Pie Crust Tips
Tips for Making a Perfect Pie Crust
Whatever recipe is used to make a rolled out, from scratch pie crust – these tips will help make it the best possible pie crust.
Keep the butter cold:
The butter ingredient of a pie recipe needs to stay very cold so that it won’t begin to melt until the crust hits the oven. Here’s the trick – freeze the butter and then grate it with a box grater into shreds. These slivers will more easily combine with the flour and stay cold until the crust hits the oven.
Use Ice Water:
Warm water will melt the butter and make for a sticky gummy mess of a dough and the resulting crust will not be flaky.
Do NOT overmix:
Beads of butter should be clearly visible in the dough, this is what makes the crust flaky. The chunks of butter can be up to pea size. If using a food processor or pastry blender, mixing will be complete in less than a minute.
Take the pinch test:
Pinch a piece of the dough between finger and thumb, if it looks crumbly but holds together after squeezing then you are golden. If the piece does not hold together, then add a little bit more ice water, maybe a teaspoon at a time until the consistency is reached.
Refrigerate the dough overnight:
Most pie recipes will call for some time in the fridge before rolling, usually an hour to allow the gluten time to relax. For the best results possible, leave the dough in the refrigerator overnight.
Avoid a soggy pie crust:
A soggy crust can ruin a pie. Blind baking a crust before filling is the best way to eliminate a soggy crust.
Don’t forget to shield the pie crust to keep it from browning too much while baking the pie, as it will brown (and possibly burn) before the rest of the pie is completely baked.
Pie Crust Tips
To make a pie crust the super speedy and delicious way, see our easy pie crust recipe. This recipe eliminates the usual steps of incorporating the butter and rolling the dough, so it is different in both taste and texture but it’s easy and nearly impossible to screw up. We also think it’s extremely delicious.
To find out how long pie crust lasts, see our pie page.
Learn all about blind baking.