8 Creative Ways to Crimp a Pie

These totally polished pie-dough edges are much easier to execute than they look.

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

©2015 Food Network

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©2015 Food Network

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©2015 Food Network

Crimp My Pie

You might think there's little room for innovation at the Thanksgiving dessert table, but in addition to flavor experimentation (which we strongly encourage!), there's also more than one way to crimp a pie. To get your creative juices flowing, here we demonstrate eight beautiful crimps that are easy to execute and will make standout centerpieces among all the pumpkin- and apple-flavored treats.

 

If you start with a dough that’s neither too tight nor too floppy, you can make a nice-looking crimp the first time you try. Doughs made partially with lard or shortening can be a little easier to handle. Roll them out using enough flour, and make them big enough to cover the whole pie pan. Trim the edge with scissors and you’re almost there.

1: Basic Crimp

This basic crimp looks good on every pie.

Roll dough to overlap the entire pie dish. Trim excess with scissors for a more finished look.

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Basic Crimp

Tuck the extra dough under to make a neat edge. Gently press the dough with the thumb and forefinger of one hand from the inside and the the thumb and forefinger of the other from the outside. 

Basic Crimp

Repeat this in exactly the same way as you go around the pie. 

2: Braided Crimp

For lattice or braids, use a ruler and a pizza wheel or sharp paring knife to cut strips of dough. Trim the overhang close to the rim; you won’t need a double thickness, as the braid is thick.

Braided Crimp

Braid three strips together by alternately placing the left and the right strips into the center. Straighten and flatten as you go.

Braided Crimp

Brush the edge of the pie dough with beaten egg to help the braid stick to the bottom dough.

Braided Crimp

Lay the three pieces of braid around the perimeter, pressing gently at the seams.

Braided Crimp

Make bows out of the dough.

Braided Crimp

Place them over the seams between each braid for a more finished look.

3: Chess Crimp

Snip wide, straight tabs around the pie-dough edge.

Chess Crimp

Bend every other tab in toward the center. 

Chess Crimp

Chill the dough if the tabs get too floppy, as they appear here.

Chess Crimp

Fill this pie with something bold and rustic. If blind baking, prop up the edges with a ring of foil.

4: Easy Crimp

If you have a citrus reamer, you are one minute away from a handsome crimp. 

Easy Crimp

Trim the extra dough, then roll the reamer around the edge to make indents.

Easy Crimp

Just like that, your pie dough is crimped!

5: Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

Cookie-cutter shapes are an easy way to upgrade the look of a crust. (You can even do this with store-bought dough.)

Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

Trim the overhang close to the rim. Brush the rim with beaten egg to make the shapes stick.

Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

Overlap the flowers or other shapes slightly.

Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

To finish, prop the end of the first shape up ...

Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

… tuck the edge of the finishing shape under, and close the gap.

Cookie-Cutter Shapes Crimp

Flowers might feel most appropriate for spring or summer. Use fall-leaf cutters, tiny gingerbread people or snowflakes for the holiday season, bunnies for Easter, or any other small cutters to lend their own flair.

6: Letterpress Crimp

Use clean letter stamps to press a message into your pie’s edge.

Letterpress Crimp

Press firmly enough to make an indent. Chilling the dough before baking helps retain the indents.

Letterpress Crimp

This pie sends a loving message, but the sky (and the full alphabet) is the limit.

7: Pleated Crimp

Make small diagonal snips in the dough.

Pleated Crimp

Gently fold the flaps down one after another, following the angle of the cut, and keep folding until you’ve come all the way around. 

Pleated Crimp

This pie crimp looks quite refined but, as you can see, is incredibly easy to do.

8: Ribbon Crimp

Make this ribbon edge by folding a strip of dough over itself in big loops. 

Ribbon Crimp

Trim the overhang close to the rim; you won’t need a double thickness here. Attach the ribbon in three sections to an edge brushed with beaten egg.

Ribbon Crimp

This thick, rustic design cooks for a bit longer, and makes for a substantial slice.