Flaky pie crust is a must! This knock-out recipe requires only four ingredients and yields awesome results each time.
Cream pies, pumpkin pies, peach pies! Calling all pies! Get that pie dish out and dust off your favorite decorative pie plate. I mean, you already took the time out of your day to Google “pies”, so you might as well give into the craving. And, my friend, you have come to the right place.
Flaky pie crust is a necessary foundational recipe to put in your home chef tool belt. Whether you are baking an apple pie or using up leftover veggies to make an impromptu quiche, this crust makes for a perfectly, buttery base.
I’m not going to lie. I have spent lots of time perfecting pie crust. Pies are perfect for every season and I find myself making one about once a month. Because of this year-round pie obsession, I knew I needed a reliable pie crust recipe and I am so happy to share the fruits of my labor with you.
What Makes This Pie Crust so Flaky?
Butter is the key to a flaky pie crust! But, have you ever used room temperature butter and gotten a super flat and dense crust? I know, it is the worst. But let me tell you why it happens — room temperature butter melts quickly in the oven.
Here’s my favorite hack: Instead of using room temperature butter, grate frozen butter into shreds for the dough. Why? The tiny, frozen pieces of butter will melt slowly while baking, making those signature flaky layers everyone wants in a pie crust.
Pie Crust Ingredients
This pie crust requires four ingredients:
- Butter: I like using European butters like Kerrygold or Plugra. They have a higher fat content and a much richer taste.
- Flour: Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Flour is my personal favorite. But, any Canadian brand will work great. They tend to have a higher protein content, which makes for a more pliable and sturdy dough.
- Salt: A good dash of salt helps enhance the flavors of the pie crust.
- Water: Use filtered water if you can, as it carries less impurities and flavors than tap. I have a nifty water filter attached to my kitchen sink, which makes baking and cooking with filtered water super simple.
Tips for THE BEST Pie Crust
- Use frozen, grated butter. The little grated pieces will make your crust oh-so flaky. Trust me.
- Use ice-cold, filtered water. The colder the water you use, the less likely it will be to melt your butter and affect the flakiness of your crust.
- Toss your butter as you grate it. When you grate your frozen butter, make sure you lightly toss it into your flour mixture as you go to prevent any sticking.
- Use top-quality butter. Butter is KING when making pie crust. Don’t skimp here. Purchase a high-quality European butter. You know, the kind that has that beautiful golden hue to it.
Rolling out Pie Crust
So, you have made your dough, wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap and let it set it the fridge for at least four hours. Now it’s time to get rolling. Never done this before? Don’t worry, it’s much easier than pie-baking legend has it.
You’ve heard it from your grandmother time and time again and your mother scolded you for skipping this crucial pie-making step at least once before. But, for the sake of the good old times, let me remind you again — roll out your dough on a well-floured surface. If you don’t, you will have an icky-sticky mess that will drive you nuts.
Alright, let’s get to it! First, you will pull out your chilled, dough disc from the fridge. Place it on a well-floured surface. Applying an even and gentle pressure with your rolling pin, flatten the dough moving from the center to edge. You want to be mindful not to tear the dough. Using a dough scraper (or careful hands), lift your dough and turn it 90 degrees (make sure to reflour the surface to prevent sticking). Repeat this process of rolling and turning your dough until it is as flat and even-textured as possible.
Note: While you are in the thick of forming your dough with your rolling pin, you may notice chunks of butter fat. THIS IS WHAT YOU WANT. These are your frozen butter shreds hard at work, making sure you get perfectly flaky crust!
Ways To Use This Recipe
- 1/2 cup Unsalted Butter (frozen)
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup water (ice cold)
- Prepare the ingredients for the recipe.
- Combine flour together with salt. Using a cheese grater, grate butter into the flour mixture, toss with a spatula once in a while to prevent butter from stiking together.
- Add water to the ingredients, work the dough with your hands just enough for it all to stick together. The dough will turn out hard.
- Seal tight with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least four hours or overnight.
First time ever making my own pie crust, and it was absolutely the best I've ever eaten. Also best quiche ever! I'm using this always. Next is baked chicken pie! Recommend this to all!!
Michael, this literally made my day. I am so happy to see this feedback. Glad that you got to try it.
You mention that this recipe is for a Single Pie Crust. Is it for a 9" or 10" pie? If it is for a Regular 9", how much do I increase it for to do a Deep Dish 9"? Or for a Regular 10" or 10" Deep Dish?
Thank you in advance for sharing your AMAZING tips and recipes.
Hey Robbie, this recipe will make enough for a deep dish. Hope this helps. Thanks
Thank you Natalya for the quick response; is it for a 9" Deep Dish pie?
Yes, it is. Thanks for reaching out!
I don't see in the instructions on how long to bake & what temperature 🥴
Hi Stella- that is correct. We left that information out because you can use this dough for any pie recipe- some call for pre-baking the crust and some do not. Hope this makes sense 🙂
Hi! This is my first time making a pie crust. I tried a different recipe and it didn't go as well as I hoped. Iam not sure where I messed up at but my whole entire dish was ruined. I was attempting to make homemade chicken pot pie. I was wondering if you could help me with this. I am wondering if I can use this recipe to make a "double" crust? Like have a crust on the bottom of the pie dish and then put one on top? Also since stick butter is used for this (forgive me for asking a stupid question) how many sticks would i use for 1/2 cup? I also use Land o Lakes stick butter. I hope you are able to help me out. Thanks!
Hi Jattra! You can use this pie crust recipe for ANY pie- sweet or savory. It would work great with chicken pot pie, but you will need to double the recipe because my recipe only yields one pie crust.
As for the butter- so 1/2 cup of butter is actually 1 stick of butter!
1 stick of butter = 1/2 cup = 4oz = 8tbsp (all these measurements are usually on the butter wrapper if you forget). Now you know! 😀
Have you pre-baked this crust before? If so, have you used foil and pie weights?
Hey Joan, yes, I would suggest prebaking for most recipes. I do use parchment paper and pie weights. Hope this helps.
Will this work with pumpkin pie?
Hi Kathleen! 100%.This pie crust is great for pumpkin pie. Hope you love it and thanks for reaching out.
Thanks! Trying this years Thanksgiving…I’ll let you know 🙂
Wooohooo! Amazing, Kathleen. I'm craving pie now lol...
I've been looking for a reliable pie crust recipe! Thank you!!
Hey Alisha, so glad you found it. Keep me posted on how you like it! 🙂
I love the flavor of the butter instead of shortening. It was great for our pecan pie!
Hey Kara, good quality butter makes all the difference. I am so happy you loved it with a pecan pie! That sounds amazing.
Honestly, pie crust can make or break a pie, and this pie crust is amazing! I loved how easy it was to make! I just found my new go to crust.
Julie, thank you for sharing the most amazing review. I am so glad you loved this recipe!
Pie is all about the crust for me. If it's not good then it ruins the whole thing. This one turned out so great! Much more simple than I would have thought too. Thanks!
Hey Krissy, I am so glad you love this recipe. Thanks for sharing your feedback!
Love this crust! Made it once, now on to my second one in less than a week. Thanks for this recipe!
That is so cool! What kind of pies are you making?
could i freeze this dough? Or could i keep in fridge for 48 hours and then use it?
Yes, totally. Sometimes I make a lot of the dough, you can keep it in a fridge for up to a week.
perfect crust and easy to make!
What if you use the dough right away?
It should be fine but colder dough is always better.
The crust was easy to make, it turned out tender, buttery and flaky, but in my case at least half of the water wasn't needed, so my suggestion is to mention that you don't need to pour the whole amount of water in the dough, but rather add it gradually. It is worth mentioning that this crust doesn't work with sweet fillings (I've made a fresh strawberry tart and despite the sweetness of all other products, it didn't work well). And finally the crust made of this dough is yummy, but it doesn't hold shape very well (like some other variations - patee sucree, etc). All in all very good recipe, will make it again with savory filling.
Hi Elena, thank you for the tip on this recipe. When typing things up its hard to think of every detail. When people give feedback, it really helps to look at other prospective. I'll definitely add notes to the recipe.
Natalya, thanks! I liked it even more the next day - the crust didn't soak and stayed crispy and light which is just great. So, next time I'll just add a couple of tablespoons of confectionary sugar to the dough to make a sweet variation. Have you tried something like this?
I haven't tried that because we usually use sweet filling. But I am sure that the recipe would work just fine.
I use grated butter in my biscuit recipe ever since I tried it. It makes an incredible difference in the ease of mixing the biscuits and their flakiness.
Cheese grater! What an excellent idea! I just made pie a week ago and had the worst time trying to figure out how to cut butter into small little cubes. Thanks 😀
I love the cheese grater too. I will never go back to cutting the butter into cubes.
Hint …I found when using the frozen butter… roll it in the flour mixture and grate small amounts at a time. It doesn’t stick so much to the grater. I hand mix the butter and flour as I go. Then I add the egg mixture and combine. This makes mixing so easy.
Hi Pam, this is such an amazing tip. I like to freeze my butter as well. It really helps. Thank you for sharing your feedback!
I cant take the credit for the idea, came from Martha Stewart 🙂 but now you can also find it useful.