What in the World is Vinegar Pie: Recreating a Historic Recipe



My grandma (born about 1890) gave me this recipe for vinegar pie.
Mix 1.5 cups sugar and 1cup flour. Add 1.5 cups boiling water & mix thoroughly with whisk as you pour. Add 2 tbsp butter, 4 tbsp vinegar and 1/8 t. Salt. Pour into unbaked pie shell; sprinkle with nutmeg. Bake at 400 until set - about 30 min. or so.


My grandmother made Vinegar Pie from a recipe that she learned from her grandmother, who made this pie after the devastation of the Civil War. Her recipe uses a flour crust (not graham cracker) and had a top crust rather than meringue. Preheat oven to 425. This recipe is 2 cups of water, 1 cup of sugar, 3 TBSP Vinegar, 1 stick real salted butter, half cup all purpose flour, half cup cold water, half cup melted butter. In sauce pan, mix water, sugar and vinegar and stir until it comes to a boil then add I stick of Butter, stir until melted. REDUCE HEAT til boiling stops. Mix flour and cold water until very smooth and gradually add this stirring constantly then turn heat up, stirring until mixture is thickened. Grease pie pan with butter and place bottom crust, pour in mixture. Wet the edge of crust with water and put on top crust, press edges together and Cut slits in top crust to vent. Bake at 425 for 10 minutes then lower temp to 350 and bake for 25 minutes more or until golden brown. Remove from over and while hot spread melted butter over the entire top crust. IMPORTANT Do not cut the pie until it is completely cool so that the filling will become solid. DELICIOUS!!!

Thanks for sharing, Monica. It's interesting to see how the recipe really became a testament to the time and place whence it originated. Simple ingredients, simple process...but delicious results!


I used to make this pie when I lived in Ohio. I got the recipe from my mother in-law. she always used a egg white basted plain crust and always apple cider vinegar. This was usually without a meringue. I have not baked it in many years and do not know if I would like it now. Times and taste have definitely changed. I made it in the early 60's

Thanks for reading, Daisy. If my attempts at this pie had been more successful, I think the meringue would've been a nice balance, but not necessary. Tastes have definitely changed over time, though!


The recipe probably called for a cap full of vinegar, not a cup full of vinegar. My husbands grandma used to make vinegar pie when he was a kid and it’s his favorite. I love it too. It doesn’t have meringue on top and it doesn’t have eggs in it. It does have nutmeg. It is quite delicious. She was born in the late 1890’s. Jane.

Hi Jane. How funny it would be if I baked following a typo! That volume does indeed make sense, however. Thank you for the offer of the recipe. I will take you up on it!

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