We've really been trying to eat healthy lately. After all, bikini season is nearly upon us. But amid kale salads, cold-pressed juice, and raw everything, sometimes you just need a piece of pie or two. This week, we gave in and decided to whip up a batch of this legendary pie dough in prep for a pie feast this weekend. This recipe yields a flaky, tender, buttery crust that we think is unmatched. The secret to success? Just a little taste of ice-cold vodka. It gives the dough enough moisture to come together without adding extra gluten-boosting water, which can make the dough overly chewy. Plus it's super easy! 


Yields enough dough for one 9'' single pie crust. Note: we tripled the recipe in the photos, so don't fret if you have less dough.

  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into cubes
  • 1/4 cup chilled solid vegetable shortening, cut into 2 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vodka, cold
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
Pie Crust Step 1.jpg


1.  Process 3/4 cups flour, salt, and sugar together in a food processor (or with a handheld or standing mixer with a whisk attachment) until combined, about 2 one-second pulses.

2. Moving very quickly to prevent melting, chop butter into small cubes. If butter begins to soften, place it back in the refrigerator for a few minutes to return it to a very cold temperature.

Pie Crust Step 2.jpg Pie Crust Step 3.jpg

3. Add butter and shortening and process until dough begins to clump together, about 10-15 seconds (depending on the temperature of your fats, your dough may resemble sand-like curds, or come together in doughy clumps. There should be no uncoated flour). Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl with a spatula.

4. Add remaining 1/2 cup flour and mix until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and the large mass of dough has been broken up into little smaller masses of dough.

Pie Crust Step 4.jpg Our clumpy dough.

Our clumpy dough.

Pie Crust Step 6.jpg

5. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Don't be alarmed if dough appears much more wet than what you're accustomed to with pie dough. It should look quite sticky. Flatten dough into 4-inch disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

Pie Crust Step 7.jpg

We'll admit: it's hard to put this delicious slab of dough in the fridge and not cook it up into a pie right away. But it's so much better if you let it chill overnight. Stay tuned to find out what we decide to put IN the crust next week. We're thinking seasonal fruit! 

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