Get the original Grasshopper Pie recipe direct from the source, plus find out how it was invented

Original Grasshopper Pie

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This original Grasshopper Pie recipe creates a delicious and refreshing no-bake dessert, made up of a chocolate mint cream filling (with alcohol) in what’s basically an Oreo crust.

The story of how the dessert came to be is unique — it didn’t come by way of a cooking contest or random experimentation, nor was it created by a marketing department somewhere. 

According to the newspaper article published below, it all started in the late 1940s, when a man named Lawrence Pugh, who worked for the Dutch liqueur distillery Bols, learned a survey had found that chocolate and mint were Americans’ favorite flavors.

He decided to see if he could combine the two in a cocktail, so he mixed a little of his company’s green creme de menthe with some deep brown creme de cacao… and got something that tasted great, but looked terrible.

He took the problem to the team at Bols, and they actually went ahead and invented a version of the liquor without the chocolate color. “So we made the first white cacao,” said Pugh. “That led to the birth of the Grasshopper cocktail.”

Soon thereafter, his wife got involved, and came up with the idea of turning the cocktail into an actual dessert. Read more about that below, and get their original recipe, too!

Green grasshopper cocktail with mint
The inspiration: A grasshopper cocktail (Modified from a photo by mcgphoto/Deposit Photos)
Couple create Grasshopper Pie: A dessert with a kick

By Camille Glen – The Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Texas) July 28, 1966

The Lawrence Pughs of Louisville, Kentucky, have creative palates. Pugh, a native of England, is a chemist. He likes his job so well that it is also his hobby. Mrs Pugh says that more often than not one corner of their kitchen is turned into a lab for blending flavors and mixing liqueurs.

In 1949, Pugh concocted the Grasshopper Cocktail. “The American people seemed to be very fond of chocolate-covered mints,” says Pugh, “so I blended the chocolate and mint liqueurs and found it delicious.” Because of the creme de menthe, the drink was green, so it was dubbed the Grasshopper.

ALSO SEE: 100 years of the best old-fashioned mint julep recipes (1862-1962)

As the Grasshopper was most refreshing when served very cold, it occurred to Mrs. Pugh to thicken the formula with marshmallows, put it in a chocolate crumb crust and freeze it.

Presto! “The Grasshopper” had been transformed into a pie. Good culinary news travels fast. A friend found the Grasshopper Pie in a West Coast magazine not long ago, and the fastidious Homestead in Hot Springs, Virginia, has listed it on its dessert menu.

Original Grasshopper Pie recipe from the 1960s

MORE: Delicious peppermint fudge with crushed candy canes is an extra festive Christmas treat

Get the classic how-to for this chocolate-mint dessert

Here you will find the Pughs’ recipe for the original Grasshopper Pie recipe, which they served frozen. We made a few modifications to allow for modern marshmallow sizes, and filled out the instructions with a bit more detail.

For the purists, however, below our recipe card, you will find the original newspaper clipping of the recipe, exactly as published. 

Original Grasshopper Pie

Original Grasshopper Pie

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups chocolate wafer cookies, crushed fine
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 32 large marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup green creme de menthe (2 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup white creme de cacao (2 ounces)
  • 1/2 pint heavy cream
  • 1/8 cup shaved chocolate for garnish

Instructions

  1. Combine the crushed cookies and melted butter, and press them into a pie plate. This makes the crust.
  2. Over low heat, warm the milk, then melt the marshmallows in it, stirring constantly just until the marshmallows are melted.
  3. Cool the marshmallow mixture, stirring occasionally.
  4. Gradually stir the creme de menthe and creme de cacao into the cooled marshmallow mixture.
  5. In a separate chilled bowl, beat the whipped cream until stiff peaks form.
  6. Fold the whipped cream into the marshmallow-liqueur mix. If you would like to add green food coloring, do that now.
  7. Spread the filling into the chilled pie shell. Sprinkle with shaved chocolate and freeze.

Notes

The original recipe published in 1966 called for 20 marshmallows, however, marshmallows are smaller nowadays. We did some research, and estimated that 32 large modern marshmallows would be roughly equivalent.

Instead of freezing the pie, you can instead chill it by refrigerating it for at least 4 hours. Serve cold. Cover and store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 505Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 67mgSodium: 306mgCarbohydrates: 55gFiber: 1gSugar: 37gProtein: 4g

Click Americana offers approximate nutrition information as a general reference only, and we make no warranties regarding its accuracy. Please make any necessary calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe, and consult with a qualified healthcare professional if you have dietary concerns.

See the 60s original

Here’s a clipping of the 1966 recipe, exactly as published.

Original Grasshopper Pie recipe from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram - July 28, 1966

ALSO TRY: Quick creamy chocolate mint pie (1985)

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