Before this blog I knew nothing about pie weights. To me, they sounded complicated, and kind of hoity toity. After some research, I now grasp why I didn’t know about pie weights. It’s for tarts, single-crust pies and I grew up in a home where no one ever used them.
Further research showed, Europeans almost exclusively blind bake (that’s fancy for pre-baking) the crust. While Americans usually make the crust, add filling then cook the pie. Without ever baking the crust beforehand.
Pie weights are used to keep a pie crust from bubbling and shrinking away from the edge of the pie plate or tart pan when you’re blind baking a crust. If you don’t own pie weights, there are plenty of things in your pantry that you can use instead.
Just line the inside of your crust with foil or parchment paper, and fill it with dried beans or rice. Then, bake your crust according to the instructions in your recipe. You can reuse these pantry pie weights over and over again.
Blind Bake Your Pie Crust to Perfection
Remove the pie weights half way through the baking time. Then, dock the crust (poke holes in the crust with a fork) to prevent the crust from developing bubbles, and return it to the oven. This will ensure that the bottom of the crust gets a chance to cook fully, so it comes out golden and flaky.
Below are different types of pie weights you can purchase.
CERAMIC BALL PIE WEIGHTS
CHICAGO METALLIC PIE WEIGHT
This lady I know switched to pennies years ago. She said they lie flat, they cover more area and are easier to remove. You can also push them up against the sides of the crust to help fight against the downward creep that so often occurs with an all-butter crust.
I thought about using this trick, but came to the conclusion it would be a lot of work to place all those pennies. Perhaps I should try quarters, they cover more square inches lol.