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Decorative Pie Crust Edges
pie crust

Creatively decorating the edge of a pie or using pastry cut-outs on the top of the pie are really very easy and can make your pie a blue ribbon winner! No matter whether you make a two-crust apple pie or a single-crust pumpkin or lemon meringue pie, you can use your imagination for creating decorative pie crusts once you master some of the basic techniques. Remember to use the basic butter Pie Crust recipe.

Here are some easy ways to decorate the edge of a pie.

Fluted or Ruffled Edge

No special tools are needed.

1. Trim crust so it hangs over the edge of the pan approximately 1 inch. Fold the edge of the pie crust under and pinch the edge to make the crust edge even and so it stands up.

pie crust

2. With the thumb and index finger of one hand, pinch the edge of the crust. Press down between the two fingers with the index finger of the other hand.

pie crust

3. Repeat this process around the edge of the pie at about ½-inch intervals.

Rope Edge

(This looks similar to the fluted edge but I think it is easier. This is the decorative pie crust edge I usually make.)

1. Trim pie crust so about ½ inch hangs over the edge of the pie pan when you make a single-crust pie. If you make a double-crust pie, consider letting about 1 inch of pie crust hang over.
2. Fold the edge of the pie crust under and pinch the edge to make it even and so it stands up.
3. Make a fist with one hand. Working from the top and the outside of the pie crust press your thumb at an angle into the pie crust edge. I push the crust down slightly on the pan edge.

pie crust

4. Repeat this action at about ½-inch intervals all the way around the edge of the pie.

Forked Edge

(Only a simple tableware fork is needed. This is the easiest technique to use for a decorative pie crust edge. It works best for a single-crust pie.)

1. Trim the pie crust so it is even with the edge of the pie pan.

pie crust

2. Using the tines of a lightly floured fork, press the edge of the crust to the edge of the pie pan.

pie crust

Note: A variation of this technique is to press a lightly floured fork into the pie crust, but at 1 inch intervals all the way around the crust.

Leaf Edge

(Use small cookie cutters to cut out pastry to decorate the edge of the pie, such as leaves, hearts or apples. This technique is best for a single-crust pie.)

1. Prepare a double-crust pie crust recipe. Roll out the first crust and place it into the pie pan. Trim the crust so it is even with the edge of the pie pan.

2. Roll out the remaining dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out shapes, using 1-inch to 1 ½-inch cookie cutters.

pie crust

3. An extra decorative touch is to cut veins in the leaves. Draw lines with a paring knife on the leaf cut-outs. Be careful to not cut through the dough.

pie crust

4. Brush the edge of the first pie crust lightly with water. Lay the leaves, overlapping slightly, onto the crust edge and press down gently.

pie crust

5. Cover the pie crust edges with foil or a pie shield so the edges don’t overbrown.

Perfect a creative technique for decorative pie crust. It will be your special touch and with practice it will be as easy as pie!


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• Comments •

My pie crust comes out nice and flakey, doesn't tear when move it to the pie plate, taste great, but when I take it out of the oven the fluting has disappeared. I use the Ruffles edge, it looks great when I put it in the oven, but when it has finished baking it is a smooth rounded edge and the Ruffles have just about disappeared. I just made a pumpkin pie with a new recipe and wanted to do a test run before the big day and the same thing happened. I put the unbaked fluted pie in the freezer for about 20-30 while I made the filling, took it out of the freezer, filled it and put right in the oven, same rounded edge, any suggestions?

Posted Nov 13 2015 by Ethel
Test Kitchen Comment


Hi Ethel, it may be that you are a light flour measurer (like me). If the ratio of flour to butter is off, it can melt down in the oven like you described. Next time you make a pie, try adding a tablespoon or two of flour to your crust mixture and see if that helps. Happy baking!
Posted November 17, 2015

What I need is how do you bake a pie crust without the filling, mine always shrink and you help me.

Posted Nov 21 2011 by Yolanda Perez
Test Kitchen Comment


Yolanda, Prepare the crust by rolling it out and placing it into the pie pan. Be careful not to stretch the dough as you put it into the pan. Form the crust using any of the decorative edges described in this article. Then prick the bottom of the pie crust all over with a fork to allow steam to escape as the pie crust bakes. Before placing the pie crust into the oven either place pie weights into the bottom of the pie shell to keep the crust in place or place a sheet of aluminum foil into the pie crust, lining the inside of the crust. Then pour uncooked rice or beans onto the foil. Bake the pie crust as directed. Cool the pie crust and remove the rice or beans and the foil. It should be ready to fill with your favorite cream-type pie filling.
Posted November 21, 2011

thank you for pie crust recipe will have to try it

Posted Oct 26 2011 by nellie diaz
Test Kitchen Comment


I do hope you experiment and use a creative edge on a pie soon. It is fun to do and you will receive many positive comments.
Posted October 27, 2011

I like the leaf edge pie!

Posted Oct 19 2011 by deb Bee
Test Kitchen Comment


Isn't that fun! Being creative and using interesting crust edges on a delicious pie makes the pie taste even better!
Posted October 21, 2011

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