Making Pastry With Oil


Making Pastry With Oil


Rhubarb Forest v2 May10

this was my rhubarb forest in June 2012. DP is a confirmed fan of rhubarb crumble and apple pies

Making pastry with oil

Before we go into making any of the dishes involving pastry, a word about making it.  I have been making pastry since I was a child as it was one of the ways Mum made things stretch, meat pies with not much meat in them and lots of vegetables, apple pies to fill us up and rhubarb pies with rhubarb from the garden together with custard so thick you could slice it.

Mmmmmm  (Birds custard that is, not proper egg custard :))

Which fat to use?

Usually when making pastry, some kind of solid fat is used as shortening. Butter, lard, hard margarine or blocks of shortening sold especially for making pastry. But on the Meal Plans on this site, we don’t usually have enough solid fat to spare to make pastry with, so I will be using a technique I learned, to make pastry using the vegetable oil that we will have available

When I was involved with the £100 a month plan over on , and we needed to make pastry, but only had oil, no solid fat, I was up for the challenge.

How To Make It

If you are familiar with making pastry, you will know that usually you have to add the minimum of  liquid to keep a pastry short, otherwise it can go rubbery and unpleasant. With oil pastry, my first thought was that it wouldn’t need any liquid as the oil would provide all the moisture needed. My goodness!  It was like trying to roll out a crumble topping!

After a lot of experimentation, I found that if I added almost as much water in ml as the oil, the flour sort of slurped it all up and became very compliant, rolling out beautifully.

So when you make this kind of pastry, put the flour and oil in a bowl, and almost as much water as oil, and just gently stir it with a spoon.Oil pastry stage 1

You can use this kind of pastry for most recipes using pastry. I’ve used cheapest vegetable oil, mild olive oil and extra virgin olive oil, all of which worked really well


making pastry with oil

Faggots & Gravy
pastry made with oil

Pastry Making

Pastry made with oil is light, short and rather wonderful
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins
budget meals
cheap family recipes
dairy free by Olguioo from the Noun Project
Dairy Free
No Nuts by Llisole from the Noun Project
Nut Free
vegan by Guilherme Furtado from the Noun Project
Vegetarian by Philipp Petzka from the Noun Project
Servings: 4 servings
Cost per portion 17p
Calories: 403kcal
Author: Thrifty Lesley
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  • 100 ml water up to 100ml, you may not need it all
  • 100 ml oil 11p
  • 200 g flour self raising, 6p


  • After a lot of experimentation when creating this recipe, I found that if I added almost as much water in ml as the oil, the flour sort of slurped it all up and became very compliant, rolling out beautifully.
  • So when you make this kind of pastry, put the flour and oil in a bowl,
    and add almost as much water as oil, and just gently stir it with a spoon.
    pastry made with oil
  • Add the water bit by bit, it will look a little like a batter at first.
    If you add too much water, the pastry is easily rescued by adding a
    little more flour, but if you are following the weekly plans, you may
    not have enough flour to spare from the weekly bag to do this and still
    have enough to make the other flour requiring dishes for the week,  so
    go slowly.
    pastry made with oil
  • The flour will bind everything together and you will have a soft ball of pastry dough, ready to roll out.
    pastry made with oil


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You can rest it for a bit if you like, it helps the dough to relax and the gluten to develop. Or you can go straight into rolling it out. If there is enough water in it, it should roll out and stick together like this, like pastry made with solid fat
If you haven’t got it quite as amenable yet, don’t worry, everything that we make on these plans you can stick bits and pieces together in the pie tin etc, and it will taste just fine

Got a great recipe? How about submitting it to appear on Thrifty Lesley!


Nutrition Facts
Pastry Making
Amount Per Serving
Calories 403 Calories from Fat 225
% Daily Value*
Fat 25g38%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Sodium 2mg0%
Potassium 54mg2%
Carbohydrates 38g13%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 5g10%
Calcium 8mg1%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @ThriftyLesley or tag #ThriftyLesley !

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Before putting together the meal planners, Lesley surveyed what was needed. Of the existing 14 budget meal plans, most are cheap meals for 2 people so can be sized up or down. Others are cheap family meals for 4 people, or meals for one

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  1. Thrifty Lesley

    Fantastic, so glad you liked it. And welcome

  2. Jude Gibbons

    5 stars
    I was making a pie tonight and realised I didn’t have enough butter so quickly googled ‘oil pastry’ and found this page. Delighted to say that your recipe worked a treat! I used sunflower oil and plain white flour. I hesitated adding so much water, so only added about 40ml at first but you’re right – it is like rolling out crumble! So I added about the same again and it came together fine even though it seemed a bit gloopy at first. I chilled it before rolling out and also before putting the pie in the oven. The raw pastry feels much softer than that made with solid fat but cooks just the same. Thanks!

  3. Thrifty Lesley

    I’m so glad you were successful. Those pasties sound delicious !

  4. Ali Dixon

    Made the oil pastry Couldnt believe it .Made cheese,onion and potato pastys. Usually my pastry is vile but this is super Well done Lesley!

  5. Thrifty Lesley

    I just use water straight from the cold tap

  6. Yas

    Most pastry are made with cold water. What temperature should the water be?

  7. Lisa

    Amazing thank u x

  8. Lesley

    Hooray! I’m so pleased it worked for you

  9. Jackie

    My pastry never ever worked, – until I discovered and tried your recipe with oil. You’ve made me a star! It works! So far, one double crust pie using leftovers which just slid beautifully out of the tin, and a quiche. Fabulous, easy and foolproof. Many thanks.

  10. Lesley

    Ooh, lovely. Look forward to reading what you write

  11. Tinyallotment

    Hi Lesly
    Thank you for this recipe for pastry. It have revolutionised my cooking. I have put a link to your site on my blog. I will be shortly doing a blog post on oil pastry and will of course link across to you.

  12. Lesley

    Ceri – I haven’t yet. I’ll try it and let you know what it’s like

  13. Ceri

    Hi has anyone made this with gluten free flour? Thanks Ceri

  14. Mark


  15. Lesley

    Hi Mark, it’s the same ratio as a shortcrust pastry. So for a double crust 20 cm pie, it would be 200g self raising flour, 100ml oil (not grams) and start with 100ml of water, adding 75ml to start with and see how it goes

  16. mark

    There are no measurements…. Flour, oil, water..what ratios….?


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