Five Fresh Takes On Apple Pie For Your Fall Baking
I am ALWAYS looking for new and inspired ways to reinvent the apple pie. I make A LOT of apple pies in the fall, and while I LOVE the simple, basic apple pie with cinnamon and sugar. I like to get fancy and different and exotic and sometimes downright historical in my baking. All of these pies check my must-bake apple pie list.
Click on the name of the pie to view the recipe!
This spicy sweet apple pie recipe gives me everything I desire in a dessert inspired by the healthy, warming Chai. (Chai means tea). I have always thought the blend of cinnamon, cardamon, nutmeg and cloves were the absolute perfect flavors to pair with apple. And this pie is delicious and warming and just a little different.
This recipe states that vanilla extract and orange zest are optional. I’ll go out on a limb and say they are not! I find them to be quite essential as the earthiness of the vanilla combined with the bright sweetness of the citrus is a delightful pairing.
As you can imagine, this pie pairs well with milky black coffee or tea.
In North Carolina, the state fair arrives in October, so when I think of the fall. I think of the fair. And I really wanted to find an apple pie that evoked some of my favorite state fair flavors and memories. Candy apple comes to mind, but I couldn’t find a candy apple pie recipe that I wanted to try or even like. Candy apple might not be the best way to make a pie anyway.
But the state fair candy apple definitely inspires recipes, and I found one that I had to try try. Nothing says state fair like caramel apples. And tying those flavors into a pie is infinitely kinder to your teeth (at least I think so) than the actual caramel apple is.
So, I found the perfect recipe in the Brown Eyed Baker’s recipe which calls for nutmeg and allspice ( I love these spices and am always trying to find new ways to incorporate into my diet), salted caramel sauce (easy to make but you can also buy it. try to find an all-natural organic version for the best taste) and really tart, crisp apples like a Granny Smith.
As you can imagine, the combination of tart apples, salt and caramel is absolutely divine and a sure winner at your next family meal.
Hands down, my favorite way to eat apples is sliced and dragged through copious amounts of peanut butter. This is not just a naturally delicious snack but it’s also healthy (if your peanut butter is organic and not loaded with sugar).
So, I’ve tried several different peanut butter and apple combos trying to find the perfect one. Because what really is the best way to incorporate peanut butter into the pie? Do you make a peanut flour crust? A peanut butter crust? Or do you swirl peanut butter into the apple filling? So many questions!
I may in fact post my own tweaked version at some point. But today, I want to share Leelalicious’s take on this pie which includes a peanut butter crumble topping. Leelalicious’s recipe actually includes PB2 peanut powder and is a sponsored post. This article however is not. But, i like PB2 and have used it in smoothies – banana peanut butter smoothies all the time. So I like this powder and am happy to find a way to use it. This recipe also call for the powder to be added into both the filling and the crust. Lastly, using the powder cuts down on some of the calories and fat (if you’re watching either of these two things.) typical peanut butter would add.
But have no fear. I love peanut butter so much that I will probably do another post on peanut butter pies that includes actual peanut butter.
This recipe had me at all butter crust. Because let’s face it the crust is important. There is nothing worse than a boring, dry, tasteless crust to absolutely ruin the pie! For that reason, I’m always looking for interesting pie crust recipes as well. Hello shortbread, oatmeal cookie, peanut butter or salty butter graham cracker crust – I’m talking to you!
But there’s also bourbon. I love the idea of bourbon much more than I actually love to drink it. I’ll admit that. I’m much more of a wine kinda gal when it comes to actually imbibing in the spirits, BUT I do love baking and cooking with wine and beer and… bourbon. I’ll always say yes to coffee aged in bourbon barrels or pies or cakes flavored with the lovely smell and taste of said spirits.
This recipe calls for one tablespoon of bourbon. I add to taste – which can be two or three tablespoons depending. I like a really strong taste of bourbon in my pies, as long as it’s equally balanced by the sugar and spices (so sometimes I increase those as well). And of course we know the alcohol burns off leaving a fragrant and delicious apple pie.
Did you grow up eating apple butter? I did. We just always had a jar in the house. but I find that some people have never heard of it and some don’t like the taste or consistency. Many are confused – like what is it? It’s like overcooked apple sauce, am I right? Really easy to make but also delicious out the jar.
I thought the creamy flavorful nature of apple butter would translated into a delicious pie. And I was right! Everyday Pie’s recipe calls for a spelt-cinnamon crust. (you can make whatever crust you like but the heart nuttiness of this crust paired with the earthiness of the cinnamon, really works!) The apple butter filling is flavored with nutmeg and clove, a really perfect combo, which leads to a deliciously autumnal pie. I’ll be making this one again. One, because it’s so easy, two, because I really love the crust, and three because it’s just that good.