How to Make a Crumb Crust
Many recipes call for crumb crusts for cheesecake, coffee cake, cream pies, ice cream pies, and even some cakes. You can use shortbread, chocolate or vanilla wafers, cream filled sandwich cookies, other cookie crumbs, or even cereal in place of graham crackers: the ingredient list may change, but the method will stay the same.
- Break the graham crackers or cookies into smaller pieces, by breaking in two, then divide those pieces in half.
- You can use a food processor or blender to turn those pieces into crumbs. Pulse in short bursts until there are coarse crumbs.
- You can also place the broken pieces into a heavy-duty recloseable bag. Seal the bag leaving a small portion unsealed to allow some air to escape. Roll a rolling pin over the plastic bag, using a little pressure while rolling. Continue rolling the pin over the bag until the cookies are broken into coarse crumbs.
- Pour the coarse crumbs into a large mixing bowl. Add any sugar, cocoa, or chopped nuts that may be included in the recipe, followed by melted butter. Some recipes also include, honey, peanut butter or maple syrup in place of, or including butter. You can also add a pinch of salt to reduce the sweetness of the mixture.
- Work the butter (or other soft ingredients) into the crumbs using a wooden spoon, fork, or your hands until the butter is evenly distributed.
- Dump the mixture into the pan indicated in the recipe, This can include springform pans, tube pans, pie plates, rectangular or square baking pans, or even jelly-roll pans. Generally, there is no need to grease the pan.
- Use your hands, the back side of a spoon, or a flat-bottomed glass to press the mixture evenly into the bottom and sides (if desired) of the pan. To avoid crumbs getting into the filling or batter, press firmly to ensure the crust is well compacted.
- Bake the crust according to the recipe instructions, usually 8 to 10 minutes. Let it cool completely before adding the filling or batter.
Try some of these popular recipes for crumb crusts:
Or see all recipes for crumb crusts: