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Slice of German Chocolate Brownie Pie on a white plate with a couple of pecans for garnish in front of a red pie plate

German Chocolate Brownie Pie

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German Chocolate Brownie Pie: A decadent fudgy brownie is topped with the classic coconut and pecan German chocolate frosting!

This tasty twist on a German Chocolate Cake Recipe is so much easier than baking a full-fledged cake and definitely as rich and delectable!

German Chocolate Brownie Pie in a ruffle edged pie plate with pecan halves

German Chocolate Brownie Pie

It had been quite a while since I’d whipped up my Brownie Pie, a simple dessert composed of a rich brownie batter baked in a flaky pastry shell. To make it even easier, I decided to omit the crust and gild the lily with a topping of the classic German chocolate frosting recipe.

I could probably eat a bowl of this caramelly coconut icing with bits of pecans. It’s heavenly, especially for coconut fans like me. I gave my coconut phobic husband permission to scrape off his topping with strict instructions to save it for me! I call this a win for me and a win for him.

Slice of German Chocolate Brownie Pie on a round white plate with a red handled fork

What Is German Chocolate?

In 1852, American baker Samuel German developed a type of dark chocolate for Baker’s Chocolate Company. Sweeter than semisweet chocolate, it contains chocolate liquor, sugar, cocoa butter, flavorings, and lecithin, an emulsifier. To honor Mr. German, it was named Baker’s German Sweet Chocolate. 

What’s in A German Chocolate Cake?

Now that you know what makes up German chocolate, you might surmise that this chocolate is a component of the cake. Since it’s similar to semisweet chocolate, that can also be used as a substitute. The first German chocolate cake recipe was posted in the Dallas Morning Star in 1957. Credit is given to Mrs. George Calay, a homemaker. So the cake is actually Texan, not German. Sales of German chocolate went crazy after this recipe was shared with the public.

Besides the German chocolate, a German chocolate cake recipe contains buttermilk, which makes for a moist, tender cake. It is also iced with a special German chocolate frosting recipe with coconut, pecans, sugar, butter, and cream cooked with eggs. If you love coconut and pecans, this is a to die for cake filling and frosting!

How to Make a Brownie Pie

I took my favorite One Bowl Fudgy Brownies and baked them in a pie plate instead of a square baking pan. I like to use an offset spatula to smooth the top before baking.

When the brownies have cooled to room temperature, make the frosting. Gently cook the custard mixture, which will become the frosting base, over medium heat while stirring constantly. You do not want the egg yolks to scramble, but instead to cook slowly and help form a luscious base to which you add the coconut and pecans. Paired with the fudgy base creates a dazzling dessert!

German Chocolate Brownie Pie slice on a white dessert plate

Memories of My Dad, AKA the Dude

German chocolate anything reminds me of my dad. Known by family and friends as “the Dude,” he passed away almost four years ago. I first shared this recipe with a twist on one of my Dad’s favorite recipes for Father’s Day. My dad was a huge fan of steak, sushi, tacos…well, almost everything except his mom’s oxtail soup.  Every birthday, my mom would run to our local Randall’s grocery store and pick up their bakery German chocolate cake. It was a huge treat for the whole family.

And, even though my dad denied liking sweets, he would eat every crumb off his plate! I created these German chocolate brownies as a tribute to the man who showed me the value of education, altruism, loyalty to family, and unconditional love. Though I get teary as I remember him, I know he’s been reunited with my mom, his cherished wife of over 50 years, and they’re sharing a bottle of red wine and laughing. That’s the way I remember them both. Nostrovia!!!

 Collage of my dad, The Dude, through the years

More Coconut Recipes You’ll Love

If you need your coconut fix, these White Chocolate Coconut Truffles have minimal ingredients and taste amazing! Chewy Coconut Cookies take nearly no time to whip up and these Coconut Apricot Bars are always a hit! Plus, don’t miss these German Chocolate Brownies or Mounds Bar Recipe. I’m also drooling over these Chocolate Coconut Cookies! Plus, check out all my Homemade Brownies Recipes.

German Chocolate Brownie Pie photo and text collage

This recipe was first shared in June 2016. Photos and text were updated in 2020.

German Chocolate Brownie Pie slice on a white dessert plate

German Chocolate Brownie Pie

A brownie twist on the classic German chocolate cake.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Yield 8 servings


For Brownies:

  • 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick ) butter, cut into tablespoons
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • pinch of salt

For topping:

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Combine chocolate and the ½ cup of butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in the microwave using 30-second increments till chocolate is melted, stirring frequently. Mix in sugar and let cool for a couple minutes
  3. Whisk in eggs and vanilla, then stir in flour and salt until just combined.
  4. Pour into prepared pan and bake 40 minutes or till crust is brown and top of brownies is appears set. Cool to room temperature.
  5. To make the topping, cook heavy cream, sugar, yolks, and butter over medium heat, stirring constantly till mixture starts to boil and thickens. Remove from heat and mix in coconut, pecans, and vanilla. Let rest till cools to room temperature, then spread over the top of the brownies.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 slice

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 447Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 88mgCarbohydrates: 61gFiber: 3gSugar: 49gProtein: 5g


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German Chocolate Brownie Pie | Fudgy brownie pie topped with the classic German chocolate frosting!
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37 comments on “German Chocolate Brownie Pie”

  1. Great photos of your Dad. These brownies look devine – the coconut topping would be so good.

  2. Yes please:@) Love that topping!

  3. Love those photos of your parents, Liz…I almost got teary eyed reading your heartfelt account…Bet he and your mother are toasting all your wonderful success from Heaven..Bet they’re super proud too that they raised such a kindhearted daughter.

    Ps. Bravo for your win-win arrangement with Bill…David and I have a similar arrangement when it comes to desserts with whipped cream =)

  4. Love the photos of your dad – a wonderful glimpse into a life that was surely well lived.

  5. I always wanted to try German chocolate pie! Looks really rich and delicious!

  6. Liz, I am visiting my Dad this week and this is his all time favorite cake and brownie combined! I must make for him!

  7. What a heartfelt tribute to your Dad, Liz. My father insisted he wasn’t a sweet eater too, lol…However, on Thursdays, treat night at our house, when he came home from work, he usually brought home donuts. There was always one missing from the box by the time we got to tackle them, lol…

    Cherish the memories, Liz and everyone once in a while, join your parents in spirit with a toast to their love:)

    Thank you so much for sharing, Liz…

  8. That’s a really sweet tribute to your Dad. I love esp. that topping…totally divine.

  9. It is definitely a win-win when you get extra topping!! The photos of your dad are lovely. I know mine will love this too. He is a big fan of coconut, but my mom is not so he doesn’t get it often!

  10. I loved your post. Sorry for the loss of your darling dad. He looks like a great guy. And who doesn’t like Coconut, brown sugar and pecan topping. I don’t blame you for taking your husband’s extra. BTW, is that Rose’s Pie Plate?

  11. What a sweet tribute to your dad. My dad would LOVE this pie–He’s a chocoholic big-time. I would be like your husband, scraping off the topping! ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. What a lovely tribute to your Dad. I love this dessert. I hate to admit it but chocolate cakes are not my thing (I know – how can that be?) but I love brownies, who doesn’t? Plus the gooey coconut filling on the brownie – this has my name written on it!

  13. Liz this looks simply scrumptious!
    Your post was incredibly sweet and touched my heart. ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. All those photos are so great. It sounds like you have many fond memories of your dad. I’m sure he would have loved this pie. I made brownie pie once and loved it and with that topping – irresistible.

  15. What an amazing looking pie – love that topping. I can imagine this will be a harder father’s day for you but you write so warmly about him, I hope those memories make it a better day. Along with this pie, of course, to toast him.

  16. What a lovely tribute to your dad. I don’t know how you keep coming up with such great recipes, but you’ve done it again. Bookmarked to make for my coconut-loving husband!

  17. Beautiful tribute to your dad! German Chocolate is my very favorite cake too and I’ve been lucky to have it every year on my birthday. I’ll have to try this pie, it looks amazing!

  18. What a wonderful recipe to honor what sounds like a wonderful man!

  19. I put off reading your post, Liz, because I knew it was going to make me well up but in the end I couldn’t resist that coconut/pecan topping. I could eat that stuff with a spoon. What a great dessert! And, as expected, a lovely tribute to your dad.

  20. Such a great post and what a delicious dessert to go along with it!

  21. Hi Liz, so sorry to hear about your father, love the pictures of him and both of your parents together. Very thoughtful post….

  22. What a beautiful tribute to your Dad. Your German chocolate brownie pie looks divine!

  23. Liz what a great way to honor your dad. I know he’s looking down and wishing he could sit down with you for a slice. This, your first, Father’s Day without him will be difficult, believe me I know. But all we can do is remember all of those happy times and past celebrations. Hey, maybe our fathers are up there getting to know each other. ๐Ÿ™‚ Sending you a big hug!

  24. Love the colourful post! Have an awesome week, dear!

  25. I love anything coconut (and chocolate, for that matter!). What a heavenly pie!

  26. Condolances to you as you miss your Dad today. He (and your Mom) are smiling down upon you and wishing they could join you for this brownie treat.

  27. This brownie pie looks heavenly ๐Ÿ™‚
    I’ve lost my Dad in my teens and I love to bake his favorites every now and then. I celebrate his birthday every year with a cake. So I see this as a beautiful tribute to your Dad

  28. I can see the whole family swooning over this one!

  29. my whole family would be swooning over thisone !

  30. This dessert was a hit! Even my husband who (like your dad) doesn’t like sweets, went for seconds! It’s definitely a keeper.

  31. I can’t even handle how good this is! Will be making again and again and again!

  32. I <3 this blog post! Saving this one to make for a gf's b-day!

  33. What a wonderful tribute to your dad! And what a fabulous way to re-create a German chocolate cake!!

  34. Growing up I always stayed away from desserts like this because they had coconut in them (even though my Mom LOVES coconut in every form). Now that my tastes have changed, I like coconut a bit more and am trying all sorts of things I never had before. What a great topping to compliment a delicious brownie!

  35. Liz, what a special way to remember your dad. I hope to make this soon and think of him when I do! Thank you for sharing such a special recipe.

  36. No doubt this will quickly become a favorite pie in my house!

  37. A great way to honor your dad. I am with you I love the coconut and pecan topping! These German chocolate brownies are right up my alley!! They look delicious!!

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