Favorite Tender Pie Crust

Hello everyone! In keeping with the Thanksgiving baking theme, I decided to make a pumpkin pie from scratch.    In an earlier post, I showed you how to make King Arthur Flour’s great double pie crust, and now I’ll show you how to make their “Favorite Tender Crust,” which was perfect for pumpkin pie!

Without further ado, here is the recipe and ingredient list from my King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion:


  • 1 and 1/2 cups (6 and 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour or a combination of all-purpose and pastry flours
  • 1 tablespoon (1/8 ounce) buttermilk powder (optional; it will help make the crust tender)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick, 2 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup (1 and 5/8 ounces) vegetable shortening
  • 1 teaspoon white or cider vinegar
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons (1 and 1/2 to 2 and 1/2 ounces) ice water



In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the flour, buttermilk powder, salt, and baking powder.  Using a pastry fork, pastry blender, your fingers, or a mixer, cut in the butter and vegetable shortening, leaving some baby pea-sized lumps.

Mix the vinegar with 3 tablespoons of the water.  Sprinkle this mixture over the flour and fat and toss with a fork.  Squeeze the dough together; if it’s not cohesive, add an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons water (just enough to make the dough stick together comfortably).  Shape the dough into a flattened disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for 30 minutes or longer before rolling.

So, I got all the ingredients measured out as you see above.  I then took the flour, salt, and baking powder, put them in a bowl, and whisked them together (I didn’t have any buttermilk powder, so since it was optional, I left it out).  I then diced up the cold butter into small cubes, and added that and the vegetable shortening (I used Crisco) into the flour mixture.  I took a large fork and started mixing the shortening and butter it in with the flour.

Dough mixin.jpg

I then took my fingers and mixed the butter and shortening in more thoroughly until the mixture looked like this:


Next, I added three tablespoons of the ice water to the vinegar. I then took my fingers, dunked them into the container of vinegar and water, and sprinkled it over the mixture in the picture above.  I then took a fork and tossed the wet mixture to start forming a dough.  The dough didn’t hold together yet, so I added one more tablespoon of ice water.  I then squeezed the dough with my hands and it held together nicely.

I took the dough out of the bowl, placed it on the counter, and formed a flat disk.  I then tore off a sheet of plastic wrap, placed the disk on it, wrapped it up, and set it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

In Plastic.jpg

After 30 minutes, I took the dough out of the fridge. I took my 9.5 inch Pyrex pie plate and sprayed it with non-stick baking spray. I then set a silicon mat onto my counter top, sprinkled it with flour, unwrapped my dough, and set it on the floured mat.

I took a rolling pin and rolled the dough out to a circle 12″ in diameter.


Once I got it to the size I needed, I took the mat, inverted it over the greased pie plate, and peeled it off the mat, onto the plate.  I then pressed the dough into the plate.

Press into plate.jpg

Next, I took the edge of the crust and pressed it with the tines of a fork to get a classic look.


Once it was pressed, it looked like this:


Now it’s ready for you to add whatever filling you like!  I chose to make this into a pumpkin pie, which will be the next post, so keep your eyes out!

As always, let me know if you tried the recipe out and how it turned out for you!

Happy baking, folks!