Flaky Pie Crust
This homemade flaky Pie Crust is made with a mixture of butter and shortening to create the flakiest, most flavorful pie crust.
HOW TO MAKE A PIE CRUST
Start by placing your butter, flour, shortening, salt, and sugar in a food processor. You can also cut the butter in the flour mixture by hand with two forks or a pastry cutter.
Slowly pour the ice water in a few tablespoons at a time and pulse until the pie dough forms. Don’t add too much water.
Press into a disc (this makes it easier to roll out), wrap it in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge.
When ready, with a rolling pin roll it out into a circle larger than your pie pan.
You can even place the pie pan on top to see if you’ve rolled it big enough.
Place the dough into the pan and fold under the excess dough on the lip of the pan and crump it with your thumb and forefinger.
A food processor is not necessary but it sure does turn a 20 minutes process into a 2 minute process of making a pie crust. It keeps everything cold because we aren’t using our hands which have heat.
BUTTER VS. SHORTENING
I am not a fan of shortening so I have been using an all butter pie crust recipe for years. When I was testing pie crusts I did a blind taste tests of 5 different doughs and guess which one won? The one with a combo of butter and shortening.
Butter gives it flavor and shortening makes it soft and pliable like butter can’t. The perfect flaky crust.
In my testing, I tried:
- all butter
- butter and shortening combo
- dough with buttermilk added
- dough with vinegar added
- all shortening dough
Here’s why the butter/shortening combo won: You get the flavor of the butter and the texture of the shortening. The perfect pie crust.
- FLOUR – All-purpose flour is what you want to use. Use a high quality one as it makes a difference.
- UNSALTED BUTTER – Sure you can use salted but I like to control the salt in my butter.
- SHORTENING – This makes for a super soft crust. Easy to roll out.
- SALT – Brings out all of the flavor.
- SUGAR – For savory pies you don’t have to add sugar but if you’re baking a sweet pie, add a tablespoon of sugar.
- ICE WATER – This is essential to keeping everything cold.
HOW TO GET A FLAKY PIE CRUST
Keep all of your ingredients cold. Butter has a higher water content which means lots of flakes. The cold butter melts while baking, creating steam which causes all those thin layers.
CAN THIS BE FROZEN?
Yes, wrap well with plastic wrap. I then place in a ziploc bag and freeze up to three months. To use, thaw in the fridge overnight.
HOW TO BLIND BAKE A PIE CRUST
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and place rack in the middle.
After the crust has been refrigerated or placed in freezer, line inside of pie with parchment paper and fill with pie weights or dried beans to prevent shrinking. Bake for 7-8 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove parchment paper, and prick with a fork. Return to oven and par-bake for another 5-6 minutes if filling pie and baking some more. If making a chilled pie (like banana cream), fully bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from oven and let cool completely after baking.
PIE RECIPES TO USE THIS CRUST
Pie Crust Recipe
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled with a knife
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar, (if making a savory pie leave this out)
- 3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 inch pieces, (12 tablespoons)
- 6 tablespoons chilled vegetable shortening, cut into pieces
- 1/2 cup ice water
- In the bowl of a food processor, add the flour, salt, and sugar (if using). Pulse for a few seconds to blend.
- Add the butter and shortening to the bowl and pulse until the mixture has formed into pea sized balls.
- Slowly stream in the ice water as you pulse the food processor until a ball is formed.
- Place dough on a work surface and roll into two balls. Press balls into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for one hour or up to five days. If not used within five day, freeze for up to 3 months.
- When ready to use, take the dough balls out of the fridge and place on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough away from the center of the disc, turning a quarter turn after each roll.
- Roll to larger than your pie pan, about 12-13 inches. To transfer, fold the dough into quarters and transfer to pie dish. Unroll and fit to the pan.
- Fold the overhanging edges under and using your thumb and forefingers crimp the edge.
- Chill pie in the freezer for 15 minutes if baking right away. Bake according to recipe instructions.
- HOW TO BLIND BAKE A PIE CRUSTPreheat oven to 425 degrees F and place rack in the middle. After the crust has been refrigerated or placed in freezer, line inside of pie with parchment paper and fill with pie weights or dried beans to prevent shrinking. Bake for 7-8 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove parchment paper, and prick with a fork. Return to oven and par-bake for another 5-6 minutes if filling pie and baking some more. If making a chilled pie (like banana cream), fully bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.Remove from oven and let cool completely after baking.