If you like chai-flavored foods, then you need this Chai Spice-flavored Vegan Pear Pie in your life! This recipe calls for simple ingredients and is way easier than you might think.
Omgsh I made a pie. Seriously, just call me Martha Stewart.
I’m at Starbucks right now and quite literally just wolfed down a breakfast sandwich. I’m hoping no one saw how quickly I ate it, but I’m sure there’s someone in here right now who thinks I’m a disgusting animal. Uhhhhh yeah sorry? I was hungry.
If you haven’t noticed, I’ve taken a crazy interest in baking recently. There’s something therapeutic about it and it brings out the perfectionist in me, a side that doesn’t always show itself. Guys guess what? I think pies may be easier than cakes! I thought it’d be the opposite, and I’m sure there are some pies that are tricky, but fruit pies? Nahhhh, they’re pretty easy peasy. The trickiest part is figuring out how to design the top of your pie! Ohhhh the options.
This pie took me three tries because I obviously didn’t know what I was doing (I’m JUST starting to get comfortable with cake baking…), but the internet is a beautiful thing. I Googled “how to roll out a pie crust” and “how to make a pie crust look pretty”. Yeah, I’m serious and just trying to be transparent with you. With the help of some YouTube tutorials, I think I managed to make the crust look fairly presentable, though next time I’m going all out. Have you seen those braided pie crusts with the leaves?! They’re stunning, and now I feel like it’s a task I MUST accomplish.
When I celebrated my birthday with my family last weekend, I was given the task to come up with a vegan dish for Thanksgiving—something my entire family including my vegan brother could enjoy. My first thought was a sweet potato casserole, but my brother quickly claimed that dish. I thought, well SCREW YOU I’m making pie, so that’s exactly what I did. I can’t guarantee this vegan pear pie is going to be THE Thanksgiving pie, but it might be. <—oh the mystery.
The pie crust is pretty simple and uses milk and syrup in place of eggs, and is stuffed with chai-flavored pears. I don’t know about you, but I LOVE chai-flavored things. The only reason I tend to stray away from actual chai lattes is because they’re so sweet, but chai flavored foods? Sign me up! This vegan pear pie is everything you need for an alternative Thanksgiving day dessert, trust me.
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup almond milk
- ½ cup ice water
- 5 pears, chopped
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- ¼ cup raw cane sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp all spice, cardamom and cloves
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Start by making the crust: combine flour and salt in a large bowl.
- Add butter and use your hands to mix it in with the flour. This took me about two minutes to fully break down the butter. You want the mixture to be crumbly.
- Add in the syrup and milk; stir to combine.
- Last, add the water and stir. The dough will be a bit sticky, and that's ok. Form dough into two separate balls, one a bit larger than the other, and place them in the refrigerator.
- While dough is hardening, make the pear filling.
- Heat coconut oil in a large skillet and then add the chopped pears. Cook the pears until they are slightly soft, but be careful not to overcook them! I recommend 5 minutes over medium-high heat.
- While pears are cooking, add the sugar and chai spices to the skillet and stir so that the pears are coated with them; set skillet aside.
- Next, it's time to roll out the dough. Flour a baking mat and place the larger ball of dough on it, being sure to coat the dough with additional four as well.
- Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough so that it's in the general shape of a circle, making sure it's at least 11" in diameter.
- Lightly line your 9" pie pan with coconut oil and then transfer the dough into the pie pan. The dough should hang off the edges a bit--that's a good thing!
- Use your hands to press dough into the pan, and then trim the edges and scallop them if you wish.
- Add the cooked pears to the pie pan and set aside.
- Next, it's time to create the top layer for your pie. Roll out the second ball of dough (you can add the trimmings from the pie crust to this second set of dough--that's what I did!) so that it's in the general shape of a rectangle.
- Use a knife or pizza cutter to cut dough into thin (approx 1") strips, and criss cross the strips overtop of the pear filing, being sure to secure the ends of them so they stay put.
- Brush top dough with a bit of melted butter and sprinkle with cane sugar.
- Bake pie for approximately 40 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 350° and continue baking for an additional 15 minutes, or until crust turns golden brown.
- Remove from oven and wait until pie cools off before cutting a serving.
- Enjoy (with or without coconut or cashew-based ice cream)!