I grew up listening to Rupert Holmes' big hit "Escape (The Piña Colada Song)." The song was released back in 1979 and eventually climbed all the way to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

I loved "The Piña Colada Song" as a kid and now love Piña Coladas as an adult. If you're in the same boat, you're going to love this recipe like I do. Patty Millay has created an amazing Piña Colada Pie that you can serve by the slice or by the jar. Here's what inspired the recipe and everything you need to know about making it at home.

From Patty:

It's almost summer and I don't want to heat up my kitchen for any reason! This is without question one of the best things I've made in years and it could not be more simple!  30 minutes and you're done!   This is a great make ahead for your summer picnics and special occasions!  This easily makes a dozen and a half take and go or two 8 inch pies.

Piña Colada Pie

1 1/2 cup of shredded sweetened coconut

2 sleeves of graham crackers crumbed

1 cup white sugar

1 stick of butter

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

2 8-ounce bars of cream cheese softened to room temperature

1 airline size bottle of rum (2 teaspoons) or 2 teaspoons of rum extract

16 ounces of crushed pineapple well drained

6 ounces of chopped berries of your choice (raspberries, strawberries or maraschino cherries are recommended)

1 large container of whipped topping

1 cup of coconut cream


Begin by toasting your pecans with 2 tablespoons of butter and 1/2 cup of sugar in a skillet over medium heat.  Stir frequently, this takes 2-3 minutes max.  Don't over cook them.  As your pecans cool in a bowl, add your coconut to the skillet and brown for 3-4 minutes stirring constantly.  Remove coconut to a bowl to cool.

You'll need to reserve a 1/2 cup of your graham cracker mix, 1/2 cup of your toasted coconut and a 1/2 cup of nuts for toppings after assembly.

Prepare the crust by placing the crushed graham crackers in a mixing bowl. Then pour the remainder of your butter (melted) on top, add the remaining sugar and stir until the crumbs are mostly moist. Press the crust into a 9-inch pie pan with your fingers or the bottom of a measuring cup.  Patty opted to make hers in individual servings using small jars. You could easily use clear plastic punch cups for a take and go serving.

Make the Piña Colada filling by beating the cream cheese and coconut cream together until they are smooth and fluffy. Then add the rum (or rum extract).

Add the whipped topping, pineapple, berries, and nuts into the cream cheese mixture. Mix this together by hand to avoid crushing your berries. Spread Piña Colada filling into the pie pan or your individual serving containers. Top with a sprinkling of graham cracker crust, a pinch of toasted coconut then a sprinkle of extra nuts.  Cover well sealed and refrigerate for several hours.

This dish is best left to chill overnight and must be refrigerated until serving.  This is a make and take dish, it's not for freezing.

What's Cookin'? is sponsored weekly by Kight Kitchen Interiors of Owensboro.

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