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Sourdough Pie Crust

Sourdough Pie Crust, where have you been all my life? This pie crust is tender, flaky and tastes amazing. This just might become your go-to pie crust recipe. This recipe uses an entire cup of sourdough discard.

closeup shot of a pie showing the flaky sourdough pie crust

If you’re a sourdough-bread baker, you know how painful it is to throw away a whole cup of hard-earned yeasty goodness every time you need to replenish your starter. This recipe is a great way to use that discard to make an incredible pie crust.

If you don’t already have one, I can show you how to make a sourdough starter and how to feed a sourdough starter.

Why Sourdough Pie Crust is so good:

  • Sourdough discard does amazing things for the flavor and texture of a basic flaky pie dough.
  • Sourdough starter is acidic. Acidic ingredients tenderize gluten. Sourdough discard helps keep this pie crust tender.
  • As the crust bakes there is a tiny bit of lift from the natural yeast in the sourdough starter. I find that lift helps make the crust even flakier as the air pockets in the dough poof up a bit and separate the layers of dough.
  • Sourdough Pie Crust smells amazing as it’s baking in the oven. The yeasty, bready smell is totally tempting.


ingredients for sourdough pie crust in glass bowls.

Ingredient Notes

  • Flour – This recipe uses a mixture of all purpose and cake flour. All purpose flour will give the dough enough structure so it can hold the flaky texture and a small proportion of cake flour will help keep it tender. In a pinch, you can use bleached AP flour and get good results.
  • Fat – I like to use a mixture of half vegetable shortening and half butter. The vegetable shortening has a higher melting point and keeps the crust from slumping as it bakes. The butter is, well, delicious! You can use all vegetable shortening for a vegan pie crust or all butter if that’s your preference. I sometimes use leaf lard in my pie crust. If you have that available you can use it in place of the shortening.
  • Sourdough Discard – This recipe was developed using a 100% hydration starter. That means the starter is fed with equal weights of starter, flour and water. You may need to adjust the amount of starter in the recipe based on the moisture level of your starter.

How to make Sourdough Pie Crust

  • Whip the whites to full peak. Whisk in the yolks and vanilla.
  • Sift the over the batter and gently fold it in.
  • Fold just until all the flour is incorporated. Do not overmix.
  • Pipe the cookies onto the prepared baking sheet into 4″ long x 2″ wide “fingers”.
  • Lightly sprinkle the tops of the cookies with powdered sugar.
  • Bake until light brown and spongy about 10-12 minutes. Cool completely.
a spatula coated with custard.
  • Cook the custard over medium/low heat, stirring constantly, until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  • Pour the custard into a clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold.
  • Sandwich the ladyfingers with the preserves.
  • Cut a ladyfinger sandwich in half, lengthwise.
  • Stand the ladyfingers on end, with the cut side to the outside of a glass trifle bowl. Continue cutting and arranging the ladyfingers until the entire perimeter of the bowl is lined with a “striped” pattern.
  • Use half of the remaining uncut cookies to the line bottom of the bowl. You can break them up to fit pieces into any gaps between the cookies.
  • Sprinkle a ½ cup of the sherry over the cookies on the bottom and sides of the bowl. Pour half of the custard into the bowl. Arrange the remaining cookies over the custard and sprinkle with the remaining sherry.
  • Pour the other half the custard into the bowl.
  • Top the trifle with whipped cream and refrigerate at least 6 hours (preferably overnight) before serving.
a bowl of flour with slices of butter scattered on top
  • Mix the fat in two stages.
  • First mix in the shortening, then toss in the slices of cold butter.
a cup of sourdough discard pouring into a bowl of pie dough mix
  • Add the sourdough discard to the flour/butter mixture.
  • There is no other water in the crust other than the water in the starter.
a spatula mixing a bowl of sourdough pie dough
  • Mix with a spatula until the dough starts to come together.
a hand mixing sourdough pie dough
  • Use your hands to gather the dough together until the all the loose flour is mixed in.
a hand holding a ball of sourdough pie dough
  • Gather the dough into a “shaggy” mass.
  • Do not knead, just gently gather the dough together.
a packet labeled sourdough pie crust
  • Wrap the dough and refrigerate for several hours or over night before rolling.
  • This will give the flour time to absorb the water in the dough.
a sheet of dough for sourdough pie crust on a work surface
  • The bits of butter and a little lift from the starter will help form the flakes.
a slice of pear pie with sourdough crust on a plate

I used Sourdough Pie Crust to make a sensational Vanilla Pear Pie and the best Chicken Pot Pie ever.

Since you’ve got your starter fed, peruse the entire list of My Best Sourdough Recipes. Have fun!

I know you hate to throw away that sourdough discard. Check out these recipes that use sourdough discard.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

a closeup of a pie made with sourdough pie crust
Print Recipe
4.55 from 135 reviews

Sourdough Pie Crust

A Perfect Pie Crust is a thing of beauty. The addition of a little sourdough discard adds an intriguing depth of flavor to a basic pie dough.
Prep Time10 minutes
Chilling Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 10 minutes
10 servings


  • 7 ½ oz all purpose flour (1 ½ cups (see note))
  • 3 ½ oz cake flour (⅔ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 4 oz vegetable shortening (or leaf lard, cold)
  • 4 oz unsalted butter (very cold and sliced into ¼" thin slices)
  • 8 oz sourdough discard (1 cup (100% hydration))


  • Combine 7 ½ oz all purpose flour, 3 ½ oz cake flour, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar. Whisk together to mix the ingredients evenly.
  • Using your fingers, cut 4 oz lard or shortening into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse corn meal. Using your fingers, toss 4 oz unsalted butter into the flour mixture. Allow the slices of butter to break up into slightly smaller pieces into the flour. Work quickly so the butter doesn't get warm. Don't break the butter down completely. There should be some large flakes remaining.
  • Pour 8 oz sourdough discard onto the flour all at once and toss to combine. Gently press the dough just until it comes together. It will look a little dry in spots. The moisture will redistribute in the dough as it rests.
  • Wrap the dough and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours before using.


My Book
Kitchen Scale
Pyrex Glass Pie Plate 
Rolling Pin

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I based this recipe on my starter which is fed with equal weights of starter, flour and water. You may need to adjust the amount of starter in the recipe based on the moisture level of your starter.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 237mg | Potassium: 60mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 853IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!
Recipe Rating


Saturday 11th of November 2023

Yum! Loved the texture and tasted perfect!


Saturday 24th of September 2022

I'm SO EXCITED about this!! The kids picked 80000 apples this past weekend that are calling out to be made into your maple apple pie. One question, I see another commenter mentioned whole wheat absorbing more water. My starter is 100% hydration whole wheat...does that effect anything when using AP and cake flour in the recipe? The sourdough world is new to me !

Eileen Gray

Sunday 25th of September 2022

So you'll be using a whole wheat flour discard to make this crust? That shouldn't be a problem. I make a whole wheat pie crust and it has a nice texture. If the dough seems dry after you add the discard just sprinkle a little more water over the dough while mixing it together.

Donna Reardon

Wednesday 24th of November 2021

Hi, I'm making this for my pumpkin pie. Do I need to prebake the pie crust?

Eileen Gray

Thursday 25th of November 2021

For pumpkin pie I would blind bake the crust so it doesn't end up soggy.


Monday 22nd of November 2021

Any suggestions for doing this with a wheat-free discard? My daughter loves pies and I’ve made her a wheat-free starter but it’s a lot thicker than the normal one even though I do the same ratio of ingredients. I made this recipe over the summer with the regular discard and it was so good, I wanted to use it for pumpkin pie this week, but I feel bad not letting her eat the crust (it’s my favorite part!) Thanks!


Thursday 25th of November 2021

It was extra crumbly so I added more water (not sure how much, a few splashes until it seemed good). I did have to mix it more though because I didn’t realize how crumbly until after I took it out of the fridge. And I had run out of shortening which is hard to get here (in the UK) so used more butter. Daughter had a taste as I was transferring her mini pies to another container and she said it was good, so it probably turned out fine. In future, I will just add some more water at the start. Thanks again!


Wednesday 24th of November 2021

@Eileen Gray, yeah, it does. It’s not gluten that’s the problem (common mix-up, you can actually have one without the other!)

About to give it a try! We’ll see how it goes. She usually eats most things without complaining, so that’s good.

Eileen Gray

Monday 22nd of November 2021

Hi Kim, sorry I don't have experience with wheat free recipes. Maybe someone else can make a suggestion? Would the entire recipe have to be wheat free?


Wednesday 13th of January 2021

Hello! I'm a huge sourdough starter fan and am so happy I found your website! One of my cookbooks is a book all about bacon and one of the recipes in the cookbook calls to use clarified bacon fat to make a pie crust. I'd love to make a pie crust using both sourdough starter and bacon grease! In your opinion, do you believe replacing the vegetable shortening for clarified bacon fat (cold) could work?

Eileen Gray

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

Yes. I almost always use leaf lard instead of vegetable shortening when I make pie dough.