The best Apple Pie is made from simple, delicious ingredients and is ready in just one hour. Buy a pie crust or use my easy homemade pie crust recipe!
Raise your hand if your brother is an apple aficionado who has an orchard and grafts his own apple species!
Just me, then?
My brother Matt, aforementioned apple whiz, always makes an Apple Pie at Thanksgiving. He uses a variety of apples, more species than the rest of us could come up with collectively, and puts all other apple pies to shame.
Luckily, you can get the same fantastic results with just a few tart apples and this easy recipe!
How do you make Homemade Apple Pie?
For an apple pie to truly be homemade, you'll need to make the crust. After experimenting with butter-based crusts and shortening-based crusts, the vegetable shortening crust was the clear winner. Lightly, flaky, and surprisingly buttery given the lack of, well, butter.
But don't worry. You can start with store-bought pie crust if you want to and no one will ever know!
Best Apples for Apple Pie
Granny Smith apples are the best choice for apple pie. They soften when baked but still stay quite firm and hold their shape. The tartness also balances the sugar in the pie filling.
Some recipes, such as Cook's Illustrated, recommend using two kinds of apples: Granny Smith AND McIntosh apples. The logic is that McIntosh apples are sweet which adds depth of flavor. They also break down into mush when cooked which creates a more cohesive filling.
The problem with this plan is McIntosh apples aren't always available. So, I stick with one kind, Granny Smiths, since they are always at the store. But feel free to add another kind in to the mix and see what happens!
The Best Apple Pie Recipe
- 1/2 cup sugar plus more for the top crust
- 1/2 cup brown sugar packed
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 6 to 7 cups tart apples peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 9-inch pie crusts thawed (homemade or from 1 box store-bought)
- 1 tablespoon butter chopped into small pieces
- 1 egg white
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small mixing bowl, mix 1/2 white sugar, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, toss apples with lemon juice. Sprinkle in sugar mixture and toss to evenly coat.
- Lay one pie crust in bottom of 9-inch pie pan, trimming the pastry even with the edge of the pan. Spoon in the apple mixture into the pie and place butter piece on top.
- Roll the remaining crust out. Set crust over the filling and trim as necessary to fit the top of the pie. Seal, flute the edges, and cut slits in the pastry.
- Beat egg white until foamy; brush over pastry. Sprinkle with sugar. Cover edges loosely with foil.
- Bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake until crust is golden brown and pie filling is bubbling, about 20 minutes more. Cool on wire rack.
- Sift 2 cups of all-purpose flour and 1 teaspoon of salt together in a large mixing bowl. Cut in 2/3 cup of shortening until the mixture resembles small peas. Add 1 tablespoon of water at a time, sprinkling over the mixture and tossing with a fork. Push to the side of the bowl and repeat until the mixture is moist, about 5 to 7 tablespoons.
- Split the dough into two equal sized portions and roll into balls. On a lightly flattened surface, press each ball until flattened, and roll out from the center to the edge into a 1/8' think circle.
- Proceed with step 2.