How To Fix Pie Crusts That Cracked In The Oven

Whether sweet or savory, making pies is a very involved process with super rewarding results.

The care and time needed to create a perfect pie make them pretty challenging, but once you’re done, you can serve your pie to your friends and family and proudly declare that you made it all by yourself – cue the compliments. 

But what about when it goes wrong? Because of how difficult pies can be to create, there are several ways that your pie can end up being ruined. One of the most commonly seen ways is a broken pie crust. 

Sometimes, when you’re rolling out your pie, the dough can crack and tear, making it difficult to shape properly, and mean that there are faults within the dough that the filling might seep out of once it’s cooking. 

This can be really frustrating when it happens, but don’t worry, there is a solution. 

This article will should you how to fix your pie dough if it cracks when you roll it out or tears during baking. We’ll even show you how to prevent the problem in the first place. 

How To Prevent A Cracked Pie

The best way to fix a cracked pie is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Knowing all the reasons that a pie crust can break should help you prevent these accidents from happening. 

The first thing you need to know is that even the best, most professional recipes will never tell you how much cold water to add. The level of moisture needed for your pie crust is completely dependent on the amount of humidity in the air wherever you are, and the amount of moisture in your flour. 

Pie dough that is too sticky requires more flour. Dough that’s too dry and has too much flour needs more water. It’s a perfect balance that you need to find.

If your dough is really crumbly, it could need more water, or, more likely, it requires more kneading, as you might not have built up enough gluten (the stuff that keeps your crust together). 

Ensuring that you have balanced your recipe out perfectly will make the chances of a cracked pie much lower. 

How To Fix Pie Crusts That Cracked In The Oven (1)

Fixing Cracks In Raw Homemade Pie Crust

The easiest solution to fixing your cracks is to just simply try again. You can ball up your pie crust, pop it in the refrigerator for 30-minutes, then try again. You don’t necessarily need to put it in the refrigerator if you’re short on time, but I do recommend it because we think that it helps a lot. 

If your dough continues to crack, then you can roll it out to your required thickness and size, then place your pie pan on top of it. Cut around the pie pan, leaving a 1 inch border. The rest of the pie trimmings can then be used to fill in any gaps or tears that remain in the crust. 

Gently place the trimmings over any holes, then roll out the dough. If you find that your patches aren’t adhering to the pie crust, then you can use a couple drops of ice water. As always, be sure not to use too much water or you’ll end up with a sticky mess. 

Then you’re going to want to let your pie crust rest in the refrigerator again and chill for a little whilst before rolling it out, especially if you have been handling the crust a lot whilst trying to patch it. 

Fixing Cracks In Frozen Pie Crusts

For an easier pie-making experience, you can always buy a frozen pie crust. These typically have a great, crumbly texture, but does mean that they’re more prone to cracking. They are remarkably fragile. 

There are two basic solutions to cracks in your pie crust, the first is to ignore it. Sometimes, if you’re making a custard pie, like pumpkin pie, or lemon meringue pie, this filling can act as almost a kind of glue.

You’ll have to be careful when you cut into the pie, and expect it to be a bit messier, but generally you should be fine. 

Alternatively, you can use the spackle method. Create your spackle by combining 2 parts flour, 1 part butter and knead together until you get a kind of Play Doh texture. Then you can use this to patch any cracks or holes that are in your crust. 

Smart Trick – Add a little bit of powdered sugar to the spackle if you’re making a sweet pie. 

Fix Holes In Parbaked Pie Crust

Even if you got everything perfect, you might still find cracks after you’ve parbaked your crust. 

Depending on the extent of the tear, you might be able to get away with a small egg wash. Though to be fair you should be doing an egg was to prevent a soggy bottom to your pie crust anyway. Brush a small layer of egg whites over the crust and the tear, and continue to cook your pie. 

However, if the crack is wide, you might need to fill it in with pie trimmings, or with spackle. 

Whichever method you require, you will need to prebake your pie crust for 5-10 minutes until your spackle, egg wash, or trimmings are cooked. 

Smart Tip – If your crust is already browning, use a foil shield to avoid it burning

Final Thoughts

There you have it. Hopefully, with this knowledge you will be able to prevent or fix any cracks that form in your pie crusts, either when they’re rolled out or once they’ve finished cooking. 

I’m sure your pies will come out great know that you know how to fix pie crusts that have cracked in the oven. 

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Kathryn Sewell

Hi! I'm Kate and I have been baking and cooking for as long as I can remember. I like to share the most interesting tips and recipes I try here on What Kate Baked for you to enjoy. If you have a favorite recipe you'd like to share send it over on social.

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