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French Apple Pie With Streusel Topping {Apple Crumble Pie}

Homemade French Apple Pie with a cinnamon roll pie crust is the best recipe for beginner pie bakers!

You build the pie in layers, a bottom crust, the apple filling, and the top is really like the top of an Apple Crisp, sweet and crunchy full of brown sugar and butter.  Yum! Yum!

French Apple Pie is also called Dutch or Apple Crumble Pie, but whatever you call it, you will never forget that sweet, crunchy buttery topping!

This post was originally published in September, 2016 and updated on February 8, 2018, and May 24, 2019.

When I bake apple desserts, I like to mix it up a bit, and will often use 2 or 3 different varieties of apples. I’ve included a really cool graphic here for you, that shows a sample of some of the wonderful varieties there are.

I went into the grocery store the other day to buy my apples, and I thought I was picking up a bag of McIntosh – but when I went to bake my pie, discovered they were Jersey Macs. 

Bon Appetit says the three best apples to bake with are Honeycrisp, Pink Lady and Mutsu – but I think it’s all personal choice and besides its fun to experiment!

close up image of a slice of apple pie with a crunchy caramel topping text is cinnamon roll apple pie in white lettering on a dark orange background

Now I like a tart taste to my apple pies, so I always include fresh lemon juice and a little lemon zest.  I also put in about half of the sugar that other recipes ask for.  The reason for this is that apples are very sweet on their own and you want that flavour to come through in your french apple pie.

Dutch Apple Pie in white pie plate on printed tea towel with pie server

When slicing up your apples, try to cut the slices fairly thin and pile them up!  I use 4 cups of peeled and sliced apples for only a 9” pie plate.  That’s because the apples will cook down and you will still end up with a glorious mile high apple pie!

My daughter made one the other day – I was so proud!  A lot of the recipes call for using Pillsbury cinnamon rolls and that’s great because they are so easy to use. 

However I had a batch of fresh buttery pastry made (just whipped it up in my little food processor) so I was all set.   You can make some too, here is the recipe.  I call it my Insanely Easy Pie Crust.  Honestly it takes about 10 minutes.  Promise!

chart of different varieties of apples

 How to Make Cinnamon Roll Apple Pie from Scratch

This is the fun part! I’ve set out the process step by step and it really is very easy. I think it’s much like the rugelach cookies I make during the holidays!

Dutch Apple Pie in white pie plate on printed tea towel with pie server

You will need enough pie crust for a two crust pie. There will be a bit left over, but I usually just use it up in a separate cinnamon roll treat!

  • Roll out the dough, and cut it into a rectangle.
  • Brush with melted butter, and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar and ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
  • Starting at the long edge, roll the pastry, keeping it fairly tight. I needed two long rolls to fill my deep dish pie plate – I love this pie plate! It’s from Good Cooks, (you can see it when you click the link!) and it can stand up to anything I throw at it! I have a lovely red one at the trailer, and this white one, here in our small space in the city.
  • Using a pastry cutter, slice the rolls into small pieces as show here and place them on a sheet of parchment paper. I follow the guide on my pastry sheet. (another link)
  • Then place a sheet of parchment paper on top and pressing your rolling pin down firmly, roll it out. The little pieces will stick together. Peel off the top layer and quickly flip the pie crust into your well greased pie plate.
  • Don’t worry if a few pieces don’t stick. Just put them in the pie plate and use your fingers to press them into place.
  • Flute the edges, and brush the cinnamon roll pie crust with melted butter.
  • Wrap it up in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
  • Note: you can see the the finished pie crust is darker than normal and that’s due to the cinnamon mixed throughout!

The whole cinnamon roll pie crust thing is very nostalgic for me too.  When we were kids, my Mom would take the leftover pastry from her pie baking and make us a cinnamon pastry roll for us.  And this pie crust tastes just as good!

Slice of Dutch Apple Pie in white pie plate

This is THE most popular pie in our family now.  I even make it as a gift for my brother and sister!  Mark thinks adding raisins would make it a perfect pie.  What do you think?

If you loved this French Apple Pie With Streusel Topping recipe, then check out my other recipes!

Slice of Apple Pie with cinnamon roll pie crust on a white pie plate

French Apple Pie Recipe | Dutch Apple Pie!

Yield: 8 slices
Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Start with a delicious buttery Cinnamon Roll Pie Crust and Build this scrumptious Dutch Apple Pie on top! A perfect recipe for Beginner Bakers. Make it a family time, with apple peelers, and pie crust rollers! 🙂


Cinnamon Roll Pie Crust

  • Pastry for a two-crust pie
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 9 " pie plate

Dutch Apple Pie

  • 4 cups of peeled, cored & sliced apples
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp. corn starch
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter


Pie crust

    Roll out the pastry in a rectangle

    1. spread one side with 1/4 c brown sugar
    2. spring 1 tsp of cinnamon on top of the brown sugar
    3. Carefully roll the pastry along the long side and quite tightly
    4. slice evenly - about 3/4" (don't measure!) and place each slice in the bottom of a 9" pie plate, pressing them in as you go to fill the sides and bottom.
    5. Repeat with the second pie crust - you may not need all of it.

    Dutch Apple Pie

      Toss the apples, white sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, corn start in a large bowl, making sure the apples are well covered, then set aside. This is your apple pie filling.

      1. In a separate bowl mix the brown sugar, flour, and butter - I use a pastry blender to evenly mix the butter.
      2. Build the pie by placing the apple mixture in the bottom of the pie crust, pile it high in the centre, leaving room around the edges.
      3. In a small bowl, mix up an egg wash and brush the edges of the cinnamon roll crust.
      4. Spoon the brown sugar mixture all over it, again piling it high. The apples will cook down, so don't worry if it looks like too much topping.
      5. Bake at 350F for 50 minutes or until golden and you can see the apples bubbling.


      Let the pie cool, and serve with your favorite ice cream or freshly whipped cream. Enjoy! Note: prep time includes making pie crust and peeling apples.

      Nutrition Information:
      Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
      Amount Per Serving: Calories: 787Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 25mgSodium: 393mgCarbohydrates: 131gFiber: 5gSugar: 80gProtein: 6g

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      Be sure to follow us @pieladybakes for more recipes like this! xo

      two images the first is the cinnamon rolls placed on a pie plate before baking, the bottom image is a close up blurred image of apple pie with text cinnamon roll apple pie in white and black letters on an orange background

      I hope you enjoy this Cinnamon Roll Apple Pie recipe as much as I did putting it together for you!

      Have some more pie!

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      Judy Kahansky is an experienced baker and writer. She loves to take classic and vintage recipes and update them to fit the busy lives of her readers. When not baking, Judy and her husband Mark are passionate golfers, travelers and dog lovers, spending as much time as they can with their sweet pup Millie.

      Debra kallen

      Sunday 16th of February 2020

      Thanks for sharing! Do you know where I can purchase the apple poster?

      Judy Kahansky

      Monday 17th of February 2020

      thanks Debra! Sorry I don't, it was a graphic I found several years ago.

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