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pie crust discs wrapped in plastic wrap

Easy Pie Crust Recipe by Hand

Course: Appetizer, Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chill Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 2 pie crusts
Calories: 139kcal
Author: Emily
A quick and easy pie crust recipe you can make without a food processor for a perfect flaky crust every time.
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  • cups all-purpose flour
  • teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, FROZEN (2 sticks)
  • 8 tablespoon ICE COLD water


  • Before you begin, add ice to a cup of water so it gets nice and cold. Grate the butter into a bowl or cut it up into small pieces and place it in the fridge until you are ready to add it to the dough.
    grated butter in a bowl for pie crust
  • Place the flour, sugar, and salt into a mixing bowl and mix together with a fork or whisk. Add the cold butter and cut in using a pastry cutter or a fork. You can then use your hands to fully incorporate everything ensuring you have a coarse meal with some larger pieces of butter throughout.
    butter incorporated into flour for pie crust
  • Measure and add the ice-cold water to the dough and mix it in using a pastry cutter, a fork, or your hands. The dough will still be crumbly at this point, that is fine.
    pie crust dough with water added
  • Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface or a silicone mat. Create 2 equal-sized discs using your hands but do not press together too much, just lightly to quickly form 2 circles.
    pie crust dough separated into 2 rounds
  • Wrap the discs tightly in plastic wrap and place them in the fridge for at least an hour to chill. If you only need one crust, you can place the other disc in a freezer bag and freeze for later.
    pie crust discs wrapped in plastic wrap
  • When ready to roll out, remove the disc(s) from the fridge and allow it to sit at room temp for about 10 minutes. Roll the disc out on a lightly floured surface with a rolling pin, rotating and flipping as you go. Try not to handle the crust too much and allow it to rest for 5-10 minutes before shaping. Once you have the shape you need, place the crust in the fridge until ready to bake.
    rolled out pie crust


  • First, freeze your butter ahead of time. Then, use your cheese grater to get nice small pieces of butter that are so much easier to cut in! I use this trick all the time and it never fails.
  • Make sure you are adding ICE COLD water, not just cold water from the tap. This keeps the butter from melting while mixing so when it comes time to bake, the butter slowly melts creating a flaky and delicious crust.
  • If you are using your hands to mix the dough, run them under cold water first. This is for the same reason as using super cold water in the mix, it keeps the butter from melting.
  • If at any time you think your butter is getting too soft, place the bowl in the fridge for 5-10 minutes, and then continue mixing.
  • Don't over-handle your pie crust. This includes when you are making it and when you are rolling it out for your recipe. The more you handle it, the less flaky and it will be and it will also shrink when baking.
  • If you are making a savory meal like a Chicken Pot Pie, you can omit the sugar in the recipe.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 139kcal | Carbohydrates: 12.5g | Protein: 1.6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6.4g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 175mg | Potassium: 17mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 0.6g | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 1mg