Amish Flaky Pie Crust Recipe – Never fail pie crust

Amish pie crust

Perfectly Flaky Amish Pie Crust

Who doesn’t love a delicious piece of pie with a good flaky crust? This flaky Amish pie crust recipe is easy to make, and it’s the only one you’ll ever need.

 There are so many delicious kinds of pie you can make. And I love them all, as pie is one of my favorite desserts. But one of the keys to a good pie is a flaky crust.

I will be posting some delicious recipes for pies that I grew up eating, some of them are very unique to the Amish.

Amish eat lots of homemade pie with Amish pie crust

My mom would frequently bake pies and they never lasted long with twelve of us in the house to devour them. 

We didn’t have pie every day though like some of my cousins did. My Amish aunt used to bake shoofly pie every week. Because they served it every morning as dessert, along with their breakfast of meat, eggs, hash browns, toast, or whatever else they might have.

 Growing up on a farm, everybody was up early doing chores. And by 7:00 everyone had a hearty appetite for a big breakfast. 

Amish Food

Three specifically unique kinds of pie are famous among the Amish in the Lancaster, Pennsylvania area. They are shoofly pie (click here for recipe), apple Schnitz pie (recipe here), and minced meat pie.

 If you’ve never tried them, you’re missing out. Although I will admit that some of the foods we ate and loved, others would say that you’d have to acquire a taste for it. 

 There are several foods that I loved growing up. But when I talk to my kids about it, they think it sounds very disgusting :).

  It is well known though, that most Amish ladies are good cooks. And there’s nothing quite like the taste of a good home-cooked meal.

 Back to my crust… How to make flaky Amish pie crust using lard

flaky pie crust
Amish flaky pie crust

Some might say that there’s an art to learn, to make a good pie crust, and feel intimidated to try it. But it’s really not that difficult if you know a few tips: (Do not over mix and use ice-cold water). So, get adventurous, and give it a try. You’ll be a pro in no time.

Mix your flour, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. Add lard, Crisco, or whatever shortening you choose to use. Using your hands or a pastry blender, mix until crumbly. Make a well in the center, add ice cold water and gently mix/squeeze together. Do not mix more than necessary to get the crumbs all sticking together.

Divide dough into 3 balls. Place a thin layer of flour on your clean countertop. Put one ball of dough on it, press dough into a circle, and dust the top with flour. Now using a rolling pin, gently roll from the center outward to create a round disc about an inch or so larger than your pie pan.

You can lift and fold in half, gently transferring to your pan. Lift the edges so the center can fall into the sides of the pie pan. Trim the edges with a knife. Now you can leave it as it is or crimp the edges for a neat appearance.

Fill with your favorite filling and bake according to directions on your recipe. I usually like to bake my pies in the bottom half of the oven, so my bottom crust gets crisper and the top is not too browned.

Crisco Pie Crust or Lard and Butter Pie Crust?

I typically use lard to make my pie crust, because it tends to create a more flaky crust. But butter does give it a better flavor. So I started using a combination of lard and butter. I think of the three fat choices typically used in pie crust, shortening is probably the last choice I would make. It doesn’t produce as much flavor and tends to not be as flaky.

This is an Amish Never Fail pie crust recipe.

Flaky Amish pie crust

Flaky Amish Pie Crust Recipe

This flaky, tender crust is the perfect vessel for your favorite pie for the holidays. But then again, who needs to have a holiday to enjoy a delicious piece of pie?
The Amish have some unique flavors of pies that they are famous for. But they all start with a crust. If the crust is no good, it affects the whole pie. So, for any pie recipe, you can come back to this simple crust.
Prep Time 25 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Amish
Servings 3 9″ pie crusts


  • 4 cups flour
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups lard, shortening, or butter
  • 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 cup ice cold water


  • Mix flour, sugar and salt in large bowl.
  • Add lard, butter, or shortening, whichever you decide to use; and blend in with your hands or pastry blender until crumbly. It doesn't matter if there's still little pebbles, you just don't want them any larger than pea size.
  • Gradually add ice cold water, and form into ball. If it looks like it will be too dry, just add a bit more water. You want it wet enough that it will stick together. But do not over mix.
  • Divide into 3 balls. Dust your counter top with flour and place your ball of dough onto flour. You can spread a bit with your hands, then dust the top with flour as well. Using rolling pin, roll into a round disc, just a couple inches larger than your pie plate. You'll want to start in the center and roll outward, just applying a little pressure as you roll. And rotate around in a circle to get it nice and round.
  • If it wants to stick to your counter, just lift the crust, sprinkle more flour under it, and continue rolling.
  • Place into your pie pan, carefully lifting the edges so that the center can be lowered into the edges of the pie plate; then using a knife, you can trim around the edges.
  • Now you can just leave it as it is, or lift the edges a bit and crimp them, to give it a more decorative touch. Then fill with your favorite filling and bake according to instructions.
  • Yields: 3 9" pie crusts or two double crust pies



The secret to a flaky crust is not over mixing. After adding the water, you want to gently mix, only until everything sticks together. If it seems too crumbly, simply add a bit more water. But do not mix more than absolutely necessary to get all the crumbs incorporated.
 You can literally use any shortening you have on hand. I like to use lard as it seems to produce a more flaky crust. Butter gives it a great flavor, but you may find a slight difference in the outcome. I often use a mixture of lard and butter.
With the trimmings that you cut off the edges of your pie pans,  you can make another smaller pie crust.
This recipe makes enough for 2 double-crusted pies. The bottoms need to be bigger than your pan, but the tops only need to be 9″. 
* Edited to add the measurements if you are wanting to make only one pie crust…
1 1/4 c. flour, 1 Tbs. sugar, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/2 c. lard, 1/3 c. ice-cold water (This should make one 9″ pie crust.)
Keyword Amish Pie Crust Recipe, Flaky Amish pie crust recipe, Flaky pie crust, How to make pie crust

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13 thoughts on “Amish Flaky Pie Crust Recipe – Never fail pie crust

    1. I always use mine right away. If you do refrigerate it, let it come back to almost room temperature before filling. If I want to work ahead, I usually mix the crumbs, and then wait till I’m ready to make it to add water.

  1. Hi Anna ,
    I was wondering if you had a recipe for boiled apple dumplings . My Mom used to make them & we would eat them with warm milk & of course , sugar. I`m assuming the apples inside were sprinkled with sugar & cinnamon , maybe butter ?? I haven`t had one in 50 years !!
    Thank you

    1. I have a recipe for baked apple dumplings. I’ve never heard of boiled apple dumplings. If you type apple dumplings into my search bar or look at my list of recent posts, you will find my apple dumplings recipe.

    1. I bake my pies in the bottom half of the oven (place my rack just below the middle). It helps to get a good bottom crust and prevents top from browning too much.

    2. I was wondering is that salted butter or unsalted I am making your pie crust this morning for apple pie and pumpkin pie and could double the the pie crust I’m making this for my boyfriend’s parents and she was telling me how she loves Amish Apple pie 🥰 what do you mean by the pie crust has a different taste with the lard and butter together

      1. Butter gives a little different flavor than using just lard. I use both. I use salted butter for everything, but I don’t think it would matter to use either one.

  2. Will you be posting pie recipes? One day I will have to try and make a pie crust..I usually just buy them pre made.

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