Dutch Apple Pie (aka apple crumble pie, aka perhaps the most perfect pie in existence) is filled with cinnamon-spiced homemade apple pie filling and topped with a glorious buttery streusel crumb topping. It's an utterly blissful experience to eat a slice of slightly warm dutch apple pie with a scoop of ice cream!
This is the Best Dutch Apple Pie Recipe
My pie-crust averse husband has improved in his appreciation for a perfect pie crust over our marriage, but he will still choose dutch apple pie with it's crumble topping over an old-fashioned apple pie with both a top and bottom crust.
And okay, I'm right there with him now. I'm not sure which one of us is the better influence on the other at this point.
But this pie with it's cinnamon-streusel topping is absolutely heavenly. I love the extra texture of the crumble topping and the balance of spice and sweetness it gives to the tender, juicy apples below is just the best.
And btw, did you know you can "dutch" almost any pie you can think of by adding the crumble topping from the recipe below and it will taste incredible? Cherry crumble pie, peach crumble pie, and berry crumble pie are all amazing and definitely your answer if there is a weirdo in your life who, like my husband, "doesn't care for crust".
(Fine. I still love you. But you destroy a piece of my soul every time you utter those words.)
What is different about Dutch Apple Pie?
For starters, it's easier than a regular apple pie because you only have to make a bottom crust and then sprinkle on the topping.
But a dutch apple pie is also sweeter, thanks to the streusel topping.
The sugar in the topping also gives it an interesting texture and slight crunch that is really nice with the soft apples from the filling beneath.
Dutch Apple Pie Recipe ingredients
- Pie crust - You can use my favorite pie crust recipe or buy a refrigerated or frozen pie crust from the store.
- Apples - I always use at least 2-3 types of apples in my apple pies. Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Golden Delicious, and Envy apples are some of my favorites.
- Lemon juice - Keeps flavors bright and prevents the apples from browning.
- Sugar - You’ll need both granulated sugar and brown sugar for the filling and crumble topping.
- Flour - Helps thicken the apple filling
- Spices - A blend of cinnamon and nutmeg are the perfect complement to the apple flavor of this pie.
- Salted butter - For the crumble.
What are the best apples for this Apple Crumble Pie Recipe?
I always, always, always, use at least 2-3 types of apples in my apple pies. I think using a variety of apples gives a better, flavor to any apple pie, and since some apples are juicier or sweeter than others, and some apples break down more as they cook than others, you get the best of all worlds by combining more than one apple variety.
I recently visited a nursery where I got my hands on some apple varieties I haven't had a chance to bake with before since they aren't seen as frequently in grocery stores. So this particular apple crumble pie was made with a mix of Mutsu, Winesap, and Baldwin apples. They made for an excellent apple pie filling with a good cider flavor that we loved.
But more readily available apples that you will find in any grocery and are good for baking include Granny Smith apples (one of my go-to apple choices for almost any baking situation), Golden Delicious (they bake down softer but have wonderful flavor), and Honey Crisp.
I also have some Belle de Boskoop, Arkansas Black, and York apples from my visit to the nursery that I haven't had a chance to bake with yet, but that are supposed to be delicious in pies.
Making the crust for Apple Crumble Pie
Just because the crumble topping gets all the glory in this dutch apple pie doesn't mean you can just ignore the bottom crust. It may not be as seductive as streusel, but I love the deliciousness of a homemade pie crust and 100% encourage you to make it from scratch rather than buying one from the store. It's not that bad, I promise!
My favorite pie crust recipe is made with a combination of butter and shortening, and honestly, it's the only pie crust recipe I use. But I've heard good things about this sour cream pie crust, which is certainly intriguing.
Since I was going for simple and easy with this dutch apple pie, I simply finished off the crust by pressing the tines of a fork around the edges for a decorative design rather than my typical scalloped edge that you make by pinching thumb and forefingers together to create a wavy edge.
How to Make Dutch Apple Pie
1. Make the crust
- Mix flour, salt, and a little sugar in a bowl, then cut in cold butter and shortening to form pea-size crumbs using a pastry cutter. This can also be done in a food processor .
- A cold water, a couple tablespoonfuls at a time, mixing just until the pie crust starts to come together in a ball.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
2. Make the filling
- Peal, core, and slice the apples. The thickness of your apples (as well as the variety of apple) will determine how they cook in the pie. If you slice them thicker or chunkier, they will take longer to cook and still have some bite to them. Thinner sliced apples will cook down softer. For dutch apple pie, I like to slice my apples on the thin side, about ¼" thick, using a mandolin so they are uniform in thickness and the pie bakes evenly. But if you don't have a mandolin, you can almost as easily slice them with a knife on a cutting board.
- Toss the sliced apples with lemon juice, sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Let them sit for 30 minutes to draw out some of the juices from the apples. Don't get rid of those juices though!
3. Make the crumble topping
- Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, butter, and salt in a large bowl, using the pastry cutter to cut the butter into the other ingredients until it's a sandy texture. I like to squeeze a couple handfuls of the streusel together in one hand to create some larger crumb pieces for a variety of streusel textures.
4. Assemble & bake
- Roll out on a lightly floured surface and transfer to your pie plate. I use a standard 9-inch pie plate for this recipe, but it would work just as well with a deep dish pie plate if you have one!
- When ready to assemble the pie, pile the apple filling in the center of the pie crust, making a mound that is thicker in the middle since the apples will cook down as the pie bakes. Do not pour in the juices that came off the apples, but don't discard them either! I see so many apple pie recipes that call for the juices to be discarded and it makes me want to cry! That's where so much of the flavor it! Instead, transfer that syrupy juice to a small microwaveable bowl and microwave it for about 45-60 seconds until it is thick. Then spread this over the apple filling before topping with the crumb topping!
- Sprinkle the crumble topping over the apple pie filling, going all the way to the edges.
- Then bake in a 400 degree F oven for 50-55 minutes until golden brown on top and the apples have cooked down. Be sure to have a pie shield for the crust if it starts getting too brown, and a piece of aluminum foil to set on top of the pie if it starts to get too dark before the pie is done. I usually check around the 30 minute mark and stick both of those on if I need to.
- Let the pie cool completely (honestly, the hardest part of this recipe is the waiting) before slicing. You can reheat until slightly warm, but if you try to slice the pie while it's still hot, the filling won't be set up yet. It will still taste delicious, for sure, but you won't get nice slices.
How to serve Dutch Apple Pie with Crumb Topping
Always give your pie time to cool so it will be able to set up properly. You do not want an overly juicy slice of pie. I love a good warm slice of pie so when it is time to serve the pie, so I usually just microwave my slice for a couple of seconds to get it nice and warm and top it off with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream.
How to store Apple Pie with Crumb Topping
You can store dutch apple pie in the fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to 5 days. I think apple desserts are delicious served chilled, but it also reheats really well in the microwave for individual slices, or you can put the whole pie in a 325 degree F oven for 15 minutes until it's warm.
If your fridge is full of other leftovers (like ours at Thanksgiving time), this dutch apple pie will keep on the counter at room temperature for a couple of days just fine. Just cover it with plastic wrap and try not to sliver off a piece every time you walk past.
Apple Crumble Pie Recipe FAQs
There’s no difference! Both a Dutch apple pie and a French apple pie have the crunchy, buttery crumb topping instead of a top crust. It’s just called by a different name in different places, but it’s the same delicious pie.
Dutch Apple Pie and Apple Crumb Pie are also the same thing just called by a different name with an amazing crumb topping and juicy apple filling all nestled in a flaky, buttery crust.
A crumble topping should be chunky with some good solid chunks of crumble spread throughout. It should not be thin like sand but more chunky and piecey. You do not want your butter too soft when mixing the crumble topping because then it will not hold together very well. Once cooked the top should be slightly brown with a good crunch to it, but still slightly soft to bite into.
More Pie Recipes We Love
- Dutch Pear & Nutmeg Pie
- Best Key Lime Pie Recipe
- Classic Homemade Blackberry Pie
- Southern Peach Pie Perfection
- Easy Homemade Pumpkin Pie
- Best Homemade Cherry Pie Recipe
- Easy Coconut Cream Pie From Scratch
- Easy Blueberry Custard Pie
- Fresh Strawberry Pie
Did you make this recipe?
Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.
Dutch Apple Pie (aka Apple Pie with Crumb Topping)
Apple Pie Filling
- 7 cups apples peeled and sliced into ¼-inch slices
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup butter softened
- Pinch of salt
- Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Combine all pie filling ingredients in a large bowl and toss to evenly coat apples. Let sit for 20-30 minutes until apples have released some of their juices.
- While the apples macerate, combine the crumble topping ingredients in a large bowl and cut the butter in using a pastry cutter until it is just small crumbs. Squeeze a couple of handfuls together to create small clumps of varying sizes.
- Roll out pie crust on a lightly floured surfacae and tansfer to a 9-inch pie plate. Trim edges and tuck under, using the tines of a fork to make a decorative pattern around the edge of the crust.
- Mound the apple pie filling in the center of the crust, leaving the liquid behind in the bowl. Transfer the juices from the apples to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 45-60 seconds, until thick. Spread over the top of the apple pie filling.
- Sprinkle the pie with the crumble topping.
- Bake for 50-55 minutes until golden brown on top and the apple filling is bubbling and the apples are tender. Cover the pie crust edges with a pie shield partway through baking and cover the whole pie with a piece of aluminum foil halfway through baking if it looks like it is getting too brown.
- Cool completely before serving.