Easiest Ever Crumb Topped Apple Pie

Easiest Ever Crumb Topped Apple Pie
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It’s apple season!

Which means it’s time to dust off that pie pan and get busy. I feel like pie often gets a reputation for being a difficult baked good. But that’s not true! I promise you with this no fail, easiest ever Crumb Topped Apple Pie you can make a great dessert that will impress your friends and not take all day to bake!

I think one of the things that holds new bakers back from trying a pie is that there are several elements to consider. What kind of apples do I need? How do I make a crust? Is it going to take all afternoon to bake? In today’s post I will give you my most straight forward answers to make a beautiful pie without all the hassle.

Let’s make a beautiful crumb topped apple pie…

First things first, you have to pick your apples.  Did you know there are over 7,500 varieties of apples grown throughout the globe?! Here in Michigan the apple blossom is our state flower, and we get a tad crazy about apple season.  Currently my grocery store has table upon table of fresh local apples for CHEAP. Which means lots of apple desserts are in my future (my husband jokes my apple pie is one of the reasons he married me, so he’s not complaining).

Peeled Apples

Anyway this just means there are lots of varieties to chose from when baking your pie. Perhaps one of the most common baking apples, and easiest for find is the Granny Smith. For today’s pie I used Jonagold, but I also like Gala’s or Northern Spy. Spend some time in your produce section and see what is available around you. Most baking apples are pretty crisp and slightly tart. This works well because then the apples will retain their shape while baking and won’t be overpoweringly sweet in the Crumb Topped Apple Pie.

After you have selected your apples it’s time to get to that crust. My absolute favorite kind of pie to eat is a crumb top. My absolute favorite kind of pie to bake is a crumb top. The reason? The crust can be ugly. I have made some ugly crust. It just saves so much time when you can press the dough into the bottom of the pie pan without concern for frills or the perfection of the dough.

Pie Crust in a Ball

For my base crust I simple mix the oil, flour, salt and water until a slightly crumbly ball forms. Then I press this into the bottom of a greased pie tin.  I press the dough as thin as possible across the bottom and up the sides of the dish until the crust seems uniform. Cut away the excess dough and pinch around the edges to make it look like you know your doing. I also find you can increase the visual appeal buy using a pretty dish like this one: (link to pretty dish.)

Silly sure, but who doesn’t love pretty dishes?

Apple Pie Crust

The next step of making a Butter Crumb Apple Pie is to prep your apples. For peeling the apples it’s worth investing in a decent vegetable peeler like this one.

Pro Peeler Tip: When you peel firm produce like potatoes or carrots, scrape the peeler quickly to remove the thin skin. For soft produce with thick skin like apples, work slowly pressing down with your thumb to remove the skin in large ribbons.

Season your apples with spices, sweeten with sugar and syrup and your ready to fill your crust. Kiss that ugly pie bottom goodbye and forget that you ever even thought about a pie bottom.

Now comes the fun part: the crumb top (because what is the easiest ever Crumb Topped Apple Pie without the crumb top). For this it’s  VERY important that your butter be soft but not melted.

Self Proclaimed Pro Tip: Microwaving butter tends to melt more than soften the stick. Instead, place the butter on the stove top while the oven preheats and the butter will soften more quickly.

Slice the softened butter, add all the other top crust ingredients. Mix with both hands until crumbly. Sprinkle this mixture over the pie until you can no longer see the apples (and really until all the toppings are used up). Pop this pretty little crumb topped apple pie in the oven for about 50 minutes. Then call some friends or family you’d like to impress with your baking skills to come on over for pie.

Let me know what you think! Oh and my final bit of “Pro” advice: you can’t go wrong serving a crumb topped pie with ice cream either.

Crumb Topped Apple Pie

Easiest Ever Crumb Topped Apple Pie

Dig into apple season with this super simple, no fail, classic crumb topped apple pie. Sweet perfection with warm spices, and rich apple flavor, you will want to call some friends to share this dessert. 

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6

Ingredients

  • Bottom Crust
  • 2 cups Unbleached All Purpose Flour
  • 1/3 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 3 tbsp Water
  • Pie Filling
  • 4-6 Apples depending on size I used 6 small apples
  • 1/2 cup Granular Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp Clove
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp Flour
  • Butter Crumb Topping
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 1 cup Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1/2 cup Granular Sugar
  • 1 stick Butter
  • 1/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/8 tsp Cinnamon

Instructions

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Wash and Peel your apples, then slice them thin, keeping uniform in size.

  1. Mix ingredients for the bottom crust together in a medium sized mixing bowl until crust begins to ball up. Use your hands to pack the dough and form a ball (this may require a small about of kneading). 

  2. Place dough ball in a grease pie pan. Use your fingers to press out the dough across the pan and up the sides until the inside of the pan is covered evenly. 

  3. Trim (with a knife blade or scissors) away the excess dough from sides of the pan. Work your way around the top edge of the crust, pinching it to make it look neat.

  4. Add all other filling ingredients to the sliced apples, mix well. Pour this mixture into the bottom crust. 

  5. Use room temperature butter cut into chunks for the butter crumb topping. Add all other ingredients. Mix with your hands until small balls of crumb form. Sprinkle this mixture over the pie until apples are completely covered. 

  6. Bake for 45-50 minutes. When the pie is done the crust should have browned slightly and the filling should be bubbling. 



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