Rich, flaky, amazingly delicious vegan pie crust that’s made from coconut oil! Use this easy crust in just about any pie recipe. It’s even freezer-friendly!
Every time I post a pie recipe I get people asking me for a pie crust recipe. My answer is usually to buy one at the store. Lots of store-bought pie crusts are vegan! Not all of them, mind you (watch out for butter and lard in particular). But in my experience, finding a vegan pie crust at any old supermarket isn’t hard to do.
But I totally get the fact that maybe you want a rustic homemade pie crust. Or maybe you’re not into some of the ingredients found in those frozen pie crusts. Fair enough! So I finally came up with a homemade version.
My vegan pie crust is made with coconut oil. When it comes to making pastry, fats that are solid at room temperature work best. So you could also make a vegan pie crust with vegetable shortening or vegan butter. I don’t cook much with vegetable shortening though, and with vegan butter you’ve got all kinds of variables to deal with (like moisture content) depending on what brand you use. So coconut oil made the most sense to me.
Also, coconut oil makes a really delicious, perfectly flaky vegan pie crust. So that’s why I picked it!
Pie crust is actually pretty darn easy to make. I kind of feel a little silly using the store-bought stuff all those years.
You only need four ingredients to make this vegan pie crust: flour, salt, coconut oil and water. A day or so before you get started, check to make sure your coconut oil is solid. It melts just above room temperature, so unless you keep your house pretty toasty, it’s probably good to go this time of year. If you find it’s liquid (or even partially liquefied), stick it in the fridge for a bit, and then take it out a half hour or so before baking time, so it’s not too hard to work with.
Also, make sure your water is nice and cold. Cold water helps keep the fat (in this case coconut oil) solid, so your crust comes out nice and flaky.
Make the Dough
Start by stirring the flour and salt together in a mixing bowl. Next, add your coconut oil and cut it in. I used a pastry cutter to do this, but if you don’t have one, try a fork or take a couple of knives and criss-cross them through the chunks of coconut oil to literally cut it into smaller pieces. The pieces slowly get smaller and smaller, all the while becoming coated with flour.
Eventually, your mixture should look like fine crumbs. When you get to that point, start stirring in your water, a tablespoon at a time, just until the mixture forms into a dough that holds together. At this point I usually start mixing it with my hands.
Shape the Crust
Once you’ve got a nice ball of dough formed, roll it out to make your crust. I use an inverted pie plate to measure: you want the dough to extend an inch or so past the edge of the plate. Turn the plate over and lay the dough in the plate. Trim any excess dough from around the edges using a knife or kitchen shears.
Crimp the edges of the crust however you like. I like to make little V’s using my fingers, but you can also crimp it with a fork if you prefer.
From here, it depends on what you plans for your vegan pie crust are:
- To save it for later, seal it up in a freezer bag and freeze it.
- For a no-bake pie, poke a few holes in the bottom, then line the crust with parchment paper or foil. Fill it with some rice, dried beans, or pie weights, and bake at 400° for about 30 minutes, until it’s golden and flaky.
- For baked pies, follow your pie recipe instructions, which may or may-not require pre-baking the crust before filling.
Tips for Making Perfect Vegan Pie Crust
- Make sure your coconut oil is solid. This is super important for a flaky crust. If it’s not solid, chill it until it is.
- And make sure your water is cold. Put a few ice cubes in it.
- The crust will shrink a bit when you bake it, so leave a little more dough than needed to cover the edges of the pie plate when you trim it. Just a tiny bit is fine — 1/8 inch should be plenty!
- Can this recipe be made with whole wheat flour? Yes, but I recommend using whole wheat pastry if you go that route. Regular old whole wheat flour might make the crust a bit on the grainy side.
- Can this recipe be made gluten-free? I’m afraid I’m not sure! Instinct tells me that an all-purpose gluten-free blend would work just fine, but I haven’t tried so I’m not certain.
- Does the crust taste like coconut? I can’t taste the coconut in there, but I’m also not terribly sensitive to the taste of coconut. If you are, try using refined coconut oil.
Vegan Pie Crust (Made with Coconut Oil!)
Rich, flaky, amazingly delicious vegan pie crust that's made from coconut oil! Use this easy crust in just about any pie recipe. It's even freezer-friendly!
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (solid state)
- 4-6 tablespoons ice cold water
Stir the flour and salt together in a large mixing bowl. Add the coconut oil.
Use a pastry cutter (or alternatively a fork or a couple of butter knives) to cut the oil into the flour. Continue until the mixture resembles fine crumbs.
Stir one tablespoon of cold water into the mixture at a time, just until the mixture begins to hold together and form a dough.
Continue mixing the dough until smooth, using your hands if needed.
Roll the dough into a ball and transfer it to a lightly floured work surface.
Use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough out. Keep rolling the dough into a circle until it's about an inch greater in circumference than the top of your pie plate. You can invert the pie plate on the rolled dough to measure.
Carefully drape the dough inside of the pie plate, pressing it in so it conforms to the inside of the plate.
Trim any excess dough from around the edges. Crimp the edges of the dough if you like.
Fill and bake the dough according to your pie recipe, or seal it up in a bag and freeze it for later.