A gluten free oat flour pie crust recipe made simple without the need for special flour blends. Instructions include the methods for making by hand and also in a food processor.
I have a wildly popular recipe for the Best Gluten Free Pie Crust here on the website. It’s been around for awhile and truly tastes the most like a traditional (gluten full) pie crust. (For those not sensitive to gluten, I highly recommend my all butter pie crust that I dubbed No Excuses Pie Crust because it is made in a food processor.) As tasty as my other gluten free pie crust recipe is, I’ve been playing around with ingredients with the hope of creating a gluten free pie crust recipe that does not require expensive specialty flour blends. I generally prefer oat flour in place of those specialty gluten free flour blends when baking. Oats impart such a lovely, nutty flavor to baked goods, and the mouth feel is anything but gritty. So oat flour was where I began the process.
And boy, let me tell you, this was a process. I’m not too proud to say that it took eight different trials before nailing down the right proportion of ingredients for this recipe. EIGHT! For the Pie Girl!
Part of that process was because I want to be able to easily roll out a gluten free oat flour pie crust on a lightly (oat) floured surface, just as I would a traditional pie crust. I don’t want to fuss with rolling the dough between two pieces of parchment that may or may not want to peel away when it comes time to fill the pie plate. Sticky pie crust can be a real bummer.
If you don’t like to roll out pie crust, no worries! This recipe can also be “pushed in” to the pie plate as you would a graham cracker crust.
What’s in a gluten free oat flour pie crust?
Well, it begins where all good things do–with copious amounts of butter! Other simple ingredients like gluten free oat flour, cornstarch, granulated sugar, salt and iced water also make an appearance. I had the most success when testing the recipe using Bob’s Red Mill (gluten free) Oat Flour. The fine grind makes for the softest, flakiest texture. I also was successful in making the crust vegan, using Earth Balance Buttery Sticks.
Can’t I just grind my own oat flour?
Of course you may. I also test the recipe by grinding Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Oats into a fine powder to make my own oat flour. If you choose to grind your own gluten free oat flour, I do caution you to use old fashioned oats, ensure the oats you choose are gluten free, and also that the resulting flour is finely ground.
What’s up with the cornstarch?
Since the recipe for gluten free oat flour pie crust is, well, lacking gluten to hold it all together, the cornstarch acts as a binder. I tried various amounts cornstarch, xanthan gum, and arrowroot powder to act as a binder in the recipe. In my experience, straight up cornstarch yields the best texture and ease of rollability in the finished product. That said, you may substitute arrowroot powder 1:1 for the cornstarch in the recipe if you prefer. Just know that the arrowroot makes the dough a tad trickier to work with. I do not recommend using xanthan gum in this application.
Assemble the gluten free oat flour pie crust but cutting the butter into the dry ingredients before adding the water. Once you get the big clumps seen in the upper right photo of the collage, go ahead and gently smoosh it all together to form a ball. Press the ball into a disk, and wrap tightly in plastic wrap before chilling in the fridge for 30 minutes.
OR take the easy way out and follow the instructions to make the gluten free oat flour pie crust in a food processor in half the time. You do you, Boo.
Once the dough has been sufficiently chilled, roll it out, nestle it into a 9-inch glass pie plate, fill & bake it according to your favorite pie recipes. The resulting gluten free oat flour pie crust has a rustic shortbread texture with a slightly nutty flavor that pairs well with most any recipe.
Gluten free pie crusts are not as flaky as a traditional pie crust made with (gluten full) wheat flour. Gluten free pie crust does not behave in exactly the same way. Also, gluten free pie dough is more fragile. A little cracking when transferring the crust to a pie plate is normal. The dough also dries out quickly. If the dough will be sitting out while the filling is prepared, cover it with a damp paper towel.
This recipe was developed using Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Oat Flour. I cannot guarantee success of this recipe using different gluten free oat flour.
Cornstarch is a gluten free food. Be sure to carefully read all labels to ensure that the product you are buying is clearly labeled gluten free in order to avoid possible cross contamination.
Chilling the water with ice is to aid in keeping the butter as cold as possible while making the pie crust. STRAIN the ice out of the water before adding it to the recipe. Even the tiniest shard of ice will wreak havoc on a pie crust.
When baking in tempered glass pie plates, I place them on a light color, stainless steel baking sheet for baking—doing so ensures the bottom of the pie is cooked thoroughly. Nobody wants to eat a soggy pie!
This recipe can be made vegan by substitution Earth Balance Buttery Sticks in place of the butter.