Monday, October 13, 2014

Flakey Grain-Free Pie Crust Recipe



I've got a delicious grain-free and gluten-free pie crust recipe to share with you today....just in time for holiday baking! Use it to make your favorite pumpkin pie, apple pie, berry pie, or chicken pot pie (pictured above). I've tested it with many different filling recipes and it works beautifully every time.

This recipe uses a mixture of blanched almond flour and arrowroot powder or tapioca flour. I've tested it using organic, pastured butter as well as a dairy-free version using Nutiva's Vegan Superfood Shortening. You can order blanched almond flour from Lucy's Kitchen Shop or from Nuts.com (though the latter is not as finely ground and does not work as well for pie crusts). I've also noticed that Costco sells Honeyville blanched almond flour which also works beautifully in this recipe. 

I have recipes for healthy, refined-sugar free pumpkin pie fillings in my Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and my Nourishing Meals Cookbook. Get the recipe for my favorite Pumpkin Pie here!



Flakey Grain-Free Pie Crust Recipe

Below are two versions, one for a single crust and one for a double crust. This recipe works in both a regular 9-inch pie plate as well as a deep dish 9-inch pie plate. Be sure that the butter or shortening is very cold, in fact, I often freeze it and then grate it into the flour using a cheese grater....this helps to create a very flakey crust. 

Single Crust:
1 cup blanched almond flour (packed)
1 cup arrowroot powder or tapioca flour
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4 to 5 tablespoons cold unsalted pastured butter or organic shortening
1 large organic egg

Double Crust:
2 cups blanched almond flour (packed)
2 cup arrowroot powder or tapioca flour
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
8 to 10 tablespoons cold unsalted pastured butter or organic shortening
2 large organic eggs

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the almond flour, arrowroot or tapioca flour, and sea salt. Cut in the butter or shortening using your fingers or a pastry cutter until small pea-sized crumbs form.



Crack the egg into the middle of the mixture and then stir in using a fork. Continue to knead a few times until the mixture forms a ball. If dough seems too dry, then add a very small amount of cold water (about 1 tablespoon). If making a double crust, divide dough into two equal sized balls. 

Wrap dough in parchment or waxed paper and chill in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours or into your freezer for about 20 minutes.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place dough ball onto a piece of parchment or waxed paper, place another sheet on top, and then roll out. 

Remove the top sheet of paper and then carefully flip dough over and into the pie plate. Remove the second sheet of paper. Flute edges. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork a few times. Pre-bake crust for 8 to 10 minutes for a single crust pie and then fill with a pumpkin filling (or your favorite filling). Bake as directed. If making a double crust pie such as an apple pie then roll out dough, fill, and place the second layer on top. Flute edges and bake as directed. Source: www.NourishingMeals.com



More Holiday Recipes:


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Interested in more Healthy Grain-Free Recipes? Download my Healthy Holiday e-Book! Serve up tasty desserts made without any refined sugars, grains, gluten, dairy, or soy!

Impress your friends and family this season with recipes such as Chai Spiced Cupcakes, Chocolate Mint Shortbread Cookies, Cinnamon Raisin Bread, Raw Salted Chocolate Tart, Persimmon Spice Ice Cream, Yeasted Dinner Rolls, and more!

About the Author

Alissa Segersten holds a Bachelor's of Science in Nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the founder of Whole Life Nutrition, the mother of five children, a whole foods cooking instructor, professional recipe developer, and cookbook author. She is passionate about helping others find a diet that will truly nourish them, and offers elimination diet recipes, healthy gluten-free recipes, paleo and vegan recipes, as well as tips for feeding your family a nourishing, whole foods diet. Alissa is the author of two very popular gluten-free, whole foods cookbooks and guidebooks: The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and Nourishing Meals. She is also the co-author of The Elimination Diet book. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!

34 comments:

  1. This looks great! I use a very similar pie crust using a combination of almond flour and arrowroot too - it makes for a great crust! I'll have to try your version next time I make a pie :)

    -Cassidy

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  2. What can I use in place of the almond meal. (Slight allergy to almonds and hazelnuts.)

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    1. Hi Sharon,

      Like Jennifer mentioned below, it's hard to sub a whole cup of almond flour. I know some people use sunflower seed flour in place of almond flour for as a nut-free option, but I think it might burn during the long cooking time for a pie….good for cookies though! So I don't have an answer…..yet! :)

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    2. Hello Sharon,

      Have you tried to soak the almonds/or almond meal for a few hours (7h for exemple) ?
      According to what I read, this release the things that can cause a reaction.

      Soaking the nuts/meal in water, then discard the water.

      I am myself sensitive to nuts, and I started to try that method following Sally Fallon "Nourishing Traditions" book.

      This works for every nuts.

      Damien.

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    3. Sorry I must add another information :
      this is water PLUS a little bit of salt (depend on the quantity of nuts).

      Sorry I forgot. ;)

      Thank you for your blog which truely inspiring me ! Merci from France. Damien

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    4. I know it's been awhile since you posted this Sharon but I've substituted cashew flour for almond flour with success.

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  3. Egg substitute???

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    Replies
    1. You could probably try ground chia seeds, or just search for a grain-free/egg-free crust recipe on the web instead of trying to invent your own substitutions. I am certain the recipe already exists out there! And to the person looking to replace almond meal, you simply need a different recipe! Subbing out 1 cup of almond meal isn't as easy of a substitution to suggest, especially if hazelnuts are out too. There are neat recipes using chestnut flour or coconut flour, but again, you couldn't do a 1 to 1 swap in this recipe, most likely.

      I am excited to start making pumpkin pies this season, and I am thinking this is the just-right recipe. Although, the top picture has me craving something more along the lines of chicken pot pie! Yum! So many possibilities! Thanks Ali!

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    2. Thank you Jennifer for the suggestions! I bet there is an egg-free and grain-free pie crust recipe out there. Happy baking! :)

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  4. Any egg substitute for egg in this recipe

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  5. can you use ghee instead of butter or shortening?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Darlene, I have not tried that so not sure if it would work. You could certainly try though and report back here with a comment. :)

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  6. Is there a recipe for the filling of the chicken pot pie?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Brett,

      Yes, you can find the recipe in my Nourishing Meals cookbook in the main dish section. :)

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  7. I am loving your cookbook! I use it regularly, which I realized I would be able to do when I read you have a large family. It would have to have 'accessible' recipes and it does! Thank you.

    What's the difference between the blanched almond flour and the almond meal they sell at the store?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Alli,

      Thank you for the feedback! As far as the differences between the meal and the flour…..blanched almond flour is very finely ground while the meal is slightly coarser.

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  8. This looks like a beautiful crust. I can't wait to make it!

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  9. Last night I made the chicken pot pie from the Nourishing Meals cookbook with this crust and it was out of this world good!
    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe with us! I am new to baking but followed your directions and it turned out beautifully.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for the feedback Melinda! :)

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  10. Hi Ali...I also made this crust with the chicken pot pie from your recent book. Super tasty and the crust was easy to handle, backed very evenly and held up really will in the fridge. I even made the dough ahead of time and it hung out, tightly wrapped, in the fridge for about 5 days. Splendid dough even after all that time. I've sent the link on to many friends as well. Thanks for all your fab recipes and wonderful insight!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Holly! Good to know that the dough can last that long in the fridge and still bake up perfectly. :)

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  11. Hi Ali, I would love try this pie crust. The problem is I have a high sensitivity to almonds. Is there any other nut flour I could use instead. By the way, I am also sensitive to hazelnuts. Thanks, Angie

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    Replies
    1. Hi Angie~ I have not tested this recipe with any other nut flour but if I were to give it a try I would use cashew flour. :)

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  12. Hi, I just wanted to share that I've used this recipe a few times as a quick mix and drop crust without rolling it out. I use olive oil instead of butter and the dough is kind of crumbly, but then I use my hands to pat it into the pan and it comes together more. Sometimes adding an extra tbsp of water helps bind it as well. Thanks for the recipe!

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  13. Wondering when making a two crust pie are you baking the bottom crust then adding filling and top crust?

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    1. When I make a 2-crust pie I just bake as you would a gluten-full pie crust…place the bottom piece of rolled dough into your pie plate, add your filling, then add the top crust, flute edges, cut steam holes, and bake! :)

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  14. Please use weight measurements on your recipes for more accuracy. I had to go grain free recently from being gluten free. I had much success with gluten free baking by weight. I had to add 4 tablespoons of cold water for double crust. It is in the refrigerator now. I will comment again are actually eating the pie

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    1. I totally understand that it helps, but as a mom of 5, sometimes you just toss things in the bowl and hope for the best. I (as a mom of only 2) have made nearly every recipe on her site and in her books and there is room for fudging around the measurements to some degree. I wouldn't worry about being too precise. My kids can make a lot of the recipes just fine and they sometimes forget to level their spoons or cups--or they pack it in tightly. It all seems to work out in the end with yummy results!

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  15. This is my go-to pie crust recipe and it has never failed me! Thank you for such a great recipe. I use Trader Joe's almond meal and Anthony's arrowroot starch both with superb results. It makes wonderful little apple tarts/turnovers as well.

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  16. Can I use organic palm shortening?

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  17. This is a truly excellent pastry! I love pastry and I was very skeptical about making a grain-free one but you converted me. Absolute genius! Delicious!! I didn't have almond flour so I have consistently used almond meal and it still turns out beautifully. I have made this pastry about 6 / 7 times since I found your recipe. I have used itfor both sweet and savoury dishes and I have not been disappointed. Thank you so much for sharing this with us

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  18. Fantastic pastry! I was very skeptical about this crust because I have tried so many awful grain-free crust recipes but this is spectacular! I love pastry and this tastes and feels like a lovely wheat based pastry. It's great! I have used it to make an egg custard tart (sweet) and various quiches etc (savoury) - everything turned out beautifully! Thank you for sharing this excellent recipe!! I wil add that I didn't have almond flour, I used almond meal and it still turned out perfect. I also didn't roll the dough out, I just pressed it into my pie dish before sticking the whole lot in the freezer before blind baking - still turned out beautifully! Thanks again!!

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Thanks and Happy Cooking! ~Ali :)