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Perfect Gluten-Free Pie Crust

Gluten-Free Pie Crust pre-baked and ready to fill.

When I decided to make a million pies for Thanksgiving (OK, eleven) I made the potentially disastrous choice of making all the crusts gluten-free.

Why potentially disastrous? Because I’d never made a gluten-free version of my favorite pie crust, and I didn’t do a test run. (Gluten free baking can be finicky.)

Also we were having company for the big dinner.

I live on the edge, what can I say?

Luckily it was SO good. Like, if someone made me a pie with this gluten free pie crust recipe, I would never know it was gluten free crust. Honest. This flaky crust is even better than most traditional pie crusts I’ve eaten. (I’m a pie crust snob.)

All I did was take an all-butter version of my Grandma’s flaky pie crust recipe and use a gluten-free flour blend. That’s it.

Her recipe has an egg and it’s very forgiving, so I figured that would give me a head start.

I’ve played with this recipe before, substituting whole-grain flours, but this variation is by far the best. It tastes and feels almost identical to the original. (I’m curious to see if Grandma would even notice…)

Food processor with gluten-free flour mixture ready to make pie crust dough.

AND there’s no xanthan gum. Using xanthan gum doesn’t bother me, but I know some people don’t like hunting down ingredients that are unfamiliar that they might not use often. So, you’re welcome.

Best gluten-free flour for pie crust

The flour I used is an adapted version of the King Arthur Gluten-Free Brown Rice Flour Blend Recipe.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you try this recipe with other gluten free flour blends, I can’t guarantee it will turn out well.

Since the website with the recipe isn’t online anymore, here’s the recipe:

Recommended Gluten-Free Flour Blend

  • 3 cups brown rice flour
  • 1 cup potato starch
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour/starch

I’ve been using this gluten-free flour mixture a lot lately, and it’s my current favorite. The ingredients are all easy to find, especially if you have a grocery store with a bulk section. (Unless you have severe gluten allergies, then bulk bins aren’t a great idea.)

Adding cold butter to the gluten-free flour to make the pie crust dough.

Making Gluten-Free Pie Crust Dough

Using a food processor to make pie crust changed my life. A pastry blender (or a pastry cutter) and a large bowl get the job done. So do a couple of forks, but by the time you finish cutting the butter into the flour you’ll want to stick a fork in your eye.

And that reminds me — yes, I use cold butter. You can probably use palm shortening, but I make no promises about the outcome. I use Kerrygold grass-fed butter because it tastes amazing. And because, butter.

Cold butter cut into the gluten-free flour mixture in the work bowl of a food processor.

Just toss that flour and salt into the work bowl, give it a buzz, and then drop pieces of butter in and pulse it up.

It’ll look sorta chunky-crumbly and a little like damp sand.

Here’s the important part. Have a big glass of ice water ready, and measure out 1/4 cup of the water. Break an egg into it and beat it with a fork.

Cold water mixed with an egg, ready to add to the flour mixture.

Cold water is super important here. Keeping that butter chilled as long as possible is important no matter what pie crust recipe you’re using.

Then pour it into the dry ingredients and pulse some more.

Keep pulsing. It’ll start to get chunkier and form pea sized clumps.

Gluten-free pie crust dough blended up and chunky in a food processor.

And chunkier…

Until the dough starts to gather to one side of the processor in a big clump.

View of the finished pie crust dough in the food processor.

Tips for rolling out gluten-free pie crust dough:

Empty the dough out onto a floured surface, split it in half, and shape it into two disks.

Cover them with plastic wrap and chill for about 30-40 minutes. You want the dough to be cool to the touch, but not hard.

Gluten-Free pie crust dough formed into two discs and dusted with flour.

Now we move to my countertop with the ugly sand-colored formica. Sigh.

Flour the surface and use a rolling pin to gently roll out the dough. Move from the center of the dough out toward the sides in all directions. You’ll want to work quickly, too, because as the dough warms up to room temperature it’ll be more difficult to work with.

Pie crust dough rolled out on a counter with an upside down pie crust dish on top to measure.

If you happen to have a pastry scraper you’re in good shape. You can also use a metal spatula.

View of a pastry scraper held over the rolled out pie crust dough.

Slide it around the edges of the crust to release it from the counter and then gently transfer it to a pie plate.

Pie crust dough being lifted by the pastry cutter.

Boom.

Sometimes it will tear a little, but just pinch it back together.

Pie crust dough laid in a pie crust dish.

Trim the edges if there’s more than 1/2 inch hanging off the plate and then tuck the edges under to clean it up.

I like to crimp the edges with my knuckle because Grandma always crimps hers, and I think it looks prettier than using a fork around the edges which also flattens it and make it burn more easily.

By now you may have realized that isn’t flour or dough on my hands. I went from glittering pinecones directly to rolling out pie crust with a quick handwashing in the middle, but I didn’t have time to pick off all of the paint because the baby was still asleep.

View of the pie crust dough being trimmed and crimped.

And I promise there was no consumption of acrylic paint during this process.

Make a double-crust or two single-crust pies

Did I mention this recipe makes a double-crust pie? Or two single-crust pies.

At this point you can add your pie filling to the bottom crust and bake it like normal! Or use it to make a double crust pie.

How to Blind Bake or Pre-Bake a Pie Crust

If you’re going to pre-bake it, prick the bottom of the crust with a fork so it doesn’t bubble, cover with parchment or foil and add some pie weights or dry beans. Then toss it in a 400 degree oven until golden brown — maybe 15-20 minutes.

Trimmed and crimped pie crust dough with fork pricks in the bottom to keep it from bubbling while it's pre-baked.

I don’t have pie beads, weights, or dry beans so I just lightly press foil onto the crust and cover the edges.

Pie crust dough covered with foil to prepare for baking. You can add pie weights here if you like.

Ready to be filled!

View of 9 different kinds of pie laid out on a table in a grid.

I used this crust for 7 of these pies — including the heart cut outs and the lattice. The lattice on the apple pie was a little tricky, but I thought it worked out beautifully!

By the way, if you want to know the details and recipe sources for those pies, you can find that on the Instagram post.

Cleaned-Up Chocolate Silk Pie

I also filled one with Cleaned-Up Chocolate Silk. You may want to get in on this. It’s a naturally sweetened chocolate silk pie and the only dairy is grass-fed butter. It’s rich and decadent and delicious.

Obviously this recipe works beautifully for sweet pies This gluten-free pie crust works well for savory pies, too! It makes a delicious top crust for a chicken pot pie.

Pre-baked gluten-free pie crusts ready to be filled.

How to Freeze Pie Crust

If you’d rather make your pie crust ahead of time, here are a few ways you can freeze it:

#1 Raw & Unrolled

The step where you form the dough into a slightly flattened disk? Instead of putting it in the fridge, wrap it again with some foil and stick it in a freezer bag. You can fit several crusts in a gallon bag, so this way saves a lot of space. Lasts a couple months in the freezer.

TO USE: Let it thaw for several hours — the last couple of hours can be room temperature. It should be somewhat chilled when you roll it out.

#2 Raw & Rolled Out

This option works whether you plan to pre-bake your crusts or not. Roll it out and form it in a freezer-safe pie plate. Cover the whole thing with plastic wrap and a layer of foil and then freeze. I wouldn’t leave this in the refrigerator for more than a week because it has a higher chance of drying out since it’s already rolled out.

TO USE: Thaw it out (but at least keep it chilled — room temperature is like death to a pie crust) and either pre-bake it or fill it and then bake. This probably goes without saying, but DON’T put frozen Pyrex dishes in a hot oven unless you plan on making a broken glass/pie dough mosaic art piece.

#3 Pre-Baked & Frozen (or not)

Wait until the crust cools, wrap it in plastic wrap and foil and freeze for up to a week. Honestly, I probably wouldn’t do this unless I was REALLY pressed for time for Thanksgiving pie making on the actual holiday because the pie crust could dry out really easily and you may run the risk of breaking it while trying to wrap it.

TO USE: Let it thaw somewhat so it isn’t icy when you add your filling.


Here are a few recipes on my site that use this delicious Gluten-Free Pie Crust recipe!

Recipes to use Gluten-Free Pie Crust

Grandma Inez’s Pineapple Pie is at the top of this list. It’s my favorite pie in the whole world. If you’ve never had it, it’s like a pineapple version of lemon meringue.

Cleaned-up Chocolate Silk Pie was mentioned above. It’s a rich, decadent chocolate silk pie that’s naturally sweetened and the only dairy is grass-fed butter!

Gluten-Free Berry Hand Pies use my Easy Berry Sauce to make the cutest hand-held pies! The Easy Berry Sauce can also be used as a mixed berry pie filling (see recipe notes)


If you make this recipe, be sure to post it to social media and tag me at @perrysplate or #perrysplate so I can send you some love!

Perfect Gluten-Free Pie Crust

Perfect Gluten-Free Pie Crust

Yield: 2 crusts
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

This is the best gluten-free pie crust I've ever eaten. It's also fairly easy to work with. Just be sure you use the gluten-free flour blend I recommend in the notes!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten-free flour blend (recipe in Notes)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 12 Tablespoons cold butter (grass-fed, if possible)
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Fill a tall glass with ice water and set it aside.
  2. Combine the flour and salt in the work bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine.
  3. Cut the butter into 1/2-inch pieces, and add them to the food processor 2-3 pieces of the time and pulse a few times in between additions. The mixture should resemble coarse damp sand. Don't overmix it.
  4. Measure out 1/4 cup of the ice water into a small bowl. Crack the egg into the water and beat it with a fork.
  5. Pour the egg mixture into the processor slowly while pulsing. Continue to pulse the crust until it gradually thickens and gathers to one side of the mixing bowl.
  6. Transfer the dough to the countertop and gather it into one ball. Cut it in half and form each half into a disk. Cover the disks with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours (or put it in the freezer for 20 minutes).
  7. Place the chilled disk on a floured surface and gentle roll it out working from the middle outward. If the crust cracks, just pinch it back together. Roll it out to the desired size -- I like to turn the pie plate I'm using upside down to make sure the crust is big enough.
  8. Using a pastry scraper or a metal spatula, loosen the edges and work your way into the center to release it from the work surface. Transfer it to a pie plate.
  9. If there is any crust that hangs over the edge of the plate more than about 1/2-inch, trim it off. Tuck the edges under and crimp them if you want.
  10. At this point you can fill the crust and bake it. If you want to pre-bake it, prick the base of the crust with a fork and press a piece of foil over the crust, covering the edges.
  11. Bake the crust at 425 degrees F for 12 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake for another 6-8 minutes until the crust is baked through, but not too browned.

Notes

Recommended Gluten-Free Flour Blend:

3 cups brown rice flour, 1 cup potato starch, 1/2 cup tapioca flour/starch. Mix thoroughly and store the remaining flour blend in an airtight container at room temperature. Use 1:1 in any recipe that calls for all-purpose flour. Works especially well for pancakes, waffles, and crepes.

  • If you don't have a food processor, you can use a pastry blender or a couple of forks to cut the butter into the flour and make the dough.
  • You can store the dough disks and the pre-baked crusts in the fridge, covered, for up to a week.
Nutrition Information
Yield 12 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 184Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 46mgSodium 186mgCarbohydrates 16gFiber 1gSugar 0gProtein 3g

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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