Once you try this homemade blackberry pie recipe, you’ll want to make it again and again! This is the ultimate summer pie, with a sweet and juicy blackberry filling and a light, flaky pie crust.
This pie took me by surprise. When I decided to test a blackberry pie recipe to share with you, I had hopes that it would turn out well. I never expected to discover that this blackberry pie is now my favorite of all the summer pies!
From the sweet, juicy blackberry pie filling that’s brightened with a touch of lemon to the (secretly lighter) homemade pie crust, every single bite of this blackberry pie is worthy of your tastebuds.
You don’t have to take my word for it. Try this pie recipe for yourself, and then let me know how you liked it!
If you’re still not convinced that this blackberry pie is worth your time in the kitchen, know that it’s not just me who sings the praises of this particular pie. While eating his slice, Brad said that this blackberry pie just might be better than his all time favorite cherry pie. And my 6-year-old, who doesn’t like eating blackberries plain, ate every last crumb of his slice, blackberry filling and all. 😉
Can you make this blackberry pie with frozen blackberries?
You can use either fresh or frozen blackberries in this pie. I have made this blackberry pie with both fresh and frozen berries and both worked well!
If you are using frozen blackberries you will want to defrost them and drain off any excess liquid before mixing them with the remaining pie filling ingredients. You should also increase the cornstarch to 1/4 cup. Cornstarch acts as a thickener in the pie filling and helps to create the juicy, syrupy blackberry filling that you want in a pie. Without the cornstarch your filling will be too runny.
If you use fresh berries, you will want to give them a wash and then let them air dry on a clean towel. You can gently pat them dry to speed the drying process.
Should I use store-bought or homemade pie crust in this blackberry pie recipe?
Sometimes (like when you’re trying to get dinner on the table quickly and you’re making this easy broccoli cheese quiche) I praise the benefits of store-bought pie crust.
When it comes to baking a pie for a special dessert, though, I’ll always recommend making homemade pie crust. Don’t be intimidated – homemade pie crust is easy to make and doesn’t take much time at all!
My homemade pie crust recipe (which I’ve included in the blackberry pie recipe below) doesn’t require you to chill the pie dough before you roll it out. It rolls out like a dream and won’t stick to your work surface or your rolling pin, as long as you lightly flour both.
The easiest way to make pie crust is with a food processor, fitted with the steel blade. If you don’t have a food processor then you can mix the dough in a bowl using a pastry blender (or even your fingertips).
Whichever method you use, to make a light and flaky pie crust you should:
- Keep your butter as cold as possible. This means you will want to work relatively quickly once you add the butter to the dough. You should also place the dough in the refrigerator whenever it is between steps, such as when you are mixing up the blackberry filling. Using cold butter keeps the butter from getting completely worked into the dough. The bits of butter in the dough release steam and create little air pockets when baking. This is what makes a light, flaky pie crust!
- Use ice-cold water in your pie dough. Before you begin, place a few ice cubes and some water in a glass and pop it in the refrigerator so it will be as cold as possible by the time you are ready to add the water to your pie dough. See above for why… your want to keep the dough (and butter pieces) cold, not melted.
- Above all, don’t stress about doing it perfectly! This pie crust recipe is very forgiving and you really can’t do much to mess it up.
How do you make a lattice-top pie crust?
A lattice-top pie crust is the name for the woven crust that you see on the top of this blackberry pie. It’s fun and pretty to make a lattice-top for your pie. If you’d prefer not to, you can either top your pie with cookie-cutter pie crust cut-outs or with a solid top crust. If you choose to place the full second pie crust on top of your pie be sure to cut 4-5 slits in the top for steam vents.
To make a lattice-top pie crust, roll out the dough for the top of the pie into a 12-inch diameter circle. Use a sharp knife, pizza cutter or pastry wheel to cut the dough circle into ½-inch strips. Using every other strip from the circle, arrange half of the dough strips going one direction across the top of the pie, leaving a little bit of space in between each strip.
Weave the other half of the dough strips through the first set, over and under, pulling back the first set of strips as needed to weave. I find it easiest to start in the center of the pie when weaving, and pull back every other of the first set of dough strips. Here is a helpful tutorial on making a lattice-top pie crust.
To make a blackberry pie:
To make this blackberry pie recipe, you’ll start by mixing up the pie crust dough. Be sure to read my tips above about making homemade pie crust. You’ll divide the dough in half and roll one half out for the bottom crust. Chill the second half of the dough while you work to keep the butter cold.
Once the bottom crust is rolled out, gently roll it around your rolling pin to transfer it to a 9×2-inch pie dish. Then place it in the refrigerator to keep it cold while you make the blackberry pie filling.
The blackberry pie filling is a simple mixture of blackberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla extract. You will need 6 cups of blackberries for this pie. That is about 30 ounces of blackberries.
I find that 1/2 cup of sugar is the perfect amount for this pie filling if your blackberries are fairly sweet. You might need a touch more sugar if your berries are very tart. You can use less than 1/2 cup sugar if your berries are really sweet! You want the natural sweetness and flavor of the blackberries to shine so you don’t need to add too much sugar.
Before baking your pie, gently brush it with an egg wash. An egg wash is a mixture of one egg beaten with a little bit of milk or water. Brushing the top crust with an egg wash helps it to get that pretty golden brown color as it bakes.
After your pie is baked, you will want to let it rest at room temperature for at least 2 hours before slicing it and serving. This pie tastes best when served at room temperature. You may also serve it warm or chilled if you like. A scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side is optional but highly recommended!
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 7 tablespoons ice-cold water
- 6 cups fresh blackberries, about 30 ounces, see note below about frozen berries
- ½ cup granulated sugar, or to taste*
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch, use ¼ cup if using frozen blackberries
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon milk or water
- Preheat oven to 400° F with a rack in the lower third of the oven.
- Make the pie crust: Place the flour, granulated sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. (Alternatively, the pie dough can be mixed by hand in a bowl using a pastry cutter.) Pulse a few times to combine.
- Add the cold butter cubes and pulse 10-12 times, until the butter pieces are the size of small peas.
- Add the ice-cold water and pulse until the dough comes together into a rough ball. If needed, add more water, a teaspoon at a time, to help the dough come together.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and cut it in half. Form each half into a round disk. Refrigerate one disk.
- Use a rolling pin to roll the second dough disk out into a circle that is 12 inches in diameter. Turn the dough a quarter turn with each roll as you roll it out. Place dough circle into a 9x2-inch pie dish. (Gently wrap dough around the rolling pin to transfer it.) Gently smooth the dough out into the pie dish, but do not press it down firmly into the dish as this can cause the crust to stick. Place in the refrigerator while you prepare the pie filling.
- Make the blackberry pie filling: If using fresh blackberries, wash the blackberries and lay them out on a clean towel; gently pat dry. If using frozen blackberries, thaw the berries and drain them of any excess liquid.
- Place blackberries in a large bowl. Add the sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla and stir until well combined. Transfer to the pie dish with the rolled out pie crust. Set aside.
- Roll out the top pie crust: Place the second dough disk onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll it out into a 12-inch diameter circle. Use a sharp knife, pizza cutter or pastry wheel to cut the dough circle into ½-inch strips. Using every other strip from the circle, arrange half of the dough strips going one direction across the top of the pie, leaving a little bit of space in between each strip. Weave the other half of the dough strips through the first set, over and under, pulling back the first set of strips as needed to weave. (As an alternative to the lattice crust, you can place the whole dough round on top of the pie. Cut a few slits in the center to allow steam to escape.)
- Trim off excess dough around the edge of the pie. Fold the edge over, towards the inside, and crimp with your fingers or a fork.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg and the 1 tablespoon milk or water. Lightly brush the top pie crust with the egg mixture. (You won't use all of the egg mixture.)
- Bake pie at 400° F for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350° F and continue baking for 40-45 more minutes, until the filling is bubbly and crust is light golden brown. Begin checking on the pie at 30 minutes and cover crust edges with pieces of foil as needed to prevent over-browning (you may use pie crust shields in place of the foil).
- Let pie cool for at least 2 hours at room temperature before slicing and serving. Store leftover pie in the refrigerator, wrapped tightly, for up to 5 days.
- You may use a store-bought pie crust if you don’t want to make your own. You will need a double crust, one for the top and one for the bottom of the pie.
- You can adjust the amount of sugar depending on the sweetness of your blackberries and how sweet you like your pie.
- You can make this pie with frozen blackberries. Defrost the blackberries and drain any excess liquid. Increase the cornstarch to ¼ cup.
So delicious. Thanks!
Yay! I’m so happy that you enjoyed this! Thanks for letting me know. 🙂
I found this crust to be very dry, difficult to work with. I won’t use the crust recipe again. The pie had too much lemon flavor for us, the lemon flavor overtook the blackberry flavor. I obviously put in too much zest. The recipe says “zest from one lemon”. I would use much less than all the zest from one lemon, maybe 1/2 – 3/4 tsp, depending on how strong you want the lemon flavor.
I’m sorry you didn’t love this as much as we do. I’ve made this crust recipe many times over the years and it’s always really easy to work with. I’m not sure what happened with yours. Did you spoon and level your flour rather than scooping it? Thank you for your thoughts on the lemon zest. I’ve updated the recipe with a measurement as all lemons are different sizes.
This looks and sounds fantastic! I have been wanting to make a blackberry pie for awhile now and this will be a perfect choice for my husband’s birthday coming up this Sunday. I’ll let you know how it turned out!
Happy Birthday to your husband! I hope all of you love the pie. I’ll be excited to hear how it turns out. 🙂
This is the most delicious pie ! I made it for my husband thinking I wouldn’t want any but like your son, I cleaned my plate. It cuts perfectly and i really like the hint of lemon . I’ve already had a piece for breakfast today !
Have you ever frozen this pie?
I haven’t, so I can’t say how it would freeze. I would probably make the crust and filling and freeze them separately. Thaw the filling in the refrigerator, fill the crust and then bake.
Any blackberry pie depends on the quality and type of berry for it’s success, and therein lies the problem. A supermarket blackberry might certainly need vanilla, lemon or the extras that many recipes include. Because I have been fortunate enough to live much of my life in areas where there were really good wild blackberries or where I could grow my own, the flavor of the berries stood on their own, and adding such flavors would be a large mistake. If you are ever lucky enough to get some West Coast Marionberries or the little wild berries, please don’t add anything but sugar and thickening.
I used fresh picked wild berries too, yet I found the lemon and vanilla added a lovely balance. That said, we halved the sugar, and I will halve again or omit it next time as I find fruit sweet enough and sugar has a strong flavour to me. US Americans seem to have a much sweeter tooth than we do, but all sense of taste is unique.
I don’t know what white whole wheat flour is as opposed to regular wholemeal here. We used wholemeal and it seems to be the same or similar enough. I also assumed all US American volumes.
I made this for mother’s day, and got tons of compliments! It was my first experience baking a pie from scratch. This pie was beautiful, and even more delicious. It was so sweet despite not having to add much sugar. I used mostly frozen berries, and I must not have let them fully thaw because the pie filling was extremely runny! I think more cornstarch, using only fresh berries, or letting the frozen ones thaw all the way would solve this problem, however. Great recipe!
Hi Grace, I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed this pie! You’re right, it’s important to thaw frozen berries all the way and drain off any excess liquid. You should also increase the cornstarch to 1/4 cup, as directed in the recipe note for using frozen berries. 🙂
Hi Christine, Im Mark, and I want to thank you for the detailed recipe. Im a widower, so I cook a lot for me! And I just made the most perfect, delicious pie Ive ever eaten. I had never made a crust before, and this one was absolutely awesome! Flaky, light, Mmmmmmm! Thanks again
Been eating blackberry pies for over 70 years and this was the best one ever! Made it with my granddaughter and found it pretty easy.
Thank you Kathy!
Hello Kristine! The recipe sounded great, but sadly, something went wrong with my filling. I used fresh picked blackberries from a local farm, which I sampled prior to making the pie, so I knew there was no problem with the berries themselves. I followed the recipe exactly when it came to the filling, and the cornstarch definitely kept the filling from turning runny. However, the flavor of the filling was so off putting that I literally could not eat it. I am an experienced baker, but as I always use other thickening ingredients, this is the first time adding cornstarch to a recipe for a pie filling. Could the unpleasant taste be coming from the cornstarch? The taste is hard to describe succinctly, but I would say the filling tastes bitter. Any thoughts or advice? Thank you!
I’m not sure what when wrong, that could be a sign that the pie was undercooked. Everyone’s tastes are different, if you have strong tastebuds for cornstarch you can omit that ingredient and replace it with a thickener of your choice or none at all.
I have never made blackberry pie before and this turned out great! I had to make some alterations. I used vegan butter since we are dairy free. I was out of cornstarch so I substituted using 6 TBS of arrowroot powder in place of the 3 TBS of cornstarch. I also did a plain egg wash with egg whites, not adding the milk. I didn’t have a lemon on hand so I used 1 TBS of lemon juice instead. The pie was so good and the crust was flakey and slightly sweet.
My husband and I love this pie. Thank you for this amazing recipe. This my new favorite pie!
I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed this recipe!
Followed the directions using fresh berries and a little extra cornstarch but my pie was very runny. I cooked it for an hour so needless to say I was very disappointed.
I’m sorry to hear that. Did you let it cool completely (at least 2 hours) before slicing? I hope it still tasted delicious!
I was really looking forward to trying this pie; however I was disappointed in the final product. Definitely needed more sugar. My boys didn’t even want to finish their pieces. ?
I’m sorry you were disappointed with the pie. It sounds like your blackberries may have been on the tart side. You can always adjust the amount of sugar in a recipe, depending on how sweet your fruit is and your tastes.
Have you tired This recipe with any other berries like blueberries or huckleberries?
Here is my blueberry pie recipe. I haven’t tried this recipe with other berries.
Best pie, of any fruit, that I’ve ever made! I think those that complained that it was too runny didn’t let it drain long enough. I put my frozen berries in the colander for about 6 hours, stirring it every hour or so, and ended up with almost a pint of liquid! Imagine if I had baked it with all that! The consistency of the filling was top notch! We LOVED this…thanks for sharin
Well, the pie is in the oven, I didn’t read the recipe all the way thru and put the egg and extra tablespoon of water into the filling, will have to see how this turns out 🙄 Happy Thanksgiving!
Oh my! I hope it turns out ok. Happy Thanksgiving!