Learn how to make the perfect vegan homemade pie crust with this easy step-by-step basic shortcrust pastry recipe. You can use this for crispy cookies, pies, tarts, quiches, cheesecakes, and more! It’s a versatile egg-less dough that can be made gluten-free and makes the perfect base for different baked goods, both sweet and fruity, as well as salty and savory.
I really enjoy using this simple basic shortcrust pastry for my recipes because it can be used in so many different ways so you can always make a delicious treat for any occasion! You can make a creamy no-bake tart to serve your family for coffee time or a rich vegan cheesecake for a summer picnic. When it comes to cozy fall and winter days, I love to make a hearty vegan quiche because it is perfect to use up leftovers. It is one of my absolute favorite comfort foods. It’s so handy to have a simple basic shortcrust pastry recipe on hand, isn’t it?
Easy Vegan Homemade Pie Crust
Unlike many traditional Pie Crust recipes, this shortcrust pastry is made without eggs or dairy butter so it’s very simple and completely vegan! Nevertheless, this easy pie crust is just as crispy and delicious as the non-vegan recipes. I recommend using vegan butter because it is crucial for the flavor and ensures the dough’s perfect consistency for easy handling. Alternatively, you can also use coconut oil or margarine, however, it can get a bit more difficult to roll it out.
Sweet or salty?
In the recipe card below, I added sugar for the sweet pie crust. However, you can also leave it out and add more salt instead to make a savory shortcrust pastry for a quiche! If you want to make sure everything is correct, check out my recipe for mushroom leek quiche or my vegan spinach quiche! The method is exactly the same.
If you like, you could also add some seasonings or herbs to your pastry dough to make it more exciting. For example, how about a little cinnamon for a vegan apple pie or oregano and rosemary for an heirloom tomato tart? Get creative!
Which baking dish?
This vegan shortcrust pastry basic recipe can be used for any pie dish, tart pan, springform pan, or whatever baking dish you prefer! This easy pie crust is sufficient for one 10-inch tart crust or one 9-inch pie crust to use as a base or as a top crust. However, you can also use a smaller pie dish, like in my best vegan pumpkin pie recipe, or instead of making one large tart, you can make several small tarts or mini pies in a muffin pan! Just make sure to adjust the amounts of the ingredients by using my baking pan conversion calculator.
How to store and freeze the shortcrust pastry
You can also prepare this vegan pie crust recipe in advance! Simply wrap it tightly in cling foil and keep it in the fridge for up to 5 days. It can also be frozen for 3 months, this way, you’ll always have a homemade vegan shortcrust pastry on hand that is free of palm oil, preservatives, softeners, or other additives and, therefore, much “healthier” than store-bought pie crust! When you take it out of the freezer, you can simply defrost it overnight in the refrigerator, and then it’s ready to use the next day.
Tip: If the shortcrust pastry has been in the fridge for a long time, it will probably be very hard when you take it out. Just leave it on your counter for a few minutes until it has softened a bit to work with it easily. Please do not try to put it in the microwave or oven, even if you are eager to bake your pie crust.
Tips for making the perfect vegan pie crust
If you want to have the perfect homemade pie crust for your recipe, there are 3 important things to consider:
Tip 1: Use cold ingredients
Using cold vegan butter and water will help the butter from not getting sticky. I usually cut the vegan butter into small pieces ahead of time. Then I put it back in the fridge to solidify again before starting with this recipe. If you use a kitchen machine with dough hooks attached, you can also use ingredients that have room temperature. In this case, simply mix the soft butter and sugar briefly using the dough hooks of your machine. Then add flour, salt, and some water if necessary. Mix everything briefly until it comes together. Finally, wrap the dough in cling foil as instructed in the recipe and refrigerate to solidify.
Tip 2: Do not overwork your shortcrust pastry
It is important to work quickly and only mix the ingredients until they just come together. Otherwise, the shortcrust pastry may become crumbly when you roll it out later. Furthermore, too much kneading releases gluten in the dough which can make the baked pastry tough.
Tip 3: Chill the dough well
Before further processing, the dough should be well chilled for the butter to solidify, and the sugar to dissolve. This makes the dough more stable so that you can work with it easier later. Furthermore, it ensures that the sides of your pie crust won’t shrink during baking.
What is blind baking?
Blind baking means that the shortcrust pastry is baked without an edible filling. Just like chilling, this step helps to ensure that the sides do not shrink down during baking. To weigh down your crust, you can use pulses such as dry rice, peas, lentils, beans, or pie weights.
Tip: If you use a flat tart pan, you don’t need to weigh down the shortcrust pastry during pre-baking! Just chill the tart pan with the dough in it very well before putting it into the hot oven!
How do I make gluten-free vegan shortcrust pastry?
If you are on a gluten-free diet or suffer from a wheat allergy, you will be happy because this pie dough can be easily made gluten-free! Simply replace the regular all-purpose or wheat or spelt flour with a gluten-free flour blend 1:1. However, I recommend adding an extra flax seed egg which helps the dough stick better together. To make a flaxseed egg, simply stir 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds into 3 tablespoons of hot water. Then set aside for about 5 minutes until it is gelatinous, similar to a regular egg. Alternatively, you could also use 3 tablespoons of applesauce or another egg substitute from a store.
How to make easy vegan pie crust
Step 1: Make the short pastry
Start by kneading all ingredients into a smooth dough with your hands. However, you can also use a food processor or a kitchen machine if you have any. Then form it into a flat ball, wrap it tightly in cling film, and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Step 2: Put the dough into the pan
After the chill time, roll out the dough between two layers of cling foil or parchment paper or simply on a floured work surface, whichever method is the easiest for you. Then lift the dough into your pan and press it firmly and evenly on the bottom and up the sides. Prick the bottom several times with a fork so that the steam produced during baking can escape, and the base does not rise.
Tip: If the dough has softened again during this time or if you want to continue with your recipe later, put the pie pan back in the fridge to keep it cold.
Step 3: Blind baking (optional)
If you want to pre-bake the short pastry, carefully line your prepared pie crust with parchment paper. Then fill it with dry pulses or pie weights. Now place your pan in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the edges are lightly golden brown.
Since the covered base often cannot be baked through because of the pie weights. After 15 minutes, carefully remove the baking paper with the pie weights. Then let the crust bake a little longer without the filling, about 10 minutes.
Once the vegan pie crust is ready, let it cool down completely before removing it from the pan. Finally, you can fill it with custard pudding cream or a cheesecake mixture according to your desired recipe!
This easy vegan homemade pie crust recipe is:
- Quick and easy
- Can be made gluten-free
- Does not require eggs
- Dairy-free (lactose-free)
- Suitable for sweet and savory recipes
- Perfect for many sweet vegan desserts or savory quiches!
Here are some delicious recipe suggestions for which you can use this vegan shortcrust pastry:
If you try this easy vegan pie crust recipe, please leave me a comment below sharing how it turned out! And if you take a picture of your pastry treat and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka to be sure I won’t miss your post! Enjoy!
Easy Vegan Pie CrustAuthor:
You do not have a fitting cake pan at hand right now? Try my Cake Pan Conversion Calculator!
- 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour or sub gluten-free flour*
- ¼ cup (50 g) sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ cup (120 g) vegan butter cold & cut into small cubes
- 5 tbsp cold water
- 2 tbsp non-dairy cream optional to brush the edges for shiny golden color
*Note: Please check out the video, step-by-step photos, and helpful tips for making the perfect pie crust in the blog post above!
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the cold cubed vegan butter and cold water. Knead with your hands until the dough starts to clump together (or use a food processor). Then transfer to a working surface and continue kneading until a smooth dough forms.
- Form the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic foil and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- After the chill time, roll out the dough between two sheets of cling wrap or parchment paper a little larger than your pan (see step-by-step photos in the blog post). Then use the foil or parchment to lift it into a 10-inch (25,5cm) tart pan (or 9-inch pie dish). Remove foil and press the bottom and sides firmly to form an evenly tart shell. (If your baking pan has a different size, you can adjust the quantities of ingredients using my cake pan conversion converter).
- Cover the pie crust and chill in the refrigerator until ready to use or continue immediately with the desired recipe. (You can make the dough up to 5 days ahead of time or freeze it, *see recipe notes).
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Prick the bottom a few times with a fork, then line the crust with parchment paper and top with pie weights (such as dry rice, beans, or chickpeas, *see tip/note below).
- Blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove tart from the oven and carefully lift out the parchment paper with the weights. Return the tart to the oven and bake until the bottom crust is golden brown, about 10 minutes longer.
- Let the baked crust cool completely before adding the filling. Enjoy!
- Gluten-free pie crust: You can sub gluten-free 1 to 1 baking flour. I suggest adding an additional flax-egg (stir 1 tbsp ground flax seeds into 3 tbsp hot water and set aside for about 5 minutes until jelly) to prevent a crumbly dough.
- Tip for blind baking: If you use a flat tart form, you don't need to weigh down the shortcrust pastry when blind baking! If you chill the pan with the dough in it before baking, the dough’s sides will not collapse. Just be sure that the dough is really well chilled!
- Make-Ahead Tip: You can make the pie dough in advance, wrap in foil, refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze it for up to 3 months. To thaw, store overnight in the refrigerator. If it is too hard after chilling, just leave it on the counter for a few minutes until it has softened a bit to work with it easily.
- Nutrition information is calculated for 1 serving of 12.
- Please read my blog post for helpful tips and additional information about this recipe.
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