Grandpa Ray’s Grapefruit Pie

Today marks Grandpa Ray’s 90th year (aka it’s his 89th birthday). Grandpa Ray married Busia in 1999 and fell into place with our family. He learned our card games, and introduced us to new games. He joined Busia in being a “snow bird” and absolutely loved spending time at the Lake. He would spend all day, every day, working in the garden. And he enjoyed Busia’s cooking and accepted our Polish traditions.

This recipe is one of his! It’s the dessert he would bring to any gathering, and might be the only thing he knew how to make. It’s a unique pie that’s become a family favorite – it’s usually the one my brother requests at holidays. Many people are surprised this is a grapefruit pie – they think it is a key lime or similar pie. The “secret ingredient” of grapefruit isn’t often revealed until after they’ve tried it.

Grandpa Ray’s Grapefruit Pie


  • 2-3 grapefruit
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 1 graham cracker crust
  • 1 tub cool whip


  1. Slice grapefruit. Use a strainer with a bowl beneath it and pull the “meat” or pulp from the rind and membranes. You will end up with less than a cup of “meat” – mix gently and break up larger pieces of grapefruit – do not press or you will lose the juice in the pulp. Pieces should be about the size of a corn kernel or smaller. (The juice in the bowl under the strainer is your treat – fresh grapefruit juice!)
  2. In another bowl, mix together the lemon juice and condensed milk.
  3. Pour grapefruit into this mixture dispersing the grapefruit evenly throughout the mixture.
  4. Pour into the graham cracker crust and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  5. Top with cool whip before serving.

Grapefruit Pie


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