In the world of pie-making, the question of whether or not you can refrigerate pie crust overnight comes up often. I will answer this and any other questions you might have about the topic of pie dough making in this blog post. This question comes up a lot in the holiday season when time and oven space are at a premium. Let me put your mind at ease in this regard.
Pies are some of my favorite things to make, so I have a lot of experience testing and perfecting recipes. I am so excited to pass this on to you and hope you will find it helpful and useful in your pie-making.
Can you refrigerate pie dough overnight?
YES! I like to chill mine for at least 2 hours, but most of the time when I am prepping to make pies, I will make the dough the day before. Chill it in the fridge until I am ready to use it.
With all the pie dough I have made, I have never worked with a pie dough that could not be refrigerated overnight, and I have worked with plenty of recipes.
The important thing to note about making pie dough is you want the butter to stay chilled until it hits the hot oven. The pockets of melted butter create the perfect flaky pie crusts you want.
Can you chill unbaked pie crusts in the fridge overnight?
You sure can! Just as above, when I am prepping for a busy day of baking, I will often make the pie dough ahead of time. If I am going to be really busy, I will chill the dough, then roll it out, form it in the pie plate, and store it in the fridge overnight. This will work for homemade pie crust as well as store-bought pie crust. Both can be rolled and chilled overnight.
How to chill an unbaked pie crust overnight
The process is really simple, let me walk you through it step-by-step.
Start by rolling out your chilled pie dough on a floured surface. I like to roll mine about 2-3 inches larger than my pie plate.
Form it into the pie plate and press to secure it in the pan. You can either fold under the excess or trim it off. Crimp the edges as normal.
Move the pie crust to the fridge in a place where it won't get bumped or dented.
Once it has chilled and is hard, you can also wrap it with plastic wrap to keep out smells. For extra protection, you can also wrap it in aluminum foil.
You can hold it like this overnight and up to 2-3 days.
How to blind bake a pie crust
Blind baking a pie crust is a crucial technique used to partially or fully pre-bake the crust before adding the filling. This is often done to prevent a soggy bottom crust in pies with wet fillings or custard pies. Here's a step-by-step guide:
- Prepare the Pie Crust: Roll out your pie crust on a floured work surface, and place it in a pie dish, ensuring it's well-fitted to the edges.
- Prick the Crust: Use a fork to gently prick the bottom and sides of the pie crust. This helps prevent air bubbles from forming while blind baking.
- Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to the temperature specified in your pie recipe. Most pie crusts are blind-baked at 375°F (190°C) or according to your specific recipe's instructions.
- Prepare Parchment Paper: Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to cover the entire pie crust. Place it gently over the crust, ensuring it fully covers the dough.
- Add Pie Weights: Pour pie weights (or your chosen alternative) onto the parchment paper, evenly distributing them across the entire crust. Make sure they reach the edges to prevent the crust from shrinking during blind baking.
- Blind Bake: Place it in the preheated oven.
- Partial Blind Baking: Follow your pie recipe's instructions for blind baking. Most recipes require a partial blind bake, which means baking the crust without a filling for a specified time, usually around 15-20 minutes. The crust should start to set and become slightly golden.
- Remove Weights and Paper: Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven, and using oven mitts or kitchen tongs, lift out the parchment paper with the pie weights. Be cautious, as the weights can be hot.
- Finish Baking: Return the empty pie crust to the oven for a few more minutes (usually 5-10 minutes) to allow it to finish baking and develop a golden-brown color. This step ensures that the crust is fully cooked when the filling is added.
Favorite pie dough recipes
I have several pie dough recipes to share with you on the blog:
How to make whole wheat pie dough- This is the base recipe I use ALL the time. It is made with a blend of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour and is everything a good pie crust should be. To me, this recipe yields the perfect pie crust. It makes enough for a double-crust pie- as do all these other recipes. In this post, I will also walk you through in a very concise way how to create the perfect pie dough the first time and every time. It is so much simpler than you might think!
Spelt pie crust- If you are looking for a pie crust that is light, flaky, and made with ancient grain flour? This is the pie crust recipe you are looking for.
Buckwheat pie dough- This is a gluten-free recipe that is made with whole-grain buckwheat flour. It is a little trickier to work with, but still so good!
3-ingredient pie crust- This recipe is an all-white recipe that uses only 3 ingredients- most you probably have in your fridge and pantry to begin with.
Do you need to grease a pie pan?- This is not a how-to-make pie dough post, but all about whether or not you need to grease your pan.
How to cut a pie- this is another informational post. If you are new to pies and wondering how to slice them, let me show you how I do this.
Creating the perfect pie dough
My pie dough-making posts will cover this in more detail, but here are the basics of making a really great pie dough. This can also be done with a food processor. Or if you don't want to use any special equipment, this can also be done with frozen butter and a grater. More on this in the linked pie dough recipes above.
- Chill Ingredients: Ensure your butter is very cold, and have ice water ready.
- Combine Dry Ingredients: Whisk together all-purpose flour and salt in a mixing bowl.
- Cut in Butter: Add the cold, cubed butter to the flour mixture and cut it in until it resembles coarse crumbs with pea-sized pieces of butter. You can do this with a couple of knives, a fork, or with a pastry cutter. This can also be done in a food processor.
- Add Ice Water: Gradually add ice water to the dough, one tablespoon at a time.
- Gently Mix: Stir the dough until it just comes together; do not overmix.
- Form Dough: Gather the dough into a ball, divide it if making a double-crust pie, and wrap it in plastic wrap.
- Chill: Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes before rolling it out for your pie crust.
How long can you keep the unbaked pie crust in the fridge?
The storage duration for unbaked pie crusts in the refrigerator can vary slightly depending on whether you're working with a homemade pie crust or a store-bought one. Here are general guidelines for both:
Homemade Pie Crust: You can store an unbaked homemade pie crust in the refrigerator for approximately 2 to 3 days. It's important to keep it well-wrapped in plastic wrap or placed in an airtight container to prevent it from drying out or absorbing other odors from the fridge. If you need to store it for a longer period, you can freeze it for up to 2-3 months. Be sure to thaw it in the refrigerator before using it.
Store-Bought Pie Crust: Store-bought pie crusts often come with "use by" or "best by" dates on their packaging. It's advisable to follow the manufacturer's guidelines for the specific expiration date. Typically, they can be stored in the refrigerator for a similar duration as homemade ones, which is around 2 to 3 days. Again, it's important to keep them in their original packaging or wrap them tightly in plastic to maintain freshness.
Remember that the key to keeping unbaked pie crusts in good condition is to minimize exposure to air and moisture, whether they are homemade or store-bought. If you need to store them for an extended period, consider freezing them for the best results and longer shelf life.
Why is my pie crust hard after refrigeration?
If your pie dough made with butter becomes hard as it chills in the refrigerator, it's likely due to the butter solidifying. Butter contains a significant amount of fat, and as it cools, it becomes firm.
If it is already shaped into your pie pan, no worries, proceed with the recipe as directed.
If it is your pie dough that has hardened, don't worry or stress about this. I simply set it on the countertop for about 10-15 minutes at room temperature to soften it slightly to work with.
Favorite pie recipes
- Cherry pie recipe to feed a crowd- This recipe is designed when you are feeding a crowd. It is made with a cherry pie filling from frozen cherries.
- Chocolate pecan pie- This is a really tasty variation of the classic pecan pie we all know and love.
- Apple blueberry pie- Another twist on a classic- classic apple pie.
- Blueberry pie- This is a blueberry pie that is not runny. If you are looking for a blueberry pie recipe where the filling is a little more firm, I've got you!
- Coconut cream pie with chocolate pie- maybe you want a no-bake pie that is really easy to put together? This is it!