours.
14. Right before you are ready to serve the pie, take it out of the fridge first for about 15 minutes. This will help the ganache to soften a bit so when you add the pretzel crumbles on top they will stick better. It will also help the crust to soften up to make it a little easier to get the slices of pie out of the dish.
Tips and tricks
- When making the ganache, if the chocolate hasn’t melted into the cream completely even after whisking, you can microwave the ganache again in 10 second increments, stirring in between, until the chocolate has melted. Try to avoid overheating the ganache however, because there is a risk it may separate!
- To melt the butter for the crust, you can use my favorite method: cut the butter into chunks first and microwave in 15 second increments on high, checking in between. I use this gradual method now because I have exploded butter all over my microwave more times than I’d like to admit.
- If you don’t have a scale to measure the pretzels, you are looking to end up with about 1 ¼ cups of crumbs.
- Having trouble removing that first piece of pie from the pan? You can carefully dip the bottom of the pie in hot water first to help soften the butter in the crust; this should make it a bit easier to remove the slices.
I discussed this a bit in the Recipe notes section above, but just to reiterate, you will get the best results by using a creamy peanut butter that is not "natural." This means it has additional ingredients besides just peanuts and salt that keep the peanut butter from separating. In my experience, this type of peanut butter will give the pie the most smooth, silky texture!
Yes, you can make this pie recipe up to 2 days ahead of time, stored in the fridge. After the ganache sets up a bit, just loosely cover the pie with plastic wrap or a lid to keep it fresh. When you are ready to serve, let the pie sit out at room temperature for about 15 minutes to let the ganache soften up, and don't forget to garnish with more pretzel pieces on top!
If you want to save time on prep, you can substitute Cool Whip for the homemade whipped cream. You will need to use 2 ½ cups of the Cool Whip and just follow the same steps for folding it into the peanut butter cream cheese mixture.
Just to note however, you will still need to use the ¾ cup heavy cream called for in the recipe to make the ganache layer!
If you’ve tried this recipe, please leave a star rating and/or review in the comments section below, I would love to hear from you! You can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. And sign up for my weekly newsletter to get recipes delivered straight to you!Print
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Pie
A gorgeous three layered no bake peanut butter chocolate pie. With a salty and sweet pretzel crust and garnished with even more crunchy pretzels!
- Prep Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 3 hours 50 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings 1x
- Category: dessert
- Method: no bake
- Cuisine: American
- 4 ounces pretzels, any type, plus additional for garnish (see note 1)
- 10 tablespoons (1 stick + 2 tablespoons) softened unsalted butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
- ¾ cup chocolate chips, any type
- 1 ½ cups creamy (not natural) peanut butter, divided
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, divided
- Pinch of salt
- 8 ounces softened cream cheese
- Make the ganache: place ¾ cup heavy whipping cream into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute, or until cream is steaming. Remove from microwave and add in the chocolate chips. Let sit for 2 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Set aside. (See note 2.)
- Make the crust: Melt 1 stick of the butter in the microwave. Finely grind the 4 ounces pretzels in a food processor. Add in the 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and melted butter, pulse until thoroughly combined. Dump the pretzel crumbs into a 9 inch pie pan. Firmly pat the crumbs into place on the sides and bottom of the pie pan. Place the crust into the fridge while preparing the next step.
- Make the peanut butter bottom layer: In a small bowl, mix ½ cup peanut butter, the remaining 2 tablespoons softened butter, 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and pinch of salt with a fork until smooth. Spread into the bottom of the prepared pie crust using a rubber spatula. Place the crust back into the fridge.
- Using hand beaters or a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the remaining 1 ¼ cups heavy whipping cream on high speed until stiff peaks form. If using a stand mixer, remove the whipped cream to another bowl so you can use the stand mixer bowl again for the next step (no need to clean the bowl).
- In a separate bowl (or the empty bowl of your stand mixer), add the cream cheese, remaining 1 cup peanut butter and remaining 1 cup powdered sugar. Using hand beaters or the paddle attachment on the stand mixer, beat on high until ingredients are evenly combined and slightly fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape the bowl down once during beating to make sure all the ingredients are smooth and evenly combined.
- Stir about ⅓ of the whipped cream into the peanut butter cream cheese mixture until evenly incorporated. Then add the remaining whipped cream and gently fold it into the mixture using a rubber spatula.
- Scrape the peanut butter cream cheese filling into the pie plate, on top of the bottom peanut butter layer. Smooth out into an even layer using the rubber spatula.
- Retrieve the ganache and check the temperature. It should be at room temperature or close to room temperature. If not, place in the freezer for a minute or two. When at room temperature, pour over the top of the pie and smooth out to evenly cover the top.
- Refrigerate the pie for a minimum of three hours or up to two days before serving. Loosely cover once the ganache has firmed up to keep the pie fresh. When ready to serve, let the pie sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, then gently press additional crumbled pretzels into the top of the pie to garnish.
If you don’t have a scale to measure the pretzels, you are looking to end up with about 1 ¼ cups of crumbs.
When making the ganache, if the chocolate hasn’t melted into the cream completely even after whisking thoroughly, you can microwave the ganache again in 10 second increments, stirring in between, until the chocolate has melted. Do not overheat, however, or the ganache may split!
To melt the butter for the crust, you can use your favorite method, or do the following: cut the butter into chunks and place in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high in 15 second increments, checking in between, until melted.
To more easily remove slices from the pie pan, try carefully dipping the bottom of the pie in hot water for a few seconds to help soften the butter in the crust.
Keywords: peanut butter pie, chocolate peanut butter pie, peanut butter pretzel pie