When you make a pie crust from scratch, it is always a good idea to over estimate how much dough you will need. You want to be sure you will have enough pie crust dough to cover your pie pan, and there is plenty you can do with leftover pie crust dough.
So, make a double batch, cover that pie pan and then try out a few of these things that you can do with the extra pie crust you made.
1 – Make a Top Crust
While your pie may not call for a top crust, you may want to consider adding one, especially if you already have extra crust. A top pie crust is mainly decorative but it can serve a few important baking functions as well.
If you cover your pie in a full crust, meaning it is completely covered in one solid sheet of crust, the top crust will lock in steam as your pie bakes. This can help your pie filling stay nice and juicy rather than drying out. This can benefit sweet pies as well as savory pies. For example, if you are baking and apple pie and have no top crust or covering over the apples, they will dry out, have browned ends and may not be as tender as you would like. If you put a top crust over the apple pie, the apples are protected from the direct heat, the steam is trapped and the result is a juicy pie that will make your mouth water.
Another benefit of using a top crust on your pie is purely for taste. Everyone loves pie crust so why not add some more! Now, your delicious pie crust is not only on the bottom but also on the top! No one will be able to resist that pie!
To use your leftover pie crust dough as a top crust, roll the dough out on a floured work surface making it large enough to cover your unbaked pie. Brush the edges of the pie crust in the pan with some egg wash then lay the rolled-out dough across the top of your pie, pinching the edges together to seal the top crust with the bottom crust. Bake as your recipe indicates then enjoy!
2 – Cinnamon Sugar Snacks
One of the easiest and most delicious ways to use leftover pie crust is to make cinnamon and sugar snacks. These snacks are especially great when you are waiting for your pie to bake and need a little treat to hold you over!
Begin by rolling out your leftover pie crust on a floured work surface. Then, in a small bowl, mix together some cinnamon and sugar, using a 1:4 ratio (if there is 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, add 4 teaspoons of sugar). Sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar mix over the pie dough evenly.
To make cinnamon strips, simply cut the seasoned dough into the desired size strips, place them on a lined sheet tray and bake until they are just turning golden brown around the edges (this will probably take about 10 minutes depending on the thickness of your dough).
If you want to make cinnamon and sugar rolls, roll the rough up as if you were rolling a sleeping bag- start at the bottom and evenly roll the dough upward. You can bake the dough in a solid, rolled up log at this point or you can cut the log into 1 inch slices to bake. Both options will be delicious!
3 – Mini Quiche
Leftover pie crust dough is perfect for making mini quiches. Roll the dough on a floured work surface and then cut it into circles that are slightly larger than your mini muffin tin. Press the dough circles into each individual muffin tin hole, pushing the dough against the sides. Pour unbaked quiche filling into the pie crust lined muffin cups and then bake until the egg is set in the center (about 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven).
These mini quiches are not only a great way to use leftover pie crust but also a fantastic appetizer to serve at a party where your pie will be featured.
4 – Pigs in a Blanket
Another delicious appetizer that uses left over pie crust is pigs in a blanket. If you are unfamiliar with these tasty treats, they are essentially mini hot dogs wrapped up in a buttery, flaky crust. Sounds great, right?!
Roll out your leftover pie crust on a lightly floured work surface and then cut triangles that are about one inch wide at the bottom and about three inches high. Place the mini hot dog at the bottom of the triangle and roll it upward, enclosing it in the dough. Place the rolled hot dog on a lined sheet tray with the triangle point underneath the hot dog. Brush with a light egg wash then bake until the pie crust is golden brown. Serve while warm with your choice of sauce!
5 – Jelly Empanadas
Empanadas are almost like a mini handheld pie. While you can find empanadas with all different fillings, from savory to sweet, the easiest empanadas you can make are filled with jelly. Your leftover pie crust will be the perfect holder for the yummy jelly filling!
Roll your pie crust out on a floured surface then cut it into circles. Any size circle will do but try to keep them smaller than 3 inches or they get a little too big to hold and eat easily after they bake.
Brush the edges of the pie crust circles with a light egg wash and then place a scoop of jelly in the center of the dough circle- any flavor you want! Fold the circle in half, enclosing the jelly inside the pie crust. Place the empanada on a lined sheet tray and then use a fork to press the edges of the empanada closed, sealing the jelly inside. Bake until golden brown and serve once cooled.
6 – Nut Cookies
If you love nutty cookies then you will love pie crust cookies! Chop up some of your favorite nuts (peanuts, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts…anything will work!) and press them into the leftover pie crust, kneading the dough slightly to really mix the nuts in well.
Flatten the dough on a floured work surface using your hands until it is about ¾ in thick. Use a cookie cutter to cut out the cookies and place them on a lined sheet tray. Bake until the edges are just turning brown- the center may still look a little soft but that is okay! Remove from the sheet tray and allow to cool for a few minutes and then enjoy!
7 – Ice Cream Topping
An easy way to use your leftover pie crust and really make it last is to simply roll it out, bake it until it is golden brown then crumble it up into small pieces. These pie crust pieces are perfect for sprinkling on top of ice cream and they will keep well if stored in an air tight container. A gourmet ice cream topping ready for you anytime!
8 – Freeze the Crust
If you have enough leftover pie crust dough to make another full pie, roll it out, press it into a pie pan, wrap it well and then freeze it. Pie crust freezes exceptionally well and will keep in the freezer for about three months.
Next time you are ready to make a pie, just pull out your crust, let it thaw at room temperature and then use it as if it were fresh. Having an extra pie crust on hand will definitely save you time in the future!
9 – Cheese Crackers
While many of these ways to use leftover pie crust were sweet options, you may be looking for a savory way to use your dough. If that is the case, cheese crackers are what you should make!
Roll out your dough so that it is about 1/8 of an inch thick. Sprinkle the dough with some grated parmesan, asiago cheese or plain cheddar. Any hard or semi hard cheese will work (if you can grate it, it will be perfect!).
Cut the crackers into your desired shape and then move them to a lined sheet tray. Bake the crackers until the edges begin to brown and the cheese is nicely melted. Serve once cooled or store the crackers at room temperature in an airtight container. They will last about a week when properly sealed but don’t worry, they never stick around that long- they are too delicious!
As you can see, there really is no such thing as leftover pie crust as there is always something you can do with that dough! Try one of these ideas or try them all- you will never worry about having too much pie crust ever again! Happy baking!