More crust – less filling! Apple pie for crust-lovers.

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See that pie? The one above, the first thing your eyes were drawn to when you opened this page?

I made that pie. And I got the highest compliment on it from Halley, our King Arthur Web director.

Halley: Who made that pie in the kitchen?

Me: I did.

Halley: You’re kidding! I thought Sue made it.

Me: Yeah, really…

Sue Gray, our test kitchen director, is Queen of the Visual Cuisine, a veritable master at preventive imagery disaster. Sue makes plain muffins cute, yeast bread flawless (no mean feat), pie perfect, and wedding cakes that look like – well, like they leapt out of the pages of a wedding planner’s beauty book.

Most of our other test kitchen bakers (except me) can do lovely things to cookies and cake, using icing, pastry bags, tips, and all that other decorating detritus that makes me crazy.

To me, a pastry decorating kit is like Barbie shoes: little bits and pieces rattling around on the counter and crunching underfoot. One tip is just like another – extraneous to life as I know it.

So when Halley assumed SUE had made that golden brown pie on the counter, the one with apple cutouts, pastry decorations, and an artful sprinkling of glittering sugar – it was a good assumption.

But in this single, probably never-to-be-repeated instance, erroneous.

I MADE THE GORGEOUS PIE. And, using one particular tool – all will be revealed below – you can, too.

Here’s how–

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OK, let’s start with the star of this recipe: the crust.

Place the following in a bowl, whisking to combine:

2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons buttermilk powder, optional

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Add 1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese; low-fat is fine.

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Mix till unevenly crumbly.

If you follow the recipe, you’ll see that it calls for you to combine the first four ingredients (up through the cream cheese) all at once. That’s fine, too. Choose whichever method you prefer.

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Cut 10 tablespoons cold butter into pieces and work it into the flour…

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…leaving some visible pieces, like this.

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Sprinkle the dough with the cold water and toss.

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Squeeze the dough to determine if it holds together. If it’s too dry, add water 1 tablespoon at a time, using just enough so the dough will hold together.

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Place the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide it in two pieces, one slightly larger than the other. If you have a scale, one piece should be about 9 ounces; the other about 10 ounces.

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Flatten each piece of dough into a disk, and roll its edges till smooth. This will help keep the edges of the crust from becoming ragged as you roll.

Repeat with the remaining piece of dough. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or for up to a day.

When you’re ready to make pie, preheat your oven to 425°F.

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Remove the larger piece of dough from the fridge. If it’s been chilling longer than 30 minutes, give it 10 to 15 minutes to warm up some. Roll it into a 13” circle, trimming the edges so it’s perfectly round. Keep the trimmings; we’ll use those later.

Now you’re going to move the crust onto an ungreased 12” shallow pizza pan, or onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. The parchment is there to catch any spills; if you don’t have parchment (and if you don’t, you’re missing a GREAT time-saver), simply place the crust on the bare baking sheet.

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Fold the dough in half…

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…then in half again.

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Pick it up, and put it on the baking sheet.

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Unfold…

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…into a circle.

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Put the crust into the freezer while you prepare the filling. What, you thought our test kitchen was ORGANIZED?!

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Ah, Baker’s Cinnamon Filling, secret to many a tasty cinnamon roll, sticky bun… and “apple pizza.”

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Place 1/2 cup Baker’s Cinnamon Filling in a small bowl with 2 tablespoons cold water.

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Stir till smooth.

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Remove the chilled crust from the freezer, and spread the filling on the crust.

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Like this.

Don’t have any Baker’s Cinnamon Filling? Too bad, you can’t make this recipe.

JUST KIDDING! Sprinkle the crust with 1/2 cup granulated sugar mixed with 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon. DO NOT add any water.

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Now, prepare your apples. Our handy-dandy apple peeler/corer/slicer makes short work of this task.

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Peeled, cored, sliced…

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…and halved, in under 15 seconds.

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It doesn’t get any easier!

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Lay the apple slices atop the crust.

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You can be fancy and place them in concentric circles. Or not.

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Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons lemon juice and a dash of salt, then scatter over the top 2 tablespoons butter, cut in bits.

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Watch out! Here comes the fancy part. You KNOW I don’t do fancy. But this is actually pretty easy. We sell these double-sided pie toppers that cut designs in your top crust. Here’s the apple side…

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…and here are the leaves on the other side.

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Obviously, I’m choosing the apple side for this pie. Sprinkle with flour…

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…and roll out your other pie crust, placing it over the topper.

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Roll a rolling pin over the crust, pressing down. See how it cuts out the apple designs?

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Peel off the crust…

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…and lay it over your apple-topped bottom crust.

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Like this.

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Now don’t get rid of those apple cutouts; arrange them on the crust, to make a pretty design. (I can’t believe I actually did this… SO not me.)

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Brush the crust with milk…

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…and sprinkle with coarse sparkling sugar.

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Be generous; you won’t break the bank with this stuff.

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Bring the bottom crust up over the top crust, and press the edges together with the tines of a fork.

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Slightly misshapen, but not bad, eh?

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Bake the pie in the preheated 425°F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 375°F, and continue to bake for an additional 25 to 35 minutes, till the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbly. Remove the pie from the oven.

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Let it cool for at least an hour before cutting. If you cut it immediately, the filling might ooze out.

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Look at that flaky crust!

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One more shot of my FANCY pie. Warm individual slices in the microwave for 15 to 20 seconds (if the pie has cooled completely), and top with vanilla ice cream. Be still, my heart!

Read, rate, and review (please!) our recipe for Crusty Apple Pie.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. AmandaLP

    Wow! That looks awesome! My partner has been asking for an apple pie, I might try this one! Will also be my first attempt at pie crust, so we shall see how that comes out :)

    Reply
  2. mollie

    Be still my heart!

    I am a huge piecrust fan … I mainly love the crust more than the filling! I am going to make this next week.

    P.S. You are an artist. :)

    Reply
  3. Mrs. Hittle

    Wow, that looks and sounds amazing. GOOD JOB, PJ! :-)

    Does it develop any more gluten to mix in the cream cheese and butter separately? Can that be done in the same step? i have to say, i LOVE the idea of cream cheese in pie crust.
    Doing it in two separate steps, will make for a flakier crust, because you can leave bigger pieces of butter by doing those last. Mary @ KAF

    Reply
  4. Carla

    OH! MY! I have to make this today! My son will be in 7th heaven! The last time I made him an apple pie he actually complained that there was too much apple and not enough crust! :~) Thank you for solving yet another baking opportunity!

    Reply
  5. linda

    WOW PJ!!

    this is an awesome post & since i have a “fear” of rolling out pastry dough ALL OF YOUR PHOTOS ( i repeat ALL OF YOUR PHOTOS) are wonderful…i have been saving your posts in a folder which i call TUTORIALS…

    you inspire me (i just signed up for pastry courses @ local cooking school).
    i will definitely attempt to re-create this recipe (btw: love the handy dandy peeler)…until your next post sister!

    Thanks for the kind words, Linda – keep on keepin’ on, right? :) PJH

    Reply
  6. Bridget

    Is the cinnamon filling gluten free? I’ve been tempted a few times to order it, but have not taken the time until now to find out if it is gluten free.

    No, this is not a certified gluten-free ingredient. We do not have the dedicated lines required. Sorry. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  7. Knead2quilt

    You’ve done it again. I thought I wanted apple challah but after seeing this I know now that I REALLY want this pie. Am I correct that it is not baked in a pie pan? I love pie so much more than cake but never bake pies because the crust is always such a hassle; but this makes me feel a need to get out the rolling pin… Yum!!
    K2Q

    Correct, it is baked on parchment on a flat pan. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  8. FRAN S

    I was just hankering for something apple. So I think I’ll give it a try this weekend. It looks lovely; reminds me of apple strudel. I am pretty famous for my crisco crust but how can you go wrong with cream cheese and butter. I feel like I’d want to put a little extra sugar on top of the apples. i really like the idea that it could be finger food. I do not have the pie drust cutters but will just use a small cookie cutter.

    Reply
  9. LB

    Whatever happened to the Cookie Cake link? Was it a bit too early?

    Sorry, it went up too soon. It will be back in about a week. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  10. Michelle

    This pie looks fit!

    I’m looking for that previous posted recipe the cookie cake, that has disappeared…. where can I get the recipe? The picture looks so good and it came up in my google reader but when I go to the main page it is not there.

    Sorry, it went up too soon. It will be back in about a week. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  11. Jan

    Excellent & enticing description! If you prepared the crust in a food processor would the size of the cheese and butter bits get too small? I do lots and lots of pies and love to try new approaches to crusts–but I learned something here I never saw or heard before–to roll the SIDES of the ball to be chilled in a bit of flour to prevent it cracking later when it is rolled. Great tip! Thank you for an informative and entertaining article. With your sense of humor and down-to-earth approach to the Fynne Arte of Bakingge, you should be writing cookbooks! Thanks!

    When using a powerful appliance like a food processor, you need to balance: Butter temperature, and pulsing time. This can be a challenge. I find it is best to begin with evenly cut cubes of cold butter. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  12. Sarah

    Wow! This looks amazing. It looks like you use your mixer to cut in the butter-is this correct? When you toss in the liquid do you use your hands, a fork, something else? I guess its hard to shoot photos and toss at the same time.

    Correct. You may certainly mix by hand. I generally use a plastic bowl scraper to “fluff” the wet and dry together, finishing with my hands to shape the dough into a coin. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  13. Brooke

    This is how all recipes should read: Explicit directions, mixed in with lots of fun!

    Making this tonight, as I also love the crust much more than the filling.

    Reply
  14. Marsha Oremland

    I am going to try this as soon as I get my shipment of ingredients! The last (and only) time I made an apple pie it was a watery mess. I bake all of the time and make some very complicated desserts but the apple pie is my nemesis. Let’s see if you can help me change this.

    Reply
  15. Nancie

    This looks fabulous, my dad is visiting this weekend, I think I will make it. One question I have for you is the cream cheese soft or cold from the fridge. It appears to be soft, but I just wanted to ask. Thanks for you fabulous recipes, I’m addicted to this blog!

    It’s cold from the fridge, Nancie -but unlike butter, cream cheese remains pretty soft, even when it’s cold. Good luck – hope your dad likes it. PJH

    Reply
  16. CINDY

    My Oh my that looks so good, I can’t wait to try this. My hubby is a Huge apple pie fan and I love crust so your killin two birds with one stone for me !!!! An the pictures are amazing, we all love those crust design thingys i never new you were suppost to roll the crust over the top of them !! Its an amazing thing!! You just never know what your gonna learn on here.

    Thanks again
    Cindy

    Reply
  17. Mary

    That does look awesome! Cream cheese in the crust, eh?

    You almost lost me with your product placement of the Baker’s Cinammon Filling, but then you revealed the secret ingredients. I think this sort of honesty i very admirable in a test kitchen.

    Reply
  18. Anita

    Thanks for the great blog posting. I had to laugh at your description of your decorating skills. You could have been writing about me! I just think they are a waste of time.

    Reply
  19. Erie

    I have trouble reading the sentence about the parchment paper.
    ….The parchment is there to catch any spills; if you don’t have parchment (and if you don’t, you’re missing a GREAT time-saver). …
    To me it seems that there should be something after the ) but before the . What do you do without parchment paper?
    It looks like a yummy recipe, I usally have cornstarch or custard powder in my applepie recipe to thicken the filling. Is that useful in this pie?

    Thanks for catching that goof – all set now. I don’t think you’ll need any thickener in this pie – the filling simply doesn’t generate that much juice that it’s necessary. PJH

    Reply
  20. Daria

    You made pie crust in a mixer! Hallelujah, it can be done! No more pastry blender for me!!

    This looks wonderful – thank you for the recipe. Crust loving people like my husband have much to look forward to.

    Reply
  21. Angela

    This looks divine! Where did the cookie cake go? Shows up in my reader.. tempting me.. hehe

    Sorry about that, Angela – pushed the “publish” button by mistake! Stay tuned, it’ll be live next Tuesday… PJH

    Reply
  22. Suzanne

    PJ you did an awesome job!!!!!!! You got skillz girl! LOL

    I’ve heard of cream cheese in pie crust and have been a skeptic… but not anymore! I’m going to try this recipe ASAP!

    Must get me one of those cutters too. *LOVE* the look!

    Suzanne, you didn’t see me mumbling and grumbling over all of this – not that it was so hard (it wasn’t), but just that I honestly don’t care about looks – usually – but somehow that pie topper thing hooked me. Looked like a big result for very little effort – TRUE! It IS cute, and really “fancy schmancy” on top of a regular pie, too… PJH

    Reply
  23. Swisspotluck

    Oh how gorgeous! It makes me drool. I want to eat that right now along with an accompanying hot cup of tea. How heavenly for fall.

    Reply
  24. Maria

    I’m so excited – I guess I have been using my piecrust decorating thingy (I have the one with lattice and hearts) backwards, trying to press it down on the crust and then picking out all the little pieces that did not separate from the crust. This looks much easier, don’t know why I didn’t figure that out! Thanks PJ!!!

    Funny you mention that, Maria – my fellow bakers in the test kitchen were all dutifully following the directions, doing as you describe, until I came in (an inveterate non-follower of directions) and just did it the way it made most sense to me. BINGO. Much easier. Sometimes it pays to be a rebel… :) PJH

    Reply
  25. Elizabeth

    What kind of apples do you prefer for this recipe? (When I make regular apple pie, I usually use a mix of Granny Smith and Macintosh – will that be too juicy?)

    That’s fine, Elizabeth – I love Ginger Golds this time of the year, Granny Smiths other times of the year, as I prefer a crunchier apple than a Mac. But Macs/Cortlands will do just fine. PJH

    Reply
  26. Kimberly D

    I love my apple peeler/corer/slicer, so fast and easy than peeling and cutting them by hand like I use to do. And cutting the apples shapes into the crust with the double-sided pie toppers so much faster and easier than cutting with small cookie cutters. I never through out the apple shaped crust and put them on the pie too. And I am not into fancy either PJH, I don’t even own any pastry tips and bags.

    Any good recipes for coconut cream pie? I never made one and been wanting to, thought of making it chocolate coconut cream pie by added coca powder, do you think that would work?

    Kimberly, try this recipe for Creamy Coconut Pie. And read the sidebar on the right first – it has some good tips. Have fun – PJH

    Reply
  27. Knead2quilt

    I just have to say that KAF has the absolute BEST ideas and recipes. There are a couple others that I look at, but this is my absolute favorite place to look. Thank you for all the time, effort and terrific information you share with us all.
    K2Q

    Thanks, K2Q – hope things are going well for you these days… PJH

    Reply
  28. lana

    My family has a cholesterol problem, so butter is not an option. Can I sub soft (not stick) margerine?
    Also, it’s hard to find unsalted soft margerine in Manhattan, at least where I shop. In general, if I use salted margerine, how much should I reduce the salt in this and muffin recipes? I’m planning to make your blueberry and apple muffins for brunch this Sunday and will be using soft margerine instead of butter. Think that will work??

    Sorry, Lana, baking with soft margarine is a problem, as it has a high percentage of water. You could try it “straight” in the pie crust, adding enough till the crust comes together without any water. And you can certainly try it in the muffins, subbing for the fat. Your crust won’t be as crisp/flaky, and your muffins won’t be as tender… I’m just not sure how satisfied you’ll be with the results, but give it a go. A better choice might be finding recipes designed specifically to be low in cholesterol, as they’ve been tested and proved. I’m sure there must be some good low-cholesterol baking books out there. As for salt – for salted butter, I reduce the salt in the recipe 1/4 teaspoon for every 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter. Don’t know if salted margarine is the same, but it’s a place to start. Good luck – let us know how it goes. PJH

    Reply
  29. linnie

    What a piece of pie art that is..can’t wait to make it. I usually toss my apples in lemon juice after cutting so they don’t turn brown while putting the other ingredients together… can I toss my salt into that juice and skip the “sprinkle on top” step…. OOhhhhh the anticipation….

    Sure – toss away. Whatever works for you – that’s my #1 rule in baking, don’t mess with success. Have fun – PJH

    Reply
  30. linda

    hey pj!
    re-reading this post as i wanted to see the freezer photo…i see you freeze cornmeal, walnuts…am curious what kaf pros freeze as it relates to baking…do you freeze flours? chocolates? butterscotch chips?
    keep on keepin’ on back @ you!

    :) We freeze anything with oil that may go bad. Primarily, nuts; butter; and whole grains (including whole-grain cornmeal). We don’t freeze white flours; chips or chocolate; dried fruit; sugar… anything like that. We also freeze our Weight Watcher frozen lunches; and baked goods needing to be photographed at a future date (well, sometimes; they can get kind of craggy-looking in the fridge…); leftover buttercream icing and profiterole dough; and sometimes yeast dough waiting to become something later on. Oh, and last week we had Popsicles because we were celebrating something that escapes me… maybe Customer Service Week? We have two big freezers, and they’re crammed – isn’t everyone’s freezer crammed?? PJH

    Reply
  31. Anne

    Just made this crust, it is excellent! Started your KAF Guaranteed Pumpkin Pie last night, and saw this crust recipe so decided to try it. I’m hooked! I am a pie crust failure – never can roll them out – but this came together nicely and rolled easily on a floured linen. The house now smells teee-riffic!

    YAY, Anne! I always love to hear success stories with pie crust. I struggled with it for YEARS. Sometimes I still do. But usually, I seem to hit that ideal fat/flour/liquid ratio pretty closely. Hope your pumpkin pie comes out delicious- PJH

    Reply
  32. Ted

    This really looks amazing! Can you substitute pastry flour for the all-purpose? I have a question about using pastry flour in general, instead of all-purpose: do you substitute it 1:1? Or use some other combination? Having recently bought some KAF pastry flour, I hope to learn how to use it most successfully. Thanks!

    Yes, Ted, pastry flour would be fine. It’ll make a more tender crust – and be harder to work with. You MAY want to cut back the butter just a tad and increase the water just a little as that’ll make it a bit less challenging to roll out. Pastry flour, with its low gluten, tends to make a crust that falls apart as you work with it. Moving it around with a big spatula or cake turner, instead of trying to fold it into quarters, or roll it around a rolling pin to move it, will be a help. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  33. Alvara

    Hi PJ, Probably at appletime last year I was pestering you about an apple cake my Mom used to buy in the bakery when I was a teenager (OMG it was 60 yrs ago). It looked so similar to this crust except it had straight sides maybe baked in a cake pan but it had a white icing glaze on top. I’m going to try this to see if it tastes anything like I remember.

    I love seeing the pictures of your store freezer. I am always trying to read the labels. I freeze most everything except chocolate. Even my KA flour. My big freezer in the garage is always crammed and also my kitchen one. Most of the labels say King Arthur on them. I have to be prepared to bake anytime.

    Be prepared – not only the Boy Scouts go by that motto, eh, Alvara? I hope your experiment with the iced pie works out – I do remember you asking about this cake last year, and my research never turned up anything… PJH

    Reply
  34. Tom

    Wonderful. I saw this yesterday while whipping up a batch of puff dough. Rather than baking it flat on a sheet pan, I used a glass pie pan and baked it at 350 for an hour and 15 minutes. The top was fantastic, and the bottom was perfectly done. Thanks PJ!

    Sounds like a nice variation, Tom – thanks for sharing. PJH

    Reply
  35. Knead2quilt

    For the one who needed to NOT use butter and asked about using margarine instead, one of the BC members uses Fleischman stick margarine successfully. Perhaps it would work with this recipe.

    Yes, regular stick margarine works fine – just not the “light” stick margarine or tub margarine. So if you can still find some old-fashioned, full-fat stick margarine – go for it. PJH

    Reply
  36. linda

    thanks for the freezer info PJ & Alvira!
    time formy freezer re arranging & adding some pantry products!!
    wish i lived near kaf…:)

    Reply
  37. Baking Soda

    Really… I think you should branch out into Europe (or maybe not, my wallet would be happier without I guess but oh think about happy me!). I love love the double sided pie toppier but the shipping costs to get it to the Netherlands are dreadful.
    Going to try this great looking pie crust asap! We’re definitely flakey crustlovers.

    Reply
  38. Lee

    just have to jump in and say that using “full fat stick margarine” in place of butter to avoid cholesterol is a bad idea. A stick of margarine could also be called a “stick of trans fat” which is much more deadly than the cholesterol in the butter!

    Lee, that’s true about the trans fat – Thanks for pointing it out. I guess we all have to pick our own “poison” where fat is concerned, huh? PJH

    Reply
  39. Pchiensha

    I thought I followed the instruction to make the dough into wheels but when I go to roll them out, the edge still cracked. Where did I go wrong? Should I have “packed” the edge when I shaped them into wheels? Help!

    If you’re talking about when you roll your dough into a circle, it’s OK for edges to crack – they always do. The only reason my edges in the picture look smooth is because I trimmed them. Cracked edges are usually a sign of 1) not enough liquid, or 2) too cold while rolling. And anyway, they don’t really matter – just fold them over or under, seal them together, and you’ll never see the cracks. Also, patching is always an option – I do it all the time, as you’ll see in an upcoming post on chocolate chip pecan pie…

    If you’re talking about edges cracking when you roll the dough into a hockey puck shape initially, then I’d say it’s strictly a case of too much flour, too little liquid/fat. Or too high a protein flour. Did you use King Arthur AP? PJH

    Reply
  40. Lauren Moore

    I’m not a big fan of the typical grocery store variety processed cream cheese and try to use natural cream cheese whenever possible. Do you think it would work in this pastry? I believe it’s the chunks of butter that create the flakiness, but I wonder if the cream cheese contributes as well. Any recommendations on using the natural cream cheese?

    PS – I made an apple pie this weekend and added some of your boiled cider syrup – a fantastic addition!

    Your substitution of natural cream cheese should work like the processed variety – same amount and all. The cream cheese adds flavor and texture as well as helping to temper the gluten – which you don’t want much of to get a flaky, tender pie crust. Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  41. AJ

    Our group has decided to put this in our “Feast Ideas” file for a possible dessert item. Could these possibly be made ahead and baked and frozen? Failing that, make, freeze to be baked later? We would need to make at least 12 or more and since our “on site” ovens are not always in good order the bake and reheat option is always better!

    To freeze now or to freeze later, that is the question! Some bakers believe that freezing apple desserts before baking ruins the texture of the apples, so we encourage you to bake, then freeze. Reheat or refresh later for that fresh baked aroma and taste! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  42. Nanci

    Just reporting back, I made this over the weekend for my dad. It was a fabulous hit. I didn’t make the filling very sweet, but to help with the tartness of the apples, I drizzled some melted caramel over the top of the pie, the sweetness was just right. We warmed it and served it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Everyone loved it.

    Love the melted caramel idea, Nanci – Thanks! PJH

    Reply
  43. Kim

    I have the lattice/heart pie crust cutter also and was about to give up on it. The way the directions read were just too much work. You have saved it from the trash bin! I wish all recipes came with a blog. A much better way to show recipes. Thank you!

    We’re working on it, Kim – MOST new recipes on our site do come with a blog now. Thanks for your input – and glad we saves that cutter from the trash! PJH

    Reply
  44. Angela

    I surprised my family with this yesterday and they LOVED it! What a great recipe, and the pictures really are helpful.

    Glad it was a success with your family, Angela. When the kids are happy – EVERYONE’S happy. PJH

    Reply
  45. Margie

    I would love to make this with cherries. How many ounces / pounds of cherries would I use? Also, what would I sprinkle the bottom crust with? Cinnamon in a cherry pie does not appeal to me. That crust looks so yummy! Thank you!

    Not sure how many cherries – just make a single layer. And a thin layer of almond paste would be wonderful – cherries and almonds are great together. Let us know how it comes out – PJH

    Reply
  46. Kari

    Made this crust in a traditional pie plate for my Grandma’s birthday apple pie. It was the bomb! Beautiful flaky layers, almost like a puff pastry. Yum!! Normally I do the hot water pie crust (and if you haven’t tried it, this is an official pie throw down challenge!!) but wanted something fancier. Thanks for the wonderful recipe and all the helpful pics. I’m never sure how big to leave the butter chunks, the pics def. help!! You guys are great!

    Hey, I’ve tried the hot water crust and had NO luck. Post the recipe, would you? I’d like to try it again. It makes a tender/sandy kind of crust rather than flaky, right? PJH

    Reply
  47. samanthasmom

    Served this last night warm with a caramel swirl ice cream topper. OMG! I didn’t have your fancy pie crust topper, but I do have an apple shaped cookie cutter that was the right size to vent the pie crust. I sprinkled the top with raw cane sugar. It was a work of art as well as tasty as all get out. My guests raided my plastic container stash and made off with the rest of the pie. I still have some of the ice cream left so gosh darn, I guess I’ll have to make another pie.

    That’s the spirit – leftover ice cream = more pie! PJH

    Reply
  48. Margie

    Do you mean marzipan for the cherry version, or do I need to find almond paste? Thank you!

    Marzipan would be fine – it’s just a bit sweeter than almond paste. Crumble it on top of the crust before adding the cherries. And let us know how it comes out, OK? PJH

    Reply
  49. N Gudgell/Scottsdale AZ

    I made this with granny smith apples and it was very good. I didn’t have the KAF Cinnamon mix, so I used the cinnamon and sugar method. I would make this again, but I would use more sugar and cinnamon than called for.

    Reply
  50. Kari

    PJ, here is the hot water pie crust recipe as requested! :) It is flaky and sandy at the same time, if that makes sense. Personally I feel it is best suited for meat pies, but maybe because last time I made turkey pot pies I added the cold fat I’d skimmed off the turkey stock in place of some of the shortnening. I know, yowsa. It just seems a sturdier crust, but still tender. If this recipe doesn’t work, there are many online, some calling for cornstarch, vinegar, etc. Good luck!
    PS, is there any way I can send you the pic of my sour cream chive potato rolls, mixed in two batches in the Zo, one with yeast, one without, baked in the same pan. Totally hilarious presentation :)

    Ingredients
    3/4 cup shortening
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon milk
    1/4 cup boiling water
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    Directions
    In a large bowl, combine shortening, salt, milk and boiling water. Whip with fork until smooth and creamy. It will resemble cream
    Add 2 cups flour and stir with round-the-bowl strokes until all flour is incorporated.
    Makes crust for one double crust pie.

    Thanks, gotta try this. Wonder what would happen if I subbed half butter for half the shortening and left out the milk? Hmmm… Does this make one crust, do you think? It’s kind of in between – I usually use 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups flour per crust. Anyway – I’d love to see your yeastless vs. BIG buns! email me at pj.hamel@kingarthurflour.com – TX – PJH

    Reply
  51. Kari

    PJ, I don’t think there would be a problem with any of the changes. I believe I’ve used butter or marg before, and come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve added the milk. It felt redundent. :P

    Reply
  52. Pat Cialek

    I could not find how much butter is required in the recipe. Please let me know how much.

    Thanks, Pat – I had it in the recipe, but forgot it in the blog. That would be 10 tablespoons. Enjoy – PJH

    Reply
  53. Pauline Schettini

    Beautiful Apple Pie!!!! I like the idea of the cream cheese in the crust and the cut outs, the course sugar on top adds soooo much. Thank you for the step by step procedure. Just a great web sight!
    Paulines

    Reply
  54. Lisa Umansky

    This looks delicious! will try later this week…must get the apple pealer gizmo.I make alot of applesauce and that tool has been on my list for years!.

    You won’t be sorry, Lisa. I LOVE my apple peeler – going to use it tomorrow to make dried apples (dehydrator) out of some I’ve had in my crisper for awhile… PJH

    Reply
  55. FRAN S

    THIS RECIPE IS DELISH! IT IS SO EASY TO JUST CUT A SLICE AND HOLD IN ONE HAND WHILE BAKING SOMETHING ELSE. I ATE SOME FOR BREAKFAST, HAD SOME FOR COFFEE BREAK AND GAVE SOME TO A FRIEND. MY HUBBIE AND SON LOVED IT TOO. THE BEST PART OF BAKING IS SHARING THE LOVE.

    Reply
  56. Karmen

    Your site always inspires my hidden baker. Being a pie girl, well…I believe this will be the perfect apple pie for the holidays. Cream cheese? Wow!

    Reply
  57. Brend

    This is the absolute best apple pie. I am no pastry chef and with a few helpful tips from the website on handling the crust it turn out beautiful. This will definitely be a yummy addition to the holidays.

    Reply
  58. Happy Baker

    LOVE this recipe, and have made it several times since it has been posted here. I’m dreaming of using it for peaches in the summer…in the meantime, are there any other fruit options that you think would be good, just for the sake of some variety. Even my non-pie eating (gasp, I know!) husband devours this one. Still, I’m not sure that he’ll keep wanting apple pie every night (or morning, as we’re eating leftovers for breakfast, too!). Suggestions are certainly appreciated!! Thanks!!

    Pear, or pear-ginger would be delicious. Berries would work well – frozen, at this time of the year. How about Italian prune plums, if they’re still available in your market? I’d suggest a cruise through the fruit section at the supermarket, see what strikes your fancy… PJH

    Reply
  59. Sue

    OMG!!!! I made this and it was fabulous. I’m getting ready to make this to give away and then another to give to the Fireman at my local firehouse for Thanksgiving :)

    Reply
  60. Ariana from Chicago

    I was looking forward to making this, as I am intimidated by regular apple pies. When I put my pie in the oven, I soon saw a pool of melted butter around the crust edges. I used a rimless baking sheet and soon enough, the smoke alarm went off! A drippy burned butter mess on the bottom of the oven! Should the butter melt like that? I always though the cold butter in the crust is supposed to “steam” at that initial high temperature. I did have big pieces of butter in the crust though. I also wonder if my oven temp is off. Could that be the problem? This is the 3rd apple pie recipe I’ve made in the last few months and I have had this happen (melted butter pool, not so flaky crust). The resulting pie wasn’t bad, but I suspect something was off.

    Ariana, I’m not sure what’s causing this. First, though, bake on a baking sheet with a rim next time, OK? Just in case it happens again, you’ll want to avoid the mess in the bottom of the oven. Are you using King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour? If not, it may be that the lower protein flour you’re using simply can’t absorb the amount of fat in the recipe. The other two times it happened, were you using different crust recipes? Are you using regular butter (not “light”)? And you’re using butter, not margarine, right? Try cutting the butter in more finely, so you don’t see the big chunks. Readers, does anyone else have anything to offer here? PJH

    Reply
  61. Lisa Evko

    Hi PJH!

    How would you do this pie with frozen blueberries or frozen cherries – and would you still do cinnamon (I am new at pies…)? I have been making the apple and everyone who has tried it loves it!

    Hi Lisa – I’d thaw the blueberries or cherries, and dry them off as much as possible. Use cinnamon for blueberries, a touch of almond extract for the cherries. Add a bit more thickener, too, as they’re liable to be juicier than the apples. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  62. Karen

    I invested in the apple slicer/corer/ peeler! Wish I would have had that twenty years ago! The cinnamon filling is the easiest pie filling I have ever used. I made 5 of these and put them in pizza boxes. Everybody loved them! The coarse sparkling sugar is the best crunch and makes the whole pie!

    Reply
  63. John Graham

    I have a problem with the top crust cracking in a ring about one inch inside the outer edge. I have had this same problem with the last four or five fruit pies I have baked. Any ideas why? The top crust does not crack while I am sealing the top to the bottom crust so I don’t think the crust is too cold when I am sealing. I have slits cut for venting but the slits are placed more towards the center of the pie. I roll out the crust using sizer rings on the rolling pin so I know the crust is even thickness.

    John, I’ve forwarded your question to our Baker’s Hotline folks – someone will get in touch via email to discuss this with you. Thanks for connecting – PJH

    Reply
  64. Maria

    I would like to say THANK YOU for finally making my quest in finding a “more crust less filling” pie recipe. My partner is very picky over this and over the years I have never found a recipe that met the needs of “picky eaters”! I made it last week for the first time and I used my KitchenAide mixer, with the flat-blade attatchment (trying to recreate your process) and it worked out well. I did have to convert the weights due to Australia not selling butter in “sticks”, whereby measuring out 10 tablespoons may be easy. I made this recipe again just two days ago – a double batch…and made individual pies so Porky Partner can have two for dessert!!!

    Thank you again…!

    Reply
  65. bean

    Apple pie is my favorite of all pies! I cannot tell you how much I enjoy this web site since I discovered it this year. The banters are so helpful when you might be in doubt about something you are deciding on to bake. I will be making this pie after my next trip to the grocery store to get what I need very soon. Also, I’m going to get that apple peeler too! Thank You for providing such a helpful and interesting website.

    Our pleasure – you’re going to love this pie! :) PJH

    Reply

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