What if I told you that making gluten free pies can not only be easy, they can be fun to make, turn out beautiful and be flaky and delicious? Would you try it? Well today is the day to conquer your fear of baking pies and learn how to make gluten free pies and have success every time! Not only that enjoy Mama’s delicious recipe for Dairy Free Pumpkin Pie, perfect timing for Thanksgiving!
The first problem to overcome is fear and fear itself. Don’t worry, I used to be afraid to make pies too, fearing a disaster or complete failure. Making regular pies with wheat flour can be challenging, as overworking dough can cause a tough crust that shrinks and is hard to manipulate. With gluten free pies, I have heard that people struggle with rolling out the dough or achieving a decent texture. I talk to many people and they say that either they can’t do it or won’t even try. Over the weekend, I taught a class at the National Gluten Free Expo on how to make an easy gluten free pie crust and dairy free pumpkin pie. Then at my booth I gave people the opportunity to practice rolling out the dough, transfer it to a pie pan and flute the edges. What people found out was with my simple tricks and techniques and a little practice they can make pies too. It was great to see the excitement in their faces as they began to think about baking pies for the upcoming holiday season. I even had several young children as young as age four giving it a try. I was amazed to see the confidence in the children and their attention to detail.
One little girl Macie was so excited to make her pie. She carefully listened as my daughter Lexie and I gave her instructions. She rolled her dough out just perfectly. Macie had watched my class before coming to my booth so she already knew what to do. During the class I showed the group a few fun fluting ideas to make your pie edges look extra pretty. Macie wanted to do the spoon technique. It’s super easy, you take the top of the spoon and press it in to the edge of the pie, covering the whole egde of the pan. Then you move the spoon slightly to the middle of the edge and press again, creating a double indentation and it looks beautiful. See the pics below. I just thought is was so special that this young girl only four or five years old, paid so close attention in my class and then wanted to try it herself. It is never too young to start teaching kids to bake and helping them find joy in baking. So here is my new motto. If Macie can do it, so can you!
First, please read Mama’s Gluten Free Pie Guide for all the tips on rolling out dough.
Here are a few basics for now.
1. Start with a good recipe. Mama’s cookbook, In the Kitchen with Gluten Free Mama has several pie crust and quiche crust recipes. Or use Mama’s Pie Crust Mix, which makes it even easier!
2. Decide if you are making it with dairy or dairy free. If you are making it dairy free, you can replace the butter with dairy free margarine, coconut oil, or spectrum shortening. If using the margarine or coconut oil, partial melt it in microwave for 20-30 seconds. I recommend spectrum shortening because it is non-hydrogenated, made with palm oil and soy free.
3. When preparing dough you will add cold water. Don’t be afraid to add 1 Tbsp. at a time extra water until you get a nice moist dough ball. You want it to be like the texture of playdough, but more moist. If it crumbles, it needs a little bit more water. Everyone’s house is a little different temperature, so sometimes you will only need 8 Tbsp. water sometimes you will need more. With pie crust it is okay to use more.
4. Roll out dough between two pieces of wax paper that have been lightly sprayed with cooking oil. This helps achieve a nice evenly rolled out dough, and prevents the sticky, gummy mess of using a rolling pin directly onto the dough.
5. Be sure to cover the edges of the pie when baking so they don’t burn. You can do this by using a pie ring, but I find it easier and more successful to just make a ring with foil, or place foil gently over the top of the entire pie about 15-20 minutes after baking.
6. Remember this: If you mess up, it’s easy to make small repairs. Don’t worry, nobody will see your repairs or ever know. Also, if you roll it out and it just falls apart or doesn’t work. Just take it and form it into a nice dough ball again, add a teaspoon or so of water, work it in and start over. Simple as that. You can not overwork gluten free pie dough. If you notice any gaps or tears in your crust, just take some excess dough from the overhang and gently press it into the gaps filling them in. Simple as that!
Fluting the edges. Fluting the edges of your pie makes the pie just look a little extra special. You don’t need to be an artist to make it look great. After transferring the pie crust to your pan, trim the edges of your crust leaving about 1/2 inch over hang. Fold the crust under and pinch it, forming it into a mountain or slightly thick edge. Some fluting ideas.
1. Take a fork and just use the edges and press into the crust all the way around the edge of the crust.
2. Take your second and third finger and place them on the inside of the rim and place your thumb on the opposite side and squeeze together. Repeat. This will create a scalloped edge.
3. Take the edge of your pinky finger and gently press into the dough at an angle all the way around the edges creating a wave like design.
4. Take a spoon, with the tip facing the center of the pie, press the spoon into the dough with the edge at the inside edge of the rim. Then move it back in the same spot about 1/4 inch, pressing gently again. Repeat all the way around. This makes a beautiful decorative edge.
5. Roll out extra dough. Using miniature cookie cutter, cut out shapes like leaves or apples and press the cutouts centered on the rim in sets of two or three, leaving a few gaps if desired around the edge of the pan. Be sure to not let the edge of the cutouts hang to far over, because they could break when removing pie from oven.
Check Mama’s Pie Crust Tips in the Page Section for up close look at different fluted edges.
You can see how to make the dough, roll out the dough, transfer the dough and flute edges on my video from the National Gluten Free Expo that was in Salt Lake City October 11, 2014. This is an annual show and they also have other locations now too. For more info on the expo go to www.glutenfreeexpo.com
Click Here to Watch Mama’s Pie Crust Video Presentation. (Please note it will take about 30 seconds to load the video.)
Now let’s make a Gluten Free Diary Free Pumpkin Pie! This is a super easy recipe and it tastes delicious. So instead of evaporated milk or condensed milk, we are going to use coconut milk. You can certainly use Silk or So Delicious Coconut Milk from the dairy section at your supermarket. I like to use the canned coconut milk from the Asian aisle at the supermarket. Gently shake the can before opening. The reason I use the canned is that it contains all the fat or thick creamy parts of the milk and it will add a scrumptious creamy texture and rich flavor to the pumpkin filling. Either will work fine though for this recipe. Be sure to use pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie mix. Pumpkin puree is the purest form and no spices or additives have been added. If you don’t need to be dairy free, then follow the pie crust instructions as written on the Mama’s Pie Crust Mix or the recipe in my book. If you do need dairy free, use Spectrum Shortening in place of the butter or dairy free margarine. The spectrum shortening will make it more flakier and you may find you like it better, where the butter sticks will make the crust a little crunchier in texture, but not much. No need to tell anyone this pie is dairy free, because it is so good they will never know!
1 bag of Mama’s Pie Crust Mix or 1 gluten free pie crust
2 cups pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 1/4 cups coconut milk (preferably canned coconut milk)
3/4 cup brown sugar or sucanat
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 400 º.
In a mixing bowl, add all the ingredients. Using a whisk, mix well. Pour into prepared pie shell. Depending on the size of your pan you may not need all of the batter. Allow the batter to go just to the top of the inside rim, so it doesn’t overflow.
Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees. Cover edges with foil or gently place a foil tent over the pie covering all the edges and being sure not to let it touch the pumpkin mixture. Bake for 45-50 minutes. You know its done with the center doesn’t jiggle when shaken. Remove from oven. Allow to cool completely.
Now you can do this too! Pick up a bag of Mama’s Pie Crust mix at a store near you or order from www.glutenfreemama.com or use Mama’s Pie Crust and Pie recipes in her cookbook. Please be sure to take a picture and send us your final creations! GFMrecipes@gmail.com
Items that make this recipe easier
1. Mama’s Pie Crust Mix or Cookbook
2. Rolling Pin
3. Wax Paper
4. Spectrum Shortening
5. Coconut Milk, Canned
6. Glass Pie or Ceramic Pie Pan
- 1 bag ofMama’s Pie Crust Mix or 1 gluten free pie crust
- 2 cups pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/4 cups coconut milk (preferably canned coconut milk)
- 3/4 cup brown sugar or sucanat
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- Preheat oven to 400 º.
- In a mixing bowl, add all the ingredients. Using a whisk, mix well. Pour into prepared pie shell. Depending on the size of your pan you may not need all of the batter. Allow the batter to go just to the top of the inside rim, so it doesn’t overflow.
- Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees. Cover edges with foil or gently place a foil tent over the pie covering all the edges and being sure not to let it touch the pumpkin mixture. Bake for 45-50 minutes. You know its done with the center doesn’t jiggle when shaken. Remove from oven. Allow to cool completely.