Learn how to make the absolute best graham cracker crust and you’ll never want to buy a pre-made crust ever again. This is the ONLY recipe you will ever need; it’s thick, buttery, doesn’t crumble, and comes out perfectly every single time, plus you can use it for no-bake pies or in recipes where the crust needs to be baked. Perfect for cheesecakes, pies and tarts, bars, and anything else that requires a graham cracker crust.

Graham cracker crust pressed into a glass pie plate.

Pie crust can intimidate even the most experienced bakers, but armed with a little knowledge and confidence, anyone can master it! I’ve nailed favorite recipes for an all-butter pie crust and a butter/shortening crust (with vodka as the secret ingredient!), and while graham cracker crust is so insanely easy to make, many people still reach for the pre-made, store-bought ones. No more!

Why make a graham cracker crust?

  1. They are EASY! With only a few ingredients and a few stirs of a fork, your crust is ready to go.
  2. Taste is infinitely better than a store-bought graham cracker crust. You can’t even compare homemade to store-bought.
  3. Perfect for no-bake recipes, especially in the summer when you want to avoid turning on the oven.

Graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl.

What Makes This Graham Cracker Crust the Best?

I know, graham cracker crusts seem so elementary, but if you’ve ever lifted a slice of pie out of the pan and had the crust break and crumble all over the plate (mortifying if you’re serving to company and just plain annoying otherwise!), then you KNOW how important a good crust is! Let’s discuss…

  • Perfectly Moist – I’ve had the (dis)pleasure of making graham cracker crusts that both crumble as described above, and that leak liquid because there is too much butter. This recipe strikes the perfect balance to create a crust that holds together beautifully and never crumbles.
  • Flavor! It might not seem important in something like a graham cracker crust, but honestly? I could eat this crust ON ITS OWN. Using brown sugar takes it from a basic graham crust to something truly delicious on its own.
  • Clean Slices Every Time – Quite possibly the most important aspect of any crust recipe. You want super clean slices every single time. Get that crust packed in nice and tight (follow the instructions in the recipe!) and you’ll have perfect pieces of pie from now until infinity.

Melted butter added to bowl with graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and salt.

Only Four Ingredients Needed!

This crust comes together incredibly quickly thanks to needing only four ingredients and a super simple mixing process.

  1. Graham Cracker Crumbs – You can use whole graham crackers and crush them up or buy a box of ready-made graham cracker crumbs. If crushed them yourself, you could use a food processor and pulse until you get fine crumbs, or put the graham crackers in a zip-top bag and crush them with a mallet, can, or anything relatively heavy.
  2. Sugar – We use light brown sugar to keep the crust moist and give it a little more of a browned-butter/toffee flavor.
  3. Butter – This is a smidge more than is used in most crust recipes, but it really helps to bind the crust together and keep it from crumbling apart when it’s sliced. (Want to ratchet this crust up a notch? Use browned butter!)
  4. Salt – It balances out all of the flavors.

Mix these four ingredients together for the most amazing crust you ever will meet.

Mixing together graham cracker crust.

Making graham cracker crust from scratch

This is very basic, but let’s walk through the steps together!

  1. Start with Graham Cracker Crumbs – If you haven’t purchased pre-made crumbs, then grab your graham crackers and crush them up into fine crumbs, measure out 2 cups, and place them in a medium bowl. You can crush them using a food processor (this will give you the finest, most even crumbs) or place them in a resealable zip-top bag and crush them with a rolling pin or mallet. Quick Tip! 14 graham crackers (the full sheets) will yield about 2 cups of crumbs.
  2. Add the Brown Sugar and Salt – Stir together the graham cracker crumbs with the brown sugar and salt, making sure that there are no lumps of brown sugar left in the bowl.
  3. Stir in the Melted Butter – Drizzle the melted butter over the graham cracker mixture and use a fork to mix everything together, ensuring that it is evenly moistened. Attempt to not eat the entire bowl right now (important step).
  4. Press and Pack the Crust Into a Pan – This is VITAL! Years ago, I heard about the tip to press a graham cracker (or Oreo) crust into the pan using the bottom and sides of a measuring cup and it is a total game-changer. Getting that crust packed in nice and tight means that it holds together beautifully when sliced instead of crumbling all over the place. Seriously, take the extra few minutes to do it! You can use anything – dry measuring cups, a liquid measuring cup, a regular old drinking glass – anything that has a round bottom will do!

Pan Note: This recipe works for a standard 9-inch pie plate, 8-inch or 9-inch square pan, or a 9-inch or 10-inch springform pan. You will need to double the recipe to use in a 9×13-inch pan.

Graham cracker crust stirred together in a mixing bowl.

Substitutions

There aren’t many ingredients in this pie crust, but below are suggestions for substitutions, should you need to make them:

  • Graham Crackers – You can use any flavor or variety of graham cracker you like, or you can also use crushed digestive biscuits, gingersnaps, vanilla wafers, or cornflakes. Whichever of these you use, just be sure to crush as finely as possible and measure out 2 cups of crumbs.
  • Brown Sugar – You can substitute regular granulated sugar, coconut sugar, or muscovado.
  • Butter – You can substitute vegan alternatives or coconut oil.

Graham cracker crust poured into a glass pie plate.

No-Bake vs Baking

The beauty of this pie crust recipe is that it can be used in both types of recipes! Whether your recipe calls for simply assembling the crust and pie and chilling, or for baking the crust, these are my recommendations:

  • No-Bake Recipes: If the crust and pie will not be baked, prepare the pie crust as directed, then place the pan in the freezer for at least 15 minutes before filling it.
  • Baked Recipes: If the graham cracker crust needs to be pre-baked, bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, then proceed with the recipe as written.

Graham cracker crust being packed into a pie plate using a measuring cup.

Make-ahead and freezing instructions

  • To Make Ahead: You can prepare the graham cracker crust up to 2 days in advance of filling it. Simply cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate it until ready to fill.
  • To Freeze: Prepare the crust as instructed, then wrap the pie plate in plastic wrap and then in a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months; thaw in the refrigerator overnight before using.

Make these pies using the graham cracker crust recipe:

Now that you’re armed with the best (and easiest!) graham cracker crust recipe, start adding these pies to your must-make list!

Graham cracker crust

Graham cracker crust is the base of so many amazing desserts – cheesecakes, pies, bars, and more! Which makes it all the more important to have a tried-and-true, reliable recipe that you can use time and again. This thick, buttery, and DELICIOUS crust can be used for both no-bake and baked desserts; be sure to save it to your recipe arsenal today!

If you make this recipe and love it, remember to stop back and give it a 5-star rating – it helps others find the recipe! ❤️️

Graham Cracker Crust

An easy graham cracker crust that you can make from scratch with only a few ingredients. Can be used for both baked AND no bake recipes!
4.2 (25 ratings)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs, approximately 14 full graham crackers
  • cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • Pinch salt

Instructions 

  • In a medium bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and salt, ensuring no lumps of brown sugar remain.
  • Drizzle the melted butter over the graham cracker mixture and toss to combine with a fork, ensuring that the mixture is evenly moistened.
  • Press the crust mixture evenly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate, 9-inch or 10-inch springform pan and pack tightly using the back of a measuring cup.
  • If using in a no-bake recipe, place the pan in the freezer for at least 15 minutes while you prepare the filling and proceed with the recipe.
  • If the graham cracker crust needs to be pre-baked, bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, then proceed with the recipe as written.

Notes

  • Equipment: This recipe works for a standard 9-inch pie plate, 8-inch or 9-inch square pan, or a 9-inch or 10-inch springform pan. You will need to double the recipe to use in a 9x13-inch pan.
  • Graham Crackers: You can use any flavor or variety of graham cracker you like (and you can buy a box of graham cracker crumbs!), or you can also use crushed digestive biscuits, gingersnaps, vanilla wafers, or cornflakes. Whichever of these you use, just be sure to crush as finely as possible and measure out 2 cups of crumbs.
  • Brown Sugar: You can substitute regular granulated sugar, coconut sugar, or muscovado.
  • Butter: You can substitute vegan alternatives or coconut oil. For an extra oomph of flavor, go the extra step of making browned butter instead of simply melting the butter.
  • No-Bake Recipes: If the crust and pie will not be baked, prepare the pie crust as directed, then place the pan in the freezer for at least 15 minutes before filling it.
  • Baked Recipes: If the graham cracker crust needs to be pre-baked, bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, then proceed with the recipe as written.
  • To Make Ahead: You can prepare the graham cracker crust up to 2 days in advance of filling it. Simply cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate it until ready to fill.
  • To Freeze: Prepare the crust as instructed, then wrap the pie plate in plastic wrap and then in a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months; thaw in the refrigerator overnight before using.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

Photography by Dee Frances