The best Homemade Apple Pie recipe to make this classic all-American dessert piled high with sweet apples between a flaky and buttery double crust.
It’s hard to imagine celebrating Thanksgiving without the promise of finishing your meal with a generous slice of freshly baked double crust apple pie. Sky-high apple pie is a must-have holiday dessert, complete with two golden layers of crust.
This year, I’m thrilled to share my secrets to perfect apple pie filling and crust just in time for the holidays. I hope you and your family enjoy!
How to Make Homemade Apple Pie
This pie is guaranteed to impress guests––before they even take their first bite. Apple pie is made with simple ingredients that you may already have on hand. You just need sliced apples, warm fall spices, and two homemade or store-bought pie crusts.
Start with the crust. I’ve written a helpful pie crust tutorial that makes all of your holiday pie-making as easy as, well, pie!
Keep your pie dough in the fridge while you prepare the homemade filling. This ensures that the butter in the crust stays cold before baking for extra flaky layers.
Best Apples for Apple Pie Filling
I love to use a combination of fresh, firm apples to make my pie. This way, every bite has a mixture of sweet and tart flavors, as well as the perfect blend of apples some hold their shape during baking and apples that break down a little to make a juicer filling.
Choose apples that stay firm and crisp like a sweet Rome Beauty or a tart Granny Smith, and combine it with a tart Jonathan or a sweet Honey Crisp that will break down a bit when baked.
You’ll need 2 ½ pounds of apples, which is about 9 medium apples. Peel and slice them into wedges no thicker than ¼ inch to ensure the filling cooks evenly.
Assembling Double Crust Apple Pie
Once your apples are sliced and well coated in your sugar and spice mixture, it’s time to assemble the pie.
Start by placing the bottom crust into your pie plate. Trim any excess dough from the edges. Then carefully arrange the apples on top, stacking the pieces on top of each other on their sides. This makes for easier cutting.
Next, gently place the second crust on top, lining up the edges as best you can.
Again, use a sharp paring knife to trim any excess crust from around the edges. Then use your fingers to pinch the two crusts together into a decorative edge. If you find the crusts aren’t sticking together well, brushing a little egg wash around the edge of the bottom crust will help the crusts join together.
Or, you can also use the tines of a fork to press the edges of the crusts together.
Before baking, be sure to cut several large vents in the top crust – more than the three shown in the pictures. This allows steam to release during baking and helps the crust follow the contour of the apples so you don’t get a gap (empty pocket) between the apple pie filling and the top crust as it bakes.
You can even use a mini apple cookie cutter to cut a pretty apple in the center of the top crust before putting the crust on top of the apple filling. Then add a few smaller cuts around the sides, which will help prevent the top crust from gapping, and is an easy way to decorate the top crust. It also makes it easier to check and see if your apple is finished cooking.
Finally, brush with egg wash and sprinkle generously with sanding sugar for a crunchy, golden topping.
How To Perfectly Cook the Bottom Pie Crust
The secret to getting your bottom crust to crisp up is to preheat a cookie sheet upside down in the oven. Do this while your assembled pie chills for 30 minutes before baking.
When you’re ready to bake, place the pie on the upside-down cookie sheet. The heat will help the bottom crust brown and crisp up.
Serving & Storage
I love to serve this pie warm, ala mode of course!
Let it cool in the pan for at least 30 minutes before slicing. This allows juices to absorb and steam to release slowly.
If you’re making your apple pie ahead of time, you can warm individual slices in the microwave in 10-second intervals.
Store leftovers wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. It’s delicious for breakfast too!
More Holiday Pie Recipes
Our family loves pie. So every holiday dessert spread features more than homemade apple pie. Try these other favorite pie recipes so there’s something for everyone:
- Cranberry Pecan Pie is another classic thanksgiving dessert with fresh cranberries and buttery pecans.
- Pressure Cooker/ Instant Pot Pumpkin Pie from Pressure Cooking Today saves oven space and makes a silky-smooth custard pie filling with a cookie crust.
- Apple Cranberry Streusel Pie is an alternative to this classic double crust apple pie, brightened up with cranberries and a crumbly streusel topping.
Homemade Apple Pie
- 2 pie crusts rolled into circles a bit larger than your pie plate and chilled
- 2 ½ pounds assorted apples peeled cored, and cut into ¼-inch slices
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 2 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ginger. optional
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves optional
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg optional
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter cut into small pieces
- 1 large egg beaten
- Sanding sugar
- Have two dough disks rolled out and chilled. Fit one of the dough rounds into a pie plate. Return to the refrigerator while you prepare apple filling. Keep other dough round chilled.
- In a large bowl, mix together apples and lemon juice.
- In a second bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar, flour, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and salt until well blended. Add to apples and toss to coat. Spread apple mixture evenly into chilled bottom crust. Dot with butter.
- Place the remaining pie crust gently on top of apples. Trim off any overhanging dough and pinch the dough into a decorative edge with your fingers, if the two layers of dough are not sticking together brush the bottom edge with a little egg wash.
- Cut several large slits or into the top of the crust to vent steam while pie bakes.
- Brush the top with egg wash and sprinkle generously with sanding sugar.
- Refrigerate assembled pie for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 425°F and place a baking sheet in the oven upside down.
- Bake the pie on the preheated baking sheet for 25 minutes until the crust begins to brown.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350°F and bake for an additional 25 minutes, until golden brown, the juices are bubbling, and has an internal temperature of 175°F.
- Cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes. Serve at room temperature or slightly warm.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap.