♫ Listening to: American Kids by Poppy ♫
If you know me, you know I’m not a fan of pie crust. I try to avoid crust by pouring pie filling into cookie shells, by using biscuits in the place of pie crust, or by avoiding pie altogether. The one time I simply cannot avoid making pie is pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving. One year, I made crustless jar pie. This year’s work around is to make a unicorn colored crust. It will still taste the same, but I might be able to trick my taste buds into thinking it’s something better than crust.
This recipe will make 2 pies.
Vegan Unicorn Pumpkin Pie Crust Ingredients
- 3 ½ cups unbleached flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons organic or vegan powdered sugar*
- ½ cup organic palm shortening* (or sub coconut oil)
- ¾ cup organic earth balance*
- ½ cup ice water
- 2 colors of food coloring
Vegan Unicorn Pumpkin Pie Crust Directions
Freeze all the ingredients for 5-10 minutes before you start, including a mixing bowl.
Whisk together the 3 ½ cups unbleached flour, ½ teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons vegan powdered sugar in the chilled bowl.
Transfer the flour mixture into a food processor fitted with the S blade.
Add the ½ cup spectrum sustainably harvested organic palm shortening and ¾ cup earth balance, but not all at once. It will mix in easier if you add it piece by piece while the food processor is running.
Chill the entire food processor container in the fridge while you color the ice water.
Add vegan food coloring to the ½ cup of ice water. Make the color darker than you want to pie crust to be. Use a gel food color, rather than a food-based color for this project, otherwise the color won’t come out as vibrant as you might want it. I used wilton sky blue gel color and wilton leaf green gel color to make my teal color. If you want to use more than one color, make 2 cups of ice water with ¼ cup in each and color each cup a different color and divide the pie crumbs in half before continuing with the next step.
Return the container back to the food processor once you’re ready to continue.
Drizzle the ice water in slowly in through the top hole while the food processor is running until the dough starts to stick together, and then stop adding the water. You don’t have to use all of the water if it isn’t needed.
Remove the dough from the food processor and divide it into 2 equal sized discs. You may need to knead it a tiny bit to get it stick together.
Wrap each dough disc in plastic wrap and chill both discs for 20-30 minutes.
Measure your pie pan before you start rolling your dough so you know how big to roll it. I use a pliable measuring tape, and start at the very edge of one side of the pie pan, going to the center of the pie pan by dipping down the sides and hugging the inside of the pan the entire way. Then continue to the other side, and up the wall of that side and out to the furthest edge from where you started. If you don’t have a measuring tape, the best guess it to roll your dough to a diameter of 12 inches. I’m lucky that my rolling mat has measurements on it, but if yours doesn’t, you can always draw on a piece of parchment paper. Or just eyeball it. It doesn’t have to be perfect, right? I say that, but then I’m (not so) secretly disappointed when I make things that don’t come out perfect.
Roll one dough disc on a lightly-floured rolling mat or other surface using a lightly floured rolling pin. I rolled mine to ⅙ of an inch, but often people roll pie crusts as thin as an eighth of an inch.
Trim any extra dough off, wrap it back up in the plastic wrap it was in before, and return it to the fridge.
Shape the edges in the pie pan in whatever design you like. You can also cut shapes out of the trimmed off excess dough and press those shapes around the pie edges or roll the extra dough into long snakes and twist two snakes together to place them around the edge of the pie crusts.
Repeat the same steps with the second pie crust.
Chill the pie crusts until you’re ready to blind bake them or to fill them.
Want to make your pie crust ahead of time? Here are some options.
After wrapping the dough discs in plastic wrap, put them into freezer bags and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. A day before you’re ready to roll the dough, transfer the discs from the freezer to the fridge.
Blind bake your crusts for 15 minutes, cool, and wrap with plastic wrap and then freezer bags before chilling for up to 3 days or freezing for up to a month. A day before you’re ready to fill your crust and bake your pie, transfer the pie crust from the freezer to the fridge.
Vegan Unicorn Pumpkin Pie Filling Ingredients
- 2 cups organic or vegan sugar*
- 3 cans pumpkin
- 2 cups (1 pint) nondairy vanilla coffee creamer (or sub canned coconut milk)
- ½ cup organic cornstarch, tapioca flour, or arrowroot*
- ½ tablespoon nutmeg
- 1 ½ tablespoon cinnamon
- ½ tablespoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ½ teaspoon salt
Vegan Unicorn Pumpkin Pie Filling Directions
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Blend all of ingredients together in 2 batches.
Whisk the 2 batches together in a large bowl.
Remove the crusts from the fridge and set them on baking sheets.
Pour filling into pie crusts.
Bake pies for 60-70 minutes.
Cool the pies on cooling racks on the counter.
Chill the pies in the fridge overnight.
Serve with pastel coconut whipped cream.
* I use mostly organic ingredients when I cook, but I realize that not everyone has the disposable income to purchase all organic ingredients. Therefore, I only specify organic on the ingredients that really matter - when buying the organic version is the only way to ensure that the item is vegan.