This buttermilk slab pie is baked on a buttery shortbread crust with a lemon and nutmeg custard filling.
I love buttermilk, but I’ve raved and ranted on here more than once about the large quantities it’s sold in. There is a bright side, though – if I have it in the fridge then I’m forced to make even more buttermilk recipes, like this awesome Southern Buttermilk Slab Pie.
I reached out to my Facebook community for some ideas on how to use up the last few cups that were still in the fridge, and they didn’t let me down.
They came up with some amazing recipe ideas, but the most popular suggestion was to make a simple buttermilk pie. I’ve already made this version of a similar Chess Pie, so I know how good pies can taste.
But I also know that I don’t like to make repeat recipes, just like how I never watch movies a second time – I’m weird like that.
Making my buttermilk slab pie
So, the only way to make a pie – without making a real pie – is to make a slab pie! Just follow the same method you would use for making a round pie.
The only change is the baking pan and the time it takes to bake. Slabs will bake faster.
The result is a buttery crust topped with a nutmeg and lemon infused custard, which is easier to slice than a pie. You can just cut these into bars and serve at room temperature, dusted with powdered sugar.
I like my bars to have a thick pastry base but if you prefer a thinner version, just roll the dough out into a larger rectangle.
These will fly off the table so be warned, you might want to double the recipe!
They also taste great with a dollop of vanilla ice cream on top!
This post has been updated since it’s original post date in 2014.
Easy Southern Buttermilk Slab Pie
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup room temp butter
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 8 tbsp unsalted butter melted
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter and line with parchment paper a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour and the powdered sugar. Gradually add the 1 cup butter and using your fingertips, rub the butter through the flour mix until it comes together to form a ball.
- Place the dough into the prepared pan and press it down and out towards the edges of the pan keeping it as level as possible.
- Place the pan into the fridge for 15 minutes to rest.
- Place the pastry in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes and slightly golden in color.
- In a large bowl beat the eggs, cornstarch and sugar until well mixed.
- Beat in the buttermilk and melted butter alternately followed by the lemon juice, zest, nutmeg and salt.
- Pour the filling into the pan and place into the oven.
- Bake for about 35 minutes and the top is crusted and puffy. It will still be jiggly but will firm up as it cools. It may take longer depending on the thickness of your base.
- Let cool before attempting to slice into squares. Serve dusted with powdered sugar.
I really love this recipe! I’ve never seen a buttermilk pie done in slab form. Beautiful :)
Holy cow do those look great! Pinning this now :)
That slab or pie…looks good to me. Lemon is always very welcomed! :) ela
It reminds me of those magic bars you made in 2013! This slab pie is definitely a must-have!
This looks really good and I was just thinking about making a buttermilk something….guess what it will be?
I could REALLY go for a piece of this, or two :)
Yess!! Thanks Diane.
This looks so incredible! And plenty to share. :-)
Or not to share… ;)
You can buy powdered buttermilk on baking section at Walmart. I am lactose intolerant, but not sensitive to it in food so as not to take up fridge space, i use powder milk and buttrmilk
I am a huge fan of buttermilk and anything southern. This sounds and looks delicious, Gerry!
Gerry I love this! I’ve made a version of Chess pie but never in bars like this. I can practically taste how creamy & awesome they are! Pinned
You can purchase the smallest container of buttermilk, use what the recipe calls for , then pour 1/2 cup in freezer zip bags. Freeze & when needed just let it thaw. It won’t take long if you freeze in a flat shape.
Slab pie always appeals to me. This one has my mouth watering!
I wanna make a slab pie! This looks fantastic!
What a gorgeous pie, I’ve never tried a buttermilk pie but this looks so tempting!
This sounds and looks amazing!
Love the recipe! Have made this several times & it always disappears quickly! The written directions say to add salt, but it isn’t listed in the ingredient list. How much salt do you add? Thank you! 😊
Thanks Jennifer, glad to hear that! The salt is just a small pinch
Gerry, I’ve yet to try chess pie and buttermilk pie. But your slab version here looks pretty amazing! I’m with you. I buy buttermilk for specific recipes and never end up using it all. Now I have the perfect recipe here! Your photos are wonderful! : )
I’ve been dying to try this! You make them look so gooey and perfect! I want the entire pan, please!
This one is a keeper Julie, I love the filling!
Yum! I love buttermilk. My mom made quite a bit of Irish Soda Bread when I was younger so it was always in the house. Next time you have extra, consider adding it to a smoothly instead of yogurt.
This one looks firm enough you could take breakfast on the go. What a way to start the day!
I’m making this, and am wondering if the 1 1/2 TEASPOONS cornstarch is correct? Seems like a very small amount to thicken the rest of these ingredients. Thanks!
Yes, that is correct
I think I’m in love!
I almost always have leftover buttermilk, and this pie looks and sounds perfect! You should serve it with buttermilk ice cream on top. I may know a recipe ;)
I hardly ever by buttermilk just because of the waste. I make my own with sweetmilk and vinegar. 1 cup of milk less 1Tablespoon and add 1 Tablesoon of white vinegar and let stand for 5 minutes. Makes 1cup of buttermilk Walla – just enough buttermilk.
Great tip Beth!!
How far ahead can I make this? Also, does it need to be kept in the refrigerator? Thanks!
Hi Corrinne, You could make this a day in advance and it’s best stored in the fridge for any time but served at room temperature if you can. Thanks!!
I am making these for my daughters wedding reception. I need to make 78 servings and am wondering if it would be okay to make these 2-3 days in advance?
Thanks for the important feedback everyone!
I’m making this right now. The directions say to add salt to the egg/buttermilk mix but i dont see salt in the ingreidients list. Hie much salt?
Hi Senaris, it’s just a pinch and won’t change the overall recipe dramatically
Hi can I use salted butter instead of unsalted Thanks Gracie
Sure can Grace :)