I don’t have a strong stance on homemade pie crust vs frozen pie crust from the store. I like both. I use both. And I think Trader Joe’s frozen pie crust is very very good. I’ve used it for just about everything, from chicken pot pie to tarts to fruit pies to quiche. The main trick for me is getting it to thaw evenly without getting too warm on the outside half (since it comes packaged as a roll). I usually put it in the refrigerator overnight unless I’m in a rush, and I unroll it as cold as I can keep it without having it crack (and it if does crack, I just use a rolling pin to go over it and press it back together). The colder you can keep the crust, the flakier it will be once baked. Once it’s placed in the pie dish or tart pan, I put it right back in the fridge until I’m ready to fill it (and even in the freezer for 20 minutes if I’m blind baking – it really helps prevent slumping)
Using frozen pie crust doesn’t mean you can’t get creative with it. If you’re following me on Instagram you may have seen some of the pies in this post. These are all using Trader Joe’s crust. There are lots of great ideas online for crust decoration, whether it’s adding freeform leaves, doing traditional lattices, or adding a whimsical sprinkling of cookie-cutter flowers or stars. Cookie cutters can make it very easy to make something impressive, like the heart pattern at the top of this post. Have fun and post some of your pics on our Facebook page.