EatAbout Blog | How to make 3-2-1 pie crust

While 3-2-1 pie crust may sound like a countdown for a weirdly named space mission, it’s not and also not as hard as one to accomplish! 3-2-1 is simply the ratio of flour, butter, and water.

This ratio is great for converting if you decide to make lots of pies or just an easy recipe to remember.

For 2, 22cm/9in pie crusts measure out the following:

  • 340g/12oz all purpose flour, cold
  • 230g/ 8oz butter*, cubed and very cold
  • 125g/ 4oz water, cold
  • 1 tbls. sugar or salt (optional)

*You don’t have to limit yourself to butter, you could try lard for a savory crust or shortening, or even a combination. I prefer butter for the flavor and flakiness.

The key to the perfect pie crust is keeping all your ingredients as cold as possible but not frozen. The most important is your butter or fat stays the coldest. For extra measure I even put my flour in the fridge too. As for tools, I have very warm hands so I prefer to use a bench scraper or pastry cutter, but you can use your hands.

You can either make the crust in a large bowl or on a cool counter top. I prefer the countertop method. Here we go:

The method for piecrust is called: rubbing method. You are going to rub or cut the butter into the flour.

You want to keep going until the butter and flour resembles a coarse meal texture.

Once you reach the coarse meal texture, make a well. Similar to making pasta (make sure to check out that easy and delicious recipe afterwards).

Fill the well with ⅛-¼ of the water. Then from the edges bring the flour and butter over the well and press down gently. Continue to go around the circle until the water is absorbed. Continue until use up the water.

Once you’ve finished your dough will look a little shaggy which is completely fine.

Now it’s time to allow it to rest. Form the dough into a disk and cover with plastic wrap in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or until firm. If you want to save time, cut the dough in half and separately wrap discs for easy rolling afterwards.

Keeping the dough in disks will make rolling them out much easier! :)

Once your dough has chilled - you are ready to (rock) and roll!

Do not rush chilling the dough, you want it colder than warmer. If you feel the dough is getting very warm place back in the fridge.

On a lightly floured surface, you want to start for the center and roll outwards to keep the form of a circle. This takes a little practice but this recipe is big enough that you will have excess.

Make sure your rolling pin is lightly floured too.

Once you’ve rolled it out, place in your pie dish.

Glass is the best, but ceramic or disposable works very well too!

Trim around the edges and tuck them in.

Then you can make whatever border you’d like! And dock (prick) the bottom of the crust.

Here are some websites that have great ideas:

You’ve done it! Easy as pie.

This is a great recipe for any kind of pie. I used it to make an easy apple pie.

For the filling I used:

  • 6 apples, peeled and sliced
  • 30 g of flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp cloves
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • 70 g brown sugar

Mix all ingredients together and coat the apples and place into prepared pie crust and cover with another pie crust.

Brush the crust with an egg wash and sprinkle some sugar on top.

Bake at 180C until filling bubbles and crust is golden about an hour.