Hello, hello! I'm super excited to share with you today this Easy Homemade Apple Pie recipe! I've been wanting to add one to the Beyond the Butter recipe box for quite a while, but was holding out for fall! This recipe combines a pre-cooked apple pie filling with flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg through out that's baked in my signature buttery, flaky pie crust. It's an easy recipe to make, tastes fantastic, and absolutely perfect for those crisp fall nights! So, curl up on the couch with your favorite blanket and enjoy a warm slice of this apple pie topped with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream!
why do you pre-cook apple pie filling?
While it is not a requirement with making apple pies, pre-cooking your apple pie filling does have its benefits. Here are a few of them!
eliminates pie juices
It can help eliminate some of the pie juices that tend to bubble up and run over the pie crust while baking. It's worth noting that having a well-vented pie crust top can help with this part too.
softens the apples
Pre-cooking the filling will soften the apples ahead of time so you're not left with any potential crunchiness. And, you want the apples softened, but not to the point where they fall apart into a mushy mess.
That happened during one of my apple pie tests. It still tasted good, but you want to actually see the apple slices.
thicker pie filling
It can produce a thicker, more solid pie. Apples lose volume during the baking process which can open up gaps within the filling and crust. Pre-cooking the apple pie filling reduces the chance of this happening.
quick tips for making homemade apple pie from scratch
Below are some quick tips that were helpful to me when making this easy homemade apple pie recipe.
homemade pie crust
- When making the pie dough, you can use a knife to clear out the pastry blender if it gets clogged as you mix everything together.
- If you deal with arthritis in your hands like I do, you can use a food processor to make the pie dough. I did find it easier though to move the dough to a large lightly floured mixing bowl to add in the cold water before forming the discs, but that's up to you. You may find you use a little less water when adding it in the food processor.
- If I know I'm going to be using the pie dough within a day or two, I'll tightly double wrap the discs with plastic wrap and place them in the coldest part of the refrigerator.
- If I'm making them with the intent of just having them on hand for whenever, I'll tightly double wrap the discs with plastic wrap, place them in a freezer bag, and into the freezer.
- I used these 1 inch Ateco alphabet cutters to spell out "APPLE PIE" for my top pie crust design. Even with dipping them in flour, the dough can be a little tricky to get out sometimes. To help release the dough from the cutter, you can use a toothpick or pairing knife.
- For another top pie crust design, you can easily create a cut-out pattern using a cookie cutter (see my Homemade Cherry Pie recipe). You can also, as a more detailed option, create a lattice top with overlapping rows of the pie dough. Cutting slits into the rolled out pie crust is the simplest way to go though.
- If making pie crust by hand isn't your thing, you can easily use the store bought refrigerated pie dough. It's usually comes in a pack of 2 and can found in the dairy aisle along with pre-made cookie dough, yogurt, butter, etc.
pre-cooked apple pie filling
- I used a combination of McIntosh and Granny Smith apples for this recipe. These 2 varieties give you, IMHO, the best tasting apple pie. But definitely feel free to try other varieties!
- You can either slice the apples by hand or you can use an adjustable mandolin slicer.
- If using the slicer—please, please, please watch those fingers! I once sliced off the tip of my thumb using one and it hurt like a mother f&$ker. Use the guard that comes with it or they make a glove you can wear too.
- Be gentle with stirring the apples as you cook them. As they cook, they'll soften. If you're too forceful with the stirring, you'll break the apples into smaller pieces.
- Be mindful of your time as you cook the apple filling. You want to cook them for about 5 minutes until they just soften. You'll notice that they'll start to reduce in size as well. You definitely don't want to cook them to the point where they turn into a mushy blob.
- Don't let the apple pie filling sit in the skillet to cool after making it—carefully transfer it to a mixing bowl.
- You can always double this part of the recipe and store the other half in the refrigerator or in the freezer.
recommended baking tools
give these other beyond the butter pie recipes a try this fall!
- Chocolate Chip and Pecan Pie
- Homemade Cherry Pie
- Easy Chocolate Pecan Pie
- Perfect Pumpkin Pie
- Brown Sugar Peach Crumble Pie
For all Beyond the Butter pie recipes, check out the pie section over in the recipe box!
This Easy Homemade Apple Pie is fall favorite that combines a pre-cooked apple pie filling with flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg through out that's baked in my signature buttery, flaky pie crust. It's an easy recipe to make, tastes fantastic, and absolutely perfect for those crisp fall nights! So, curl up on the couch with your favorite blanket and enjoy a warm slice of this apple pie topped with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream!
homemade pie crust (makes 2, 9 inch pie crusts)
- 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 6 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, cold and cut into cubes
- ½ cup Vegetable Shortening, cold and cut into cubes
- 4-6 tablespoons Ice Cold Water
apple pie filling
- 3 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
- 2 ½ pounds Apples, peeled, cored, and sliced into thin wedges
- ½ cup Light Brown Sugar, lightly packed
- ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon Nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon Salt
- 2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
- 1 tablespoon Cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon Lemon Juice
- 1 Large Egg, lightly whisked (for pie crust shine)
recommended baking tools
homemade pie crust - part 1
You can skip this part if buying store-bought refrigerated pie crusts.
- In a large mixing bowl and using a pastry blender (or two forks), mix together the flour, salt, cold cubed butter, and cold vegetable shortening until you have small pea-size pieces. Some larger pea-size pieces are fine too!
- Add in 1 tablespoon of the ice cold water, then (using a spatula or with your hands) work it into the pie dough mixture. Continue to add the ice cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the pie dough forms and it is no longer crumbly. If there are any crumbly bits, just add the teeny tiniest bit of cold water so they blend in with the rest of the dough.
- After forming the ball of pie dough, place it on a lightly-floured, clean surface and divide it in half using a pastry cutter. Pat each half into a 1″- 1 ½″ thick disc, then double wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and place them in the coldest part of your refrigerator (usually the back) for a minimum of 1 hour.
apple pie filling
- In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the light brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the unsalted butter then add in the apple slices and stir to coat. Add in the whisked mixture, stirring to combine.
- Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook the apples for about 5 minutes, gently stirring them until they begin to soften. Be careful not to over cook them or stir the filling too aggressively to avoid breaking the apple slices apart.
- Add the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, and lemon juice over the mixture and stir just a few more times to make sure the sliced apples are full coated.
- Remove the apple pie filling from the heat and carefully spoon it into a large bowl to cool completely.
homemade pie crust - part 2
- While the apple pie filling cools, roll out the first pie dough disc to about 11-12 inches in diameter onto a clean and lightly floured surface.
- Place into the 9 inch pie plate, then trim the edges, leaving about ½ inch to fold under.
- Place the pie plate with the pie dough into either the freezer (preferred) or the refrigerator to allow the pie crust to firm, then roll out the second disc of pie dough which will be for the top pie crust.
assembling the apple pie
- Adjust the oven rack to the middle of your oven, set the jelly roll pan or cookie sheet on the rack, and pre-heat the oven to 425ºF.
- Remove the pie plate from the freezer or refrigerator, gently scoop and arrange the apple pie filling into the crust, then top with the 2nd layer of pie crust. Press the two pie crust edges together then trim to cut off any excess. Crimp the edges using your fingers or a fork dipped in a little flour (so it doesn't stick to the pie dough), then cut a few slits across the top of the pie.
- With a pastry brush, lightly brush the egg wash over top of the pie. You won’t need to use all of this on the pie—just a little coverage will be good. Open the oven, place the pie on top of the pre-heated jelly roll pan or cookie sheet, and bake for 15 minutes at 425ºF.
- After 15 minutes, decrease the oven temperature to 350ºF and bake for an additional 30-35 minutes or until the top of the pie is a nice golden brown. At the 15 minute mark, it would be a good idea to add a pie crust shield to avoid burning your pie crust edges. You can use something like the one I have or you can simply use pieces of aluminum foil to place around the edges. I would suggest wearing some oven mitts for this part so you don't accidentally burn your fingers!
- Once the apple pie is done, remove from oven and allow it to cool completely.
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