I grew up in a household where everything was made from scratch. No frozen lasagna, no canned soup, no TV dinners. So naturally, I never make a pie without making the crust from scratch. My husband calls me a food snob, but really I think I just have a sophisticated palate (also I blame my parents for spoiling me my whole life with scratch made food).
You’ll find pie crust recipes all over the internet claiming to be fool proof, or super simple. Well I’m here to tell you that pie crust can be very finicky to work with. The trick is knowing what to do if you encounter a problem. If you are new to making homemade pie crust, I have a few helpful tips to help you achieve the perfect flaky pie crust.
Tip #1- Don’t use butter. Use Crisco. It’s a lot easier to work with than butter when it comes to pie crust. Personally, I think an all Crisco pie crust tastes just as good, if not better than using butter.
Tip #2- If you can get your hands on a pastry cutter, use it. They are most likely sold at your local grocery store. (this isn’t a deal breaker, my pie crust can still be made without one)
Tip #3- If you find that your pie dough is too crumbly and isn’t coming together after trying to form a ball, add 1 tsp of buttermilk at time until it comes together. Don’t add too much or your dough will be too sticky and tear. You want it to be dry enough that it just barely comes together when pressed into a ball with your hands.
Tip #4- This dough is very forgiving, if it tears, just use your hands to form it back together.
Tip #5- Do your best to not overwork the dough with your hands, the less you can touch it, the flakier your crust will be.
Homemade Flaky Pie Crust
Yields: 2 pie crusts
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup Crisco (shortening)
- 1/3 cup buttermilk (might need a few extra teaspoons)
1. In a medium sized bowl combine flour and salt.?
2. Add shortening and cut into the flour with a pastry cutter or two forks. Cut for about 1 minute or until pea sized chunks are formed.?
3. Pour buttermilk into the flour mixture and stir with a fork until it starts to form a dough.?
4. Using your hands press dough into one large ball being careful not to overwork you’re dough.
5. Split dough evenly into 2 parts.?
6. Heavily flour a clean counter surface.
7. Flatten one of the dough balls into a round disk.
8. Roll out with a floured rolling pin, always alternating which direction you roll.
9. Carefully flip your pie crust once or twice and sprinkle with a little more flour to avoid your dough sticking to the countertop
10. Using a 9 inch pie plate, place it upside down on top of your dough to see if your dough is big enough yet. You want about 1-1.5 inches of excess dough around the edge of the pie pan.
11. Once big enough, gently fold the pie crust in half and place the seam in the center of your pie plate and carefully unfold.
12. Fold excess edges underneath itself all the way around the pie.
13. Use your favorite crimping method to decorate the outside edge of the pie crust.
14. If making a no bake pie filling, poke holes with a fork all over the bottom and edges of the pie crust. If making a baked pie only poke a few holes on the bottom to prevent steam from getting trapped under the dough.
15. Cover dough with plastic and freeze for a minimum of 30 minutes or up to 1 month.
16. Bake pie crust according to the recipe instructions you are following for that specific pie.