9 of Grandma’s Best-Kept Secrets for a Perfect Apple Pie
There's no need to stress over America's favorite dessert! Here are the tried-and-true secrets you need for a perfect apple pie.
Apple pies may be an American classic, but baking anything that lives up to your childhood memories is a daunting task! Luckily, grandmothers everywhere—including ours—have some techniques for the perfect flaky crust and flavorful filling.
Here are the secrets (and the recipe) for baking a perfect apple pie.
Choose Sweet and Firm Apples
Whether you’re picking ’em from a tree or your local market, apples that are firm, sweet and just a little bit tart are a good bet. Almost any apple will make a good pie, but we’ll recommend Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Rome and Jonagold.
Leave Time for Dough to Chill
When planning out your baking, it’s easy to forget that you need time for the homemade dough to chill! Wrap your dough in plastic wrap and leave it in the fridge for a half hour to make sure your crust will cook to flaky perfection.
Mix Up Your Apples
If you happen to have a few different types of apples lying around—that works! Using a variety of apples creates a more complex and well-balanced flavor. This guide to apples will help uncover your perfect flavor and texture combination.
Pre-Cook Your Apples
Yes, they’ll cook in the oven, but to make sure the filling is juicy and flavorful, cook the apples before pouring them into your crust. (And there’s still hope for the shortcut-happy among us; some pro bakers skip the peeling step to add a pop of color.)
Cool the Filling
We know we’re making you wait a long time! But once you’ve cooked your apples with butter and spices, it’s important to let the filling cool to room temp so air pockets don’t end up forming in your crust. (Give it 45 minutes or so.)
Don’t Be Afraid to Use Flour
When you’re rolling out the dough, it’s important to make sure it doesn’t stick! Cover your countertop and rolling pin with liberal amounts of flour to avoid a sticky mess. (Trust us, you won’t regret it.)
Hey, there aren’t always enough hours in the day to make your own crust, and many a delicious apple pie has been made not quite from scratch. (You can use that store-bought shortcut for quick and delicious savory pies, too.)
Get Creative With Your Top Crust
There’s no one way to make the top crust of an apple pie. You could go with a smooth top or a more challenging lattice, but how about using cookie cutters to turn your dough into shapes you can use to make a collage? Creative and delicious.