The One Pie Dough to Rule Them All

495latticetopprebake
Is it hubris to call this a perfect pie dough recipe?  Well, it is perfect.  And do you know what’s perfect about it?  You can do it too.  Yes, YOU.  I don’t care what kind of sordid, tragic past you’ve had with other pie dough recipes.  You can forget it all and start anew with this one.  It will become your One Pie Dough to Rule Them All: pies, tarts, galettes, pop-tarts, you name it.  It will be the easiest and most forgiving dough you’ve ever handled.  It will be flaky and tender, yet somehow possess the strength of character not to crumble under pressure like other wimpy doughs.  Your slice of pie or galette will stay beautifully in tact to serve, only to surrender into tender, flaky, buttery, delicious crumbs as you bite into it.

Forget all the pernickety details everyone tells you about how to make a pie dough.  You won’t need to keep all the ingredients at precisely five degrees below zero.  You need not coddle it like a new born kitten.  You’ll put on your fiercest dominatrix attitude and you shall beat this dough into submission.  And, yes, it will like it too.

No, there’s no secret ingredient: no vinegar, no shot of vodka (but for, perhaps, a celebratory one at the end).  There’s nothing here out of the ordinary.  There will be three ingredients: salted butter (yes you read that right, SALTED butter), plain all-purpose flour, and a little bit of water.  That’s it.  The recipe is so easy, do it twice and you’ll remember it by heart.  You’ll do it in the summer.  You’ll do it in the winter.  You’ll do it for something sweet.  You’ll do it for something savory.  Heck, you’ll do it just for the fun of it.

495indispensible
Besides the ingredients, you’ll need a clean pastry board, or a clean countertop.  We won’t be doing this dough in a fancy food processor.  All you need – this part is very important – will be a pastry scraper and a pastry brush.  If you don’t have them, go buy them now.  You’ll pay about $10 for both items, and it will be the best $10 you’ve ever spent.

Are you ready?  Get the ingredients ready first.

For flaky pastry dough (enough for two 9″ rounds, for top and bottom pie crust, or two tarts)

  • 250 g | 2 1/4 cup plain all purpose flour
  • 225 g | 8oz cold SALTED butter
  • 60 ml | 1/4 cup water

495alluneed

Measure the flour and dump it unceremoniously onto your pastry board or clean countertop.  Cut all the butter into large chunks, like in the picture, and lay all the pieces on top of your pile of flour.  Flip each butter chunks once so the top sides are coated with flour.  (Before you proceed, if you hands tend to be warm, rinse your hands quickly under cold water and dry them well.)

495pressingandscraping
Now, press the butter into the flour with the heal of your hand: the left one if you’re a righty, and vice versa.  With your right hand holding the pastry scraper, scrape up some of the flour and butter and flip it over the pile.  Keep pressing and scraping until the butter becomes thin flakes pressed into the flour.  Keep working until you see more butter flakes than loose flour.  If your butter flakes are really big, break them up a little bit, you should end up with a combination of big flakes and some crumbs.

495formingthedough
Make a well in the middle of the pile, pour the 60ml or 1/4 cup of water into it.  Now, work very quickly, use your finger tips to gently blend and distribute the water evenly into the dough.  Then, scrape up the dough again with the pastry scraper and fold it again over itself.  Do this until you have a somewhat cohesive lump of dough.  Gather it into a ball, and wrap tightly with plastic and let rest in the fridge for about 30 minutes or until cold.

495rollingfolding
After 30 minutes, remove the dough from the fridge and unwrap it.  Flour the pastry board or counter very liberally.  (I know most pie dough recipes caution you from using too much flour, claiming that it will toughen the dough.  You don’t have to worry about it here, I promise you.  Use enough flour so that the dough doesn’t stick to your board or your rolling pin.)  Place the dough on the board and flour the top of the dough liberally as well.  With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to an elongated rectangle.  Pick up the pastry brush, brush off the excess flour from the top of the dough.  Then pick up one end of the rectangle, fold it 2/3 of the way in.  Brush the flour off the newly folded section, then pick up the other end and fold it over that section. Now you have a dough that is folded neatly into thirds.  The dough will crack and might even break, don’t worry about it.  Just make sure you brush off as much flour as you can between the folding so you don’t trap more flour in the dough than necessary.

Sprinkle more flour over everything.  Turn the folded dough 90 degree so that the seams are now on the sides, roll the dough out again into a rectangle, and repeat the brushing and folding again.  You will see that the dough will become smoother and more pliable.  You can repeat this process once or twice more – I usually do it three times altogether.  If your kitchen is very hot, and the dough seems very soft and gets a little oily, wrap it up with plastic and refrigerate until cold before you roll it out again.

What you’re doing here with the rolling and folding is working the dough a little bit to build the strength so that it is not so fragile when you roll it out later.  (Especially if you’re going to make lattice top, you’ll find this dough a dream to work with.)  You’re also creating very thin layers or butter and flour, much like in puff pastry, so the dough becomes extremely flaky once baked.

495cuttingshaping
When you’ve had enough of rolling and folding, roll the dough out one last time to a smaller rectangle, about the right size so that when you cut it in half you get two square-shaped doughs.  Then, reshape each into a rough circle, just push the corners in and work it until each dough is more or less round.  Don’t worry, you can’t over-work this dough.  Wrap each up in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before you roll out into rounds for your pie.

Once you are somewhat adept at this dough making process – having done it twice or three times should do really – you can double the recipe and have extra dough rounds ready for next time you feel like making a pie or a tart.  Tightly wrapped, the dough will keep in the fridge for a few days, and frozen for-practically-ever.

495makingpie
When you’re ready to make your pie, take the dough rounds from the fridge.  (If it’s been there longer than 30 minutes you might need to let it warm up a bit to make it easier to roll.)  Roll each round into a circle that is 2-3″ larger than your 9″ pie plate.  Line the pie plate, fill with whatever fruits you’re using, brush around the edges with some egg wash, then place the top dough over, pressing down to seal, and crimp the edges or pressing the tines of a fork around it to create a pretty pattern.  Cut a few slits to vent the pie before baking.

495preandpostbaking

Because there is no sugar at all in this dough, I like to brush the top (in case of a pie) or the edges (if it’s an open faced tart) with egg wash to give it a little color.  I also like to sprinkle the top or the edges of my sweet pies or tarts with some sugar – large grains of sugar like demerara sugar do especially well here.

The pie you see in this picture above is my spiced cherry pie.  The recipe is coming up in the very next post. This pie, if you will permit me to brag a bit, won first place at the pie contest at my friend Ali’s July 4th party.  Here’s a snapshot of a slice, you can see even from the darkish picture how flaky the dough is.

495asliceofcherrypie

I also use this dough to make my fig tart, and my famous homemade poptarts. This recipe was originally published in my book, The Foodie Handbook: the (almost) definitive guide to gastronomy. Check it out for other awesome recipes and fun stories.

P.S. As a polite culinary thief, I am compelled tell you I got the idea for this recipe from the fabulous Zuni Cafe cookbook. Almost by accident I discovered that I could use a lot less water in a pastry recipe (1/4 of the amount called for there), even simplify the process a bit, and still have a dough that’s just as flaky and infinitely easier to work with.  So if you like this recipe, don’t just thank me, thank Zuni’s chef Judy Rodgers as well!

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  • Mary

    I LOVE pie dough – can’t wait to make your spiced-cherry pie. Looking forward to that recipe too. Merci mille fois!
    Btw: I made homemade pop-tarts with your strawberry-hibiscus jam for Easter brunch. Huge hit. Your jam is only served @ special occasions. Next time, will make pop-tarts with your recipe + jam (loaded up the last time you sold on etsy).

  • http://cocoasensations.com/ Personalized Chocolate Gifts

    wow!..the pie is perfectly baked! can’t wait to have this at home..hhmm..really excited now…

  • http://www.cooksdelight.co.uk Rex Tyler

    Really clever presentation
    The Foodie handbook, celebration
    The one pie dough, to rule them all
    How glad I am I came to call
    Beautiful photographs, so real
    The Cherry pie wow! what a meal
    I went with you to Tokyo
    And I’m blown away by the great show
    I have to say your site will be
    Forever in my memory

  • http://justmydelicious.blogspot.com/ Paula

    looks so delicious! I love the last pic!
    have a nice day,
    Paula

  • Arturo

    Wow, great post!
    Ya, I think that is one of the hardest things to get across in pastry/baking recipes is that the amount of water required really could vary quite a bit depending on the day and the moisture in the air and the dough could require more or less
    For pie doughs I use just enough to get the thing to hold together and then stop whatever that amount happens to be.
    And the Zuni Cafe cookbook is one of the all time greats! sooo inspiring.

  • tam

    Wow that pastry looks fantastic – what’s the secret with the salted butter? How does this affect the pastry apart from flavour?

  • http://www.kooziez.com/ can koozies

    Great articles here. Very interesting to read. Thanks for sharing. Please keep this up to date..

  • Norine

    I’ll try this. I have made very good pie crusts for years using a similar technique only with a hand pastry blender. You don’t get quite the elongated flakes, but it is foolproof if you over mix/blend the flour/fats before you add the water. Also, I only use one brand on flour so my recipe is consistent – Gold Medal All Purpose Unbleached. Gold Medal flours are always the same blend of soft and hard wheats, so you have no surprises or variations in water quantity. ALSO I only use glass pie pans. Glass heats hotter and dryer than metal, so I get crisper, more evenly browned crusts. Use less heat with glass than you do with metal.

  • Selina

    Hi Pim! This is one of the best pie dough step-by-steps I’ve seen. The visual guide through what I call the “messy stage” are great- I’m sure I’m not the only one who gets panicky in the beginning, thinking the pieces will never come together! Got the cheap tools long ago, but now I’m realizing I should really spend on the table-top sized pastry board… or hope for marble countertops in my future.
    Thanks! Hope to see you around soon!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Wow, Rex, this might just be my favorite comment, ever. Thanks so much. How sweet of you.
    xx
    Pim

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Thank you! I’m about to put more marmalade and jam on Etsy this week, check them out.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Thank you and you too.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    One thing I find about this recipe is it doesn’t matter much. I pretty much use the same amount of water all the time, it turns out fine.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I just like salted butter better. I think they are fresher in general – as salt acts as preservative – so baked goods turn out better in my opinion.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I swear by glass pie plates too. For the reason you said plus you can see how the bottom crust is doing so there’s no guess work involved.
    My favorite brand of flour is King Arthur unbleached AP flour. I use it in practically everything.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Thanks Selina. Yes, a pastry board is a nice thing to have. I have a whole baking table with a wood top that I use just for baking. It never touches water, I scrape and wipe to clean, so nothing sticks.

  • Shawna

    Does this work as a method applicable for other dough recipes? In other words, could we use this pseudo-lamination technique for recipes including, say, granulated sugar or some lard? Surely we’d still develop elasticity with sugar in there….or is it a question of the dryness of the dough being suitable for rough-and-tumble treatment?
    That’s a pretty high fat ratio! Could you taste the butter more clearly than with other doughs?
    This is really intriguing. You can easily see why it’ll be the flakiest pie dough ever.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I don’t see why not. I’ve actually done this dough with a couple tablespoons of sugar. They turned out fine, but I didn’t love the flavor of the added sugar, especially since most sweet fruit pies already have sweet enough fillings.
    I don’t see why this recipe wouldn’t work with lard. I’ve been meaning to try it with some duck fat myself, but haven’t a chance. I’d keep the fat:flour ratio the same though.

  • http://www.chezus.com Chez Us

    Pim,
    I now have the urge to make pie. You made pie dough making look so easy. I love the step by step photos, a great addition to your post!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/theculinaryalchemistblogspotcom Theculinaryalchemist.blogspot.com

    I love the photos!
    Butter-rich pie dough. Definitely a winner.
    I’ll be trying this very soon. Thinking of making a caramel-apple pie…or a spiced-pear pie (since I think pears start coming into season around late summer and remain so until the winter).

  • http://foundbaking.com Kathy Diaz (found baking)

    This looks amazing! In your opinion, do you think the food processor method does not produce the same kind of dough you made here? Pliable yet flaky and forgiving yet beautiful. I have to give this method a try next time. I use the food processor for ease but it doesn’t always guarantee a fool-proof dough.

  • http://baking-with-granny.blogspot.com/ vbagatti

    My mom was pie maker extraordinaire and these three ingredients are all she ever put into her flawless perfect dough. Thank you for explaining the way to actually make it. My sad attempts resulted in cardboard. I never understood why.

  • Sandra Myers

    Pim:
    I saw this dough recipe from a link from my cousin David Lebovitz’ post on Facebook. The recipe is also very similar to that of the pie dough from the cookbook of Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. I have been using that recipe with great success. Yours is very similar, but without the ice water, which I believe helps the chilling process again. Getting one’s clean hands in the dough also helps break up the butter and makes it work easily as well. I do have the pastry brush and scraper, so I’m all set. Thanks and on to printing your recipe!!

  • http://sweetlittlesasquatch.blogspot.com Nicolette

    This is great! Thanks so much for posting the recipe with the step by step photos. I had success with my first cherry pie over the weekend so now I’m hooked. When I try this one I’ll be on a roll! Thanks!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Thanks sweetie!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Those sounds good, let me know when you blog about them please.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    There are a couple things that are different here. First I think food processor cut butter into too small flakes. You can get tender and even flaky crust from that dough, but the dough itself will be very fragile and not as easy to work with. That comes from the technique borrowed from puff pastry, which creates very thin layers of butter in the dough but also develops a bit of gluten from the stretching and folding that gives the dough the structure and pliability.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Try this one, it won’t be cardboard, I promise.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I love your cousin’s recipes. I steal from him regularly :-)
    Well, come back and let me know how this works out for you.

  • jackson heights cook

    what a wonderful recipe. if i can speculate, i would guess that the butter in this recipe supplies the moisture commonly provided by water in other recipes. After all, butter is 80% fat; 20% water (shortening is about 100% fat).

  • http://profile.typepad.com/gillordeincateringwordpresscom Gillordeincatering.wordpress.com

    That pastry recipe is very straight forward, good stuff! Would you ever use a food mixer with dough hook attached?
    Spiced Cherry filling sounds awesome. Can. Not. Wait. :)

  • http://www.eatthelove.com Irvin

    This pie crust sounds fantastic.
    I love the idea of using the letterfolding ala laminated dough to make a more flakey crust! Why did I think of that? I’ve transitioned from my traditional pie crust to the Cook’s Illustrated vodka one as it rolls out like a dream, but I wonder if this one will make an even flakier crust. The CI one is just SO darn easy though. Especially since it can be made in a food processor which makes it so darn easy.
    Hmmm. I’ll have to do a crust to crust comparison and see. Thanks for the fab how to photos as well!

  • http://www.littlepotbelly.net Steph@littlepotbelly

    Great looking pie! Love that flower shaped cutting on top. I think I might try it with apple and rhubarb.

  • Lynn

    Superb post. I tried your technique with a fresh mixed fig and apricot tart this afternoon. It came out perfectly.
    Right after I tasted it, I was taking some to my neighbors.
    I’ll be trying a savory version soon.
    I think that this would be beautiful with a quiche perhaps with crust made with herb butter.

  • tam

    All I can say is thank you for sharing this…I made a spinach and cavalo nero tart and a tart tartin with this pastry and they both turned out amazing! YUM!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I speculate you’re right!

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I’ve heard of that vodka dough. I also heard it made the dough sticky and difficult to work with. My goal for this dough was to create a dough that’s both easy to work with as well as flaky/tender/delicious.
    Do the comparison and let us know how they fare against each other, please.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    I was thinking up all kinds of elaborate, intricate patterns but then settled with the simple slits. And simplicity won the day again.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Ooh how lovely. It’s always great to hear when my recipes work out well for others as well.
    For savory, you can also grate some good parmesan cheese on the bottom before the toppings go in and then on the top for some crunch.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/danaslatkin Danaslatkin

    Fabulous photos make this recipe extraordinarily easy to follow and duplicate. it should convince anyone that they can make a pie!
    Loved Tam’s idea of using this crust in a spinach and cavalo nero tart. Yum!

  • Hez

    Let me just say that this is a fabulous method/recipe. I make about a dozen apple pies every year around September and I’m notoriously fussy about how I make the crusts. In all the years I’ve been making pie crusts, this has to be the easiest and least stressful one I’ve ever made.
    Love love love!!

  • http://www.eatthelove.com Irvin

    Hmmm. I think the reason people cite the vodka dough as being sticky is because it used SO much liquid (1/2 cup of liquid to 2 1/2 cups flour). It’s a huge amount. That said, what people don’t understand you end up incorporating a lot more flour when rolling it out. The recipe specifically says to sprinkle as much as 1/4 flour on the rolling mat to keep it from sticking. I’ve actually used more, and found the dough a dream to work with, and not difficult at all.
    That said, I’m definitely going to give yours a try and get back to you. I imagine that the CI version is easier, because what is easier than dumping flour and fat in a food processor and pulsing? On the other hand, I imagine yours is flakier (because of the faux laminated dough technique) and probably way more fun to make. I’ll let you know once I do my comparison!

  • P

    Looks yummy – will try ASAP. Can you tell if this can be used as puff pastry dough too? I am never certain about the difference.
    Thanks!

  • Janet

    Part of this process is like making puff pastry. The folding and turning the 90 degrees.
    I have been in search of the perfect pie crust recipe and over the past year I have been shown several different methods. I have made pie dough by: using a food processor, grating the butter (freeze it first), melting the butter in the oven and mixing the flour into it, using unsalted butter and dissolving the salt into the water, cut the butter into the flour by using your pastry scraper…etc.
    I can’t wait to try your method out. Thanks

  • http://www.fondtimes.com Sherri

    Cherry pie is one of my favorites. My husband really likes the Reiner Cherries, I might give that a try or maybe mix some in. I love the photos and step by step instructions. I plan on trying it this week, thanks!

  • R

    Hi Pim,
    I recently discovered your blog while searching for a tomato sauce recipe. I tried your method of removing the pulp and it worked beautifully. This will be my new go-to tomato sauce. Anyway, I only attempt simple, ‘unfussy’ recipes and this pie crust looked simple enough for a baking novice like myself so I attempted your cherry pie and pie crust recipes this weekend for some friends. The pie was a bit too sweet (probably because the cherries were so sweet) but the crust was perfect. I used a kitchen knife and a paper town in place of the scraper and brush. I feel like my cooking ‘cred’ has gone up many points now that I can pull off both a home-made tomato sauce and a home made pie crust, so thank you!
    R-

  • http://www.armorica.co.uk Cookware Hampshire

    Looks fantastic. I have always been a little scared of making pies to be honest but I think I could quite comfortably follow this recipe. So many thanks to you and Judy Rogers!
    These photos look decadent by the way. Keep up the good work!
    John.

  • vivian

    Hi Pim,
    The recipe you have posted here calls for 2 1/4 cup flour but in your rustic tart video you use 1 3/4 cups flour. Which is the correct amount?
    Thanks,
    vivian.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    It's 250g of flour, which is 2 1/4 cup of flour.  I'll get the text in the video changed.  Thanks!

  • Rick

    A pretty much identical recipe, at least in terms of technique, was published in Baking With Jim Dodge published in 1991 and I’m sure he demonstrated it on an episode of Baking With Julia Child back in the 90′s some time. I’ve used it for many years.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Hmm, is it bad to admit I’m actually not entirely sure I know who Jim Dodge is? Though I did watch Baking with Julia, or at least most of the episodes. I remember running to the kitchen and baking the lemon meringue tart with the paper thin slices of lemon under the pile of meringue by a chef at a restaurant in Providence.
    As I said, I adapted the method from the recipe in Judy Rodger’s Zuni Cafe cookbook.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    How sweet of you to tell me that. Glad you love love love it. :-)

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    The technique here is definitely borrow from the puff pastry method. But for puff pastry you’ll need a lot more layers and the recipe itself will be different.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    Do try and come back to let me know how it works for you.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pim Pim

    That’s great. And with these two basic recipes you can improvise so many things. Just have fun!

  • Zorayda Nevada

    Hi Pim! How would you compare this pie crust to Rose Levy Beranbaum’s favorite cream cheese pie crust? I can’t wait to try both & I’ll let you know. TY for posting!

  • http://www.chezpim.com/blogs/2010/07/how-to-make-the-perfect-pie-dough.html chez geller

    love this. and so well explained.
    Two questions/comments:
    1) this has a significant greater butter content than classic pâte brisée, yes? (which would be a three to two ratio of flour to butter, by weight.) Is this greater butter content part of what makes yours recipe more forgiving than most?
    2) and when you mention your suggested weight of the flour in this recipe as 250g, that really wold be much closer to almost exactly only 2 cups of all purpose flour, not 2 1/4 cups. 2 1/4 cups of flour would weigh about 280g.

  • http://www.hellemh.com Helle Hansen

    Ever since watching agent Cooper of Twin Peaks eat his “damn good piece of pie” I’ve been wanting to try making cherry pie but have never found a non-stodgy dough recipe. Am looking forward to trying your dough to rule them all dough :-) ))
    Thanks
    Helle

  • http://www.smallelectricskillet.com Nuna

    Looks wonderful. Great reading your post as well.Pictures is also good.
    Thanks.

  • http://www.ektherapies.com Hypnotherapy London

    This looks like a brilliant recipe. I have got a dinner party this weekend. Can’t wait to try cooking your food. Thanks!

  • Rick

    The meringue tart was from Al Forno in Providence. Jim Dodge was pastry chef at the Stanford Court hotel in SF and I guess well known enough at the time to appear on the show. he also wrote a couple of baking books himself. Actually both recipes were demonstrated on Master Chefs with Julia, not Baking with Julia as I thought.

  • Tamater Sammich

    David Lebovitz is your cousin? You lucky duck!!! I discovered David several months ago. Maybe I’ll get over my shyness one day, and tell him how much I love him, his blog, his realness, his sense 0′ ha-ha.
    I too discovered Pim through David, just tonight.

  • Tamater Sammich

    Can I do this with all whole wheat flour?

  • Annete

    Hello Pim,
    (or anyone else who has tried this recipe) do you know how well this recipe works with blind baking? Do you roll it out and then freeze in the pan before blind baking?
    thanks!

  • http://www.exalism.com agphotoo

    I just want to point that is my first visiting of Your blog, Pim :) and It’s looks great, everything in it lookk so tasty even romantic :)
    I wish You have nice day filled with smiles and very sweety smells :)
    Angel

  • http://www.aprille.org Aprille

    My poor little son was exposed to so many profanities as I’ve experimented with pie crust. The ones that tasted good were always so fussy that I ended up crying and swearing as they fell apart on the way to the pie plate. The ones that were manageable made tough, undelicious results.
    No longer. Thank you so much, Pim. This is truly the perfect balance of easy-handling and tender, flaky texture. This technique is a great idea, and I’m never making pie crust in the food processor again.

  • http://www.mydiaryofafoodie.com Paula Laurel

    Thanks Pim!!! I just purchased a kilo of cherries and will make your dough right away to encase these lovely babies!!! thanks for the inspiring photos!!!!
    Cheers, Paula Laurel

  • http://www.cookingworld.biz/reviews Pam @ best Cookware set

    I was looking for a pie dough recipe as I have plenty of strawberry and thinking of making a strawberry pie, I tell you I love your picture steps, they make things easy to see and do. Love it.

  • Alain Roy

    I tried this pie dough tonight. I’ve never been much of a pie crust person (I prefer the middle of the pie), but *everyone* loved it. I appreciated the fact that the dough was much easier to deal with than usual. Thanks!

  • http://www.kicksbar.com jordan shoe

    I was looking for a pie dough recipe as I have plenty of strawberry and thinking of making a strawberry pie, I tell you I love your picture steps, they make things easy to see and do. Love it.

  • Katerina

    Actually the butter in salted butter is often less fresh precisely b/c the salt acts as a preservative (and flavor masking agent) & the manufacturer knows that :-)
    Recipe looks good but alas, I have no pastry scraper.
    Recently I was able to get fantastically tender dough by adding a teaspoonful of lemon juice to my all-butter pie dough. As for flakiness, it’s nice but isn’t it a tad overrated? I mean if the pastry is tasty and tender, why must it be flaky too? Tradition? I’m not American so this is a genuine question. I like my pie pastry tasting like a sort of tender shortbread.

  • adelina

    I’m glad I remember to visit your site – haven’t stopped by for a while now! I recently tried a pie dough by Sherry Yard – her recipe asks for champagne vinegar, which I do not have in my pantry! I believe her recipe is all right although it lacks something…I am not sure what’s lacking about it, or maybe it’s my rolling the pie dough technique that really really really need improvements!!!
    I definitely will try your recipe this weekend, for sure! I love your post, All the time!
    Thanks for posting and for sharing!

  • Jody

    I used this recipe to make miniature lattice pocket pies using a mold I bought at Williams Sonoma. This was the most delicious and flaky pastry I’ve ever made and the pies were adorable! Thanks for turning me on to this recipe.

  • https://twitter.com/foodintandem foodintandem

    Wow, this recipe looks amazing!!
    and the pictures are great!!
    I have got to try making this dough.
    I always make pie dough with a certain recipe but this one looks way easier and way better.
    Would this pie dough work with every pie I make?
    Thanks,
    ~foodintandem

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  • moodyartlover@yahoo.com

    I am looking forward to trying your butter crust method. Just wanting to know that a 14 year old friend Michelle, came up with a brilliant solution about rolling out crust when the kitchen is too hot. She said to roll it out in the oven!!!! It works!!

  • moodyartlover@yahoo.com

    oops! I just read what I wrote. ROLL IT OUT IN THE REFRIGERATOR, NOT THE OVEN!!

  • http://acrossthecapricorn.wordpress.com Hannah NJ

    I feel like I have been searching for a reliable pie dough recipe for a long time and was so happy to find this (my boyfriend swears by your pad thai method, Pim!) — tried it last weekend for the first time and it was a roaring success. Thank you so much for sharing it. I made a free-form apple tart (currently living out of a suitcase so no piepan; luckily I had to buy both pastry scraper and rolling pin for our new apt anyway) and it was delicious; there’s a little dough left over and tonight I am going to make pop-tarts with some organic gooseberry jam I just got at the farmer’s market. Yay! You rock, Pim!

  • adelina

    I tried this pie dough and not only it is good, it is so much FUN to make!

  • Michelle

    I really enjoyed your step-by-step example of a light (yet sturdy crust)!!! Thanks to your recipe, I can finally lattice to my heart’s content!!!

  • award@meowmail.com

    so I found you through some publicity – but you have not posted in over a month, now I see you on more TV shows, maybe you should show some (current) love to your blog before I unbookmark you.

  • fuuchan

    Hi Pim,

    Trying your recipe for the first time today. Did you have any problems with the dough shrinking when it bakes? I don’t usually have problems with pie dough shrinking. Wondering if it’s a known issue or something I’m doing wrong.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Yes it shrinks a bit, you can see the side/side of pre/post baking cherry pie above. This dough definitely shrinks but I find it a totally acceptable trade off for how crumbly, flaky, yet sturdy the crust is.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Well, if you ever come back you’ll see that I’ve been working hard on porting the blog from Typepad to WordPress and redesigning the whole thing. I hope you haven’t unbookmarked me.

  • Jessica

    Hmm. A lot of people have told me they have the pie crust to end my pie crust problems, but still, I’ll give it a try.

  • http://twitter.com/WendeleJulie Julie Wendele

    One word can say everything about your tips and recipes you share … YUMMY!

  • Robert Wemischner

    Love this dough: I teach it to my students of professional baking at LA Trade Tech college and feature it in my book, The Dessert Architect; it’s actually a blitz puff pastry style pie dough…super flaky and super delicious! Thanks for bringing it to the attention of amateur but aspiring bakers who think that they cannot make dough successfully.
    Robert Wemischner
    author of The Dessert Architect

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Do give this one a try and please come back to let me know how it turns out for you.

  • Michaelbcaplan

    I’ve had tons of success with this referenced recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/apple-pie-recipe/index.html.

    It’s flaky, easy – in fact, it seems to me to be a bit easier that the one you’ve posted. I’ll try yours as well and compare. Thanks for posting!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    I see that it’s a all shortening dough. That’s why it’s flaky. Personally I’m not a fan of shortening, I prefer butter.

  • Michaelbcaplan

    To be honest, I use either 200grams of butter (if I’m serving dairy) or margarine (if I’m serving meat) and never shortening. I chill it and run it through a cheese grater before I cut it into the flour. That helps distribute it evenly.

  • Oui, Chef

    I’ve tried lots of different doughs over the years, some with more success than others. This is a really unique approach, somewhere between puff pastry and pate brisee, and one I will definitely try. Thanks – S

  • http://nuttyfig.com Susie

    Ooh pumpkin pop tarts for Thanksgiving sprinkled with cinnamon sugar would be *so* much fun.

  • ellen

    Pim, I just made my first batch of this dough for my Thanksgiving pies. I haven’t tasted yet but I LOVED how it rolled out – in the final rolling.
    I seem to have the same problem with every pie dough I make, no matter what technique or recipe. When I go to gather it up after mixing, it always seems very crumbly and falls apart. Invariably, I have used all the water suggested, if not more. What in heck am I doing wrong? The same happened with yours BUT I persevered and in the final rolling for lining pan, it was perfect, no tears, rips, crumbles, etc. I’d still like to know if the crumbliness and dryness that I get after mixing is ok or not? Or what I do wrong? Anyway, I can’t wait to taste it and I’m fairly confident it will be great as it rolled so well.
    By the way I have used similar technique with scone dough as per Rose Levy Beranbaum’s recipe – also fairly unconventional for scones and that makes amazingly flaky, high scones.

  • Cindy

    Pim, thank you for sharing this technique. I’ve never been confident with pastry making and in my experience, the food processor method yielded inconsistent results for me. I enjoyed mixing the flour and butter by hand and to my surprise, everything came together very quickly. I didn’t have salted butter on hand so I added 1 tsp of salt (not Kosher) into the flour.

    As advertised, this dough is *very* easy to work with and resulted in a sturdy, yet flaky and crumbly pastry. From this recipe, using 2 1/4 cups of flour, I made two tarts: an apple galette and an apple crostata.

    Question: have you tried skipping the second stage i.e. the folding part, and fraisage instead?

    Thanks again. You have helped banish the pastry demons and given me the confidence to try more pastry baking. :)

  • Salijo

    you really should salt the flour it makes all the difference

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    This dough is practically 50% salted butter. So, no, you don’t need to salt the flour. In fact you shouldn’t salt the flour.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    So lovely to hear you’ve been successful with my dough. Thanks so much for telling me.

    No, I haven’t. I think doing fraisage correctly is a bit difficult for beginners though, so I think I prefer my method. Have you tried? Got good results? I’d love to hear.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Isn’t it a dream, this dough?

    As for the crumbly dough, I think you’re just afraid to really mix in the water for fear of over-working the dough, which is a no-no for other recipes but hardly a problem here. But if you’re already successful with this dough even if it crumbles a bit in the beginning then why bother changing? You’re already ok!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Thanks Hannah! Always lovely to hear others’ success with my dough. Gooseberry jam poptarts sound heavenly, would you send some my way? Pretty please?

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    yes it should.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Thanks Jody!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    That’s so funny, so glad this worked out for you!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    It works fine, you’ll have to fill the pan with pie weights or pennies though, and this dough shrinks a bit so be prepared for that.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    I don’t see why not, you may need a bit more water as whole wheat flour might need more.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    My cousin? No, but he’s a good friend!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Hmm, I don’t know if I agree with you. Salt is added to butter when it’s freshly churned, so salted butter can hardly be less fresh because manufacturers know that salt is a preservative. It would cost them too much to gather up old butter and salt them and resell, not to mention probably illegal.

    Flakiness is definitely a sign of good American pie dough, so yes, I supposed it’s cultural, but I do prefer my dough that way.

  • Darlene Carrigan

    Your pie dough is amazing! The only recipe that results in flaky crust….every time!
    Question: I am using your pie dough for pumpkin pies this Thanksgiving. Do you pre-bake the crust? Can I get the same flaky results without prebaking?

  • Candy

    It was fun making this pie crust and it came out perfectly great.

  • Starleen Meyer

    Thanks, Norine. I’m plowing through all 108 (!) comments, trying to find something about how to get a good crust that isn’t soggy. Anyone else have suggestions?

  • Star

    Just saw Norine’s suggestion (of about four months ago) about how to get a better crust (lower baking temp, glass pie pan), and will try it. I love pies, but hate a soggy pie crust. Am always tempted to make pies, but blocked by this problem. Any other suggestions? Thanks in advance!
    Star
    http://arsacupicturaestellae.blogspot.com

  • http://cinnamonpink.typepad.com/ Darlene Koppel

    Amazing – I can’t wait to try the recipe. Thanks so much for sharing. (Just found your blog via Not Martha).

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Starleen and Norine,

    Yes, I use glass pyrex pie plate as well, and I never had a soggy crust with this recipe using the pyrex pie plate. As for the flour, I’m a King Arthur flour fan, all flours I use come from them.

    cheers,
    Pim

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    I use a pyrex glass pie plate, and I never have a soggy bottom crust from this particular recipe. If you’re really worried, another trick I’d suggest is baking it on a rack set one position lower than the usual middle of the oven. That’ll get your bottom crust closer to the heat source and will make (even more) sure that you’ll get a perfectly brown bottom crust.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Hi Darlene,

    I’m just getting to this so it’s too late for thanksgiving, but I hope your pie turn out well. Yes, this dough will be just as flaky pre-baked.

  • Jennifer

    As a frequent fail-er of pie crusts, this one turned out just great! I used it for pumpkin pie and got a little nervous when the edges shrunk in (wasn’t sure if the filling would leak out). But it turned out great. Next time, I’ll remember to fork the crust before putting in the filling – I got a big bubble toward the end. Flaky crust and light – thanks so much for sharing this recipe!

  • http://www.articlesnatch.com/Article/Chef-Basket---Your-New-Kitchen-Gadget/1806797 Chef Basket

    Thanks for this great recipe for pastry dough. I’m sure this will come in handy.

  • http://theleadtree.com Donna

    it looks just awesome, thanks for the recipe, i’m gonna try it asap

  • Alina

    I am *so* glad you have re-posted this recipe! I saw it on your old Typepad site and failed to copy it. Have been kicking myself since you got the WordPress site, since all my favorite stuff has disappeared! I have requested your book for Christmas, but don’t know if I’ll get it… So I am just ecstatic to see this recipe again! Now… would you consider reposting your Pad Thai “non recipe”? Pretty please? :) )

  • Mir

    For those who are looking for a traditional tender, flaky pie crust, look elsewhere. For those who don’t mind a puff pastry type crust, this is truly an easy, no-sweat method. It’s also more absorbent of pie juices than the traditional pie crust (I poke some extra holes in it prior to baking.) The method takes the concern out of the method, but does require a little more elbow grease. This is my father’s current crust of choice, if not mine. I’m happy to have found a recipe that pleases him.

  • ellen

    Pim, Do you know if your rolling technique (puff pastry style) will work with a dough made more traditionally in bowl with pastry blender or in cuisinart?

  • Liz

    I’m so excited to try this recipe! I haven’t had much luck with pie crusts in the past, but I’m hoping this will be the recipe that will finally work for me. One question: I’ve read that using half butter and half shortening gives it a great taste and texture. Would that work in this recipe?

  • http://educationofapalate.blogspot.com Hannah

    I have one problem with this pie crust… It seems to shrink a lot when I blind-bake it. Using beans doesn’t seem to help. Any recommendations? It’s still flaky and extremely delicious, so I’d love to stick with this one…

  • Srollings

    This crust worked extremely well for me. Thank you! I refrigerated the pie dish for 1/2 hour and then put it in the freezer for 1/2 hour before baking, and the shrinkage was minimal.

  • Srollings

    I should have said “refrigerated the pie crust in the pie dish”….

  • ceidsness

    Pim, I have been making pie crust since I was fourteen, and have [almost] always felt that i was battling the dough. This crust, however is so easy and tasty that it takes the stress out of making pies. Now i just need to work on rolling it into a circle…Thanks so much!!!

  • Catherine Pham

    Thanks for the recipe! It worked out great for me! Though I will try to roll it out a bit thinner next time because it really puffed up.

  • Gauri Gupta

    Pim, I tries your rustic fruit gallette yesterday and the dough uses the same amount of butter (1 cup=225 grms) as in your to-go-to pie dough recipe though the amount of flour varies drastically (1 3/4 cups for the gallette Vs 2 1/4 cups for the pie dough). As a result my dough was very salty, unstable and hard to work with because it would turn oily very fast during the folding and rolling process and no amount of cooling the dough worked. Is there a need to reduce the butter for the gallette?

  • Cindy

    I’m puzzled. If you follow the volume measurement and weigh 2.25 cups of flour, it comes out to 350g which is quite a bit more than 250g. Could you clarify?

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Your calculation is incorrect. A cup of AP flour is 4oz or about 113grams. So 2.25 cups is 254.25. I rounded it to 250 grams as written in the recipe.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Your calculation is incorrect. A cup of AP flour is 4oz or about 113grams. So 2.25 cups is 254.25. I rounded it to 250 grams as written in the recipe.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Your calculation is incorrect. A cup of AP flour is 4oz or about 113grams. So 2.25 cups is 254.25. I rounded it to 250 grams as written in the recipe.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Your calculation is incorrect. A cup of AP flour is 4oz or about 113grams. So 2.25 cups is 254.25. I rounded it to 250 grams as written in the recipe.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Your calculation is incorrect. A cup of AP flour is 4oz or about 113grams. So 2.25 cups is 254.25. I rounded it to 250 grams as written in the recipe.

  • Gauri Gupta

    Dear Pim,

    My confusion is over the butter to flour ratio. When I compare the weight of the ingredients for the gallete dough recipe to the One-pie-to-rule-them-all recipe, which I assumed are the same, the amount of butter remains constant( I cup = 8 oz =225 grms) even though the amount of AP flour in the gallette is far less than the amount used in the to-go pie dough (1 3/4 cups for the gallette Vs 2 1/4 cups for the pie dough). Hence, I asked if the amount of butter in the gallette should be reduced.

    Thanks,
    Gauri

  • LalitaMangoTree

    wow, i noticed that you were growing up in thailand and i really admire your success in your food career. this is because i’m thai and recently started a food blog (www.lalitamangotree.tumblr.com) . could you share some tips on how to reach this successful point? i imagine it must be a lot of work. from watching your video, it seems that your friendly personality push you this far. also, i don’t even bake and i admire your baking skill. it makes me want to try it!  

  • Kaleleaf4life

    Thank you for sharing… this is by far the best pie crust recipe (incl the detailed technique tutorial) I am just starting with pie crust and I can’t wait to try this.

  • Odelle Smith

    What a great, brilliant, tasty, flaky pie crust that is easy to make, great to work with, adaptable, won’t be bothering with food processor, it’s now  officially redundant!
    Your instructions & are superb….clear, unfussy & precise.
    Thank you!  Superb pastry had excellent results, beautiful, flaky & oh….the taste….BEAUTIFUL!
    First visit to your site, it won’t be the last!
    Having a look for a good bread recipe now.  Thank you Pim, you’re a gem.  Best wishes from the U.K.  
    Odelle.

  • Odelle Smith

    Many thanks also to chef Judy Rodgers, writer of the excellent book Zuni Cafe cookbook.  Apologies for forgetting, got carried away by Pim & her excellent rendition of the pastry to end all others, she certainly did you proud.
    I can see I’m going to have a rather large list of cookery books on my wish list, may even treat myself, why not?
    Fondest Regards,
    Odelle. 

  • Ratna

    Pim, thanks so much for this recipe! I just made it and used it for your poptart recipe. It’s amazing… So flaky it’s almost like puff pastry. I’ll never make pie dough the other way again :) . Thank you thank you! And thanks to Judy Rogers too!

  • Ann

    ! I never knew I could make pie crust! This was sooo easy- and came out perfect!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6I64PUVG3IDJXRYZ3UJKAV2HKA Mish

    SUPER SIMPLE PASTY TO MAKE, WORKED PERFECTLY, EASY TO FOLLOW DIRECTIONS, HOWEVER I USED 60ML OF “ICE COLD” WATER INSTEAD OF JUST WATER & PLACED IT IN THE FRIDGE FOR 1/2 HR, THEN THE FREEZER FOR A FURTHER 1/2 HR, ONCE ROLLED OUT INTO PIE DISHES, JUST TO MINIMIZE SHRINKAGE DURING BAKING.  THANKS PIM, KEEP YOUR FAB RECIPES COMING

  • Dianna C

    It’s the best pie crust, I ever had!
    The step by step tutorial was very helpful.Thanks!

  • Dianna C

    It’s the best pie crust, I ever had!
    The step by step tutorial was very helpful.Thanks!

  • yankee baker

    Seems like a huge  discrepancy in the gram to cups amounts.  2 1/4 cups of unsifted flour weighed 308 grams and 2 1/4 cups sifted flour weighed 284 grams.  In either case using the flour measurement would increase the dry ingredients by 13 to 23%.  The illustrations in the tutorial are excellent but the weight conversions don’t equate.

  • Debbykh

    help!!!  making pie crust is on my bucket list.  followed your directions to a ‘t’, but couldn’t get it to become a cohesive ball–rather, it’s a crumbly mess.  i added more water but am afraid of putting in too much—-what did i do wrong?? 

  • Courtney

    This sounds amazingly simple!  For a pie with only a bottom crust, would you recommend only making a half recipe or just using one of the circles and saving the other one for later?  Also, would this work for a pecan pie?  Thanks :)

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Two things. First, check that you accurately measure the ingredients. If so, then keep working. Forget what everyone’s told you about not working the dough too hard. Keep pressing and folding, the dough WILL come together. It won’t ball up by itself though, once the come together after the addition of the water (meaning you won’t see so much loose bits of flour anymore), you have to gather it up into a ball. Wrap the dough and refrigerate it, it will continue to hydrate and become a more cohesive lump before you roll again. 

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Because making two is actually easier than making just one, and this dough freeze (and thaw) so beautifully, I would make the full recipe and keep half for later. 

    I regularly double this recipe to make 4 dough rounds and keep what I don’t use for later, even.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Matt-Harrell/1721479714 Matt Harrell

    This sounds a heck of a lot easier than the last pastry pie crust I made from scratch, about 20 years ago, with shortening and a pastry cutter.  I might just have to make a pie that doesn’t use a graham cracker crust ow that I’ve found this recipe!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Matt-Harrell/1721479714 Matt Harrell

    According to http://www.traditionaloven.com/conversions_of_measures/flour_volume_weight.html, 2.25 cups of AP flour is 281.25g.  (1 cup AP = 4.4oz)
    250g is exactly 2 cups, so there is about a 1/4 cup difference.  But Cindy’s math was WAY off at 350g. That’s just over 2 3/4 cup.

  • Amanda : Grace & Gusto

    I’ll have to give this a try, though it looks far more time-consuming than my ‘throw flour butter salt water in the new-fangled fancy shmancy food processor (which isn’t prechilled), pulse a few times, done’ recipe. Comes out perfect every time.

  • Rebecca Rothaug

    Hi Amanda, are you saying you add the water at the same time as everything else? Interesting! What is your water/flour/butter ratio? Many thanks… I’d love something that works and is really simple. 

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Well, according to http://www.dianasdesserts.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/tools.measures/Measures.cfm, 2.25 cups of AP flour is 250g exactly. I guess we can argue this until the cows come home. This is precisely why everyone should just spend $20 on a digital scale and be done with it.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    If you find the amount of flour in the galette recipe too little, feel free to add more. Or try another recipe if that one doesn’t work for you?

    Or, do yourself a favor and spend $20 on a digital scale. 250g flour to 225g butter, no matter what the cups & spoons equivalent is, will come out perfectly, every time.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    This is the flaws of using cups and spoons measurement for ingredients. For example, according to http://www.dianasdesserts.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/tools.measures/Measures.cfm, 2 1/4 cup of AP flour, unsifted, weight 250g exactly. According to my rather handy Escali volume scales, it’s a little bit less. So, the best I can tell you is, I _always_ rely on the weight measurement, so, when in doubt, follow the weight measurement.

    A cheap digital scale is not even $20 on Amazon, everyone who cares enough to pick mini bones with pastry recipes should just go out and get one.

  • Amanda : Grace & Gusto

    It’s 2 1/2c AP flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp sugar (optional), 2
    sticks cold butter. Pulse for a few seconds, stream in a 1/4c-1/2c cold water,
    pulse a few seconds, voila! I tried tripling the recipe once- I way overfilled
    the mixer bowl, which meant I ended up way over-processing it in my attempt to
    get it to come together. I thought I had wasted perfectly good ingredients, but
    two quiches and a pumpkin pie later, and the crust still turned out great!

  • http://pompette-et-moi.blogspot.com Shannon

    Great recipe!  Unbelievably easy to make, and didn’t really take that much more time than a traditional pie crust recipe (food processor method excluded).  And it produced a flaky crust, exactly as promised.  It actually poofed up a bit, similar to puff pastry, causing my lovely finger-notch edging to be mostly lost after baking.  Not sure if it was down to ambient conditions or ingredients (used almost entirely 650 flour, with 450 for shaping and rolling out). In any event, I will definitely make this again and possibly just chill it again before baking to help keep my edging.  Thanks for this wonderful recipe that makes me feel more like a baker than just zooming something together in the food processor! 

  • Jessica Griswold

    I just have to tell you-  this is by far the best pie dough recipe that I’ve tried (and I have botched a lot of pie dough over the years.)  I was worried that the dough was too dry when I was combining it to rest in the fridge for the first time- and when I pulled it out about 45 minutes later it fell to pieces when I tried to roll it…  but I persisted and followed your directions and by the time I had folded it 3 times, the dough was smooth.  The crust came out perfect- I used it in a Chicken Pot Pie tonight!!

  • Denny Abler

    I am surprised as to how different this recipe is compared to most. I find it quite intriguing and yet irresistible. I rate this a must try for sure. I know what pie dough recipe I am going to use for my next pie this weekend. – Thanks Hiedi

  • Katharushka

    What an incredible pie crust this is.  So simple, and so successful.  I won second place using it in a pumpkin pie bake off today.  I bake at least one pie a week, and this is my new go to crust.  I can’t wait to try it with a lattice top fruit pie.  Its a very pretty crust too, puffs up nicely around the edges.Thank You chezpim!

  • Gail Holly

    Do you have a gluten free version of this pie crust?

  • Gail Holly

    Do you have a gluten free version of this pie crust?

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Sorry. I don’t have a clue about gluten free baking. You should check on http://www.tarteletteblog.com/ or http://glutenfreegirl.com/, I’m sure they have a few you could use. 

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Here you go: http://glutenfreegirl.com/were-having-a-pie-party/

    Recipe and link courtesy of the Gluten Free Girl and her chef!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Here you go: http://glutenfreegirl.com/were-having-a-pie-party/

    Recipe and link courtesy of the Gluten Free Girl and her chef!

  • David Lambert

    Works as advertised. Very easy and very good. One question…. Should this crust be pre-baked/can it be pre-baked for say a pumpkin pie?

  • Becky Borichevsky

    This didn’t look easy to me–simple, but not easy. It took me two weeks to work up the courage to try it. I was on the verge of tears after I added the water and realized the mixture was still completely dry and crumbly–then added a few more drops of water and detected the dreaded gluten forming (I’ve been down this road a few times in the past few weeks). I wrapped it up tight and put it in the fridge feeling forlorn, and came back to read the steps and some of the comments.
    I read a comment from someone saying they almost lost heart with the crumbly mixture but kept folding and rolling faithfully, and your comment about overworking being impossible which gave me hope. Sure enough, after the fourth fold n’ roll it started to feel and look like an honest to goodness pastry dough.
    I divided, chilled, and rolled again, popped it in a tart pan and made a quiche! And it was good. The pastry was GOOD!!! I can do this now! Thank you!

  • Laila

    Way2Go Amanda…That is my recipe, too. It’s comes out perfectly every time. I put my water in after I do the butter and flour then add just enough to make the dough stick together and start to pull away from the sides of the processor container.

  • LaraJane

    I tried to blind bake this crust and it melted into my pan. Any suggestions? I love the way it handles and rolls!

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Hmm…I’m not sure I understand what you meant. It melted into your pan, how? Did you take a picture?

  • Allyson Jason

    I was wondering, can you simply add cocoa powder to the flour to make a chocolate crust with this dough recipe?

  • Quynh

    My friend introduces me this pie crust recipe and I would love to try it. But I have one question. Can I use unsalted butter and mix some salt into the flour instead of salted butter? It’s because I’m having too much unsalted butter in the fridge and I don’t want to waste them. Thanks!

  • Josephine Smith

    My tongue has been grazed by the recipe’s picture alone. I thought I’m only able to find recipes like this at gourmandia.com but I guess its not. Sometimes its also good to explore the web for something new.

  • Pamela

     I’ve now made a half dozen pies with this crust and have been very pleased with the results. I also find the method more enjoyable than standard techniques (pastry cutter, food processor). Two questions, though: 1) Must one use salted butter, and, if so, can you say why? (I always have unsalted on hand and have to go to the store for the salted stuff.) 2) Do you have any idea why this crust can withstand so much handling without getting tough? You’re always taught that excessive handling will lead to dreaded gluten formation…

  • izzythedram

    Thanks for the recipe, the pictures and instructions were very clear, so I had a go. The pie was good, but the pastry was more short crust than puff and I am wondering where I went wrong…..After pressing butter and flour together I found that the mixture was more crumby than flaky and then with the water it rolled out really easily. So could it be that I did too much pressing the ingredients together? I did this until the flour was just about all used up. Also I used 250 g each of flour and butter by mistake, but I thought that was such a small difference it wouldn’t matter. Any more tips, other than getting the amounts right? How do you avoid over-pressing while still getting everything mixed in?

    Cheers.

  • Carmel Ives

    Wow, yum. Got te figs so going to try it out tomorrow!

  • TexasTexasTexas

    Hi, I just made a strawberry pie using this crust. Very delicious. I also used a glass to cut rounds and made little bitty pies in a mini-muffin pan. Also very delicious, and super cute. I want to experiment because I can imagine this crust thick and soaking up fruit juice. Thank you so much for sharing.

  • Jacqui

    I tried this recipe yesterday, followed it to the letter t…. I had high hopes when I rolled the dough because it was so smooth! But after I baked it (I made chocolate chess pie), the crust was tough, not flaky at all. I was wondering what I did wrong. oh well. I always use Smitten Kitchen pie crust recipe, the dough isn’t smooth although the end result is flaky crust. Maybe I will give your recipe another try.

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  • Katie

    Do those pretty slit – hole things come by them selves – as in, if you just put slits, do the shrink back to become like the second picture? (of the cherry pie) :)  

  • Fostermichelle33

    I love this recipe! Suddenly I can make beautiful lattice top pies and the taste and texture are perfect! Thank you!

  • slg3

    This technique was easy and worked perfectly and I got a flaky firm crust top to bottom!! Thanks! I recommend chilling the water with ice before using it and I had to chill my dough a little bit longer than 30 mins. I also folded and rolled it out about 7-8 times for extra flaki-ness. Finally, I lined my crust with foil to keep it from burning as it baked! What a great recipe! 

  • slg3

    Flakes of butter (larger than tiny crumbles) will melt in the dough as it bakes, leaving you with flaky crust. Therefore, you want to keep your dough slighty “undermixed” and use well chilled butter/water (I put ice in mine before using the water to keep it really cold, this way your butter wont melt as you mix it.). Also, if you’re using wheat flour, there is gluten in it (the protein that causes pastries to become chewy rather than nice and soft if over mixed) so the less you squish the dough together in your hands, the less activated these proteins become. Then, chill it to get those butter flakes back hard again before you roll it out. I also rolled out my dough and folded it onto itself 7-8 times, each time creating new layers of dough that aid in the production of flaky dough. Hope this helps! 

  • Kate

    When I told my boyfriend I was making the “One Pie Dough to Rule Them All”, he looked at me and asked “Oh, is it the Fro-Dough?”. Needless to say, I could not stop laughing!

  • Kate

    Yes! The slits are as easy as pie…

  • Jennifer

    This is the BEST pie crust ever and the easiest to roll and work with. Thank you my quest for the perfect crust is OVER! The spiced Cherry pie is to die for!

  • Dawn

    I know the answer to your first question. Theres no salt in the recipe. You’d usually want to use unsalted butter so you can gauge exactly how salty your food will be. Also, you can handle the dough just don’t let the butter melt before you put into the oven. If the butter melts into the flour it will get all tough

  • Dawn

    yes use about 1 tsp

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  • Spaceprncss

    Good.  So good I pinned it!  Thank you!

  • Blithe

    Can you add sugar to the dough? I like that shortbread-cookie-but-flakier pie dough with, say, a tart rhubarb pie.

    Thanks!

  • Ingrid

    I can’t wait to try this dough!  At the age of 63, I still cannot make a decent pie-crust!  Here’s hoping….   :)

  • Lianne Tan

    I just wanted to drop a comment and tell you I’ve been making pies for a couple of years and I’d given up on making pie doughs by hand (always using the food processor) because I always seem to screw it up somehow, but then I decided to give your recipe a try and I gotta say, though it’s currently resting in the fridge and I have yet to bake with it, it’s one of the easiest doughs I’ve ever worked with.  And all those little bits of butter assures me it’s going to be fantastic when baked!  I’ll definitely be using this recipe again, thank you so much!

  • Lydelle

    What are your thoughts on using a wood fired oven for baking? 

  • Izzythedram

    Thanks for the reply. I didn’t see it till now. I am in the process of making a pie for dinner to which is invited a very critical pie eater! I think maybe my butter should have been cooler when I mixed it, rats, oh well though it was short crust rather than flaky last time it was still ok…Next time I will make sure the butter is straight from the fridge.
    thanks again!

  • Rmmatchok

    Just made the pie dough, when I added the water the dough was very soft and wet. I had to add more flour to tighten it up. I weighed my flour and butter and added the 60 mils of water….any thought on what went wrong?

  • Izzythedram

    Made this pie last night for a notorious pastry critic, who seemed to actually like it. I think it was lovely! Thanks.

  • Izzythedram

    Hallo again. I had to make extra pastry as the amounts were not enough for 6 people, so I was more careful about coldness with the extra mix, and it came out lovely. Thanks.

  • Izzythedram

    Was the butter maybe a bit too warm and soft?
    This recipe has much more butter than I used to use for pastry ( the ratio I used was half fat to flour by weight).
    So I  think this recipe will result in sticky dough if the butter is not cold enough. 

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    There’s a lot of butter in this dough, yes (that’s why it’s so good), but it shouldn’t be sticky at all if made properly.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Sorry it didn’t work out for you. There could be a few reasons for this. The first is perhaps the measurements weren’t accurate. Even if you use a scale, perhaps you forgot to tare it before adding the flour? I see this quite often in my cooking classes. 

    Also, as someone else pointed out here, the butter should be cold or it will melt into the flour and turn the whole thing a sticky mess.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    I’ve used it a couple times. It’s a bit difficult to control the heat, but we got it to work both times.

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    Yes, you may. I’ve added up to a quarter cup of sugar and it works just fine. 

  • http://chezpim.com Pim

    This happens because your butter was too soft and melted into the dough. That’s why it wasn’t flaky.

  • Brad

    I used this recipe for Quiche (or as I prefer to call them, ‘egg pie’) And it did Rule Them All

  • Amanda

    Pim, this dough has changed my pie life. Your pictures show the butter-flake stages perfectly. I never understood fraisage technique as well before! It also makes a phenomenal galette. I cannot recommend it enough, readers. Although I much prefer 1-2 tsp of sugar whisked into the flour beforehand, for salt-sweet balance. Try it.

  • http://twitter.com/Tungstensmum Crazy Dog Lady

    Would this method work just as well with shortening? And would I still be able to freeze it? Frozen handmade dough is an idea that’s just.. blowing my mind!

  • http://twitter.com/hannahbanananut Lev

    I was so skeptical as this came together it seemed far too buttery of a crust, but I just baked 2 apples and a pumpkin pie with this recipe this evening and the crusts were PERFECT!! so smooth flaky and yummy! THank you to @101cookbooks for sharing!

  • Dawn

    I went on the search for the best pie crust to make a pecan pie for Thanksgiving, I started by looking at the rating stars and all called for crisco, yuck and then as I got down the page I saw your title and that is what make me click on it, love the name. You were not kidding. I decided to pre-test this with a Turkey Pot pie just to see if it really worked and oh my gosh this was the most fun I have have had making a pie, pie making is usually a chore due to the stupid crust, but not this time. I couldn’t believe when I rolled it out that it didn’t fall apart that was a first in a long time for me. I will be using this recipe for ever, I shared the link in my recipe to here because your instructions are top notch. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. Dawn – http://www.livingingreenjeans.com

  • aldebaran

    It depends what continent you are on. 1 cup US is 237ml vs 1 cup metric is 250ml.

  • Crystal

    made a lattice top this weekend with this recipe and it came out flawless and delicious! i’ve never been able to bake anything good in my life, so i can only attribute this success to the recipe.

  • WayneZ

    Excellent instructions, thanks!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/carmel.ives Carmel Ives

    Fabulous Pie Dough. The second time I tried this, I didn’t add water as I felt the dough was already too moist with just the butter but then I realised you needed to add the water to produce gluten or else the dough just crumbles. I made a stunning 3 inch high Chicken pie last night and didn’t colapse when I removed the pie dish. Everyone was most impressed. You dont need to blind bake. Had some left over for a small fig pie (your recipe) which is a favorite with anyone who had had a slice. Thanks and Love from South Africa

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  • Oily

    I started making this pie dough a few months back and you can;t mess it up!

    I love that I can freeze it and I always do so I have dough anytime I want to make something.

    Best ever pie dough!

    Oily

  • Sarah

    Do you use the gram measures or the volume when you make this? My conversion tools say 2 1/4 cups flour is 281 grams. And 8 oz butter is 216 grams. I’d like to try this recipe but want to use the correct weight. Thanks!

  • Sarah

    Update: I made the dough today using the weight and it worked out wonderfully. Baked a peach galette and fresh fig galette in an outdoor wood oven – tarts were beautiful and crust was flaky and tender. My new go-to pie crust recipe. Thank you so much.

  • Anonymous

    I love that you use weight measurements and wish all recipes did. You must get tired of telling people to buy a scale.

    I’d like to use spelt (ie, whole wheat) pastry flour or ww AP – could you suggest the adjustments that would be needed?

  • Pandabear1961

    FYI, I attended a couple ” civilian ” classes at the “French Pastry School ” here in Chicago. The very amusing ( and truly French!) master pastry chef taught these classes.

    He advised to always use metric weight measurements (versus volume) as depending on altitude , temperature, air density etc. which can change from day to day, hour to hour, the “volume” potential can shift. He said all professional bakers in the US use metric weight (grams) for baking as grams are more preside. He suggested strongly that every home baker aspiring to make the best, invest in a home scale.

    We did and what a difference in dependability of a given metric recipe. Helps with fresh pasta making as well !

  • Hanh

    That is so funny!! couldn’t stop laughing.

  • Stephanie

    I have made this pastry for several different applications and I love it! It has been the best I have ever used. However, the batch I made yesterday has puffed up enormously when I blind baked it-it looks like puff pastry. Do you have any idea what I might have done wrong? I have never had this happen before! Thanks for the wonderful recipe.

  • Gabi

    I’ve tried various different recipes and techniques for pie dough but this is hands down the best one. Thanks!

  • Liz

    I just made this piece of art (7/14.) I had a slice and it turned out really really yummy. I love baking and used to make home made pies and crusts using this same recipe my babcia taught me. It has been so long and I didn’t make the bottom half dough bigger vs. top so i had to roll the bottom portion out thinner than it was and stuck to the pan, but, i realize my mistake and will make one lump bigger than the other but i don’t see that in the photos.

  • toni

    The most amazing recipe I have ever tried, flacky and tasty. All though I split the butter 50%~50% with lard to increase taste and flakyness but would I have never come up with idea without your original recipe. Thank you ihope you do, not mind

  • http://www.runningfoodie.com/ christinanpr

    I have a question pertaining to all-butter dough: Is shrinking inevitable? I notice that in the second-to-last picture of the prebaked pie next to the baked pie, the edges have shrunk and the nice crimping is lost. I always attributed this to user error, but I’m wondering if it’s just the nature of an all-butter pie dough. Thanks! I’m looking forward to trying this technique even though the idea of scares me.

  • JulieWendele

    This is my family recipe, handed down to™me by my papaw Chawktaw Indian “Howard Murel Bryant Senior PhD, the year he passed away in 1986 I became the sole heir of the family libraries, art, song lyrics, poetry, published and non published. My papaw inherited them from his mother / my Chawktaw indian great grandmother “Ollie Arnie Broadfoot” whom first made the recipe from her own scratch recipe.

    I do not know how you came to publish it, not claim copyright use of it, but it should be removed from offline IMMEDIATELY! I am on Facebook as “Julie Bower Sluder-Wendele”, there is a typo in the name as Bower should read Bowers, but I digress. You may aubscribe and message me via the network.

    I suggest that you or your representatives get in touch with me and my agent ASAP, so that we may sort this out. I might be willing to allow use of the recipe and directions in writing legeally, if the original and current owners are stated… andIin no way shape or form do you, your site, affiliates, etc. take any credit for it whatsoever. This highly insulted my family and myself and contintues to do so, since my legal research team brought this to my attention.

    Author/Wtiter, Aftist/Photographer, Researcher/Journalist, Actress/Producer, Singer/Musician, Poet/Lyricist,
    Julie™Wendele

  • JulieWendele

    All dough shrinks to some degree during the baking process, however it should be only gradual unless you bake it too long or at a temperature that is too high… the very darkened looking crust photograph I see above looks like a poorly baked crust/pie… and the tone and texture appear on the borderline burning. I would not use such a poor example myself.
    Furthermore, prebaking the dough for an aproximate 10-20 minute time (depending upon your location elevation), then adding your precooked ingredients and cooking for an additional 8 to 10 minutes… should give you premium results.
    Simply google the term “baking elevation location chart”, for further assistance.
    My post might ne deleted before you take note of it, but this is my family recipe, and not only is the image of the pie you are referring to in poor tatste, but also taking an ancestral recipe and posting it as your own. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact me.

  • JulieWendele

    The recipe, belonging to my family over many years, is supposed to be made with real cow’s buttter and a dash of salt added… not nasty precessed butters of today that have nasty tastes and added coloring etc.

  • Sernadak

    Julie, it’s not copyright infringement if she isn’t selling the recipe or claiming it as her own. And I’m not sure you can even trademark or patent a recipe. Many people all over the world make food from handed down recipes or ideas in the kitchen. You should be proud that your grandmother’s pie dough is being used by so many people. Besides, she says at the bottom of the blog that this is an amended recipe from someone else at Zuni’s.

  • Amo

    LOLOLOL @ Julie’s comment, which I assume is a joke. No, you cannot trademark flour, butter and water (or any recipe – it is a common courtesy to state where a recipe came from, or was inspired from, which Pim did).

  • Silver

    Well, my mother also made amazing pies, and her crusts were always gorgeous..and she made hers the same way , with the same ingredients. It’s just plain silly to think that there is copyright on a pie crust recipe. She would differ in one thing only, that being that she never refrigerated her dough. Other than that, the same. She died 2 years ago at the age of 90….came from the UK…no Choctaw in her.

  • Anonymous

    I think/hope this is trolling mastery, right down to the hilarious typos and misplaced trade mark symbols. Or maybe that’s giving credit where it’s not due?

  • sue

    you need to grow up

  • KHD

    JulieWendele – I’ve never read a more absurd post in my life! It’s called ingredients that nearly every human on the planet has access to and can tinker with in the kitchen until finding the right proportions to their liking or needs. I’d be willing to bet that hundreds of thousand if not millions of people use this recipe or something similar in their homes and kitchens all the time (which they didn’t get from this web page). Are you going to sue all of them too?!?!? Just because this recipe is similar or identical to one in which you or your family uses (or came up with), it does not mean that someone stole it from you or that you own it and can trademark it. People have the same ideas all the time, it just so happens that this person or it’s original source posted it online to share with the world as they are generous and you didn’t. You’ve done nothing but make yourself and your family look childish and ridiculous with claiming this is YOUR recipe and someone is infringing on your rights and your recipe. I also agree with Sue, GROW UP! Furthermore it’s people like you that involve legal matters, (or at least try) where they don’t belong. If you don’t know what pinterest is, look it up. It’s a place where people visit websites, blogs, vlogs and the like to broaden their world from recipes to arts and crafts to home decorating ideas. Obviously as we are “visiting” these pages we don’t think, feel or have the strange notion that we now own, created or have rights to anything we find, they are ideas from other people that are given credit where credit is due. Good luck with your crazy way of thinking!

  • martin in toronto

    If you don’t think the dough has warmed up a bit (so glutens start to develop in some way), why not form the shell and, before baking, put it into the frig or freezer for 15 minutes? That might help. if you DO think there’s been some gluten development, run the recipe again with more attention to temperature management. As soon as the proteins in the butter melt a bit and get into the flour, you can have gluten development.

  • st

    Well, I used my FB account to search for Julie Bowers, using the info below, and I could not get a return on the search. Well played. Best.Troll.Ever. Next, in news that matters, I will absolutely be using this recipie, looks like an easy winner that will make a perfect pie crust.