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Amazing Mixed Berry Pie with Crumb Topping

Dive into the delightful mess of berries with my ultimate Mixed Berry Pie recipe! This pie combines strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries, each bringing their own pop of flavor, along with a hint of cinnamon and a bright zest of lemon under a crispy oat crumble. It’s messy, it’s delicious, and it might just be your new favorite Perfect with a scoop of ice cream.

Single slice of pie cut from rest with ice cream and berries in pan.

You gotta make this pie!!

We discovered this pie when we lived in Michigan, just outside of Ann Arbor at a place called the Grand Traverse Pie Company. Be still my heart. They made a slew of pies daily. Fresh and incredibly good. This one was my favorite (their “Mountain Berry Pie”).

Sadly, I can’t find another place that makes those kinds of pies here back home in the Philadelphia suburbs. Sure, we have the Amish farmer’s markets nearby. And they do make a decent pie. But they don’t make this pie. I’ve been able to find berry pies that either don’t have all the necessary berry varieties and there are those with a lattice topping in lieu of the crumb topping (I love the crumb topping).

Ingredients

Ingredients for the mixed berry pie (pie dough, filling, and topping).

How To: Overview

To Make the Pie Shell (3-2-1 Dough):
Start by combining flour, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. Cut in shortening until it resembles pea-sized crumbs, then mix in cubed butter until well incorporated and dime-sized. Add an egg yolk and water gradually, only as needed to bring the dough together when squeezed.

Pie dough ingredients in white bowl.
Pie dough squeezed together in a white bowl.

Shape it into a flat disk, wrap in plastic, and chill for at least 30 minutes. For rolling, flour the dough and surface generously, rolling from the center and turning frequently to prevent sticking, until it forms a 12- to 13-inch circle. Transfer to a pie dish, shape, and refrigerate while preparing the filling.

To Make the Filling:
Mix sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, zest, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl. Combine this mixture with thawed, drained mixed berries in a large pan and cook over medium-high heat until it boils and thickens slightly. If using fresh berries, adjust the amount of cornstarch (see recipe card below). Before baking, sprinkle some of the dry mixture on the bottom of the crust to prevent sogginess.

Berries and flavorings in sauce pan.
Cooked berries in sauce pan.

To Make the Crumb Topping:
In a small bowl, blend butter, oatmeal, flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon using your fingers to ensure the mixture remains coarse and crumbly. Avoid using a food processor to keep the oatmeal from becoming too fine, preserving the texture of the topping. This crumb mixture is then ready to be sprinkled over the pie filling before baking.

Topping ingredients before mixing in white bowl.
Topping ingredients after mixing.

To Fill and Prepare: Add berry filling to the pie shell and sprinkle the top evenly with crumb topping (there will be alot of topping, this is a good thing!). Brush edges of pie with egg wash and use aluminum foil to cover the edges of the pie crust to prevent overbrowning.

Unbaked pie crust.
Filled pie crust ready to top with crumble topping.

To Bake: Place the pie on top of a baking sheet to catch any filling that might bubble over.

Bake the pie in the bottom third of the oven for about 25 minutes with the edges covered, then remove the foil and bake another 25 to 30 minutes until bubbling.

Pie filled and topped with crumble topping but unbaked.
Baked pie out of the oven.

Using Frozen Berries in Fruit Pies

I love to keep frozen berries on hand for smoothies and also for morning oats and they also happen to be excellent in this pie.

Frozen berries work very well in this pie and can be used in exchange for fresh. The only recommendation when using frozen berries is to let the filling mixture thaw and then drain to ensure you don’t end up with a runny pie.

Thickener of Choice: Cornstarch

I love to use cornstarch to thicken this pie because it turns clear and is not cloudy, it stands up for a long bake, and it works very well. Read more about thickeners at Fine Cooking.

Why is My Pie Runny?

Fruit pies can be runny if you don’t use enough thickener (cornstarch), if you don’t let the filling bubble in the oven when baking, and/or if you don’t let the pie cool enough after baking. I find that the easiest way to avoid all this is to let the fruit drain very well and to “pre-thicken” the filling by cooking the filling just a pit prior to baking the pie.

Fruit to thickener ratio: Fruit pies can be runny for a few reasons. First, the proportion of fruit to thickener may be off. I recommend 1/3 cup of cornstarch for every 5 cups of mixed berries (fresh or frozen).

No bubbling: Another reason fruit pies may be runny is if the pie filling didn’t bubble during baking – this is the step that allows the filling to thicken when baking. If you precook the filling a bit you don’t have to worry about the bubbling.

Insufficient resting: Fruit pies also need time to rest ideally overnight but for at least 2 hours.

Pie topped with fresh berries in plate with forks.

Pie Crust: Tips and Tricks

  • If the dough is sticky, generously flour both sides. If, however, the dough begins to crack, a light spray of cooking oil on the surface and counter can help manage its consistency.
  • Regularly turn the dough to ensure even rolling: start from the center, roll, then turn, continuing this pattern to maintain uniform thickness.
  • To easily flip the dough, use a bench knife or scraper. In a pinch, a spatula will suffice.
  • It’s crucial to work swiftly with pie crust to keep it manageable; it should be chilled but not excessively hard.
  • If the dough has chilled for more than 30 minutes, let it sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes to soften slightly before rolling.
  • To transfer the dough to your pie dish, carefully wrap it around your rolling pin and then unroll it gently into the dish.
  • Once the crust is in the pie dish, refrigerate it again for at least 30 minutes. This resting period helps prevent the crust from shrinking during baking.
  • Fun Fact: The typical ratio for making pie crust is 3:2:1, representing three parts flour, two parts fat, and one part liquid, which is a simple guideline for creating the perfect pie crust.
Close up of a berry pie slice on white plate topping with vanilla ice cream and a sliced strawberry.

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📖 Recipe

Single slice of pie cut from rest with ice cream and berries in pan.

Amazing Mixed Berry Pie with Crumb Topping

This mixed berry pie is one of my favorite pies and is a perfect dessert. Loaded with mixed berries (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries), fresh or frozen, and topped with a brown sugar oatmeal crumb, everyone will be asking for more!
5 from 11 votes
Author: Marie
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8 slices
Calories 622 kcal

Equipment

  • 8 or 9-inch standard pie pan

Ingredients
 

For the pie shell (for a single 9-inch pie crust; makes 14 ounces of dough):

  • 1 3/4 cups (210 g) all purpose flour , plus more for rolling
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoon (80 g) shortening
  • 4 tablespoons (60 g) butter cold, cubed
  • 1 egg (20 g) yolk reserve the egg white for brushing crust
  • 2 (30-50 g) tablespoons ice water up to 3 tablespoons if needed
  • egg wash (I used egg white mixed with dash of salt) to brush edges of pie
  • cooking spray or oil to oil counter (optional) if pie dough is cracking this is helpful

For the filling:

  • 8 to 10 cups mixed berries (frozen, thawed and drained) (see note for fresh fruit) (2.5 to 3 pounds total)(strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries)
  • 1/3 cup (43 g) cornstarch
  • 1 small lemon , juiced and zested (use 1 tablespoon of the juice)
  • 3/4 cup (150 g) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

For the topping:

  • 1/4 cup (57 g) butter , diced
  • 1/2 cup (117 g) oatmeal (not instant)
  • 1/2 cup (62 g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions
 

To Make the Pie Shell (3-2-1 dough)

  • In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, salt, sugar).
  • Add shortening and mix with pastry cutter or in standing bowl of mixer until the shortening is pea-sized and evenly distributed.
  • Add cubed butter and continue to mix until well distributed. Butter can be as large as dime-sized.
  • Add egg yolk and then 1 tablespoon of water at a time, trying to distribute it evenly over the surface. **Do not add all of the water if not needed.**
  • Squeeze the dough after each tablespoon of water has been mixed into the dough and as soon as it comes together (meaning the mixture holds when squeezed), stop adding water – it's done. Shape the dough into a flat disk shape, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  • When ready to bake, remove dough from refrigerator. If the dough is too stiff, let it rest at room temperature for 10 minutes.
  • To roll out dough: it helps to flour each side very well, roll out from the center, and turn often. Keep adding flour if needed as you roll out and turn the dough to prevent sticking. Alternatively, if your dough is on the dry side, and is cracking, use cooking spray on your countertop and a touch on the surface on the dough (on each side). Roll until you have a circle with about a 12- to 13-inch diameter.
  • Transfer the dough to the pie plate by either folding the dough gently over the rolling pin, or carefully folding it in quarters and then transferring to the pan. Arrange the dough in the pie dish and crimp along the edges. Place in the refrigerator while you make the filling. I like to refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (overnight is fine as well).

To Make the Filling

  • Combine sugar and cornstarch (set aside a tablespoon or two of this mixture to sprinkle on bottom of pie before adding filling to prevent soggy crust). Stir in lemon juice, zest, salt, cinnamon, and defrosted and drained berries (see notes if you are using fresh berries).
  • Just before you are ready to bake the pie, add all ingredients to a large pan and heat over medium high heat until the mixture comes to a boil and then turn down heat and continue cooking until mixture thickens up a little.

To Make the Crumb Topping

  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix well with fingers. Do not use food processor or the oatmeal will become too fine and the texture will change.

To Bake the Pie

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • If you reserved some cornstarch/sugar, add it to pie shell before adding the filling. Add berry filling to the pie shell and sprinkle the top evenly with crumb topping (there will be alot of topping, this is a good thing!). Brush edges of pie with egg wash and use aluminum foil to cover edges to prevent over browning.
  • Place pie on top of a baking sheet to catch any filling that might bubble over.
  • Bake pie for about 25 minutes with edges covered in bottom third of oven, then remove foil and bake another 25 to 30 minutes until bubbling.
  • Cool thoroughly, preferably overnight, so pie sets properly. Fruit pies should set at least 2 hours before serving and may stand for 24 hours at room temperature.
  • For longer storage, cover and refrigerate.

To Store Unbaked Pie in Freezer and Bake at Later Date

  • Prepare pie in a freezer safe pie pan, place in freezer bag, and seal. Freeze for up to 4 months.
  • To bake from frozen, unwrap, cover top with foil and bake at 450F for 15 minutes then reduce temperature to 375F and bake for 15 minutes more. Uncover and continue baking for 55 to 60 minutes more until crust is golden and filling is bubbling. (total time 90 minutes for frozen pie)

Notes

Fresh fruit may be used if it is macerated (mix with a few tablespoons of sugar to release the juices) and then drain well and proceed with the step for To Make the Filling. Fresh berries can be macerated anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight. 

Nutrition

Calories: 622kcalCarbohydrates: 94gProtein: 7gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 66mgSodium: 531mgPotassium: 197mgFiber: 7gSugar: 44gVitamin A: 640IUVitamin C: 11.4mgCalcium: 44mgIron: 2.9mg
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24 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness ! This is a winner for sure! I had frozen berries and a frozen pie crust so I used this recipe for the filling and topping and was just amazing. I only regret that I did not have vanilla ice cream to go with it!

  2. 5 stars
    Hi Marie, I love this recipe! I’m familiar with the Grand Traverse Pie Co., so I was happy to find your site. I’ve been making this pie for a couple of years, and I noticed it’s been updated. As a novice baker, this one is a little harder for me. Do you still have the original somewhere on your site? I also liked that earlier version made two pie crusts. Thank you!

      1. 5 stars
        Hi Marie, thank you so much for sending the link! Somehow I didn’t notice your reply (just hours after I inquired), until now, nearly a year later. It’s pie season, so I’m back on your site. I am going to try the older recipe again, with the two crusts. Thanks again, and happy summer!

  3. 5 stars
    I made your Mountain berry pie and I have to say, it was de-lish! I hope you don’t mind but I’m highlighting it, along with your blog, on my blog today, as I “celebrate the small things”. I made it with fresh berries and swapped out half of the white sugar in the filling with Stevia. It was perfect. Love the crumble topping also. The pie was a dead-ringer for the well-known company’s pie. I’ll make it again, for sure, when berries are in season.

  4. Hello! So excited to try this recipe. GT Pie Co has apples in their Lakeshore Berry pie- how much do you think should go in?

    1. Hi Jennifer – I’m not sure because I’ve never used apples but that sounds great! I’d say to start with adding one small apple to the berries- that should work and you can scale up or down from there next time

  5. I made this for Christmas and it was so good! I go to Interlochen in the summers and missed this pie so much this year since I couldn’t go. It was a little runny but that’s because I didn’t drain it as long as I should have (impatient). Still very delicious. I may have made the crust too thin because I had extra but just made a braid on the rim so it would look pretty! 🙂 Thanks for this recipe I’ll definitely be making it again.

    1. The filling is only for one pie, so I would suggest freezing other pie crust or doubling the filling recipe if you want to make 2 pies

  6. 5 stars
    This recipe is amazing! Takes me back to living in Traverse City & the comforts of Northern Michigan! I will for sure be making this again when my parents come to visit our family in Texas! Thank you!

    1. Marian, I would go with 6 to 8 cups of berries (mixed; 30 to 40 oz) (depending on if you are using a deep dish pan or not) and follow the rest of the recipe. Let me know how that works out.

  7. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe for my husband and my in-laws, and it was a smash hit! Thanks for the detailed instructions…I’m not too domestically inclined, so they really helped. It was a delicious pie, and I will definitely make it again.

  8. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! I am bringing a pie to a friends house tomorrow and I’m going to try this one. I’m known among family and friends for making berry pies and always looking for new recipes to try. This will be great with some vanilla bean ice cream:) Yum!

  9. 5 stars
    Thanks so much for this recipe. GTP Company is also my favorite destination when in Michigan. I would bring my husband home a pie on each trip up there. Now I have to make them myself. I can’t wait to enjoy the homemade version!!

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