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We started home preschool with my 3 year old and 1 year old a few weeks ago. This past week, their lesson was “A is for Apple,” so of course, mama wanted to do all the fall things! Including making up a recipe for this dang delicious apple pie from scratch!
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Note: Cold butter is SO important! Make sure you chill it first. I like to stick mine in the freezer for a bit while I am prepping.
First, you will stir together the flour, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl. Using your hands or a pastry blender (we think hands are fun!), smash the butter and the flour mixture until most of the butter is incorporated. You’ll have some chunks of butter coated in flour. It will look lumpy and dry, which is what you want.
My sweet girl had so much fun squeezing the butter chunks in her little hands, and it was a great sensory activity. Those big chunks of butter give your crust that flaky texture that makes it so divine.
Drizzle the ice water and vinegar into the flour/butter mixture. Use your hands or a pastry blender to mix this together until everything pulls together into a dough. Knead the mixture a few more times until you’ve got a nice, smooth ball. Cut the dough into 2 equal parts, roll each into a ball and wrap individually in plastic wrap or a ziplock.
“Korintje cinnamon is the most popular type of cinnamon used by professional bakers. It’s what makes their cinnamon rolls and apple pies taste extra special! Trust this high-grade pure cinnamon to provide the classic, sweet flavor your remember from your childhood.
Look at that gooey goodness…
It’s super important, unless you love scraping the bottom of your oven, to place your pie on a parchment or foil lined cookie sheet! Because this pie is packed with goodness, sometimes that goodness spills over the sides. If you don’t follow this step, that goodness will drip to the bottom of your oven and burn there for all of eternity. I doubt you want that. Do the cookie sheet!
- Deep Dish Pie Plate
- Pie Crust Shield (optional)
- Rolling Pin
- Pastry Blender (optional)
- For the crust:
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 3 Tbsp. sugar
- 1½ tsp. salt
- 1 cup 2 sticks cold butter, cut into small pieces Salted or Unsalted doesn't matter.
- 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup ice water I always make the ice water and let the ice melt, and then pour out to get what I need!
- For the filling:
- 8 apples, sliced. I personally love HoneyScrip or Fuji! Granny Smith are good, too!
- ½ cup sugar divided
- ¼ cup packed brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon This Korintje cinnamon is my favorite! SO flavorful!
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 large egg gently beaten with a 1/2 TBSP of water.
- First we will do the crust:
- Chill your butter. I like it stick it into the freezer for a few minutes while I am prepping. The colder, the better!
- Stir together the flour, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl. Using your hands or a pastry blender (we think hands are fun!), smash the butter and the flour mixture until most of the butter is incorporated. You'll have some chunks of butter coated in flour. It will look lumpy and dry, which is what you want. The butter chunks are what make that flaky crust!
- Drizzle the ice water and vinegar into the flour/butter mixture. Use your hands or a pastry blender to mix this together until everything pulls together into a dough. Knead the mixture a few more times until you've got a nice, smooth ball. Cut the dough into 2 equal parts, roll each into a ball and wrap individually in plastic wrap or a ziplock.
- Now, here is the deal. You can do this step a couple of days out and store in the fridge, or the day of. It needs to chill for at least an hour to firm up, two is optimal.
- While your dough is chilling, we will make the pie filling!
- Core your apples and then slice into thin slices (See the recipe notes for the easiest way to do this!)
- In another large mixing bowl, toss your apple slices, half of the sugar, brown sugar, flour, vinegar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Set this mixture in the fridge until your dough is ready.
- Once your dough has chilled, go ahead and beat the egg and water in a small bowl, just enough to blend. (This is your egg wash. It gives the crust that delicious golden sheen!)
- Preheat your oven to 375º.
- Remove one of your dough balls and roll it out on a lightly floured surface. You want a circle about 12 or 13 inches in diameter, to allow room to overlap.
- Carefully wrap the dough around your floured rolling pin to make transport easier. Gently lay the rolled-out round of dough to a 9" pie dish, allowing the dough to slump down into the bottom and up over the sides.
- Scrape your apple filling into the pie crust (make sure you get all of those yum juices!).
- Brush egg wash around the outer edges of the crust.
- Roll out the remaining disk of dough and place it on top of the filled bottom crust. You could get fancy here and cut your top crust into strips for a basket-weave, etc. Most of the time, I prefer to just keep it simple!
- Press the edges of the top crust to the edges of the bottom crust to crimp and seal. I like to roll them upward and tuck/crimp to make sure the pie stays together.
- Place your pie on a baking sheet (I like to put a piece of parchment over it) to catch any drips from baking.
- Using a pastry brush, coat the pie all over with egg wash mixture. Sprinkle it with the remaining sugar (I like to add a dash more cinnamon here, but you don't have to!). Using a sharp knife, cut a few slits in the top of your pie to allow it to vent while baking.
- Place the pie into the oven, and put a pie crust shield on if you have one (you can make one out of foil if you don't! This will keep your edges from burning).
- Bake the pie for about an hour and 15 minutes, until it is golden brown and the juices are bubbly. It's really important to make sure you don't underbake it! I remove the crust shield at this point and bake about 10 more minutes.
- Allow the pie to rest on the counter for a half hour or so before serving. This gives the juices time to settle.
- We like to drop a big fat scoop of vanilla ice cream on top!
- When making this pie, you can chill it, unbaked, overnight and bake it the next day to make things go more smoothly. Just don't forget to add the egg wash before baking.
- You can also fully bake it the day before and serve it at room temperature or warm it back up in a 350° oven for 30 minutes.