Dutch apple pie is a classic pie made with a buttery crust and a sweet apple and cinnamon filling. Add a lace crust and you have the perfect fall dessert.
I LOVE apple pie and I am not the only one. In the Netherlands, and in many other countries, apple pie is the number one pie. Most families have their own recipe and the United States even declared apple pie as their (unofficial) national symbol!
Where does apple pie come from?
You can find recipes for apple pie in Dutch cookbooks since medieval times. One of the first recipes was written in 1514 and can be found in ‘een notabel boecxken van cokereyen’. This is not the oldest recipe out there. The first known recipe for apple pie was written in England in 1381. In this recipe, they added figs, pears, and spices like nutmeg and mace with the apples.
The modern recipes for Dutch apple pie are slightly different from most recipes you will find in old cookbooks. Most of these recipes state that you have to bake the apples or even boil them to a puree before adding them to your crust. Also, many of the first apple pies have no bottom crust but only a closed crust on top of the apples which they removed before eating.
But what about the rest of the world?
People in the United States, also love apple pie. You might have heard of the expression ‘As American as apple pie’. The first European settlers some apple seeds with them in the 17th century when they sailed to the Americas in the hope of being able to bake their beloved pie over there.
Another delicious type of apple pie comes from the 19th century in France, the Tarte Tatin. You make a Tarte Tatin by first putting the apples (or other fruits) before you place the crust into the pie tin.
I first came across recipes where the uncooked apples go straight in the crust in Dutch cookbooks dated from just before WWII. Recipes like this are still the most used apple pie recipes in the Netherlands.
How to make a Dutch apple pie
You might have noticed that in my recipe for apple pie, you won’t find any raisins. The reason for this is that I really don’t like them. If you do love raisins, add about 60 grams soaked raisins or currants to the apples at step 5. In many old cookbooks, they add nutmeg or ginger to the apples, this is very delicious! You could also try adding some speculaas spices to the crust. I have a recipe for that here.
PS. because I had set aside the apples with the sugar while putting the crust in my pie tin, the apples had already lost some of their moisture and the bottom of my apple pie turned out perfectly! (no soggy bottom!) If you’d like to try this, please wait before adding the cinnamon until you can actually add the apples to the crust so you won’t lose flavor.
Ingredients you will need
A little pie Q&A
A traditional Dutch apple pie is made with a pie-crust (wenerdeeg), an apple filling with cinnamon and raisins, and a beautiful lace pattern on the top.
In the US, an apple pie with a crumble topping is often called a dutch apple pie, in the Netherlands however, we call this kind of pie an appelkruimeltaart (apple crumble pie). Apple crumble pie is also very delicious but if you love the pie you get on the terraces of Amsterdam, this is the recipe you’re looking for.
Not really. If you plan to eat the apple pie the same day or the day after, it is best to keep it covered at room temperature. You can keep it covered with plastic wrap in the fridge for 2-3 days, but the crust can get a bit softer.
Yes! Let the pie cool down completely and wrap it in plastic foil, this way you can keep the apple pie in the freezer for 6 months.
Traditionally Jonagold is used for Dutch apple pies but I prefer a sweeter apple like an Elstar so I don’t have to use so much sugar.
Sure! If you want to make a vegan apple pie you can replace the butter with vegan butter, shortening, coconut oil or margarine. You can omit the egg and add a little oat milk (almond milk or coconut milk would also work!).
Dutch apple pie will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge and up to 6 months in the freezer.
You can add a little flour or cornstarch to the apples or sprinkle a little custard powder or bread crumbs on the bottom of your crust before adding the apples.
Other pie recipes you will love!
- 300g (2.5 cups) all-purpose flour
- 200g (7/8 cup / 7 oz) butter
- 140g (2/3 cups) sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp salt
The pie filling
- 5 apples, I like to use Elstars
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 30g (2 tbsp) sugar
- Preheat your oven to 170°C (325°F)
- Prepare a 24 cm (9 inch) springform.
- In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar and salt together.
- Add the diced butter and 3/4 of the egg and work it into the flour until it starts to resemble breadcrumbs.
- Knead the dough a little, form it into a ball, wrap the dough in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You can use the dough straight away if it's not too soft.
- Peel the apples and cut them in quarters.
- Slice the apple quarters, put them in a bowl and add the sugar and cinnamon.
- Take 2/3 of your dough out of the fridge and roll it out on a well-floured counter to 4-5 mm (you can skip this past by just pressing the dough in your springform with your fingers).
- Place the dough into your springform and press it down.
- Add your apples and spread them evenly.
- Take the leftover dough and form strips by either rolling the dough and cutting strips or take little pieces of the dough, form 'snakes' and press them flat (that is what I, and most Dutch people do).
- Lay the strips on your pie and seal them together by pressing the ends to your crust.
- Brush the leftover egg over the top and bake the pie for about 60 minutes until golden.
Let the pie cool a little before cutting and serve warm or cold with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Try adding some speculaas spices to the crust! You can find the perfect recipe on Nutmeg & Vinegar!
You could add a hand full of soaked raisins to the filling.
Wrapped in plastic wrap you can keep this pie in the freezer for up to 6 months.
I like to use Elstar apples but granny smith, golden delicious or gala are also very good!
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 182Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 189mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 3gSugar: 11gProtein: 2g
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