Possum Pie (No Actual Possums)

Arkansas Possum Pie, also called chocolate layer pie, chocolate lush, or four-layer delight, is a delicious dessert that the entire family will love. A shortbread cookie crust and rich, delicious, layered filling combine to make a delectably sweet treat that leaves everyone who tries it wanting more.

Possum pie on white plate with fork.

And no, there are no actual possums in this pie. We’re not sure why this particular Arkansas dessert is called possum pie. Some people say it gets its name from the color of the layers, which resemble those of the North American marsupial. What we do know is that it is sweet, rich, creamy, and utterly delicious.

What is Arkansas Possum Pie?

Contrary to what you might think when you read this recipe’s decidedly unappetizing name, Arkansas Possum Pie is one of the best desserts you’ll ever eat!

This is a layered pie comprised of pudding, cream cheese, chocolate, and a shortbread cookie crust. It’s as rich as you’d expect any dessert hailing from the south to be. It’s a rich dessert that will satisfy any sweet tooth.

Its cookie crust is filled with a chocolaty pudding base which is then topped with a cream cheese and whipped cream layer sprinkled with shaved chocolate. It’s one of the richest desserts we’ve ever tasted, so of course, we wanted to share it with all of you.

Slice of Possum pie on white plate with remaining pie in background

Making Arkansas Possum Pie

This possum pie is made almost completely from scratch. The only pre-made ingredients are a package of pudding and the shortbread cookies used for the crust.

What that means for you is that it takes a bit more work than some of our other recipes, it is still a simple recipe , one bite of the final product will make you glad you put in that little bit of extra effort.

No Bake Possum Pie

As you know we love no bake desserts. And this one is no exception! We are always looking for new and easy desserts. Not only are no bake desserts easy but they save time when you company coming over or need a dessert for a potluck.

Holidays are perfect for no bake desserts. They require no baking so your oven is free for turkey, ham or side dishes! This no bake possum pie is the perfect dessert to try for a holiday or a special occasion.

Layering whipped topping over chocolate pie base

Layered Chocolate Pie

In all actuality this funny named pie (possum pie) is a layered chocolate pie. But once you start making this pie and calling it possum pie well you just have to go with it.

You can call it possum chocolate pie, possum four layer delight too. Or you can leave the possum out completely but them the fun and look on anyone new to this pie face would not be the face! The look of horror, shock is all worth it!

When we first heard about this pie, we had the same reaction that most people have. “It’s not made with possum, is it?” lol no possum just delicious flavors you will love! So you will be making this pie often!


There are three distinct parts to Arkansas Possum Pie – the crust, the bottom layer, and the final top layer. Each layer requires some work, but it’s worth every delicious bite.

You’ll need shortbread cookies, butter, and sugar to make the crust.

The bottom layer, or the filling, consists of 1 package of instant vanilla pudding, milk chocolate chips, milk, half-n-half, and mini-milk chocolate chips.

The top layer, or the topping, consists of cream cheese powdered sugar, vanilla, and heavy cream.

As you can see from the ingredient overview, this recipe takes a little time and effort. Don’t worry, though, although the recipe takes a bit of work, that work isn’t the kind of wearing, tiring work that you might put into some recipes that require lots of kneading or fancy cooking acrobatics.


Slice of chocolate whipped cream pie on white plate with fork

Making the Pie

Making the crust for this Arkansas possum pie is a straightforward affair. Simply pulse the cookies in a food processor until they become fine crumbs. Then, add the crumbs, sugar, and melted butter to a bowl and blend, pressing the mixture into a pie plate after mixing.

To make the bottom layer, combine vanilla pudding and half-n-half blended together with melted chocolate, mixing with a blender until thick. Then, continue to blend until creamy and fold in chocolate chips.

To make the top layer, mix cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form and blend with the cream cheese mixture and pour over the lower layer of the pie.

More goes into it than just this, but these are the highlights. For the full rundown, scroll down to the recipe. It has all the little things you need to do to get a great finished product.

Possump pie with fork on white plate sitting on blue towel

Possum Pie Tips

There are a lot of steps to this possum pie, and while none of them are hard in and of themselves, it’s imperative that you follow them exactly to ensure that your pie comes out creamy and delicious.

Follow the Directions Exactly

It takes a little time to make possum pie. Yet it is an easy as pie recipe. You’ll have to wait for things to cool before moving on to another step. All that waiting might tempt you to try skipping some steps, but don’t do that! Follow the directions exactly or your pie will not turn out.

Don’t Rush Things

The more you take your time with this pie, the better it will taste. Remember that we just advised you not to try skipping steps? That applies to this tip, as well. There will be steps that require you to freeze the crust and let fillings chill. Give them plenty of time to do that. Otherwise, your pie will be a mess.

Use Great Ingredients

You don’t need ultra-high-end chocolate and the most expensive organic milk and whipping cream to make this possum pie, but you should use brands that are known to be high-quality.

We do not advise bargain-basement ingredients here, especially when it comes to chocolate. Many cheap chocolates have extra ingredients, and some are only “chocolate flavored” if you read the label carefully. These types of chocolates will deliver an inferior flavor, and you don’t want to do that to a pie this good!

Overhead shot of chocolate layer pie on table

Storing Possum Pie

Possum pie will last for anywhere from 2 to 4 days in the refrigerator in an air-tight container. This recipe is made with pudding mix, milk, and heavy cream, so it absolutely must be stored in the refrigerator.

Be aware that unlike other pies, you shouldn’t try freezing leftover possum pie for later. Pudding can be frozen, but its texture and consistency changes when defrosted. If you try to freeze this pie, you’ll end up with a mess.

Slice of chocolate whipped cream dessert on table

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Does possum pie actually have possum in it?
A: No. That’s gross.

Q: Why is it called possum pie?
A: Most people agree that the name comes from the colors in the pie which resemble the coloring of an opossum.

Q: Do I have to use the brands you listed in the recipe?
A: You don’t have to use the specific brand of cookies, pudding, and chocolate that we use. Those are just our favorites.

Q: Why can’t I buy the super cheap stuff for this recipe?
A: Many house and ultra-cheap foods contain a host of additives to create their flavor, so you won’t get a pure taste. You might even get a wonky taste or odd texture, depending on what’s in those brands, especially when it comes to chocolate.

Q: How long does possum pie last?
A: This pie will keep in the refrigerator for between 2 and 4 days in an airtight container. This is a dairy-based dessert, so be sure to eat it before then.

Q: I want to keep my pie longer. Can I freeze it?
A: Unfortunately, you can’t. There are two major reasons for this. Cookies rarely do well in the freezer when part of a dessert. They have a tendency to get mushy. In addition, pudding can often have an odd texture when defrosted. So what you’ll most likely end up with after thawing the pie is a gross mess.

Make This Possum Pie and Thank Us Later

Although the name sounds gross, this is actually one of the best desserts you will ever eat. With a rich, buttery cookie crust, creamy chocolate pudding base, and decadent, smooth cream cheese whipped cream topping, this recipe is everything we all love about southern desserts and then some.

Although you can keep leftovers in the fridge for a few days, we doubt you’ll have to worry about that. When possum pie is set out, there are rarely even crumbs left. It’s that good.

dessert pie on white plate with blue and white napkin

So give this possum pie a try, and we think you’ll agree that it’s a dessert you’ll want to make again and again.


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Arkansas Possum Pie

Arkansas Possum Pie is far more delicious than its name implies. Possum pie has a cookie crust loaded with pudding and cream cheese layers.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings
Author: Rob



  • 15 Chessman Shortbread Cookies – crushed into crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons of Butter – melted
  • 2 Tablespoons of Sugar


  • 1 large package of Jello Instant Vanilla Pudding – 5.4 ounces
  • 1/2 cup of Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate chips – melted
  • 1 1/2 cups of Milk
  • 1/2 cup of half – n – half
  • 1/2 cup of mini Milk Chocolate Chips


  • 8 ounces of Cream Cheese – softened
  • 1 cup of Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon of Vanilla
  • 2 cups of Heavy Cream


  • Chocolate Curls – Using a Hershey's candy bar, and a vegetable peeler


  • Grease a 9 inch deep dish pie plate, and set aside. In the food processor or blender, add the Chessman Shortbread cookies and pulse into fine crumbs
  • Pour crumbs into a bowl, and add sugar, and melted Butter. 
  • Stir well to blend, and press into the bottom of the pie plate.  Place the pie plate in the freezer to harden crust.
  • n the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, place the Instant Vanilla pudding, and add the Milk and half – n – half, and mix on low speed until blended. Turn off mixer. 
  • Place the Ghirardelli Chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, with a few drops of heavy cream, and microwave on 10 second intervals until chocolate is melted.  
  • Stir until smooth, and pour chocolate into mixing bowl with pudding. 
  • Mix on low until blended and thick.  Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl, and blend again on Medium until smooth and creamy.
  • Fold in the mini chocolate chips.  Remove crust from freezer, and pour pudding mixture into pie plate, and place pie plate back in the freezer. 
  • Rinse out the mixing bowl, and place the softened cream cheese in the mixing bowl.  Add the Powdered Sugar, and Vanilla, and blend on low until mixed. 
  • Turn mixer up to Medium, and blend until smooth and creamy.  Remove from the mixing bowl to a small bowl, and place in the refrigerator. 
  •  Pour the 2 cups of Heavy Cream into the mixing bowl, and mix on Medium high, until stiff peaks form
  • Stop the mixer.  Remove the cream cheese from the refrigerator, and add to the whipped cream.  Blend on medium until well blended and thick.  
  • Remove pie from freezer, and top with Whipped Cream. 
  • Over a piece of Parchment paper, using the vegetable peeler, run the peeler down the side of the Hershey's Candy Bar, allowing the chocolate to curl as the chocolate bar is peeled. 
  • Place Chocolate Curls on top of the Whipped cream topping.  Place pie in the refrigerator for a least 4 hours before serving.  Serve, and Enjoy!

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