Crew’s Mess: Coconut Custard Pie

Mar 14, 2017 by Capt. John Wampler

Crew’s Mess: by Capt. John Wampler

One of the yachts I manage on a monthly basis is a 70-foot Hatteras. When the owners arrive, I work to teach them maneuvering, line handling, preventative maintenance procedures, etc., with the ultimate goal of getting them qualified by their insurance company to operate the vessel themselves.

Before they arrive on their jet, I will prepare a little something for them to nosh on after their flight. Recently, I prepared for them a delicious coconut custard pie. The husband told me that he actually doesn’t like custard, but this recipe was an exception. An additional pie was requested when guests flew in for a visit.

Success is best served sweet.

This recipe makes two pies. The second always makes a wonderful gift for the yacht next door (that is, if you can keep your crew’s hands off of it).

Coconut Custard Pie


2 14 oz. cans of sweetened condensed milk

4 cups hot water

6 large eggs

1 tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. vanilla extract

1 Tbsp. coconut extract

1 ½ cups shredded coconut

2 9-inch unbaked pie shells

2 Tbsp. nutmeg


In a stand mixer, combine milk, water and eggs. Mix with whisk attachment until well blended, adding the salt, extracts and shredded coconut.

Pour filling into pie shells. Sprinkle half the nutmeg on each pie. (Any leftover filling can be poured into custard cups or ramekins.)

Bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 300 degrees F and bake for 30 minutes. The pie is finished when an inserted knife comes out clean.

Allow the pies to cool to room temperature, then cover with foil and refrigerate. Serve with whipped cream. Enjoy, JW.

Capt. John Wampler ( has worked on yachts for more than 30 years. His recipes are casual enough for anyone to prepare.