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No-Stress All-Butter Pastry Crust

No-Stress All-Butter Pastry Crust 2.000

Goran Kosanovic for The Washington Post

Book Report Jul 25, 2017

Pastry chef Stella Parks introduces this recipe in her “Bravetart” cookbook thusly: “If you can fold a napkin, you can make old-fashioned pie crust – no food processor, no pastry knife, no vodka." Most important, she says, there's no cracking or tearing.

Make Ahead: The dough needs to rest in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight. It can be frozen for up to 3 months; defrost overnight in the refrigerator.

Storage Notes: If the temperature in your kitchen can rise above 73 degrees, first refrigerate the rolling pin and dry ingredients. If needed, chill down the work surface with a bag of ice cubes.

2 pie crusts or 1 double crust for a 9-inch pie

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 2 pie crusts or 1 double crust for a 9-inch pie

  • 1 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon (8 ounces) flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt
  • 16 tablespoons (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) cold water

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Sift the flour into a medium bowl; if using cup measures, spoon it into the cup and level with a knife before sifting. Whisk in the sugar and salt, then add the butter. Toss to break up the pieces, then smash each cube flat.

Stir in the cold water and knead to form a dough that comes together in a ball.

Generously flour a work surface. Sprinkle the dough ball with more flour, then roll it out to a rectangle of 10 by 15 inches, adding more flour along the way, as needed.

Slide an offset spatula under the dough to loosen it, as needed, then fold each 10-inch side toward the middle so the edges meet, and close the packet like a book. Fold in half, top to bottom, then divide in half.

At this point, If it is warmer than 72 degrees in your kitchen, you may want to refrigerate the dough for 15 to 20 minutes before proceeding.

Roll one portion of the dough into a 14-inch round. Brush off any excess flour, then drape the dough over a 9-inch glass pie plate, nestling it into the corners. Trim the excess to a 1 1/2-inch overhang all around, then fold it toward the middle to create a 3/4-inch border that sits atop the rim of the plate, ensuring that the pie crust can hold plenty of filling.

Pinch or press into whatever decorative edge you like. Repeat with the remaining dough, or wrap it for freezing later.

Wrap the pie plate in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, or up to overnight.

To bake the crust, preheat to 350 degrees. Line the chilled pie crust with a large square of aluminum foil, pressing it flush against the dough and letting the excess hang over the sides. Fill to the brim with sugar, a no-waste alternative to traditional options such as rice or dried beans.

Place the pie plate on a baking sheet; bake (lower rack) for about 1 hour, until fully set and golden brown. Carefully lift out the foil; once cooled, the sugar can be reused in any recipe.

If the sides of the pie crust seem pale, return to the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Let cool to room temperature; use right away, or wrap in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 24 hours.

Recipe Source

Adapted from “BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts,” by Stella Parks (W.W. Norton, August, 2017).

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per 1/8 crust: 160

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 12g 18%

Saturated Fat: 7g 35%

Cholesterol: 30mg 10%

Sodium: 90mg 4%

Total Carbohydrates: 12g 4%

Dietary Fiber: 0g 0%

Sugar: 0g

Protein: 2g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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