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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.

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. Yes, it is convenient and satisfying to use the discard in this recipe rather than tossing it in the trash. But that’s not why you should make this recipe.

Make this recipe because that little bit of sourdough discard does amazing things for the flavor and texture of a basic flaky pie dough.

If you don’t have one, you can learn How to Make a Sourdough Starter. Then I can show you how to Feed and Maintain Sourdough Starter or How to Keep a Small Sourdough Starter.

Why Sourdough Pie Crust is so good:

  • Each time you “feed” your sourdough starter you need to discard a portion of that starter. Obviously, this recipe is a great way to use sourdough discard.
  • I based this recipe on my starter which is fed with equal weights of starter, flour and water (that is 100% hydration). You may need to adjust the amount of starter in the recipe based on the moisture of your starter.
  • Sourdough starter is acidic. Acidic ingredients tenderize gluten. Sourdough discard helps keep this pie crust tender. No one likes a tough pie crust.
  • 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.

Scroll through the step by step photos to see how to make Sourdough Pie Crust:

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.
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 extra 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

Sourdough Pie Crust

Yield: 2 crust pie
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chilling Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

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.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups (7.5 oz, 210g) all purpose flour (see note)
  • 2/3 cup (3.5 oz, 100g) cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (4 oz, 115g) vegetable shortening, cold
  • 1/2 cup (4 oz, 115g) butter, very cold and sliced into 1/4" thin slices
  • 1 cup (8 oz, 224g) sourdough discard, see note (100% hydration)

Instructions

  1. Combine the all purpose and cake flour with the salt and sugar. Whisk together to mix the ingredients evenly.
  2. Using your fingers, cut the shortening into the flo7aur mixture until it resembles coarse corn meal. Using your fingers, toss the 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.
  3. Pour the 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.
  4. Wrap the dough and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours before using.

Notes

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.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Ryan

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.

Jenn

Saturday 28th of November 2020

I'm 'babysitting' the sourdough starter from work and need some discard recipes to try. This looks simple and delicious. Is it possible to make without the shortening, just substitute more butter? Thanks!

Eileen Gray

Saturday 28th of November 2020

Yes!

Alexandra Moellmann

Tuesday 6th of October 2020

Looks good and I'm about to try your recipe. But why perpetuate the myth that you need to discard starter? Sure there's a period in the beginning when it makes sense not to feed the whole developing starter, but after that, there's no reason to throw any starter away. Just keep the amounts small and then there's no waste. Make more if you want unfed starter.

Eileen Gray

Tuesday 6th of October 2020

There are a million ways to make and keep starter. For those who prefer not have less discard I recommend keeping a small starter.

Alison Wotherspoon

Friday 11th of September 2020

This recipe sounds great! I’m making a Savoury pie do i newsroom add the sugar or could I reduce the amount of sugar?

Eileen Gray

Saturday 12th of September 2020

The sugar doesn't make the crust sweet, just helps with tenderizing and browning. I always use the sugar even for savory pies.

Timesaflyin

Tuesday 8th of September 2020

Am I overlooking the directions for baking this crust? I don't see a recommended time or temperature. My recipe uses a store bought crust.

Eileen Gray

Tuesday 8th of September 2020

I don't include baking directions here because the time and temperature will be specific to the recipe you are making. Use the time and temperature listed in the recipe, even if it uses store bought crust. The time will be shorter is you're using an aluminum pie plate and longer if you're using ceramic or glass. What type of pie are you making?

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