Pastry Pie Crust

CATEGORIES: Pies and Pastries

Pie.  The fall holiday season is when pies get all the attention, but I think it’s summertime where they really shine.  The abundance of fresh fruit this time of year basically begs for all the pie things.  Hand Pies, deep dish pies, crumb-topped pies, and my summer favorite- Galettes.  

We have a great all-purpose pie crust recipe (and now that I’m linking it, wow- could use a little update!) but in the last several years I have fallen in love with this recipe.  I stumbled upon years ago on the Land O Lakes website (and no, this isn’t sponsored by Land O Lakes, but I wish it was because they’d probably send me a crap-ton of butter, right??)  and it caught my eye because it’s not like other pie crust recipes.  For example, this one includes an egg.  Also some vinegar, and a combination of both butter and shortening.  I’ve learned with many things I really love the combo of both butter and shortening, where you get to see noteworthy talents of each shine through and this is no exception.

This tastes like normal pie crust, but I just love that it’s really buttery and flaky, and almost feels a little fancy, like pie crust you’d get in a pastry shop or something (hence the name I gave it.) Try it out and see what you think, I’ve been using it lots lately!  This is your regular pie crust drill where you’ll cut in your butter and shortening to the dry ingredients. TIP:  Chill both your butter AND your shortening before using.  Also try grating the butter with a cheese grater for easy-to-cut pieces.

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

I like crumbling pie dough with my hands, and you’ll want it to look like this:

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

After adding water, egg, and vinegar, you’ll mix it with a fork until it’s just barely mixed and then pat it into a disk and chill.  Don’t add any extra flour, even if it feels soft and wet.  You’ll roll it out on a floured board and it will end up getting in a little more so you’ll want to under-do it here. I often pop it in the freezer.

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

After chilling you can roll it out onto a floured board.  I feel like this dough is a little softer than regular pie crust so handle it lightly. 

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

If it falls apart or cracks as you’re transferring it to your pie plate, just pinch it back together. (PS:  People always ask, and this is my most favorite pie plate)

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

If you want to make a nice, sharp, zig-zag edge, just do what I’m doing here.  This little squeeze-and-pinch thing will always and forever remind me of my Mom.

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

It bakes up sooo tender and flaky- I think you’ll love it!  

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

I especially love this dough for hand pies.  Just make little circles and fill them up with something yummy.  I just tossed frozen bluberries in some flour and sugar and plopped them in the centers of these.  When they came out hot, I glazed them with a powdered sugar lemon glaze and they were sooooo good!

Perfect Pastry Pie Crust

What’s your favorite kind of summer pie??  Any recipes you’d like us to make for you?  Let us know, I’ll always take an excuse to make pie.

Pastry Style Pie Crust

A tender, flaky, buttery pie crust. Great for pies, hand-pies, and other desserts! Note: This recipe is technically for 2 pie crusts, but I find I like to use it for just one and have a little extra for hand pies, other treats, etc. I personally like to have more than enough dough to work with because it seems I'm always a bit short for nice deep pie plates. But technically this should work for 2!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup real butter (chilled)
  • 1/2 cup shortening (also chilled*)
  • 3 tablespoons ice cold water
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider or white vinegar

Instructions

  1. Combine flour and salt in large bowl. Use a large-holed cheese grater to grate chilled butter straight from fridge into flour and cut shortening into small chunks and add it to the bowl as well. Use clean hands to crumble mixture until it looks like coarse crumbs.
  2. Combine cold water, egg and vinegar in bowl. Add egg mixture to flour mixture; mix, with fork, just until flour is moistened. Pat dough into a flat disk shape and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. You can also pop it in the freezer for a shorter amount of time.
  3. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface into a circle for pie, or smaller shapes for hand pies. Fill as desired and bake according to pie directions.
  4. For baked unfilled pie shell, prick crust all over with fork before baking. Bake at 475°F, 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.

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25 comments

  1. Hi Sara and Kate,
    Your crust looks like it may be a keeper! I will be trying soon. I’m on the hunt for raspberry recipes. They are coming out of my ears! I am freezing but I’d like to make fresh raspberry creations. Suggestions? Thank you so much.

  2. Pie is my favorite baked good! I have never made, or used Rhubarb, and my husband loves strawberry-rhubarb pie. I would love some info on how to know when it’s ripe, and a really great pie recipe to surprise him with.

  3. Those pies look delicious! Do you have a cherry pie filling recipe you love? We have so many cherries!

    1. I just made this one and it was delicious! I doubled the topping (duh, haha) and added a bit more flour because my cherries were super juicy. It can be made with either sweet or sour. HOpe that helps!

      1. Oops- was there supposed to be a link to the recipe? Not sure it went through! And I’ve never known anyone to complain about doubling the topping! I’ll just plan to do that too!

  4. Hi Sara,

    I didn’t see a link to the cherry pie filling recipe you referred to. Can you please add the link? Thank you!

  5. Do you use butter flavored shortening? And do you use sticks or the big tub? I am all about easy and I assume the sticks are easier?

  6. My fam doesn’t like fruit pies, but I might try this with our favorite dark chocolate pie filling!

  7. I’ve used a similar recipe like this for years and it always turns out very flaky! I’ve always loved pie and especially a boysenberry or blackberry pie.

    Do you have a good recipe for a berry pie? I’ve tried many but they always come out with the filling being too juicy. Looking for a new recipe to try.

    Thanks!

    1. I always eyeball my berry pies! And I add way more thickener than I feel is necessary because mine often turn out juicy as well, haha. I’d look up berry pie from either America’s Test Kitchen, or King Arthur flour. I’ve had luck with both of those!

  8. This looks delicious! I can’t wait to try the crust. I’d also love some more instructions on the hand pies you made. Filling ratio? Size? Bake temp and time? How you shape/crimp them? I love hand pies, and I’m always on the lookout for a great way to make them (because I’ve never had a ton of success).

    1. Okay, so I totally eyeball everything and I don’t measure or use a recipe. So super helpful, right?? haha! How about I work up a recipe for you? I just grab a little bowl from my kitchen for the size I want- usually about 6-8 inches in diameter to cut out dough rounds. For the filling I just grab whatever fruit I want- in this case, frozen blueberries, and add in a couple spoonfuls of both flour and sugar. I just mound up the filling on one half, fold the dough over, and use a fork to crimp. Prick with a fork once and just bake at 375 until they look done. I’ve made them so many times I feel comfortable eyeballing, but next time I make something like that I’ll create an actual recipe for ya!

  9. This pie crust looks fabulous! I’m going to give it a try with a pecan pie!
    Was asked to make one for a funeral dinner.
    Your timing is perfect!

    1. So I have tried 2 buttermilk pies and neither have worked! lol. They always do some weird curdling thing and I’ve been disappointed twice so gun shy to try again!

  10. I am just a very beginning pie maker but hope to perfect the art!! I’ve started with hand pies and the problem I ran into was that at first it seemed like I had way to much filling, but as they baked, the crust puffed up and suddenly there wasn’t enough filling at all! Do you know what I did wrong? I’m going to try your recipe next for a peaches and cream pie. Too afraid to try the hand pies again.

    1. Yep, finding the perfect filling-to-crust ratio is definitely an art! You want to fill it as full as possible with still being able to close them. Practice makes perfect!

  11. I tried it and this really is the best recipe I have ever made. I love the idea of grating the butter and crisco, awesome time saver. Mmmm, it was delicious!

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