The Reason Ina Garten Doesn't Only Use Butter In Her Pie Crust

When it comes to pie, the character Ned from the comedy show "Pushing Daisies" hit the nail on the head when he said, "Candy might be sweet, but it's a traveling carnival blowing through town. Pie is home. People always come home." There is something so comforting in this dessert that tends to grace our tables during holidays. It screams going home for Christmas and backyard Fourth of July gatherings. According to the Library of Congress, the story of pie began in ancient Egypt and Greece, where pie crusts were made of just flour and water, per Time. The Romans added meat to their pies, and by the 16th century, they had evolved to include sweet fruit fillings.

Today, making pies is an art, and creating a homemade pie crust is a true labor of love that can be intimidating for the less skilled baker. Whether you are making a homemade apple pie or a delicate lemon meringue, the crust can make or break it. What are the classic characteristics of a delicious pie crust? Everything Pies states a perfectly baked pie crust should be golden layers of flaky, buttery tenderness. But to achieve that state of pie crust nirvana, per Food Network, Ina Garten shares there are two ingredients necessary. One is butter, but the other might be less obvious.

Break out the Crisco

According to the Food Network, Ina Garten uses both butter and shortening to create her pie crust. The Barefoot Contessa explains in the video that the combination of butter and shortening makes for a beautiful and flaky crust. Additionally, Garten cautions that you want to ensure both ingredients are kept very cold. But what is the magic of using these two ingredients together?

Back to My Southern Roots explains butter will give your pie crust its flaky quality, along with a buttery taste, while the shortening will help your crust keep its shape in your pie dish as it bakes. King Arthur Baking Company goes a bit further, revealing that this dynamic duo's superpower is also tied to their unique melting points. Butter has a low melting point, while shortening's is a bit higher. Using the two together means you don't have to sacrifice the flavor over the stability of your pie crust.