This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.
This homemade Graham Cracker Crust is sweet, buttery, golden-brown, and perfectly crunchy. It’s a quick and easy, four-ingredient base for so many different desserts!
Easy Graham Cracker Pie Crust
Today we’re talking about how to make the perfect graham cracker pie crust. While a graham cracker crust isn’t eye-popping like tall layer cakes, or droolworthy like chocolate caramel tarts, it is a foundational recipe that every baker should have in their arsenal.
After all, without graham cracker crust we couldn’t have tangy key lime pie, decadent seven layer bars, or luscious creamy cheesecake. So let’s raise a glass to the unsung heroes of the baking world, the backbone recipes that aren’t flashy or exciting, but are so necessary to successful desserts.
This homemade graham cracker crust is just what you need to make your baking that much easier (and that much better!) No more store-bought crust. Just 4 simple ingredients and 20 minutes and you’ve got a buttery, golden-brown, and perfectly crunchy base for pies and tarts, cheesecakes, and more!
Read on to learn how to make a graham cracker crust, and don’t miss the helpful table right above the recipe that tells you how much crust mixture you will need for a wide variety of pan sizes! (The table is condensed by default, so you will have to click the button to open and display it.)
🧾 What You’ll Need
This simple homemade dessert crust requires just 4 ingredients, which you might already have on-hand! (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)
- Graham Crackers: you’ll need about 10 graham crackers to yield the 1.5 cups/6 ounces of crumbs for this recipe.
- Butter: be sure to use unsalted butter so you don’t end up with a salty crust. If all you have is salted butter, just omit the salt you add yourself.
- Sugar: I use just 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar to add a little extra sweetness.
- Salt: cuts the sweetness slightly and enhances the flavor of the crust.
A note about graham cracker crumbs
Oftentimes, large grocery stores will sell graham cracker crumbs in boxes in the baking aisle. These crumbs can be a convenient time saver. If you prefer to go that route, you will need 1.5 cups to make the crust. In my experience the crumbs are a bit coarser than the ones I make myself in my food processor, so be flexible with the amount of butter you use, and increase it slightly if the crust still feels very dry after mixing.
You just need a couple of things to put together this graham cracker crust! (Links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)
- Pie Pan: a 9 x 1.5″ pie pan was the perfect size for this amount of crust. Keep in mind if you’re using a different size pan, the thickness of the crust will be affected–see the table below!
- Food Processor or Ziplock Bag: you can use a food processor to blend the graham crackers into a fine crumb OR place the crackers into a ziplock bag and use a rolling pin to crush them into crumbs.
Here’s a quick photo tutorial showing how to make a graham cracker crust. It comes together so quickly and makes the perfect base for so many different desserts! Full printable instructions are included in the recipe card down below.
Crush the Graham Crackers
You have two options for crushing your graham crackers. Both are super quick and easy!
- Option 1: Use a food processor to crush the graham crackers into a fine crumb. I don’t even bother to pulse the processor — I just let it go on regular speed until the crackers are in uniform crumbs.
- Option 2: Alternatively, you can place the graham crackers into a Ziplock bag and use a rolling pin to crush them until they are in fine crumbs.
Mix the Crust Ingredients
- In a mixing bowl, mix together the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, granulated sugar, and salt. I recommend adding most of the butter at first, but reserving a little bit in case not all is needed.
- Stir the mixture together until well-combined. It should be the texture of wet sand and hold together a bit when you squeeze it between your fingers. If it still feels dry, stir in the reserved butter.
Form the Crust and Bake if Desired
- Press the crust evenly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9×1.5″ pie plate, then bake at 350ºF for 15 minutes, until set and lightly golden. Let the crust cool before adding any filling.
💡 Tips for success
- Melt the butter. The melted butter is what binds the graham cracker crumbs together so the crust can hold its shape.
- Use most, but not all of the butter to start. I recommend adding some of the butter to start and then mixing in more as needed. You want the texture to be similar to wet sand but not too oily. I would reserve a tablespoon or so and only add more if needed.
- Bake the crust. Although you can make a no-bake crust, I definitely recommend baking it before adding a filling. This gives it a nice golden-brown color and slightly crunchy texture which prevents it from becoming soggy!
- Tightly pack the crust. When you’re forming the crust in the pie pan, firmly press down so the crumbs are tightly packed together. If it’s too loosely packed, the crust will be crumbly.
- If making a no-bake crust, I recommend chilling the crust for 1-2 hours in the fridge to allow the butter time to solidify for a firmer crust.
Make-Ahead and Storage Instructions
Graham cracker crust will last in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for 3 months. If you’re freezing the crust, I recommend waiting to bake it.
When you’re ready to fill it, thaw it in the fridge and bake as directed if frozen, then add whatever filling you like!
🥧 Recipes that Use a Graham Cracker Crust
You can easily use this graham cracker crust in pretty much any pie or tart recipe you like! Here are a few of my favorites:
- Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake
- Strawberry Lemonade Ice Cream Pie
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie
- Pistachio Pie
- Fresh Peach Tart
Key Lime Pie
New York Style Cheesecake
❓How much Graham Cracker Crust You Need: The Ultimate Guide
This recipe is written for one 9″ pie pan, since that is an extremely common size and use for graham cracker crusts. But what if you want to make a few mini cheesecakes? Or a large rectangular tart? How much of the graham cracker base will you need then?
I am here for you! I measured all of the most common pan types and sizes and weighed how much graham cracker mix they required. To be clear, this is a general guide, and your milage may vary depending on your specific pan, how thick you like to make your crust, etc. But I hope you find it helpful as a starting point!
Click Here to Expand the Table!
Pan Name & Size
Recipe Card Amt
Mini pie pan
1 batch = 4 mini pies
8" pie pan
9" pie pan
9" deep dish pie pan
11" deep dish pie pan
3" tart shell
1 batch = 4
4" tart shell
1 batch = 3-4
9" tart shell
10" deep dish tart shell
11" tart shell
Rectangle tart shell
1 batch = 6
4" springform (bottom + sides)
1 batch = 2-3
1 batch = 3
6" springform (bottom + sides)
8.5" springform (just bottom)
8.5" springform (bottom + sides)
9.5" springform (just bottom)
9.5" springform (bottom + sides)
10.5" springform (just bottom)
10.5" springform (bottom + sides)
How to use this table
- Find the pan that most closely resembles the pan you will be using. Images are provided as a general guide, but please check the dimensions to be sure it’s a close fit.
- Look at the information in the last column, “Recipe Card Amt.” This tells you what you need to input in the recipe card to get the perfect amount of crust.
- For instance, for an 8″ pie pan, you will need 0.75, or 3/4 of a batch. On the recipe card, just below the ingredients, is a place for you to customize the amount. Input 0.75 in the box. The ingredient amounts you need will be automatically calculated for you!
- For miniature pies/tarts, the table will list how many of the mini desserts 1 batch will yield. Depending on the number you want to make, you can double or even triple the recipe to yield that many crusts. Use the customize button as described above, or the 1x / 2x / 3x boxes next to the Ingredients header.
- Finally, because cheesecakes can be made with either a crust just on the bottom, or on the bottom and sides, both of those options are listed separately in the table.
- I hope you find this helpful, and please do let us know if you use it and how it works for you!
Don’t miss the step-by-step tutorial showing how to make a Graham Cracker Crust – check out the web story here!
Graham Cracker Crust
- Crush the grahams in a food processor until they are fine crumbs. (Alternatively, place them in a zip-top bag and roll over them with a rolling pin until very finely crushed).
- Combine the graham cracker crumbs, about 2.5 TBSP of the melted butter, granulated sugar, and salt in a bowl, and stir until well-combined. The mixture should have the texture of wet sand, and hold together a bit when you squeeze it between your fingers.
- If the crust still feels a bit dry, add the remaining butter and stir together to make it the proper texture.
- Press the crust evenly on the bottom and up on the sides of a 9 x 1.5" pie plate.
- If not baking the crust: refrigerate the crust for an hour before filling, so it is more set before filling it.
- If baking the crust: bake at 350 F for 15 minutes, until set and lightly golden. Let the crust cool completely before filling.
Our recipes are developed using weight measurements, and we highly recommend using a kitchen scale for baking whenever possible. However, if you prefer to use cups, volume measurements are provided as well. PLEASE NOTE: the adage “8 oz = 1 cup” is NOT true when speaking about weight, so don’t be concerned if the measurements don’t fit this formula.Click here to learn more about baking measurements and conversion.
About Elizabeth LaBau
I’m Elizabeth, but you can call me SugarHero! I’m a former pastry chef turned blogger, cookbook author, and baking instructor, and I consider myself sugar’s #1 fan. Learn more from my About page, or connect with me on social media: