Basic Pie Dough


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1/3 cup ice water


Makes two 10-inch pie shells

In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, salt and shortening and plus until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. There should be peddles of shortening throughout the mixture. 

While using long pulses, add the ice water and pulse until the dough comes together. Squeeze a clump of dough in your hand. If it does not hold together, add a little more water and stir or pulse, then check again. Repeat as necessary.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gather it into a rough ball. You want to be careful not to overwork the dough and not to add too much flour. Cut the ball in half with a knife. Using the heel of your hand, flatten each portion of dough once or twice, then knead each piece into a ball. 

Flatten each ball into a 5-inch disc and dust lightly with flour. Tightly wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

On a liberally floured work surface, roll out one disc of dough into a circle about 11 inches across. Start rolling from the centre and work your way out in all directions. Carefully roll the dough around the rolling pin and unroll it right over the pie plate. Gently press into the pie plate, crimping the edges using the thumb and index finger of the left hand and pinching with the index finger of the right hand. Repeat with the second disc of dough.

Wrap the shells carefully in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, though overnight is best. The pie shells may also be frozen for up to 1 month.

Recipe on page 231 of Earth to Table Every Day

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