A Brush Of Bourbon Makes Store-Bought Pie Crust Taste Homemade

Just because you need to pick up pre-made pie crust to prepare tonight's dinner doesn't mean your dishes can't taste — and even look — homemade. With a few strategic swipes of alcohol, your store-bought purchase will leave your guests reaching for second helpings. 

Packaged crusts have a reputation for drying out, but by adding moisture, you can invite not only a punch of flavor but also delicious texture to your planned recipes. Because the proteins found in alcohol don't bond, adding washes of bourbon can help you pull a satisfyingly chewy dessert out of your oven. To dial up the flavor volume, reach for high-quality bourbon labels with 40% ABV or higher. The alcohol will cook out in the oven, leaving behind a delicate nutty flavor, and your pre-made crust will be flaky, crunchy, and a delight to serve. Whatever bourbon is left in the bottle can be used to make cocktails before the first course is placed on the dining room table.

Save time without sacrificing taste

Instead of swiping pure alcohol onto your pre-made crusts, fill a small dish with melted butter, vanilla, and bourbon to create a wash you can paint over the crust's surface. With vanilla, smokey, and nutty-tasting notes, bourbon can provide a gentle boost of flavor that can build a tempting base for both sweet and savory pies. 

To finish your pie creations with even more texture and taste, sprinkle chopped nuts on top of your bourbon-washed pie to bring out the woodsy, earthy elements of the bourbon, or dust powder cinnamon and sugar over the surface to highlight sweeter profiles of the booze. Whether you intend to pre-bake the crust before adding your intended fillings or simply decide to coat the top of your assembled pie with the bourbon butter mixture, this boozy wash can help you disguise any flavorless clues that this is an ingredient you picked up from the store.