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Blueberry Buttermilk Crumb Pie

Cook Time:
1 hr
Prep Time:
15 mins

Chef notes

One of America's most popular desserts is a classic buttermilk pie, so what better way to celebrate our country's birthday than with a fresh blueberry crumb pie? This recipe from Kareem "Mr. Bake" Queeman, the owner of Mr. Bake Sweets right outside of Washington, D.C., brings the spirit of the nation's capital to your Fourth of July celebration. The James Beard-nominated baker loves everything blueberry and couldn't wait to share this recipe.

This recipe has three essential parts: the buttermilk crust, the blueberry filling and of course a delicious crumble for the top. Kareem's late grandmother was adamant that letting your pies sit helps develop the flavor, so give yourself ample time to make sure your pie is perfect.

You can make this pie year-round (Thanksgiving is only a few months away!), but peak blueberry season is over the summer. It's best to take advantage of this recipe while you have the freshest product, but frozen blueberries work in a pitch, too. The ingredients are easy to find at your local grocery store, and you may already have most of what you need in your fridge and pantry.

This standard nine-inch pie recipe serves six to eight people, so it's perfect for intimate summer gatherings. Served best warm with a side of creamy vanilla ice cream, this quintessential pie recipe is the only one you'll need this Fourth of July!

Technique tip: Make sure your butter and buttermilk is cold. For best results, chill the dough for 1 hour or even overnight after it's combined, shaped and wrapped in plastic. Make sure the cornstarch is dissolved into the liquid before you mix it in. Make sure the liquid has a rolling boil before you add the cornstarch mixer into the pan.

Swap options: You can swap out shortening for butter equal parts (50/50 works best). You can use sub frozen for fresh blueberries. You can swap whole milk or water for the buttermilk. You can swap blueberries for baking apples/peaches (5 to 6 cut into slices, 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoons of ginger and nutmeg).


Blueberry Filling
  • 2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Buttermilk Crust
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted, cold butter, diced into small cubes or grated with a box grater
  • 1/4-1/2 cup cold buttermilk
Crumb Topping
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted


For the blueberry filling:


In a medium saucepan, add your blueberries, water and sugar. Heat over medium-low heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until you notice some of the blueberries breaking down and starting to boil, 3 to 5 minutes.


While your berries cook, use a small bowl and mix cornstarch, water and lemon juice. Stir until smooth without lumps. Set aside.


In the saucepan with the blueberry mixture, stir in the cornstarch mixture. Stir constantly until the mixture thickens, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.


Cover filling with plastic wrap so a skin doesn't form. Let the filling come to room temperature or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to a month.

For the buttermilk crust:


Preheat the oven to 350 F.


In a medium bowl, combine flour and salt, and mix with a spoon or fork. Add in your cold butter pieces, toss into the flour mixer to coat the butter. Make sure your butter is pea-size and scattered throughout the mixture.


Slowly mix in the cold buttermilk until the mixture combines into a ball of dough (add 1 tablespoon of buttermilk at a time; you just want the dough to start forming a ball).


Place your ball of dough on a lightly floured working surface. Lightly roll your dough with your hands into a tight ball. You can cut the dough in half and wrap it with plastic and place it into the refrigerator to chill for 1 hour to overnight.


With a floured surface and floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4 inch and about an 1/2 inch bigger than your pie pan.


Roll the dough onto the rolling pin to transfer it to the pie pan. Shape and size the dough to the pan cutting off any excess dough from the sides using a knife or kitchen scissors. Shape the crust of the dough to your liking.


Wrap and chill the dough and pie pan for 1 hour to overnight.

For the crumb topping:


Use a fork or dry whisk to combine the flour, brown sugars, salt and spices until well-mixed.


Add the melted butter into the flour mixture. Mix until you start to see wet clumps forming. These clumps will be different sizes. You want to break up the bigger clumps down to pea and penny size. Nothing should be bigger than a quarter.


In your prepared pie crust and filling, arrange the crumb topping on the pie. Start with the bigger sizes then work my way to the top, making sure you cover the entire pie filling with all the crumb topping.

To assemble:


Preheat oven to 350 F.


Pour filling into pie crust and top with the crumb mixture.


Bake pie for 45 to 60 minutes until the top and edges brown and you see the filling bubble out the corners and side of the pie.