Galette vs. Pie: Unraveling the Delicious Differences

When it comes to delicious baked desserts, both galettes and pies hold a special place. With their flaky crusts and tempting fillings, these treats have captured the hearts and taste buds of baking enthusiasts around the world. While galettes and pies may look similar, they have distinctive characteristics that set them apart. In this article, we will explore the key differences between galettes and pies, including their origins, preparation methods, and overall presentation.

Origins and cultural background

Galettes and pies have their roots in different culinary traditions, which contribute to their different characteristics.

  • Pies: Pies have a long history and are a staple in many cultures. They can be traced back to ancient Egypt, where they were filled with honey and fruit. Over time, pies became popular in different regions, each with its own unique variations, such as American apple pies, British meat pies, and French tarts.
  • Galette: Galette, on the other hand, is a term derived from the French language. It refers to a rustic, free-form pastry that originated in the Brittany region of France. Traditionally, galettes were made with buckwheat flour and filled with savory ingredients such as cheese, eggs, and ham. However, sweet variations, often with fruit, have also become popular.


One of the main differences between a galette and a pie is the crust.

  • Pie: Pies have a more textured and uniform appearance, with a double-crust or single-crust pastry shell. The crust is typically made from flour, fat (such as butter or shortening), and water. It is rolled out and placed in a pie dish or pan, creating a sturdy container for the filling.
  • Galette: Galettes, on the other hand, have a more rustic and casual aesthetic. The crust is made with a simple mixture of flour, butter, and water, resulting in a thinner and less textured dough. The dough is rolled into a rough circle, and the edges are folded over the filling, creating a pleated, freeform edge.


Both galettes and pies offer endless possibilities when it comes to fillings, but the way they are prepared and assembled differs.

  • Pie: Pies typically have a deeper filling, often thickened with cornstarch or flour. The filling is placed in the crust-lined pan, and a top crust is added for double-crust pies. The crusts are sealed together and the pie is baked until the filling is tender and the crust is golden.
  • Galette: Galettes take a more minimalist approach to fillings. Ingredients, such as fruit or vegetables, are placed in the center of the rolled dough, leaving a border around the edges. The edges of the dough are then folded over the filling, creating a rustic, open-faced tart. Galettes are often brushed with an egg wash and sprinkled with sugar or spices before baking.

Presentation and serving

The final appearance and serving style of galettes and pies contribute to their unique appeal.

  • Pie: Pies are typically presented in a pie dish or pan with a complete top and bottom crust. They are traditionally sliced and served on plates. The slices hold their shape well due to the sturdy nature of the crust.
  • Galette: Galettes offer a more casual and picturesque presentation. Their free-form shape and exposed filling create a visually appealing dessert. Galettes are often served directly from the baking sheet or placed on a decorative platter. They can be cut into wedges or served as individual portions.


While galettes and pies share a common foundation of flaky crusts and delicious fillings, their distinct characteristics set them apart. Pies have a more textured appearance, with double- or single-crust pastry shells and deeper fillings. Galettes, on the other hand, have a rustic charm with a thinner, freeform crust and simple yet expressive fillings. Whether you prefer the elegance of a pie or the rustic beauty of a galette, both desserts offer a delightful and satisfying culinary experience.


What is the difference between a galette and a pie?

Think of a galette as the pie’s younger, free-spirited cousin. Pie, is by definition, baked and served in a sloped sided dish. Galettes are totally freeform, no pan, fancy adornments or crimping necessary. Think of a pie as the undergarment equivalent of wearing Spanx.

How is a galette different from a pie?

The main difference is that tarts only have a bottom crust, and the crust is much thicker than a pie crust. Galettes – This is basically a pie made without using a pie dish, but because that would be too simple galettes can be made with any type of pastry dough.

Is a galette a pie?

Galette. This French, free-form type of pie is made with pie dough for the crust and baked on a sheet pan. To make a galette, pie dough is rolled out into a large circle; the filling (think apple slices or jammy berries) is arranged in the center of the dough, leaving at least a three-inch border.

Is pie crust the same as galette crust?

The deep, sloped edges of a pie pan help a pie crust hold its structure as it bakes and firms up, but a galette is baked directly on a rimmed cooke sheet and offers no such insurance. Pile the filling too high, and the crust will turn mushy and shapeless before it has time to “set.”

What makes something a galette?

By-definition any flat, round pastry or cake-like creation constitutes a galette. This includes round, shortbread-like butter cookies, the thin buckwheat crêpes of Brittany, and something as simple as potato cakes.

Is it galette or galette?

Galette (from the Norman word gale, meaning “flat cake”) is a term used in French cuisine to designate various types of flat round or freeform crusty cakes, or, in the case of a Breton galette (French: Galette bretonne [galɛt bʁətɔn]; Breton: Krampouezhenn gwinizh du), a pancake made with buckwheat flour usually with a …

What makes a pie a pie?

According to Oxford English Dictionaries, a pie is defined as “a baked dish of fruit, or meat and vegetables, typically with a top and base of pastry.” Merriam-Webster concurs with its first definition—”a meat dish baked with biscuit or pastry crust”—but its second definition provides the most leeway for Berry to, …

What are the 4 types of pies?

There are four types of pies: cream, fruit, custard, and savory. A pie that contains cooked meat, poultry, seafood, or vegetables in a thick sauce. Examples: Pot pies, Quiche, and Sheppard pie. Made by cooking baking uncooked along with crust.

What is a galette in baking?

A galette is a French pastry similar to a tart or a pie; it’s essentially pastry dough wrapped over a filling made from fruit, sugar, and butter. This free-form pie-like pastry doesn’t require a special pan — just a nice flat surface for baking.