A Gluten Free Pie Crust Recipe
That's Tender and Flaky
This gluten free pie crust recipe is relatively easy, yet surprisingly flaky. It may take a little practice, but once you get it you'll love it. This pie crust forms the foundation of some of my favorite gluten free desserts, as well as savory pies like quiche.
I love to make pies, and when I had to switch to making them gluten free, it was quite a challenge. But I soon learned that patting in a wheat free pie crust is actually easier than rolling out a crust made with wheat, and can be just as tender and flaky.
Use this gluten free pie crust recipe with your favorite pie fillings.
Adding a top crust is not as easy, but even though it may look kind of patchy, the flavor and texture are great.
If you try this gluten free pie crust recipe, please let us know what you think.
Gluten Free Pie Crust Recipe
Double the recipe for a pie with a top, or for 2 pies,
but divide in half before adding the water.
- 4 Tbsp butter
- 3/4 C brown rice flour Tip
- 1/4 C tapioca flour
- 1/8 tsp salt
- enough water to make it slightly moist Tip
Gluten Free Pie Crust: Making the Dough
- Allow the butter to sit out just long enough to cut it into ½ inch cubes. It should still be cold.
- Pulse the flours, along with the salt, in a food processor.
- Pulse in the butter. Stop a couple of times to loosen the sides and bottom of the mixture and check the dough. What you're looking for is a mealy consistency...It should stick together slightly when pinched. Don't leave the processor running, you don't want it blended.
- Dump it into a bowl (Measure out half if you doubled the recipe.)
- Mix in 3 tablespoons of cold water with a fork or pastry blender. Then add a little more, and more if necessary, until most of the dough pieces stick together while you are mixing it. It should not be sticky. Gather it into a loose ball and place in the center of the pie plate.
Shaping the Bottom Crust of a Gluten Free Pie Crust
- Press the pie crust dough into a 10" pie plate, working from the center toward the outside. (If you are making a 9 inch pie, you'll need to trim off more from the edges so the crust isn't too thick, or it will be tough.)
- Press dough up the sides, leaving it slightly thicker toward the top.
- To form a fluted edge: mold the dough around the edges, pushing it up from the outside with your thumbs as you hold it down with your index fingers. Pinch off excess. Or if you're not feeling too artistic, turn it under and smooth it out, but don't leave it too thick or it will be tough.
- Prick all over with a fork to help moisture escape.
- Bake the crust for 10 minutes at 350º.
- Add the pie filling and bake according to your recipe. Tool Tip
Making the Optional Top of a Gluten Free Pie Crust
: If you want to make a pie with a top crust, a crumb crust is easiest. But a lattice crust is lots more satisfying. I can't promise perfection, but here's how I do it:
- Place the rest of the dry dough in the bowl and add water as above. Just make it a little dryer than the pat-in dough.
- Press it together into a ball and flatten slightly. Tip: You'll need to add some flour to the outside if it's too wet, and add more as you roll it out. Read on...
- If you don't have a pastry board, clear a place on a smooth counter or table and clean it well. You can roll directly on the counter, but I find it better to roll the crust on a piece of wax paper, and clean-up is easier. (Sprinkle a little water underneath so it won't slip.)
- Flour the surface and your rolling pin liberally with tapioca flour, and place the dough in the center.
- Roll from the center outward, alternating from up/down to side/side.
- After each up/down/side/side rotation, lift the dough, add some more flour to the surface (and rolling pin if needed), then turn it over. It will become slightly rectangular but that is fine if you are doing a lattice. Roll until it's about 1/8 inch thick.
- Cut with a fluted pastry wheel
into strips about ½-¾ inch wide.
Here's where the gluten free pie crust gets tricky.
- Take a long bread knife, flour it well, and slide it carefully under a strip.
- Lift and place across the center of the pie. Chances are it will break, but just lay the pieces end to end.
- Lay the next strip crosswise, alternating until you get to the outer edges.
You won't be able to do a true lattice, because if you try to pick up the strips, they will fall apart. It will be beautiful anyway.
- Trim the edges, tuck them under slightly and pinch gently together with the bottom crust.
- Bake according to your pie recipe. Tool Tip
The amount of water for the gluten free pie crust recipe will vary depending on the humidity in the air and moisture in the flour. You need to add enough so the dough is not too dry, or it will be hard to press into the pie plate. If too wet, your crust may be a little tough or crunchy. For a more tender crust, I recommending erring on the side of adding too much fat, and less water.
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I typically make a brown rice flour
pie crust because my family and guests like it better. But you can use millet flour
too, which I think gives it a richer flavor.
You can get tapioca flour (also called tapioca starch) from Asian markets, but Bob's Red Mill tapioca flour
may be just as cheap. Arrowroot could probably replace tapioca flour, but I have never tried it in a gluten free pie crust.
To keep the edges from browning too much before the pie is ready, use a pie crust shield. Or cut a circle of foil larger than your pie, cut out most of the center, and fold down the edges. Place it on the pie about half way through the baking time.
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