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Gluten Free Pie Crust: Impossibly Easy

By: Mary Frances Pickett      Date: April 28, 2010      Prep Time: 10 Min.      Cook Time: 0 Min.

It took me years to come up with a recipe for a gluten free pie crust. Pie crusts, much like cookies, are rather finicky and temperamental – you have to get them just right or the whole recipe is going to fall apart.

So I was intrigued by the concept of the Bisquick Impossibly Easy Pies. These are sweet and savory “pie” recipes that General Mills published back in the early 80′s. Bisquick mix is added to the pie filling, and when the pie bakes the Bisquick forms a crust in the bottom of the pan. Easy enough!

I’ve been wanting to try some of these recipes because it seems like an easy way to cook a quick supper. However, until General Mills releases their new gluten free Bisquick this summer, and possibly even after that, I need a Bisquick type mix to use in the recipes.

Bisquick is simply the dry ingredients for biscuits, plus partially-hydrogenated oil. In order to make a gluten free version all you have to do is mix up the dry ingredients for your biscuit recipe (flour, salt, and baking soda/baking powder), cut in the butter or shortening, and then store in the freezer. Depending on your dietary needs, the fat component can be butter, vegan butter, shortening, or coconut oil.

The only real question that I have about making the homemade mix is whether or not to add xanthan gum. My gluten free  biscuits recipe does include xanthan gum to prevent crumbling, but I’m not sure that it’s needed for these pie recipes.  Xanthan gum reacts to liquids, unlike gluten which is only activated after it has been disturbed by stirring or kneading, so adding xanthan gum to the mix might result in a finished pie that is not the right consistency. Howver, I can’t imagine that the gluten free Bisquick recipe won’t have xanthan gum in it. I think the only option is to try some of these recipes both ways.

Here is the recipe for the biscuit mix if you’d like to join me in this experiment. Many of the Impossibly Easy Pies call for 1/2 cup of Bisquick, so I’ve included the measurements for 1/2 cup and for a larger batch.

Here is a short list of some of the Impossibly Easy Pie recipes – there are many more official recipes on the Betty Crocker website, but you can also find others by googling “impossible pie recipes”. Happy Baking everybody!

Pumpkin Pie                              Chicken & Broccoli Pie
Easy Taco Pie                           Ham & Swiss Pie
Bacon Pie                                   Coconut Pie
Cheesecake Pie                        French Apple Pie
Coconut Chocolate Pie         Spinach – Parmesan Pie

Instructions

(makes 4 and 2/3 cups)
1 1/2 c. brown rice flour
2 c. corn starch
1/2 c. soy flour or sorghum flour
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. xanthan gum (optional)
1 stick of butter

(makes 1/2 cup)
2 Tbsp. + 1 3/4 tsp. brown rice flour
3 Tbsp. + 1 1/4 tsp. corn starch
2 1/2 tsp. soy flour or sorghum flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. xanthan gum (optional)
2 1/2 tsp. butter

Instructions: Mix dry ingredients together and then cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender, or by pinching the butter into small chunks and then whirring everything together in your food processor. Store in the freezer for up to six months.

Want some more help on gluten free pies? We’re giving away our GF Pie Cooking Class – just in time for Thanksgiving! It’s got everything you need to make apple, pumpkin, or chocolate pie for the holidays! Click here – it’s free and takes less than 10 seconds to sign up!


This recipe has been brought to you by the Gluten Free Cooking School.

Be sure to visit www.GlutenFreeCookingSchool.com for more great recipes and information about Gluten-free living!