The moment has arrived. After almost two years of failed attempts, I’ve finally created a roll out whole wheat pie crust that I enjoy just as much as the (not as good for you, but oh so good) all-purpose flour version. I feel like this should be announced with great fanfare, maybe even trumpets, yet all I hear in my head are the quiet piano strains of hymns, as my mind is on my recently departed grandmother. Still deeply in the midst of grieving, and learning how different the grieving process is now that a baby is dependent on me during even the hardest moments, I don’t have any great stories to share about this pie crust.
Just know that it is flaky, crispy, and surprisingly easy to make.
Make sure to follow all the steps, keeping everything cold is of utmost importance.
If you’re great at rolling out pie crusts, this can make a bottom and top crust. If you’re like me and still haven’t perfected your rolling technique, this can make a slightly thick bottom crust with some scraps for patching holes and snacking.
If you like sweet crusts, you can add a little sugar or sucanat, but I prefer the hint of salt in my crust to contrast with sweet fillings. This also makes an incredible quiche crust.
- 2 rounded cups soft white whole wheat flour, chilled
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 3/4 cup shortening, chilled and divided
- 4-8 TBS ice water
- Make sure all ingredients and mixing bowl are well chilled.
- In the cold bowl, use a fork to whisk together the flour and salt.
- Add 1/2 cup of the shortening to the flour and use a pastry blender or two knives to cut the shortening into the flour. Continue cutting at the shortening, mixing it into the flour, until it resembles crumbs like cornmeal.
- Now add the remaining 1/4 cup of chilled shortening and cut it in as well, until the particles are about the size of peas.
- Sprinkle one TBS of ice water at a time over the the flour and shortening, mixing lightly with a fork. Continue adding water and mixing until the flour is just moistened.
- Use your hands to gather the dough together into a ball and then refrigerate the dough for 15 minutes, until thoroughly chilled again.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place the ball of dough between two pieces of waxed paper and roll out to one inch larger than your pie dish. (If you want two crusts, there is enough dough to divide it in half first and roll out two crusts. For one crust, just roll it out plenty big and you can have a nice folded crimped crust if you’d like.)
- Gently place the dough in the pan without stretching, and prick all over with a fork. Cover the edges of the crust with a ring of aluminum foil.
- Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil ring and bake another 5-10 minutes until crust is golden brown.
If you are making a baked in the shell pie, put the filling in the raw crust and bake according to pie directions. Cover the edges with a ring of foil until the last 5 minutes of baking.
Approximate cost/serving: Grinding my own flour makes this incredibly cheap at just about 30 cents for one pie crust. Even if you buy the flour, it’s still much cheaper than buying a pre-made pie crust.
Vegetarian: You can use Crisco, or even better, Earth Balance, and this is totally vegan.