Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie

A crunchy pretzel and graham cracker crust, layers of chocolate and peanut butter ganache, bananas, and more crunchy pretzels on top.  Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie is a sweet and salty dream come true, and easy as… well.. pie!

one wedge cut out and partially removed from a pie covered with pretzels on top

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It’s March. If you’re a dessert-based, food blogging, scientist, it’s a pretty exciting time, because that means it’s almost… PI DAY!

I mean, really. What kind of baking math and science nerd would I be if I didn’t celebrate appropriately?

While I haven’t decided yet what I’m making this year to celebrate, I also always make sure to share a new pie recipe the week before.

This year, we’re going a little non-traditional, in that this pie isn’t baked in a pie dish… and in fact, it’s not really baked at all!

It uses a graham cracker and pretzel based crust with layers of chocolate and peanut butter ganache covered slices of fresh bananas. Because of the layers, it works best in a springform pan, but a deep dish pie dish will work, too!

Just check out those delicious layers. ↓↓↓ So let’s celebrate Pi Day with this no bake, easy as pie, chocolate peanut butter banana pretzel pie!

slice of pie showing the layers of crust, peanut butter ganache, chocolate ganache, and sliced bananas

Easy Pie Layers

First up: the crust. It’s made from just crushed graham crackers, crushed pretzels, and melted butter. Press it into the bottom of the pan; no need to bake.

I provide instructions for making the chocolate ganache and peanut butter ganache using a microwave, because it’s easy. Both can absolutely be made using a double boiler instead, to gently heat the chips until melted.

For the banana, we want to use a ripe – but not overripe – banana. It should still hold its shape well when cut and not be mushy. But — oh no! You want to make this pie soon, and the grocery store only has green bananas!

What’s the quickest way to ripen your bananas? It’s time for my favorite subject… kitchen chemistry!

Kitchen Chemistry

Bananas produce ethylene gas as they ripen, which helps convert starch to sugar.  Exposure to this ethylene further increases the ripening process, which is why bananas go from green to brown so quickly.  To help bananas ripen faster, store the bananas in a paper bag to trap the ethylene.  Apples also produce a large amount of ethylene; adding an apple (or an already ripe banana) into the bag will speed the process further.

a panel of 6 photos showing each layer of the pie in the springform pan

Use Acetate Strips for Perfect Layers

If you’re making this chocolate peanut butter banana pretzel pie in a deep dish pie plate, you can skip this section. Layer as directed in the instructions and slice with a sharp knife before serving.

If you’re going to use a springform pan, there’s one trick that can really help with getting the outside of your pie as beautiful as the inside: using acetate strips.

Acetate strips, also known as “cake collars”, allow you to build layers of cake and then easily peel away the strip. These are the acetate strips that I use (affiliate link).

When you remove the springform pan, some of the crust and ganache sticks to the metal a little, and running a knife along the outside leaves little knife marks.

For a truly smooth edge, line the springform pan with an acetate strip. Assemble the pie as instructed and chill. Once chilled, remove the outer springform pan ring, then slowly peel off the acetate strip.

A perfect layered pie, every time!

(And wash your acetate strip and reuse over and over – don’t be wasteful!)

side view of one slice of pie being removed from the rest of the chocolate peanut butter banana pretzel pie

Common Questions about Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie

Can this pie be made ahead of time?

This is a perfect make ahead pie! Assemble the entire pie, excluding the pretzels on top for decoration, and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Gently press the pretzels onto the top of the pie immediately before serving.

Can this pie be frozen?

The pie, either as a full pie in its entirety, or individual slices, can be wrapped in a layer of plastic wrap followed by aluminum foil and frozen for up to 3 months.

Will frozen bananas work instead of fresh?

Unfortunately, only fresh bananas should be used. Frozen bananas lose too much structure and get too soft — use them for chocolate chip banana bread or peanut butter banana cupcakes or banana nutella cake instead!

Do I have to use a springform pan?

You can use a deep dish pie pan instead of a springform pan — cutting and removing slices is just a little more challenging.

slice of pie on a plate with a fork resting on the plate holding one bite

More No Bake Pie Recipes:

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie

Yield: Serves 16
Prep Time: 1 hour
Chilling Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours

A crunchy pretzel and graham cracker crust, layers of chocolate and peanut butter ganache, bananas, and more crunchy pretzels on top.

Ingredients

  • 9 whole sheets graham crackers
  • 1 cup bite-sized pretzels, plus more for decorating
  • 8 tablespoons (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 cups (681 grams) heavy cream, divided
  • 3/4 cup (202.5 grams) peanut butter, divided
  • 8 ounces (227 grams) peanut butter chips
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 12 ounces (340 grams) chocolate chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 large ripe bananas, sliced

Instructions

  1. Prepare the pan. Line a 9-inch springform pan with a sheet of acetate at least as tall as the sides of the pan. Alternatively, spray the inside of the springform pan ring with non-stick spray, or use a deep dish pie plate.
  2. Make the crust. Combine the graham crackers and 1 cup of the pretzels in a blender or food processor. Process until the graham crackers are all crumbs and the pretzels are small pieces (alternatively, crush by hand). Combine the graham cracker/pretzel mixture in a small bowl with the melted butter and mix. Scoop the mixture into the prepared pan and press into the bottom and slightly up the sides of the pan.
  3. Make the peanut butter ganache. Combine 1 cup of the heavy cream, 1/2 cup of peanut butter, and the peanut butter chips in a medium sized microwave bowl. Microwave for 1 minute at 50% power and stir. Repeat until melted. Set the bowl aside to cool for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. After the mixture is cooled, stir in the 2 tablespoons of milk and remaining 1/4 cup of peanut butter.
  4. Make the chocolate ganache. Combine the remaining 1 cups of heavy cream and chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Microwave for 1 minute at 50% power and stir. Repeat for 30 second intervals, stirring well between each, until the mixture is smooth and fully melted. Stir in the salt. Set the bowl aside to cool for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once cooled, whip on high speed with a mixer for 2 to 3 minutes, until lightened in color and slightly thicker.
  5. Layer the pie. Arrange banana slices into a single layer over the bottom of the crust. This should use approximately half the total banana slices. Spread the peanut butter layer over the bananas. Add another layer of the bananas to the top of the peanut butter layer and spread the chocolate ganache over top. Refrigerate until the pie is set, at least 3 hours.
  6. Add pretzels before serving. Remove the pie from the refrigerator 30 minutes before serving. Gently press the remaining pretzels on top of the pie to decorate. Unmold from the springform pan, remove the acetate strip, and transfer to a serving plate.

Notes

Chocolate peanut butter banana pretzel pie can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, or frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw under refrigeration before eating.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie: An easy make ahead no bake pie recipe, featuring a pretzel crust, layers of chocolate ganache and peanut butter ganache, and freshly sliced bananas.

This Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pretzel Pie recipe was originally published on 03/18/2016 and republished with new photos and helpful tips on 03/05/2021.