Store-Bought Pie Dough Showdown: Do Any Compare to Homemade?
[Editor's Note: Are you a homemade crust user or a store-bought crust user? In this post from our archives, I put some store-bought crusts through their paces (and updated the prices for 2013). --Julie]
I never buy frozen pie crusts in the pan, because the crimps are too perfect and pie is just not really pie if it looks like it was made by machine. And I I never buy dry mix, because if I'm going to dirty the mixer anyway, I'm might as well go full cherpumple. (I really want to bring that phrase into the lexicon; it's too good not to try.)
This cat likes store-bought crust. Image: pmarkham via Flickr.
But I have been known to buy refrigerated or frozen pie dough. Rather often. It's not that pie crust from scratch is hard (though it's picky), but it does require advance planning, refrigeration time and the dirtying of several bowls and such. And if you're like me, it also makes your workspace look like a giant snow globe. I'm not so tidy with the flour.
Of course, store-bought crusts are built to withstand the trip from factory to store to fridge to pie pan -- they're not going to have that delicate balance of flakiness and tenderness and workability that makes for crust nirvana. On the other hand, no snow globe. It's a personal choice.
So for science, I test-drove the three refrigerated pie crust doughs I found in the three grocery stores closest to my house.