The Best Frozen, Pre-Made Pie Crust

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>"The pie is an English institution," wrote Harriet Beecher Stowe, "which, planted on American soil, forthwith ran rampant and burst forth into an untold variety of genera and species." It follows, of course, that the planting of Pilgrims on American soil led to America's exuberant pie holiday, which in turn led to that eternal debate: Which pie crust reigns supreme?

Corby is on the record as a lard-lover, while Food Channel contributor Ike DeLorenzo reminded me last week that he once won a blind tasting with his aunt's recipe, which uses an unusual secret ingredient: vegetable oil. But for those of us involved in last-minute pie acrobatics, the best strategy might to go with pre-made. Here's a recent taste test of national brands from the website Serious Eats:

We're not big fans of frozen pie crusts. In fact, many of them taste like Play-doh. But if you're really in a pinch during the holidays, and the thought of making a crust from scratch is too discouraging and intimidating, we want you to somehow find pie. We are always pro-pie! So we tried the following nationally available brands, both baked plain and with a cherry filling: Trader Joe's, Pillsbury, Oronoque Orchard's, Wholly Wholesome, and Mrs. Smith. The winner, well, it wasn't even close.

Read the full story at Serious Eats.

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Daniel Fromson, a former associate editor at The Atlantic, is a writer based in Washington, D.C. He writes regularly for The Washington Post. His work has also appeared in Harper's Magazine, New York, and Slate.

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