Open-Faced Deep-Dish Apple Pie

August 27, 2021
4 Ratings
Photo by Linda Xiao
  • Prep time 2 hours
  • Cook time 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Makes 1 (9- to 10-inch) pie
Author Notes

When I was in high school, TGI Friday'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 TGI Friday's were a new thing in the 1970s 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 stepson's favorite dessert). I no longer have the original recipe, but I do have a 5x3-inch 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 three 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. —drbabs

Test Kitchen Notes

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 to make this pie 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 all about? —Katherine Perry

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
Open-Faced Deep-Dish Apple Pie
  • Crust
  • 1 cup all-purpose or white whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, very cold and cut into cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup ice water
  • Filling, Topping, and Assembly
  • 6 large apples (I like Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, and Fuji)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided, plus more for the surface
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon plus 1 pinch kosher salt, divided
  • 1 cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cups turbinado sugar, optional
  1. Crust
  2. In a food processor, pulse the flour, butter, and salt until the mixture forms small pebbles. Add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing a couple of times after each tablespoon, until the dough just starts to gather into a large ball.
  3. On a work surface, form the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic, and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  1. Filling, Topping, and Assembly
  2. Heat oven to 400°F. Peel and slice the apples ¼ inch thick. Transfer to a large bowl. Add ½ cup of the brown sugar, 2 tablespoons of the flour, 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon, ½ teaspoon of the nutmeg, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Toss until well combined.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a circle about 12 inches across. Arrange the dough in 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 on a large cookie sheet (trust me on this one) and pile the apple mixture into the pan—you will have a fairly tall mountain of apples.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the walnuts, oats, butter, and the remaining ½ cup of the flour, ½ cup of the brown sugar, ½ teaspoon of the cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon of the nutmeg, and pinch of the salt. Cover the apples with the topping as completely as possible. Sprinkle the topping with the turbinado sugar, if using.
  5. Place the cookie sheet with the pie on top into the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and continue to bake for 60 to 75 minutes, until the topping is well-browned. Let cool on a wire rack before serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Niknud
  • Kate Bosco
    Kate Bosco
  • inpatskitchen
  • JanetFL
  • em-i-lis

26 Reviews

Tobie L. December 18, 2019
I made this pie for Thanksgiving and it was a huge success. Everyone loved it. Delicious!
drbabs December 18, 2019
I'm so glad you liked it.
amazingrace November 27, 2019
I made this pie because I hurt my eye
It was so good and I didn't know why
The spices, harmony made me cry
The beautiful aroma made me sigh
And it was so quick it almost fell from the sky
I almost forgot about hurting my eye
drbabs November 27, 2019
Ouch! I’m so sorry about your eye.
And yet I’m glad you liked the pie.

Happy thanksgiving!
amazingrace November 27, 2019
I made this pie, because I hurt my eye
It was so good and I didn't know why
The spices, harmony made me cry
The beautiful aroma made me sigh
And it was so quick it almost fell from the sky
I almost forgot about hurting my eye
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. :)
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!
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?
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!
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!
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!
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!
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!
drbabs October 23, 2015
Niknud October 12, 2015
Look at all the CRUMBLE! All hail crumble!
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?
drbabs November 30, 2013
hello, seestor of my heart! I will happily make this for you when I see you in February. XO