Join Waitlist We will inform you when the product arrives in stock. Please leave your valid email address below.
Recipes,  Sourdough

Easy Sourdough Pie Crust Recipe (Step-by-Step Photos)

Come along and learn how to make a flaky, buttery, absolutely delicious homemade sourdough pie crust. Once you know a few “secrets” it’s actually quite easy to make, and requires just a handful of ingredients! If you’re new to making pie crust from scratch, our clear step-by-step photos and tips should be a big help.

This sourdough pie crust creates the perfect “home” to hold any of your favorite sweet or savory pie fillings – from apple or pumpkin pie to quiche or pot pies. Our recipe makes a single pie crust (to fit about a 9 to 10” pie pan). So, if your pie needs both a top and bottom crust, be sure to double the recipe and then split it into two at step 2 in the instructions below.



Should I use active starter or discard to make sourdough pie crust?


Since a tall rise isn’t the goal, sourdough pie crust can be made with either active sourdough starter or discarded (inactive) starter. Either way, I recommend using starter that has been fed within the last couple of weeks – not the discard from a severely neglected and hoochie starter. Using discard will result in a slightly more sour-flavored pie crust.

We use a 100% hydration starter for this recipe, meaning it’s been fed equal parts of water and flour by weight. If you follow our starter feeding and maintenance guide, this is the usual way we feed starter! And if you happen to need one, you can snag an organic sourdough starter from our shop here.

See notes about chilling your starter in the section to follow.


A fully active sourdough starter sits in a flip top liter glass jar. Bubbles are littered throughout the starter as it reaches the top of the jar.


The secret to getting a flaky pie crust


The key to achieving a stellar flaky sourdough pie crust is to keep the dough and butter as cold as possible before baking. The main goal is to prevent the butter bits within the dough from melting until the pie hits the oven, where the butter clumps then explode with steam to create flaky air pockets as the pie bakes. So, simply keep that in mind as you’re making your pie! Have your ingredients ready and work quickly to avoid leaving the dough out any longer than necessary. Also don’t handle the dough any more than needed.

Some pie aficionados even refrigerate their flour before mixing it with butter! While I don’t think that is necessary, I do recommend refrigerating your sourdough starter for about an hour (or longer) before mixing the dough – especially if your home is warm. I also put my butter in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes before starting.

When using active starter for this recipe, we feed it at room temp like ususal, let it rise, and then pop it in the fridge just as it’s reaching peak activity. If you’re using discard, it’s probably already in the fridge – so no need to let it warm up first!


The top of a latticed sourdough pie crust after it has been removed from the over for baking. Crispy golden brown crust with apples visible through the cracks inside.



Ingredients for Sourdough Pie Crust

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour (optional). It’s okay to just use 1 full cup of all-purpose flour instead, but I really love the addition of the pasty flour! Whole wheat pastry flour makes the crust more tender and delicate, and also just a wee bit healthier for you too, since whole wheat flour has more fiber and a slightly lower glycemic index than all purpose flour. (Do not substitute with regular whole wheat flour.)
  • 10 Tbsp cold butter, straight from the fridge (or lightly frozen)
  • ½ cup sourdough starter – active or discard, ideally cool temperature
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • ½ tsp sea salt


Supplies Needed



Step-by-Step Instructions


Step 1: Mix the Dough


Start by combining the called-for flour, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl. Next, grate the cold butter into the same bowl using a box cheese grater. I find this is the easiest way to evenly cut cold butter into the dough without needing to over-mix it! If you don’t have a grater, simply cut the butter into thin slices. I cut up the very ends of the butter stick (that are too difficult to hold to grate) into slightly larger chunks to add at the end.

Mix and cut in the dry ingredients with the butter until it resembles coarse crumbly sand with some bean-sized butter bits. Do not over-mix or break up all the butter chunks. I usually start by tossing everything with a fork and then switch to a pastry blender to finish cutting the butter in. A bench scraper can also be used to cut butter into flour. Keep in mind it will be quite dry at this point still.


A six part image collage, the first image shows a metal bowl with flour in the bottom. The second image shows a box grater positioned over the bowl, grating a stick of butter. The third image shows the grated butter on top of the flour inside the bowl. The fourth image shows a fork being used to combine the ingredients. The fifth image shows a pastry cutter held above the mixed ingredients. The sixth image shows the flour and butter after mixing which has turned into sandy and clumpy pea sized bits.


Now add the cold sourdough starter to the mixture. Start mixing with a fork, then use your hands to finish mixing until combined. Form the dough into a shaggy ball. There shouldn’t be any crumbles or dry bits left in the bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of cold water if the dough seems too dry.


A four way image collage, the first image shows a 1/2 cup measuring cup held above the stainless steel bowl with flour and butter mixture. The second image shows a silicone spatula scooping the sourdough starter into the bowl. The third image is two hands mixing the flour, butter and starter together. The fourth image shows two hands holding the loose ball of dough after combining.


Step 2: Form and Chill Dough 


Using your hands, quickly form the sourdough pie crust dough into a round flat puck (about 1 to 2 inches thick and 4 inches around) with smooth edges. To prevent it from drying out, wrap the dough puck in plastic wrap, or like we did, in parchment paper and then inside a ziplock bag. Split the dough in half and form 2 equal individually-wrapped pucks if you doubled this recipe.

Chill the wrapped sourdough pie crust dough for a minimum of two hours prior to baking, or for up to three days. The longer it sits, the more the dough can mingle with the starter to ferment. One of the main perks of sourdough (IMHO) is the very fact that it’s fermented, which makes it more nutritious and easier to digest! So, I don’t like to rush this step. We usually refrigerate our pie dough for at least 12 hours (overnight).

You can also make sourdough pie crust dough ahead of time and freeze it for up to several months. Be sure it’s tightly wrapped to prevent freezer burn, and then defrost it in the refrigerator for a day or two prior to use.


A four way image collage, the first image shows two hands holding the dough puck after it has been shaped, a sheet of parchment sheet is in the background. The second image shows two hands holding the dough puck at an angle to show the thickness of the puck while a sheet of parchment paper sits in the background. The third image shows the dough puck after it has been wrapped in parchment paper like a sandwich. The fourth image shows two dough pucks wrapped in parchment paper, sitting inside a larger ziplock bag.
Most pie crust recipes say to wrap the dough puck in saran wrap, but I’m not a huge fan of single-use plastic so we do this instead. At least I can re-use the ziplock many, many times!


Step 3: Roll, Fill and Bake


When you’re ready to bake your pie (and have your filling all ready to go), take the dough out of the refrigerator and let it rest on the counter for 10 minutes. This makes it easier to roll out without cracking.

Place the dough puck on a generously floured work surface and sprinkle a light dusting of flour on top. Then proceed to roll it out with a floured rolling pin

Start in the middle of the dough puck and work your way outwards, rotating the direction you’re rolling each time to maintain an evenly round shape. If the dough is resisting or cracking a lot at first, let it sit for another couple of minutes to warm more. Continue to roll out the dough until it’s aboutinch thick and large enough to cover the bottom and sides of your pie pan.

Now, gently ease the flattened dough into your pie pan. Either gently fold it in half twice (into quarters) or loosely roll part of it up around the rolling pin to help lift and transfer it without tearing. Press the crust into the sides and edges of the pan, and form the outer edge as you see fit. Cut or tear off any excess dough if necessary.

Immediately proceed to fill and bake following the pie recipe you’re using (including any par-baking requirements).


A four way image collage, the first image shows a small sifter being used to sprinkle flour over a wooden surface, the dough puck, and wood rolling pin. The second image shows two hands using the rolling pin to roll out the dough puck. The third image shows the dough being un-rolled from the rolling pin to cover the pie pan. The fourth image shows two hands touching the outer edges of the pie pan which is hidden by the overlapping edges of the dough.
Slices of apple that are coated in cinnamon and sugar are neatly stacked inside the unbaked pie dough with about an inch or two of dough overlapping the edges of the pie pan. Strips of pie dough sit on a cutting board just below to use as a lattice crust of the top.
One crust used on the bottom…
An unbaked pie with a latticed sourdough pie crust on top, the crust edges have been tamped down with a fork to produce many small ridge indentations along the crust.
… and I cut and wove the second crust into a lattice design on top. I used this pasty wheel cutter to get the fun wavy edges in my lattice.
An apple pie with a latticed crust has just finished baking. The crust is golden brown and the space between the lattice pieces reveal apples below.
A lattice top is pretty, but admittedly more complicated – and can be more difficult to make flaky (compared to a simple solid top) since it tends to warm up more while weaving it.
A close up of the top of a butternut squash pie that has a few leaves made from the crust positioned in the middle of the pie. The surrounding crust is lightly brown and crusty.
We recently made a fantastic butternut squash pie (just like pumpkin pie) – with a more simple single homemade sourdough pie crust.


How to make sourdough pie crust shiny


It’s easy to make a sourdough pie crust shine by lightly brushing the crust with milk or egg before baking. I don’t always bother with a single crust pie, but do like to brush the top of our double-crust pies.

According to Taste of Home, create a shine with light browning by brushing the crust with an egg white beaten with 1 tsp of water. Or, use an egg yolk beaten with 1 tsp of water for a glossy golden appearance. Using whole milk, half-and-half, or heavy whipping cream will offer a slight shine. On the other hand, brushing the crust with water alone will lead to a brown crisp crust. Finally, add a sprinkle of sugar on top to give it a pretty sparkle.


A latticed sourdough pie crust is being washed with heavy whipping cream using a black silicone kitchen brush. The crust has been tamped down by a fork all the way around the edge of the pie.
Brushing crust with organic heavy whipping cream, since we already had that on hand to turn into whipped cream to go with the pie
An unbaked pie with a latticed dough top that has been brushed with heavy whipping cream and sprinkled with sugar. Slices of apples coated in sugar and cinnamon are visible between the cracks of the lattice top.
A little sprinkle of sugar to finish things off.


And that’s how to make homemade sourdough pie crust!


Did that make you hungry? I sure hope so. 😉 I also hope this step-by-step tutorial gives you all the tips and confidence in the world to go make a wonderfully delicious, flaky, homemade sourdough pie crust of your own. Please pop back by to leave a review once you give it a try! Also feel free to ask any questions you may have in the comments below. Now excuse me while I go eat a slice of apple pie… Happy baking!


You may also enjoy:


Print Recipe Pin Recipe
4.67 from 3 votes

Homemade Sourdough Pie Crust (Easy Step-by-Step Directions)

Come learn how to make a flaky, buttery, absolutely delicious homemade sourdough pie crust with easy step-by-step photos and tips. This sourdough pie crust creates the perfect "home" to hold any of your favorite sweet or savory pie fillings – from apple or pumpkin pie to quiche or pot pies.
This recipe makes ONE pie crust, so be sure to double it if your pie needs both a top and bottom crust!
Prep Time30 mins
Course: Dessert, Holiday Dish, Sourdough
Keyword: flaky sourdough pie crust, homemade sourdough pie crust, sourdough pie crust
Servings: 1 pie crust

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (okay to sub with all-purpose flour, but not regular whole wheat flour)
  • 10 Tbsp butter, cold and unsalted
  • 1/2 cup sourdough starter – active or discard, ideally cool temperature
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  • In an effort to keep the dough and butter as cold as possible, have all of your ingredients and supplies ready. Refrigerate your sourdough starter about an hour before starting. I also put the cold (refrigerated) butter in the freezer for 10-15 minutes before starting.

Mix Dough

  • Start by combining the called-for flour, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl. Next, grate the cold butter into the same bowl using a box cheese grater.
  • Mix and cut the butter into the dry ingredients until small even pea-sized crumbles form using a pastry cutter or bench scraper. Do not overmix.
  • Add the sourdough starter to the mixture. Stir with a fork, and then use your hands to finish mixing and forming the dough into a shaggy ball. There shouldn’t be any crumbles or dry bits left in the bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of cold water if the dough seems too dry.

Form and Chill Dough

  • Using your hands, quickly form the sourdough pie crust dough into a round flat puck (about 1 to 2 inches thick and 4 inches around). To prevent it from drying out, wrap the dough puck in plastic wrap, or like we did, in parchment paper and then tucked inside a ziplock bag. (Split the dough in half and form 2 equal individually-wrapped pucks if you doubled this recipe.)
  • Chill the wrapped sourdough pie crust dough for a minimum of two hours prior to baking, or for up to three days. 

Roll, Fill and Bake

  • When you’re ready to bake your pie, take the dough out of the refrigerator and let it rest on the counter for 10 minutes. 
  • Place the dough puck on a generously floured work surface, sprinkle a light dusting of flour on top, and then proceed to roll it out with a floured rolling pin. 
  • Start in the middle of the dough puck and work your way outwards, and rotate the direction you’re rolling each time to maintain an evenly round shape. Continue to roll out the dough until it’s about ⅛–inch thick and large enough to cover the bottom and sides of your pie pan.
  • Gently ease the flattened dough into your pie pan. Either gently fold it in half twice (into quarters) or loosely roll part of it up around the rolling pin to help lift and transfer it without tearing. Press the crust into the sides and edges of the pan, and form the outer edge as you see fit. Cut or tear off any excess dough if necessary.
  • Immediately proceed to fill and bake following the pie recipe you’re using.



DeannaCat signature, keep on growing

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating