Pillsbury Pie Crust – A Conflicted Review

I never thought it would come to this. I actually went to the store and bought ready-made pie crust.

WP_20160213_21_00_38_Pro[1]The things a blog drives you to do.

I’ve been making my own pie crust ever since I was a teenager, when for some odd reason I decided I wanted to learn how to make pies.

Each weekend, I would take one of Mother’s cookbooks and set to it. At first I made cream pies, as they were easiest. Eventually I graduated to fruit pies. The tricky part was always the crust, but that never bothered me because I was learning, you see? I knew that in time it would come to me, and eventually it did.

Since that time, I have never used a ready-made pie crust. Until I bought one for you, dear reader, to help you feel easier about making Barbara’s Triple Berry Pie, when I wrote this post.

You’re welcome.

And what did I think of the crust? I, who only makes it from scratch?

Look! Over there! Is that a spaceship? Or some other incredibly fascinating thing to direct your attention away from this post? … No?

Okay, fine. I’ll admit it. It wasn’t bad.

You have no idea how hard that was for me to write. I honestly hoped it would be horrible. I wanted it to be clearly inferior, obviously lacking. But no. It wasn’t bad. Sigh.

In fact, I could even see positives in it (gasp!). Mainly: there was no muss, no fuss, no clean up. Just pop the crust in and boom, you’re done.

WP_20150823_16_44_31_Pro[1]The downside? There was no muss, no fuss, no clean up. I just popped the crust in and boom, I was done. It was so unsatisfying! Like I didn’t earn the pie. As though I cheated, but instead of receiving a failing grade, I ate pie.

I decided another test had to be made. One thing about these ready-made crusts is that you have no leftovers – at all. Which means you can’t make pie crust cookies.

Please don’t tell me you’ve never had pie crust cookies? All you do is take a bit of leftover, rolled-out pie crust dough, sprinkle it with cinnamon and sugar, and bake it at 425 degrees for about 6 to 8 minutes. They’re super easy and really yummy, and I was certain would be an even better indicator of the difference between homemade and ready-made pie crust.

So I went to the store and bought another package of pie crust (Oh God — now I’ve bought two! Someone check the weather in hell!). I also made a batch of homemade. Because this is the kind of thing we take seriously here at Feeding on Folly.

My two varieties of pie crust cookies done, I asked my family for their opinions, one at a time. I did not tell them which was which. I stood by, making notes:

Daughter: This one is better (points at homemade). It’s lighter and more airy. The other one is hard.
Me: What about flavor?
Daughter: This one (points at ready-made) is kind of bitter.
Me: That one is store-bought.
Daughter: Actually, it’s kind of gross (tosses in trash).

WP_20160218_19_38_51_Pro[1]
Left: ready-made; Right: homemade
Did I ever tell you how much I love Daughter?

Husband: That one is clearly the best (points at ready-made).
Me: Really? You think so?
Husband: Yeah. No contest.
Me: Why?
Husband: (shrugs) It just has more flavor.
Me: What about the texture?
Husband: What do you mean, texture?
Me: Well, is one flakier?… Lighter?…
Husband: (shrugs) I couldn’t tell.

What can I say? I married a Philistine.

Son: (eats one, thinks about it… eats second one, thinks about it… Time stands still.)
Me: Well?!
Son: (eats another one, thinks again…) I think… I think I like that one (points at ready-made).
Me: Why?
Son: It has a bit more flavor. What did you put on it?
Me: Cinnamon and sugar.
Son: What did you put on the that one? (Points at homemade.)
Me: Same thing. It’s the crust that’s different, not the topping.
Son: Oh! (He tries them again. Again, deep in thought…) Yeah, I still like it better.
Me: What about texture?
Son: That one (points at homemade) is flakier.
Me: But you still like the other better?
Son: Yeah. The texture isn’t as good, but I liked the taste.
Me: That’s the store-bought.
Son: What?! Are you kidding?
Me: No. That one’s store-bought, the other is homemade.
Son: (Tries them again) Well, the homemade is still good. I mean, it’s still…
Me: It’s okay. You can like the store-bought better.
Son: But I don’t want to like it better!

Poor kid. He seemed to think he failed me somehow. Didn’t stop him from eating the rest of the cookies, though.

So there you have it, two in favor of  ready-made pie crust, one in favor of homemade. (I thought the homemade was way better, but then I knew which was which. So not sure if you want to count my vote.)

In closing, if buying ready-made pie crust means you’ll have more homemade pie in your life, then by all means buy this crust. You deserve more pie in your life.

And like I said… most grudgingly… it’s not bad. 🙂

Author: C. J. Hartwell

Christi lives in Phoenix with Husband, Son, Daughter, and Dog. She enjoys moonlit walks on the beach, but as she doesn't live anywhere near a beach, she's usually in bed by 9:30.

17 thoughts on “Pillsbury Pie Crust – A Conflicted Review”

  1. Just as pantyhose rendered my life so thankfully garterless, I’ve never gone back to making pie crust. And never will. I just buy two or more pre-mades at a time in case I need to line a big pan — and cinnamon and sugar atop any crust forgives the multitude of any perceived sins! I say all this as if I still make pies — suffice it to say I now and then save a store from throwing out a pie that could otherwise be bought — but your recipes do sound delicious. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I vote homemade. It gives it a little something extra, and that way the wife and I can tag team on pie building – crusts from me and fillings from her. Of course, we don’t make ’em very often so a little extra work isn’t a big deal. (Says the guy who still uses malt extract to brew beer…)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! I’ve not heard of the malt extract shortcut before!
      I don’t do the pie thing often either, so yeah, it only seems right to put in the extra effort. I’m the same way with real whipped cream. I mean, if you’re going to add the extra calories, you might as well go all the way!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Home brewers usually start with malt extract and special grains for flavor and color. After they get more advanced many opt to do “all grain” brewing, i.e. they extract the malt sugars from base malts themselves, as well as using the special grains. It gives them a little more control over the flavors and freshness. I’m not there yet, probably because I’ve had good results with extract brewing so far and it takes more gear to do it. Making pie crust from scratch is much easier than making to jump to all grain brewing.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes, much easier! My grandfather used to make his own beer — this was during the Prohibition. As I understand it, people could make it to consume but not sell. I rather doubt they could buy extract back then, right? Which means they must have made it themselves.

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  3. I thought I had to do homemade everything because my Mum does, jam, bread, preserves, biscuits, cakes, pie. I resented the effort, they still didn’t taste like my Mums. In the end I just went with what I wanted to buy that tasted good to me – there isn’t time to do everything from scratch, and it’s a waste if you don’t enjoy doing it (which I don’t usually).
    Bottom Line – do what make you enjoy it best. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely! Most of the time I enjoy cooking, but not always. Sometimes shortcuts, or eating out, is just the ticket.
      I made preserves once, just to see if I could, and thought “Holy crap! All that work for 4 jars?” Never again! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My mom used to make the pie crust cookie too and I really liked it better than the pie! Last summer we were teaching my grand daughter how to make pie crust. When I showed her how to make the pie crust cookie, she had to agree – pie was okay – cookie was a much better use for the dough!

    Liked by 1 person

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