Open-Faced Deep Dish Apple Pie

November 2, 2013

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: When I was in high school, TGIFriday's opened in New Orleans. I had lunch there with my Aunt Martha (who also owned a restaurant—I know this seems crazy, but chains like TGIFriday's were a new thing in the 1970's and seemed kind of cool). She and I both loved their apple strudel pie, and asked for the recipe—which they gave us! I've made that pie nearly every Thanksgiving since then (and for other occasions as well—it's my step-son's favorite dessert). I no longer have the original recipe, but I do have a 3 x 5 butter-stained card entitled "My Apple Pie," probably my first foray in adapting recipes to my taste. I honestly have no idea what I changed, except that ever since I made mrslarkin's Truly Scrumptious Apple Pie, I've always used at least 3 different varieties of apples. This is my go-to fall pie recipe, and with the possible exception of my white cookies, it is my most-requested dessert. I like an all-butter crust, but use what you like.

The original recipe had a super sweet filling and crumb topping. I recently altered the recipe, borrowing the topping from Alice Medrich's No-Peel Apple Crisp. I prefer the pie less sweet, and love the crunchy topping.

Food52 Review: This pie is beautiful, delicious, and pretty much as easy as pie gets. Its simple crust and classic autumn spices pair perfectly with the nutty-oat crumble topping. I used a mix of Macs and Honeycrisps and got great flavor without a saucy mess. This pie doesn't reinvent anything, but is a great execution of a traditional dish. And aren't traditions what the holidays are about?Katherine Perry

Makes: one 9- to 10-inch pie
Prep time: 2 hrs
Cook time: 1 hrs 15 min


For the crust:

  • 1/2 cup butter, extremely cold and cut into cubes
  • 1 cup all purpose or white whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup ice water

For the pie filling:

  • 6 large apples (I like Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, and Fuji)
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • For The Topping
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cups turbinado sugar, optional
In This Recipe


For the crust:

  1. Put the butter, flour, and salt in the food processor. Pulse until the mixture forms small pebbles. Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing a couple of times after each tablespoon. Continue to add water until the dough just starts to gather into a large ball. Remove the dough, form it into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

For the pie filling:

  1. Peel and slice apples 1/4-inch thick. Place in a large bowl. Add sugars, spices, flour and salt. Toss till thoroughly blended.
  2. Remove pie crust from refrigerator. Roll out dough on a lightly-floured surface into a circle about 12 inches across. Place crust into a 9- or 10-inch pie pan with at least 1-inch high sides (higher is better, but use what you have). Crimp the edges if you're feeling fancy. Place the pie plate onto a large cookie sheet (Trust me on this one.) and pile the apples and spices into the crust—you will have a fairly tall mountain of apples.
  3. Heat oven to 400° F. Make the topping: Combine all the topping ingredients (except the turbinado sugar, if using) in a bowl and mix well. Pile over apples, covering them as completely as possible. Sprinkle the topping with the turbinado sugar, if using.
  4. Place cookie sheet with pie on top into oven and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350° F, and bake for 1 hour to 75 minutes, until the topping is well-browned. Let cool on a wire rack before serving.

More Great Recipes:
Pie|American|Apple|Fruit|Christmas|Thanksgiving|Winter|Fall|Rosh Hashanah|Vegetarian|Dessert

Reviews (21) Questions (0)

21 Reviews

Niknud January 30, 2017
So I saved this over a year ago to try and make for my Monday morning, can't we all just get along, please God don't talk about politics, half-treat/half-bribe/half-threat treats. I work in an uber-conservative organization so this is my little way of keeping things settled down and reminding all of us that everyone can get along behind a nice homemade baked good. It was fantastic! So delicious. I love how the pie itself and the crumble wasn't too sweet but the turbinado crust added that hit of sweet. It was gone by the time everyone was done with their morning cups of coffee. I was just looking at the hotline question about making political statements with your cooking. But all I was thinking about was how food brings us together - everyone likes pie. And even if we agree on nothing else, at least we had that in common. Thanks for a great recipe. Can't believe it took me so long to make it. :)
Author Comment
drbabs January 30, 2017
Hi Rachael. This is such a crazy time. I'm glad that my little pie recipe that I've been making for so many years has been able to bring you and yours to some sort of peace.
Melba M. December 23, 2016
Made this at Thanksgiving, and due to several requests, I am making for Christmas eve dinner! I usually edit recipes, but this is great as is!
Author Comment
drbabs December 24, 2016
I'm so glad you enjoyed it!
Kim R. April 25, 2016
Would it not be better with a pre-cooked tart base?
Author Comment
drbabs October 1, 2016
I'm so sorry. I just saw this. Do you mean par-baking the crust? It bakes for a really long time so not par-baking is fine.
S November 29, 2015
Awesome pie! Delicious! Empty pie tin! I made 1.5x the amount of crumble the recipe called for....just in case. : ) Not necessary - the recipe is perfect as is!
Author Comment
drbabs November 29, 2015
So happy you liked it! Thanks for letting me know!
Kate B. November 24, 2015
Making this for thanksgiving! Wish me luck!
Author Comment
drbabs November 24, 2015
Have fun! I hope it turns out well for you.
inpatskitchen November 11, 2015
Such a great pie! Congrats on the CP!
Author Comment
drbabs November 11, 2015
Thanks so much!
JanetFL October 28, 2015
A perfect pie for me - less sweet and crumble on top! This will be on a holiday menu. Thank you for sharing!
Author Comment
drbabs October 28, 2015
I'm so glad you liked it. I've been making it for YEARS. It's a family favorite.
em-i-lis October 23, 2015
This looks FABULOUS!
Author Comment
drbabs October 23, 2015
Niknud October 12, 2015
Look at all the CRUMBLE! All hail crumble!
Author Comment
drbabs October 12, 2015
:) you're funny
Niknud October 12, 2015
Sorry, the amazing mound of crumble made me lose my ever-loving mind!
mick-cook November 29, 2013
why have I not been treated to this delicious dessert?
Author Comment
drbabs November 30, 2013
hello, seestor of my heart! I will happily make this for you when I see you in February. XO