Pumpkin Pie with No-Shrink Crust

Pumpkin Pie with No-Shrink Crust

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 105 minutes
  • Servings: 8 to 10

Fearful of making piecrust? You’re not alone. Even if you’ve never made one from scratch, you can whip up a pie like a pro with this recipe, which features a foolproof dough that’s not only sturdy and easy to roll out but is also guaranteed not to shrink in the oven. It’s the creation of Christopher Kimball, founder of Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street, who spent years perfecting the recipe. If you’d like to add a fanciful finish, prepare a second batch of dough and use it to make cutouts in autumnal shapes using decorative piecrust cutters. Bake the cutouts on a baking sheet until golden brown, about 10 minutes, then arrange them on top of the pie cooked after it has cooled.

Ingredients:

For the no-shrink pie dough:

  • 3 Tbs. water
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 cup (5 oz./155 g) plus 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 10 Tbs. (1 1/4 sticks) (5 oz./150 g) cold salted butter, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) pieces
  • 2 Tbs. sour cream

For the pumpkin pie filling:

  • 2 1/2 cups (20 oz./625 g) pumpkin puree (from about 1 1/2 cans, each 15 oz./470 g)
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz./105 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 whole eggs plus 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 Tbs. bourbon
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped, seeds reserved
  • Whipped cream for serving

Directions:

  • To make the pie dough, in a small microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the water and cornstarch. Microwave until set, 30 to 40 seconds, stirring once halfway through. Chill in the freezer for 10 minutes.
  • Once the cornstarch mixture has chilled, in a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt and process until combined, about 5 seconds. Add the chilled cornstarch mixture and pulse until the cornstarch mixture is evenly distributed, about 5 pulses. Add the butter and sour cream and process until the dough comes together and begins to collect around the blade, 20 to 30 seconds. Pat the dough into a 4-inch (10-cm) disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days. (If the dough is chilled for more than a few hours, it will need a few minutes on the counter to soften before rolling.)
  • When ready to bake, position a rack in the middle of an oven and preheat to 375°F (190°C). On a well-floured work surface, roll the dough into a 12-inch (30-cm) round. Drape the dough over the rolling pin and transfer to a 9-inch (23-cm) pie dish. Gently ease the dough into the dish by lifting the edges while pressing down into the corners of the dish. Trim the edges, leaving a 1/2-inch (12-mm) overhang, then tuck the overhang under itself so the dough is flush with the rim of the dish. Crimp the dough with your fingers or the tines of a fork, then chill in the freezer for 15 minutes.
  • To blind bake, line the chilled crust with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights. Bake until the edges are light golden brown, about 25 minutes, rotating the dish halfway through the cooking time. Remove the foil and weights and bake until the bottom of the crust just begins to color, another 5 to 7 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for 1 hour before filling. (Once baked and cooled, the crust can be wrapped in plastic wrap and kept at room temperature for up to 2 days.)
  • Meanwhile, make the pumpkin pie filling: In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add the flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg and whisk until smooth. Add the eggs and egg yolks and whisk until combined. Add the cream, bourbon, lemon juice and vanilla bean seeds and whisk until smooth. Pour the filling into the cooled piecrust.
  • Place the pie dish on a baking sheet. Bake until the filling is set, about 1 hour and 15 minutes, covering the edges of the crust with aluminum foil if they brown too quickly. Transfer the pie dish to the wire rack and let the pie cool completely, about 4 hours, before serving. Cut into slices and serve each with a dollop of whipped cream on top. Serves 8 to 10.
  • Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen