Chess Pie vs. Sugar Cream Pie: Differences & Which Is Better?

Rate this post

Chess pie and sugar cream have become the signature desserts during the holiday season. Since they are so easy to make, they have secured their places in many households and are beloved members of the weekly menus of many families. Given their similar appearances and ingredients, you can easily mistake one for the other, while they are not the same dessert. So, what are the differences between chess pie and sugar cream pie, and which is better?

Chess pie originated in the south of North America, and sugar cream pie around Indiana. Chess pie is made with cornmeal and sugar cream pie with flour. Chess pie and sugar cream pie are made by mixing all ingredients and pouring them into the pie, whereby the sugar cream pie doesnt contain eggs.

Chess pie and sugar cream pie are very similar as they contain the same ingredients, but the way they are made is different and therefore differ in taste, but not too much. However, they are easy to mix up as they look similar and have similar textures. In the following paragraphs, I will explain the differences between chess pie and sugar cream pie and discuss their making, ingredients, nutrition, and popularity.

Chess Pie vs. Sugar Cream Pie: Differences 

Chess Pie vs. Sugar Cream Pie: Differences & Which Is Better?

Chess and sugar cream pies are also known as make-do pies, which contain only the essential ingredients that qualify them as pies.Back then, it wasnt easy to find many ingredients and those ingredients people could find werent cheap. Therefore, these pies were working-class dishes or poverty dishes.

At first, they gained popularity among the communities composed of working-class citizens, and later on, they spread to the rich, as the working class people worked as servants in the houses of the rich.

Today, sugar cream pie is a signature dish in Indiana, and Tennessee is famous for chess pie. Both pies have shifted from poverty dishes to wholesome American symbols and compulsory members of the holiday menus.

Making and Ingredients 

Chess pie is made of sugar, cornmeal, eggs, and butter.Some variations use regular flour instead of cornmeal or a combination of cornmeal and flour. However, the traditional recipe calls for cornmeal.

The making process is very straightforward, consisting only of mixing the ingredients together and pouring them into a pre-baked pie crust. The result is creamy, crumbly pie, moderately sweet, and incredibly rich.

Unlike chess pie, sugar cream pie doesnt contain eggs and is sweeter-tasting than chess pie. It is made with flour, sugar, butter, and cream.There are alternative recipes containing milk or heavy cream instead of cream, but the taste doesnt vary much.

milk, or heavy cream. Then the filling is poured into the pre-baked crust and baked.The making procedure for sugar cream pie is almost the same as that of the chess pie.The dry ingredients are mixed first and then combined with the melted butter, cream

milk or heavy cream in the filling, sugar cream pie is creamier and much smoother than chess pie. Due to the larger sugar amount, it is sweeter too.Nevertheless, both pies are very delicious and, therefore, very popular.Because it contains cream


As I mentioned, sugar cream pie is sweeter than chess pie, which doesnt make chess pie any less tasty.The cornmeal in the chess pie does its magic and gives it a crumbly yet soft, creamy, and silky texture. The discrete corn flavor intertwined with the butter and eggs makes chess pie a finger-licking dessert, and it is very hard to believe that something that rich was once considered a poverty dish.

Sugar cream pie is sweeter and creamier than chess pie. Its texture is very smooth and even. It has an expressed butteriness and milkiness and is incredibly rich-tasting and satisfying. Because it is so creamy, sugar cream pie resembles a pudding-like mixture that, combined with the crunchy texture of the crust, results in a heavenly merger of two opposing sides.

Serving Styles 

Since chess pie is the simpler of the two, it has a wider choice of serving styles.It fits excellent with fruity additions, as well as creamy toppings. It pairs great with chocolate, jam, and honey or chocolate cream topping.

Since chess pie is already slightly acidic, it goes with neutral-tasting cream cheeses such as mascarpone or crme Fraiche. You can pair it with chocolate or milk-based drinks and juices, coffees, and teas.

Sugar cream pie is expressively sweet and creamy, so it doesnt offer as many options as the chess pie. Still, sugar cream pie pairs perfectly with chocolate, in any form, nuts, and citrus fruits. It goes with black coffee to oppose the pies milkiness and cocoa, whereas tea or juice dont sit well with sugar cream pie.

Popularity and Variations 

While chess pie is most popular in the American south, sugar cream pie is more prevalent in the midwest. However, they are both popular throughout North America and Western Europe.

Many diners and cafes offer chess pie and sugar cream pie as coffee desserts, but these two pies are also popular in households as they are straightforward and cheap to make.

Since they use the essential ingredients, both chess pie and sugar cream pie are prone to variations. They serve as bases for buttermilk pie, pecan pie, or custard pie. Both pies offer many serving combinations with ingredients that make them different from their base form and, therefore, variation of the same pie.


Although both chess pie and sugar cream pie are rich in carbohydrates, sugars, calories, and fat, sugar cream pie is the more nutritious.

Chess pie doesnt offer a significant nutritional value, but it does contain protein from the eggs.

milk derivative in the filling, it contains calcium, but on the downside, it is richer in carbs than chess pie. milk or heavy cream and Lacto bacteria that promote gut health. Because of the milkSugar cream pie contains protein from the cream

However, while chess pie contains cholesterol because of the eggs, sugar cream pie doesnt.

Chess Pie vs. Sugar Cream Pie: Which Is Better? 

Chess Pie vs. Sugar Cream Pie: Differences & Which Is Better?

As different as they are similar, chess pie and sugar cream pie are served in different moods. Therefore, none of them can be labeled as better.Choose the chess pie if you want something simpler and lighter yet rich and satisfying. If you crave creaminess and self-indulgence, you should go for the sugar cream pie.


What is the difference between a chess pie and a custard pie?

What is the difference between this pie and custard pie? While both pies have a custard filling, the main difference is that chess pie has cornmeal in the filling. There is also acidity added (from the cider vinegar) to balance out the sweetness of the chess pie.

What does chess pie taste like?

How does a chess pie taste? Chess pie is a decadent combination of butter, sugar, eggs and milk—and tastes as sweet and custardy as you can imagine! Cornmeal gives the filling a little bit of texture and all of the sugar in the pie bakes to a crispy, caramelized layer on top.

What is different about a chess pie?

Born of convenience rather than extravagance, the most basic chess pie filling consists of butter, sugar, eggs, and flour in a single pastry crust. Cornmeal usually serves as an additional stabilizing ingredient, while an acid (buttermilk, vinegar, or lemon juice) is frequently added to punch up the flavor a bit.

What is the difference between chess pie and pecan pie?

Chess pie is a dessert with a filling composed mainly of flour, butter, sugar, eggs, and sometimes milk, characteristic of Southern United States cuisine. It is similar to pecan pie without any nuts.

What is the difference between a cream pie filling and a custard pie filling?

cream custard that sets up and thickens in the oven. Coconut Cream Pie is a custard, but it’s cooked on the stove and chilled until set.The biggest difference is that Custard Pie has a baked filling, and Cream Pie does not. What exactly is this? Coconut Custard Pie is made with an egg and milk

What is the most liked type of pie?

The clear winner for the United States as a whole was (not surprisingly) apple pie with more than 27% of sales going to the traditional flavor.

What is America’s most favorite pie?

And the vote is in: America’s favorite pie is apple pie. As we wrote about in our blog on the history of apple pie, today’s apple pie is quite unlike the delicious dessert’s predecessor. In fact, the pies were once made with hard, inedible crusts that simply served to preserve the pie’s contents.

What is Gordon Ramsay’s favorite pie?

The thing that really sets Gordon Ramsay’s apple pie apart from the rest, is the sweet, sugary caramelized apples.

What makes chess different?

It is such a great game because unlike any other games it only uses logic. You don;t need to be smart or rich to play it. You just need to know the game rules and chess moves. People from all oever the world play it because of its addicting logical thinking,us,included.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *