Jill is an avid writer, gardener, photographer, DIYer, and cook.
It's not vinegary at all!
Vinegar pie crust doesn't taste vinegary at all, but it is light and flaky. My mother-in-law calls it a "no-fail" recipe, and I have to agree: it's hard to ruin. You (and your children) can play with the dough as much as you like. It won't get tough. And if you make a mistake, you can wad it up and roll it out all over again. You can even patch it—no harm done.
Vinegar must be one of the most versatile products on earth.
- You can use highly concentrated vinegar straight out of the bottle to kill weeds.
- You can mix ordinary household vinegar with water to create an inexpensive window washing agent.
- Add 3 tablespoons of vinegar to a gallon of water, and you have an effective organic treatment for fungal diseases on plants.
- And vinegar blended with olive oil makes an excellent wood polish.
Amazingly, vinegar tastes good too, adding zip to salads, dressings, and marinades. And it is a key ingredient in a no-fail homemade pie crust.
Vinegar pie is an inexpensive alternative to lemon pie and a great dessert for times of year when fresh, local produce is scarce. Many versions of vinegar pie exist. The no-nonsense recipe below is from Grit magazine. It makes one thick 8-inch pie or one thin 9-inch.
Why Make Your Own Crust?
Frozen pie shells taste more like cardboard than crust, and refrigerator pie crusts (although better) aren't exactly flaky. But pie crust made with vinegar is both flaky and flavorful.
Once you get the knack of rolling it out, you'll find that it's almost as easy a wrestling a frozen crust out of the bag or unrolling Pillsbury's best. And it definitely tastes better.
- 3 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cup Crisco or other shortening
- 1 egg, well-beaten
- 5 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- Blend together the flour and salt.
- With a fork, two knives, or a pastry cutter, work the shortening into the flour mixture until it resembles little peas.
- Mix together the egg, water, and vinegar, then add this to the flour mixture and mix thoroughly.
- Divide the dough into two balls.
- Begin working with the dough balls immediately, rolling them out into two pie crusts on a floured towel, pastry mat, or board. (You don't have to chill them.) You should have enough dough for two 8-inch pie shells.
- If desired, fill with vinegar pie filling (see the recipe below).
Quick Tips for Making Vinegar Pie Crust
- To easily transfer rolled pie crust into the pan, drape it over the rolling pin and then gently unroll it over the plate.
- If making a double-crust pie, don't bother to flute the bottom shell. Instead, simply use a sharp knife to cut away the excess dough.
Recipe for Vinegar Pie With Meringue Topping
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 cup hot water
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 eggs (separated)
- 1 8-inch pie crust (baked)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- Mix the first five ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir constantly until the mixture becomes thick and clear. Remove from heat.
- Stir a small amount of the hot mixture into the beaten egg yolks. (Don't add too much too quickly--you'll scramble the eggs!) Return it to the saucepan and cook two minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool. When the mixture is lukewarm, pour it into the baked pie shell.
- Mix 1/4 cup sugar, cream of tartar, and egg whites until stiff. Spread over pie to the edges.
- Bake 10-12 minutes at 325 degrees until lightly browned.
A Quick Meringue Tutorial from CookingSkills.com
© 2011 Jill Spencer
frogyfish from Central United States of America on June 22, 2015:
This is a larger recipe than my usual not-made-often pie crust, but your recipe for crust and filling both are quite tempting. I really like the 'can't over-handle it' part too. Thanks for a great sharing here...and I liked your mention of Grit, too.
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on June 17, 2015:
Hey FatBoyThin. Thanks for stopping by. You'll have to try this recipe just for a change. If you make good pie crust the ordinary way, this will be a snap for you. (: All the best, Jill
Colin Garrow from Inverbervie, Scotland on June 17, 2015:
I love pies and my usual pastry is pretty good (if I say so myself), but I've never heard of using vinegar in a pie crust before. However, I'll try anything once. Great Hub, voted up.
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on October 21, 2012:
2patricias, this is the easiest pie crust recipe I've ever made, mostly because you don't have to be careful in how you handle it. Hope you give it a try! --Jill
2patricias from Sussex by the Sea on October 21, 2012:
I've never tried this - neither the crust nor vinegar pie.
I shall have to give it a go.
Meanwhile, I am adding this to my Recipe Index for HubPages.
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on July 13, 2012:
@ jamesLyn -- Hope/glad you like it. This pie crust is really good with apple filling. Thanks for commenting.
jamesLyn@ on July 12, 2012:
ahm! the pie delicious !!!!!!!.......,,,,,,,
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on January 04, 2012:
Thanks, mathira. Hope you have a chance to try it. Not only is vinegar pie crust good, but it's really simple to make. Thanks for reading & commenting! Take care, TDF
mathira from chennai on January 04, 2012:
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on December 01, 2011:
Hey Peggy! Vinegar pie tastes a lot like lemon pie, so if you like that, you'll probably like vinegar pie. Thanks for commenting! DF
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on November 30, 2011:
I have heard of using vinegar in a pie crust but have never made it. For the few times in an entire year that I might make a pie, I use an oil crust recipe. This does look simple and nice to know that it turns out flakey. Up, interesting and useful votes. What does vinegar pie taste like?
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on November 23, 2011:
Thanks for commenting, North Wind. I'm glad you stopped by. Have a great holiday, DF
North Wind from The World (for now) on November 23, 2011:
I agree that this is useful. I am always looking for easy ways to make pie crusts! I am glad I happened upon this hub!
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on November 23, 2011:
Frogyfish, this one is easier in my opinion, simply because you don't have to fool with making anything hot or cold. I don't chill the dough because I think it's harder to roll out that way with this recipe, but you can. I can never get the fluting to look quite as pretty with this recipe because the dough is thicker, but it is flaky. If you're looking for super easy, go with this one!
frogyfish from Central United States of America on November 22, 2011:
Flaky, and you don't have to chill it? Doesn't get tough. Yea! I just came from your hot water crust but I like this easier one...Do you prefer one over the other? Am bookmarking this one too! Thanks!
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on November 22, 2011:
Hope this recipe works for you, RedElf. Don't chill it--and if you have to refrigerate the dough, let it sit for a bit before you do roll it out. Have a great holiday! DF
RedElf from Canada on November 21, 2011:
My sister has great luck with the "No-Fail Pie Crust" recipe, but it actually fails for me. I use my dad's recipe. I will have to try the vinegar pie though - most intriguing!
Jill Spencer (author) from United States on November 17, 2011:
Thanks, Celie! Glad you commented.
Shelly, I have no idea about the gluten free flour. I've never used it. I guess you could halve the recipe & try it! Thanks for stopping by. DF
Shelly McRae from Phoenix, Arizona on November 17, 2011:
This sounds pretty easy. Do you think it's possible to do it with gluten free flour mix?
Celiegirl on November 17, 2011:
Great hub! I will definitely be using the info and recipes. Thanks!