Kicked Up Caramel Pie!

One of my favorite desserts is caramel pie.  O'Charley's, which is a restaurant chain primarily in the southeast...I think, is the creator of the caramel pie.  At least, that is where I discovered it.  This is the homemade version which I have kicked up a bit and even if I do say so myself, I think I improved on it a little.  Like it wasn't fattening and rich enough, I add extra chocolate chips and nuts for additional flavor and crunch.  This is really a simple dessert to make and you will get so many oohs and aahs when you serve this! 

Here is what you will need:

A large graham cracker crust (the 2 extra serving one), walnuts, mini chocolate chips, whipped cream, and sweetened condensed milk (2 cans).

Remember this step from the 'White Chocolate Caramel Banana Pudding' post?  If you missed it's under Best Dishes.  Take the labels off of 2 cans of sweetened condensed milk and place them in a pan of water that just covers the top.  Bring this to a low boil and boil for 3 hours.  DO NOT let the pan boil dry, keep adding water to keep it over the top of the cans.  This can be dangerous and it might explode if you do not keep an eye on it.  I always set the oven timer for this.   Once the 3 hours are up, carefully pour off the hot water and run cool water over them.  Once they are cool to touch open them carefully (in case the caramel is hot). 

An alternative method for turning the milk to caramel is putting the cans in your slow cooker, cover with water just to above the tops, and set on low for about 10 hours.  The water doesn't evaporate in the slow cooker with the top on it, so you don't have to worry about adding water.  It's best if you lay some foil on the bottom of the slow cooker because the cans might stain the crock.   Remove the cans with tongs when the time is up to cool.

Sprinkle 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips and 1/2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans in the bottom of your pie crust.  This is the difference in the O'Charley's version.

Now spread the caramel over the nuts and chocolate chips. This doesn't have to be smooth.

Cover the caramel with whipped cream and 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips and 1/2 cup chopped walnuts!  Chill in the fridge until ready to serve. 

1 large graham cracker crust
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans or you can use walnuts
12 oz. whipped cream

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