Who needs a regular pie crust when you can have a graham cracker crust instead? Perfect for substituting in any dessert recipe, this delicious and straightforward crust improves any pie, like my pumpkin chiffon pie! It also works perfectly for my Strawberry Squares!
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Graham Cracker Crust
Graham crackers are basically the most versatile cookie ever. True, Oreos can be made into all sorts of different desserts, but only graham crackers can make the illustrious Smore. Plus, nothing beats a graham cracker crust.
While the taste of graham crackers is amazing on their own, they become something entirely different and amazing by using them as the pie crust for any great pie recipe. The brown sugar flavors intensify, but the texture remains crumbly and crunchy, making the crust the best part.
Here’s how to easily make a graham cracker crust perfectly every time.
Graham Cracker Crust Ingredients
Make sure you look at the recipe card at the very bottom for the exact amounts so that you know exactly what to buy for this recipe.
• Finely ground graham cracker crumbs
• White sugar
• Salted butter
• Ground cinnamon
How To Make Graham Cracker Crust
• In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, melted butter, and cinnamon together until well blended
• The mixture should resemble coarse sand, and the butter should be totally mixed throughout
• Press the mixture into a 9-inch pie plate, starting at the bottom, and then pressing the mixture up the sides as well
• Bake at 375 Fahrenheit for 7 minutes and then cool on a cooling rack
How To Get The Right Texture When Mixing
Probably the trickiest part of making a graham cracker crust is getting the texture of the crumb right.
Every recipe about graham cracker crusts has the same instruction; “to mix until the mixture resembles coarse sand.” But what does this actually mean? How do you avoid ruining it?
Well, for starters, because graham cracker crusts don’t contain any extra flour, there is no real way to ruin it by over mixing. This can be an issue with flour-based doughs that you crumble the butter into, like when making shortbread, but as the graham crackers are already cooked, there isn’t really a problem.
The key to getting the right texture is to be really vigorous with mixing the butter into the crumb. Skip using a wooden spoon; just use your fingers.
By working the butter really heavily into the graham cracker crumbs, the butter will get completely coated in the crumbs, disappearing almost into the mixture.
With enough mixing and pressing, the mixture will begin feeling slightly damp to the touch but not sticky, and the individual crumbs will be the size of large grains of sand, which is where the advice of “damp sand” tends to come from.
This is also good advice for other, non-flour-based pie crusts. Whether you use Oreos or other cookies, as long as it doesn’t have raw, uncooked flour in it, knead and mix it as hard as you can to get the right texture.
What To Do If Your Recipe Needs Unbaked Graham Cracker Crusts?
This recipe produces a graham cracker crust that is blind-baked as part of its preparation. This means that it gets baked a little bit in the oven and then cooled before you add any of the other pie ingredients into it.
The reason for this blind baking is to help the crust set up, ensuring it doesn’t fall apart or get stuck in the filling as you fill up the pie. As the crust gets cooked, the butter melts throughout the mixture, gradually binding together the crumbs into one cohesive layer.
However, if your recipe calls for an unbaked pie crust like, for example, a cheesecake recipe often does, then you need to make it a little different.
Instead of blind baking it for 7 minutes, place it into the refrigerator for at least one hour. This will cool the butter down, helping to solidify it and keep the crumb in place.
This allows you to have longer cooking times in the oven without risking the graham cracker crust burning before the filling is properly cooked.
Looking for more delicious Pie recipes? Try these out:
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Graham Cracker Crust
- Prep Time
- 10 minutes
- Karlynn Johnston
- 1 ½ cups finely ground graham cracker crumbs
- 4 tablespoons white sugar
- 6 tablespoons salted butter melted
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon optional
- In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, melted butter and cinnamon until well blended . The mixture will resemble a coarse sand, and the butter should be mixed throughout completely.
- Press the mixture into a 9 inch pie plate, starting at the bottom then pressing the mixture up the sides as well.
- Bake at 375 °F for 7 minutes. Remove carfeull and cool on a baking rack.
- If your recipe calls for unbaked graham cracker crust, place into the refrigerator while preparing the recipe and chill for at least one hour.
- Adjust the amount of butter if needed. If the mixture seems dry, then add another tablespoon of melted butter. Certain brands of crumbs are more absorbant.
All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.