Here’s how to make gluten-free pie crust making easier than ever.
If you’ve ever made a pie crust with wheat-based flour, you know that over-working the dough and adding too much water are no-nos. Why? Too much water and too much mixing/kneading will create gluten, which makes the crust elastic instead of flaky. You can throw away most of this knowledge because without gluten (yay!) no need to worry about those things.
Here are some of my super-easy pie recipes, Because I like to eat more than I like to bake I created this easy strawberry pie, gluten-free fig pie and the holiday friendly gluten-free s’mores pie. All of them have simple no-bake pie fillings.
Pie Crust Ingredients
Gluten-free flour blend – Be sure to use a flour blend without xanthan gum. For a store bought one, I prefer King Arthur Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour Blend. To make your own blend check out my post on gluten-free flour blends. One-to-one and similar gluten-free flour blends which are meant to be a substitute for wheat flour, will not work as well in this recipe.
Corn starch gives this gluten-free pie crust a light delicate texture.
Butter is my fat of choice but shortening and butter substitutes will work too.
Rolling Out Pie Dough
The most difficult thing about a gluten-free pie crust is rolling it out and getting it into the pie tin in one piece. It is very sticky and tears easily. I solve those problems by rolling it between 2 pieces of plastic wrap or silicone mats. This way, transferring it to the pan is much easier. Here’s how I do it!
Pie Crust Ingredients
- 1¼ cup gluten-free flour blend*
- ⅓ cup non-gmo corn starch
- 1 Tbsp sugar (omit for savory pies)
- ½ tsp xanthan gum
- ¾ tsp salt
- 8 Tbsp cold unsalted butter
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp vinegar
- 2 tsp cold water
- 1 additional egg (for egg wash)
Make the dough
I find that a food processor is the best tool for mixing up the dough. If you don’t have one, use a pastry blender or 2 forks to break up the butter. Stir in the liquid, then use your hands to pull it together.
In a small bowl, thoroughly beat the egg, water and vinegar together. Cut the butter into cubes.
Place the dry ingredients into the food processor and pulse a few times.
Add the butter cubes.
Pulse (around 25 times) until it resembles a coarse meal (small pearl-sized pieces of butter). The mixture will start to take on a light buttery yellow tint.
With the processor running, drizzle in the egg mixture. Run until the dough comes together into a ball.
Form the dough into a thin disk and refrigerate wrapped in plastic for 30 minutes.
How to Roll out Gluten-Free Pie Dough
Splash or spray some water onto your counter top (this will keep the plastic wrap from shifting). Lay two 24″ long pieces of plastic wrap side-by-side on the counter, overlapping the long sides at least 1 1/2 inches. Smooth them out. Unwrap the pie dough and place in the center of the plastic.
Place 2 more side-by-side pieces of plastic over the dough. Try to pull out some of the wrinkles.
Roll out the dough to about 1/8″ thick. Roll from the center to the outside going around in a circle to keep it round. Imagine the dough is a clock face. Roll at 12:00, then 2:00, 4:00, 6:00, 8:00, 10:00 and repeat.
Keeping the plastic on, slide the rolled out crust onto an up-side down baking sheet and chill for 15 minutes in the refrigerator.
Remove the top layer of plastic. Slide both hands underneath the bottom so that your hands and lower arms are supporting it. Lift and flip it over and into into the pan. Gently remove the plastic. Don’t worry too much if it tears-just use your fingertips to press it back together. Form the edge and refrigerate again for 15 minutes.
How to pre-bake or “blind-bake” a pie crust:
Heat the oven to 350º Cover the crust with a large sheet of tin foil or parchment and weigh it down with raw rice or dry beans. This will assure that the crust holds its shape while it bakes.