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What happened to Old Trader pot pies. I bought them all the time in 2006 timeframe. They were the Absolute best.
So I came here looking for answers about frozen Great Value Deep Dish crusts! And before anyone scoffs at me, I get it! I’m new to making pies and I’m really frustrated because out of 10 egg custards 2 came out perfect! The filling itself is great but I thought my pies were curdling because parts were really hard! I decided to check it closely and it looks like the crust is rising into the pie and instead of filling in that spot it’s crust! Please help!! What do I do if I’m not ready to make my own crust? Has anyone heard of this? What crust is best if I want quick and easy? Thanks to all in advance!
Did you blind bake the pie crusts? If no, then you might want to do that and prick holes into the crust with a fork.
Also, do you mind sharing your egg custard pie recipe? Thanks in advance.
We like how Crystal is thinking: are you blind baking the crusts? Here’s a post on Simply Recipes all about it! https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/how_to_blind_bake_a_pie_crust/
And there’s no shame at all in using pre-made crusts. We’re not here to scoff. We only scoff at scoffers!
Thank you for this research! I planned to make a pie for a party today with my boss and coworkers (I know the recipe is amazing, I just always used pre-made crust). I had planned to make my own crust for the first time but was chickening out a bit – I had bought Marie Callendar’s brand as a back-up. I’m SO glad I read this article before I decided to do that. I guess I’ll make the pie crust after all – here’s hoping I don’t mess it up.
Trader Joe’s frozen pie crusts are outstanding. I used them to make pecan pies for Thanksgiving, and they were honestly just about as good as homemade. Here’s how I dealt with the cracking issues mentioned by other reviewers. First, I thawed the crust on the counter until completely room temp. Then, leaving the crust between the layers of plastic, I carefully peeled up the plastic on each side and dusted with flour. Then, using a rolling pin, I rolled out the crust between the plastic wrap. The cracks disappeared, and this also has the added benefit of making the entire crust a bit thinner (as packaged, I think the crusts are a bit thick, especially if you like to have your pie filling take center stage). Carefully peel back the top layer of plastic, dust crust again with flour, then fold in thirds, dusting each fold carefully. Pick up the folded crust with both hands, gently lay it in the pie pan. Crimp edges well along rim of pie pan so it doesn’t collapse downward while baking. I like to place it in the freezer for a few minutes until firm, then fill with pecan mixture. Brush the edges of the crust lightly with heavy whipping cream, then pop in the oven. Enjoy!
I think that I’ll give their crust a try. . .
Thank you for these detailed instructions on how to make the Trader Joe’s dough work! I’m planning to use them tonight and I knot these tips are going to save me a lot of frustration. Happy Thanksgiving! :)
Tip: Take the Trader Joe’s crust out of the freezer and let it sit as per the direction. Then you very slowly unroll it with the wax paper still on. When it splits or cracks you use your fingers to pinch it together while still in between the sheets of wax paper. If necessary, you can also roll it out a bit. When that’s done and the crust is intact, gradually remove one sheet of wax paper. Put the pie dish on top of that and quickly invert it. Repeat process of pinching together any cracks. Remove remaining sheet of wax paper, which will now be on the top and place back in fridge to chill if necessary.
My frustration with Trader Joe’s is that it doesn’t indicate the best buy date. I’ve had some in the freezer for a year. I doubt they are still good — so why doesn’t the box say how long they last?
If they’re no good then you can return them to the store and let them know about the dates.
I thought that it was a law to have them there.
Trader Joe’s is great for dessert pie but not for savory. It brought unwanted sweetness to a quiche.
Great to kow. . .
You should try the Whole Foods Gluten Free Bakehouse pie crust. It is excellent and I always receive compliments on it.
Have you tried the wholly Wholesome butter pie crust and how does it compare to the original
Great honest review! I would have like to know the size of the crusts. Im looking for a 10 inch crust. Like you, I have always made my own crusts and I’m very proud of them. However a ready-made crust in pie tin is so super simple especially when I’m on a quiche streak right now. I have made two quiches from the same recipe using a great value pie crust. I thought the crust was really really good but it didn’t hold all of the quiche liquid. Some of it spilled over the side. Most pie crust are labeled deep dish but I’m finding that they are anything but deep dish. Especially if they’re only 9 in. Have you ever come across a 10 inch deep dish that’s frozen?
Hi Carol, those “deep dish” crusts aren’t exactly deep dish, are they? They barely qualify as normal dish in comparison to a homemade pie crust. I have not found a 10-inch deep dish frozen pie crust on the market. I think your best bet is to get a Trader Joe’s folded pie crust, defrost it, and then roll it out a little.
I agree wholly with you. The gluten free left alot to be desired. Thanks for your review.
Enjoyed reading your review but who would have though such a generic product could be so area-based. Your #4 is the only one available in central Florida even though we have several Whole Food stores.
Elise, when you made the pumpkin pie with the Wholly Wholesome Pie Shells, did you follow the directions for them and use the pie shell from frozen rather than pre-baking the crust? You have stressed the need to pre-bake in your recipes but that was with home-made crusts. I want to make your Smoked Salmon, Dill, and Goat Cheese Quiche for a party using a WW Pie Shell and am unsure what to do.
Many thanks for this article and for your recipes. Faith
Hi Faith, I followed the directions for them and used the pie shell frozen, rather than pre-baking. I only pre-baked the crusts for this review so I could get a sense of what they tasted like unadorned by pie. For the quiche, I wouldn’t bother pre-cooking the crust with this store-bought crust.
Correction to my Reply:
A BIT of egg white…
I found that I could successfully lick the soggy bottom crust issue in pumpkin pie by lightly brushing the bottom crust with a big of egg white (I just used a bit from the eggs for the filling) and letting that dry while I made the filling. It sealed the bottom crust, which remained perfect throughout – even the next day after leftovers were refrigerated.
I did not have the bad experience with Marie Cllender’s crusts, but have not used them for several years. Crusts frozen in pie tins do suffer injury in shipping and store handling. I had no problem mending the cracks in the thawed crust before baking with a finger dipped in a bit of water.
I have a question! Were the crusts with sugar sweet at all? I’m wondering if I can recommend them for savory applications like quiche. I recently tried to use the Safeway Signature version and was so annoyed with it. Maybe it’s my imagination, but I feel like the rolled versions are getting skimpier every year. Forget about a pretty crimp. But I know a lot of people want to skip homemade, and I’m planning to point them to this article since you did such a great test. I’m leaning toward recommending anything that’s already pre-baked so all they have to do is pour in the filling.
Hi Jennifer! None of these crusts were so noticeably sweet that you wouldn’t want to use them for a savory pie. Haven’t found a pie crust that is pre-baked, I blind-baked all of the packaged pie crusts I tested.
I have always (30 yrs or so) used Oronoque Pie Crusts (pkg of 2, frozen in pie tin) because my mom recommended them and they are still good. Not as ‘solid’ as they used to be (i need to press some broken bits together and, occasionally use the single pie top they add -if they still do- to fix. Since we’ve moved from the East coast to the Southwest, I’m not sure what I’ll find. It’s good to know that TJ’s, Whole Foods, and another couple of local organic stores may have your favorite Wholly Wholesome in case I can’t find Oronoque or in case I want to try something else! Thank you!
i always use oronoque also. think it taste the best. Pillsbury i think is the worst. such a weird aftertaste. Like chemicals
Going to save this for reference – I’m from NH so always used this brand: https://www.mrssmiths.com/products/pie-crusts/pie-crusts-oronoque-orchards.htm.
but now see it’s only sold on the East Coast! Presently in Minneapolis and miss being able to bake with it. Off to read your article!
Thank you for your timely review. I have always used trader joes ( the pie crust never unrolled so badly until a couple of year ago, I’m assuming a new vendor or manufacturer) and decided to try something different when I was “assigned” to making a pumpkin pie for this year family thanksgiving dinner. It turns out I had bought your top pick! I’m relieved and look forward to my own comparison. Now I know which ones to avoid in the future. Your website is a goldmine of recipes and one I have been using for years now. Including some very successful thanksgiving turkey dinners. Thank you so much for sharing!!!
My only comment is that the first two you recommended both use palm oil in their recipe. There is a real issue with the decimation of palm forests. I avoid all products that use palm oil. Pillsbury for me.
Hi Jeanne, good point! I followed up with Wholly Wholesome on Twitter to find out where they source their palm oil. This is their reply: “Our main source comes from suppliers in South America, Brazil & Columbia.Our suppliers are independent family farms that had previously lived off non-sustainable extraction of timber & subsistence crops.” Here’s a link to more info on their site: http://www.whollywholesome.com/faq.php#palmoiluse
Personally, because I lived in a rural town with one grocery store (Safeway) and a local chain next town over, I’ve used the Safeway brand, store brand for the other store, and the Pillsbury crust. All three were just meh (such a descriptive word at times). There were freshness issues with all of them. Surprisingly it was the worst with the Pillsbury one. Very poor taste and baking performance. I don’t have the energy to do a home made pie crust most of the time so I will definitely look at some of your other recommendations.
I have never paid $3.99 for Pillsbury Pie Crust. The two were $2.50 at Krogers last week. I guess it depends the area you are in.