The Secret Ingredient Pie Crust

You will not believe the Secret Ingredient Pie Crust! Best pie crust I have ever had. The ‘secret ingredient’ isn’t anything obscure, chances are, you have it in your fridge right now!

Secret Ingredient Pie Crust, the best and last pie crust recipe you'll ever need!

I found a recipe quite some years ago that incorporated CREAM CHEESE into  pie crust recipe. I thought to myself… well obviously this must be delicious. Name one thing that cream cheese doesn’t make better….

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I tried the recipe and of course it was delicious. I’ve tweaked it over the years to make it my own, and it has become a solid staple in my kitchen/freezer at all times. The fact that it has so few ingredients, it is so quick and easy to make, AND it is perfect for sweet OR savory dishes (chicken pot pie, anyone?).

I make at least 4 of these at a time (it’s so easy), and I pat them out into round disks, wrap them in plastic wrap, and throw them in the freezer. (Best to let defrost in the fridge… found this out through trial and error.)

The easiest way to make this crust is by using a food processor. You don’t need anything fancy; I use this one that I got for a wedding shower gift 5 years ago, and it works great! I love it. There’s also plenty of room in the bowl part, which I like.

What I’m trying to say is that you do not need to have the world’s most expensive food processor in your pantry. But I AM saying that having a food processor that you like will make this pie crust making task SO easy!

Secret Ingredient Pie Crust, the best and last pie crust recipe you'll ever need

My mom hates making pie crust, she says it is such a pain in the neck. (If you know my mom, then you know that’s not exactly the phrasing she used.) I think making this pie crust is easier than the store-bought kind times a million. Has anyone ever been able to unroll that pie crust without it cracking and breaking and falling apart?!

There is no comparison when it comes to flavor and texture. This crust is hands down the best (and last!) pie crust recipe you’ll ever need.


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Secret Ingredient Pie Crust
Perfect for sweet or savory, novice or pastry chef, this is the best and last pie crust recipe you'll ever need.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Prep Time 15 minutes
  1. Using a food processor, blend softened butter, cream cheese, and salt.
  2. When the cream cheese and butter are properly mixed (you will not see any white chunks of cream cheese, the color will be uniform), add in flour all at once.
  3. With the lid on and secured, pulse the food processor until the mixture resembles a ball of dough. It is important not to over-do this. Because pastry dough is delicate, you don't want to over work the proteins in the flour... this will make your crust tough.
  4. When the dough starts to form a sticky ball, add in your cold water a teaspoon or two at a time. You will notice the dough is less sticky. The cold water is firming that butter and cream cheese back up!
  5. This recipe yields one crust (double it if you want a crust on the top of your pie as well!). Scoop the dough out of the food processor, roll into a ball, then pat down into a disc about 5" across. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least a half hour, or freeze for months!
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9 Gifts for the Mom That ‘doesn’t want anything this year’ – What am I going to get my mom for Christmas this year?

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?

I say that to myself every year. It’s so difficult to come up with a mom-worthy gift!

..and now, I am that mom!

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I used to get so mad at her (not really mad) because I want to get my mom as many gifts as I can for gift-giving holidays. How can this crazy lady never want anything?!

One year my brother told my mom, if she didn’t tell him what she wanted he was going to get her something stupid that she didn’t want at all.

Now that I am a mom, it is getting harder and harder to answer my husband when he asks me what I would like for Christmas (or my birthday). Maybe being a mom has nothing to do with it, perhaps it’s just “getting older” with a different perspective of value(s). I do not know.


Is it just me, or does it seem like the items that stores are trying to pass off as “gifts” are getting cheaper and less useful? I don’t want to get my mom (or anyone else for that matter) a gift that doesn’t have value. I don’t mean “expensive” value, I mean is valuable to that person, and shows them that I really put my heart into their gift.

Well I put together a list for you of REALLY GOOD gift ideas for your mom or significant lady in your life.

When it comes to gifting mom, think about the whole year ahead, or future Christmases. Think about the things she likes to do, her hobbies and interests. I have a hard time gifting people a Christmas-themed gift, especially when I am gifting it to them on the 25th! The item will get packed away shortly and not used for a whole year! Perhaps, think winter-y, or non-season related at all.

Here it is:
What am i going to get my mom this year for christmas? C-A-N-D-L-E-S!

I love candles, candles, candles, all year round! If mom already burns candles, this is a pretty solid gift. I like to burn clean-smelling things after Christmas, and particularly after New Years. Think of this time as a refreshing, calm, cool, and de-cluttering time. Scents like these:

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?

This Capri Blue candle in the Volcano scent is amaaaaazing. If you’ve ever been to Anthropologie, THIS is the candle you smelled. So clean and fresh, perfect for winter, spring, and summer. I am OBSESSED with this candle.

What am I going to get my mom for christmas this year? Kitchen Gadgets & appliances!

Fun kitchen wares are things I love, but never ask for. I don’t ask for them because they’re just little knick-knacks, and it seems silly to ask for a little insignificant item that I could get for myself any time.

The key there is that I DON’T get it for myself.


What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


The good stuff, man. I’m buying my normal stash of food storage containers at the Dollar Tree… but boy oh boy would I love some NICE containers. I feel guilty purchasing them the rest of the year because moms tend to have mom-guilt about making big purchases.

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


I’ve wanted one of these puppies for a long time. If mom has any interest in cooking, goes to Costco regularly, gardens, like to pre-prep meals… this is for her.

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


I don’t know how I lived so long without a salad spinner… and WITH soggy, watery salads. Gross. It is hard enough to get more veggies in the mix without adding pools of water to your lettuce. YUCK! (Also, you wouldn’t believe how much water spins off the lettuce with one of these things.) Also great for washing herbs. But also don’t just get her a salad spinner… pair it with some fancy olive oils or vinegars, a fun cookbook, etc.

Bonus points because of the healthy-living trend that rolls around during the beginning of the year.

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


Is mom a coffee shopaholic?!? A friend of mine has this coffee maker, and I hope to receive one, too! I love that it has the little coffee pods, perfect for single servings. You can make an espresso size, or coffee cup size. With the milk frother, you can also make lattes, cappuccinos, mochas…. and more! Definitely worth getting the nicer model to get the milk frother. LOVE it.

What am i going to get my mom for christmas this year? Self care items!


What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


So, maybe a little cliche. But, I feel so pampered with “fancy” cozy slippers, a real special treat over the ones I bought at the grocery store (that really shouldn’t be true!!!)

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


I SO want one of these babies. These lights simulate the sun rise, and here in Michigan it gets downright depressing in the winter. I hope to receive one of these this year to test it out. The bonus is that it doubles as an alarm/clock and plays soothing tunes. Maybe it will help mom stick with her resolution of no screen time before bed.

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


Obsessed with bath fizzies, I can’t get enough. And, since winter time brings more cause for a hot bath at the end of a cold day, you know these beauties will be appreciated!

What to get my mom for Christmas this year?
What to get my mom for Christmas this year?


What goes better with a hot bath than a glass of wine?! Now that Amazon ships wine (to most states), it’s that much easier to order. Another thought would be to sign mom up for a wine delivery club from a local/her favorite winery. Some of my favorites are 2Lads, Bonobo, and L. Mawby. #michiganwine

Halloween – Sweet Not Scary

I am a little over the unnecessarily gory Halloween decorations, costumes, and especially FOOD! No, I do NOT want to eat a cupcake that looks like a brain. And no, I do not want to wear a costume that looks like I should be rushed to the emergency room. And this is coming from a person who watches The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Here are some Family Friendly Halloween Ideas for this Halloween!

Family Friendly Halloween Ideas for the Whole Family
I love this post from Cora L. Diekman on Domino about Halloween Decor.

The ideas in Cora’s post are sweet and Halloween-inspired, without making your lip curl. Also, could be some good ideas for workplace or office decor.My favorite it the tulle-covered balloon. You could so easily use another color tulle for a mix of black and orange (maybe purple, or green, too!). I may even repackage this as a birthday decoration with pink tulle. The opportunities are endless!

This post on livingly is great for costume ideas

The post is focused on family/group costumes, but you could easily tweak most of them for a smaller group (or to incorporate your pet!). I love the Jurassic Park one. None of the costumes are gory, or overly skin-showing (I’m not in that phase of my life right now).

I love this post on Just bright ideas for halloween cakes

(Minus the one with the stabbing knife.)

I may be making the candy corn cake this year, too cute.

Getting some cute monogrammed treat buckets to stuff full of treats!

I love the idea of making extra-special treats for all of the neighbors, coworkers, or family and friends. This would be such a cute way to package everything. And, it would make a few simple things look very well put together.