Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

a3 Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

 The highlight of a pie or tart for me lies on the shortcrust pastry. The crumbly and buttery crust, what’s not to like?  Especially for a butter lover like myself, naturally I love butter in any shape or form, let it be its solid self, soften, melted or crumbly form of a pastry. I’m impartial to all of the above ha!

I was venturing out to an unknown territory by making shortcrust pastry with olive oil. Will it be as crumbly? Will it be as rich and flavoursome? Will it be as good as the butter version?

I was going to say it would be “healthier” but I love butter too much to give it all up. One thing for sure was olive oil makes a lighter and less oily pastry. I actually tried the olive oil shortcrust pastry on quiche (recipe will be up later this week) which worked perfectly well together. Remember when you work with butter to make shortcrust pastry, it is essential that the butter doesn’t melt when you try to work the butter into the flour. Well, you don’t have this issue with olive oil especially with the heatwave I have been experiencing of late.

a7 Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

(tweaked slightly on Italy in Small Bites by Carol Field)

What you’ll need to fill a 20cm (8 inched) tart pan:-

  • 200g (7 ounces) all-purpose flour + extra to dust the rolling pin & bench
  • Salt to taste (I used about a pinch)
  • 6 tbsps of olive oil + extra to grease the tart pan
  • 1/4 cup of cold water

Other: cling wrap, rolling pin, tart pan, fork, baking brush & at least 30 minutes refridgeration time

a16 Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry


In a mixing bowl, mix together flour and salt.  Then add in olive oil using a fork until resembles breadcrumbs. Gradually stir in cold water (about 1/4 cup as a guide as it may vary) until the mixture forms a dough. Wrap the dough in cling wrap and allow it to rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. If you are using the dough on the same day, remember to preheat the oven to 190C/170C Fan/ 375F before working on the dough for the tart pan. Oil a tart pan using a baking brush thoroughly, i.e. bottom and side of the pan. Set aside. Roll the dough flat enough to cover the tart pan (you may need to dust the rolling pin & workstation with some flour to avoid the dough from sticking to them). In order to transfer the flatten pastry from the workstation to the tart pan, wrap the pastry around the rolling pin, center it over the pan and unwrap the pastry. Then try to fit the pastry into the side of the pan without stretching it too much. Use your fingers to press gently  into the fluted side of the tart pan. Make sure that the pastry fits snugly where the bottom and side of the pan meet with no air pockets. Also, trim the overhanging dough and use it to “patch up” the dough shortfall area (if any).  Lightly brush the surface with some oil and prick the bottom of the tart with a fork. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the crust appears to be slight brown.

Note – You can blind bake the tart shell using the ceramic beads, dry beans or rice. I didn’t blind bake the shell and it puffed a little. So what I’ve done was to flatten the puffed-up bits using the side of a mug (super gently) while it’s hot.

a6 Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

Meatless Recipes, Other. permalink.

40 thoughts on “Olive Oil Shortcrust Pastry

  1. As a vegan living in rural Northern Tasmania, the bank is definately closed on most vegan alternatives to butter but this recipe gives me back a bit of hope that tarts, pies etc. might just be back on the menu in our household :). Cheers for this liberating recipe 🙂

    • You can really use any kind of oil in similar proportions, so the range is huge… just play around with it.

      I have a friend who is terribly allergic to anything with even the slightest trace of milk in it, so I am always on the lookout for new recipes.

      As for your quiche, you can replace the cream in a quiche with evaporated soya milk (you can reduce it yourself so that the consistency is more simmilar to single cream, and you can thicken with arrowroot powder, rice powder or cornstarch. If you are not happy with those, you can use chick-pea flour to substitute for eggs and make the whole thing set.

      Hope you manage to get pastry back on the menu!!!

    • Kim!

      I have tried to make puff pastry with olive oil and it just does not work. You just get a slightly flakier version of a normal shortcrust pastry and waste a load of time making it.

      The problem is the basic physics of puff pastry: When making traditional puff pastry, you are layering your pastry with a solid fat, which puts a relatively thick layer of fat and air between each layer of your pastry, rolling and folding repeatedly.

      I would go with a solid vegetable fat, maybe palm or coconut butter, or any other 100% pure vegetable oil that is solid at room temperature.

      If you are living in a hot climate, this may not work at all, but if you can get your kitchen cold enough and work on a marble surface, try using solid coconut oil. Keep it in a tub in the fridge and make your pastry as usual. Be quick and work it sparingly.

      Would love to know the results!!

    • Yes…there is a way of making oil puff pastry: the Chinese way. The idea is to make layers using two different types of oil dough, being one of them very similar to butter in consistency. Here is a good example:
      I guess that the number of turns will make it just a flaky oil shortcrust of a puffed pastry.

      • Yes that’s right, I’ve been using the Chinese pastry method to make a kind of puff pastry (doesn’t rise the way normal puff pastry does) that’s really flaky depending on how you handle it. The trick is to mix olive oil with flour for the “oil” layer

  2. Have just made a new friend who is lactose intolerant as well as gluten intolerant, my Hubby is also gluten intolerant, we both love pies and I will now be able to make some pies for our new friend.

  3. I came across your recipe through google. I used this today for my chicken, white wine and leek pie it was soooo good. Thankyou. I also pinned it so I can use it again.

  4. Hi Emily, is it possible to make a sweet olive oil short crust pastry? If so what measurements of ingredients would I use? Many Thanks

    • Hi Deborah,

      Unfortunately, I have not tried making this in a sweet version. However, I feel it would be possible to make a sweet version. If I were you, I would try the following:-

      200g (7 ounces) all-purpose flour + extra to dust the rolling pin & bench
      1/4 cup of fine sugar (caster sugar)
      7 tbsps of olive oil + extra to grease the tart pan
      1/4 cup of cold water (or slightly more until you can form a dough)

      As for the method, mix together flour and sugar together. Then add olive oil gradually until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs…

      Let me know how it turns out & happy baking!


      • Hi there,

        I made an apple pie using your sweet shortcrust pastry recipe. Instead of using olive oil I used coconut oil – it was delicious! I also used wholemeal flour instead of white flour. So happy to have found a recipe that is vegan and a healthier alternative to store-bought pastry.
        I also tried your savory shortcrust recipe using the olive oil – absolutely scrumptious.

        Thanks for the great recipe!

  5. Just tried this!! The shortcrust pastry is in the fridge now, hope it will taste great! 🙂 I always try to replace olive oil with butter, cause butter’s not a staple in my pantry and I’m way too lazy to buy one! Hahaha.

  6. Good recipe, thank you. Many years ago (30??) at a Tupperware party I was shown a recipe using oil for pastry. The demonstrator just put all the ingredients in a Tupperware lidded container and literally shook it up for a minute or two. It came out perfect. I lost the recipe which I always called shaker pastry and was not sure of the quantities but I’m now going to try it with your recipe. It is so easy!!

    • Thanks sounds cool! I have just attended my first Tupperware party over here in Orange. Boy it was fun and I’ve picked some no fuss recipes from there too! 🙂

  7. Hi i am always on diet and I use to do the pastry with natural youghart instead of butter, does oil is more fattening than yougart??

  8. Realy quick pastry…
    8ozs Flour… 100 mls hot water… 100 mls oil…
    Shake together in a container with a lid.
    Then use straight away…

  9. I watched a programme recently about how palm oil harvesting (which is in all vegan margarines) is destroying the habitat for the orang-utans and as I love pastry items was soooo pleased to find this recipe so I am going to make a tofu quiche tonight using it.

  10. Nice pastry but I had trouble rolling it out – should I have let it come back to room temperature after it had been in the fridge?

    • If the dough appears to be hard (and hence your trouble rolling it out), then yes, allow the dough to come back to room temperature or until the dough softens and pliable. 🙂

  11. Thank you sooooooo much for this recipe!!! This will become the pastry for our once a week vegan seitan casserole from now on!!!

  12. I am cooking a meal for my friend’s Mum who has a lot of dietary restrictions and I was wondering if you had ever tried making pastry with olive oil and gluten-free flour? Any idea if it would work? Thanks a lot.

  13. Thank you for this wonderful recipe. I’ve been using it exclusively for quiches since stumbling across it a little while back. For a mushroom-leek quiche, I replaced a little of the olive oil with truffle oil, which worked out quite well.

  14. Hi Kim, I just used your recipe as the base for a vegan pear and frangipane tart. It came out perfect! Substituted the olive oil with a mixture of sunflower and rapeseed oil and added 2 tbsp sugar. It was wonderfully crisp and flaky!

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