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French Apple Pie With Streusel Topping {Apple Crumble Pie}

Today, I am thrilled to share with you my all-time favorite recipe – homemade French Apple Pie with a cinnamon roll pie crust. 

And best of all, it’s one of those easy recipes great for beginner pie bakers!

Yes, you read that right – cinnamon rolls as a pie crust! Prepare to be amazed. It’s not quite a traditional apple pie. 

You build the pie in layers: A bottom crust, the apple filling, and then the top – which is really like the top of an Apple Crisp.

It’s so sweet and crunchy, full of brown sugar and butter. Yum! Yum!

We make our pie crust in a small food processor – saving you time and effort. It’s like a shortcut to pie heaven!

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

It’s a similar recipe to Dutch or Apple Crumble Pie, but whatever you call it, you’ll never forget that sweet, crunchy, buttery topping! 

Let’s get baking!

Ingredients

You’ll find all the simple ingredients to make this French Apple Pie recipe in your local grocery store:

  • Pie Crust Pastry an easy recipe that yields a perfectly flaky crust.
  • Apples: The star of the show, providing juicy sweetness and a burst of flavor. Use a can of apple pie filling if you’re feeling really lazy, or use our Freezer Apple Filling recipe!
  • Lemons (for juice and zest): Adds some tanginess and stops the apple filling from turning brown.
  • Cinnamon: Creates a warm, cozy flavor and serves as the base for our unique cinnamon roll pie crust.
  • White and Brown Sugar: Combine to form a sweet, crunchy topping that’s reminiscent of an Apple Crisp.
  • Corn Starch: Thickens the apple juices, ensuring a luscious, gooey filling without a soupy mess.
  • All-Purpose Flour and Unsalted Butter: Work together to create a buttery, flaky pie crust.

When it comes to equipment, I love this pie plate from Good Cooks. It stands 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.

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

How to make French Apple Pie

This is the fun part! I’ve split the process into two sections – one for the crust, and the other to finish the cinnamon roll dutch apple pie. 

I’ve set it all out step-by-step, and it really is very easy – much like the rugelach cookies I make during the holidays!

Cinnamon roll pie crust

To make this cinnamon roll apple pie recipe, you’ll 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 recipe!

  1. Roll out the pie dough on a lightly floured surface, and cut it into a rectangle.
  2. Brush with melted butter, and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar and ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
  3. Starting at the long edge, roll the pastry, keeping it fairly tight. I needed two long rolls to fill my deep dish pie plate 
  4. Using a pastry cutter, slice the rolls into mini cinnamon rolls and place them on a sheet of parchment paper.
  5. Then place a sheet of parchment paper on top, and press 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 pan. The cinnamon rolls should now lie at the bottom of the pie dish.
  6. Don’t worry if a few pieces don’t stick. Just put them on the pie plate and use your fingers to press them into place.
  7. Flute the edges, and brush the cinnamon roll pie crust with melted butter.
  8. Wrap it up in a plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

Note: You can see the finished pie crust is darker than normal – that’s due to the cinnamon mixed throughout!

Dutch Apple Pie

  1. In a separate bowl, mix the brown sugar, flour, and butter – The easy way is to 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, and pile it high in the center, 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 the top of the apple pie, 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 brown – you should see the apples bubbling.

And voila, from this simple recipe, you have an amazing dessert! 

Expert French Apple Pie tips

Follow these expert tips, and your French Apple Pie will be perfect every time:

  • Thin slices: 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 inch pie plate. It’s because the apples will cook down – so you will still end up with a glorious mile-high apple pie!
  • Tart taste: 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 flavor to come through.

How to serve

When it comes to the best way to serve French Apple Pie, I really couldn’t decide. Here are some choices:

  • Classic à la Mode: Grab a fork, cut yourself a generous slice of warm pie, and crown it with a delightful scoop of vanilla ice cream.
  • Caramel Delight: If you’re feeling decadent, drizzle your pie with a generous amount of caramel sauce.
  • Breakfast: Who says pie is only for dessert? Treat yourself to a special breakfast by enjoying a slice of French Apple Pie in the morning. One of my favorite things!
Dutch Apple Pie in white pie plate on printed tea towel with pie server

How to store

If there happen to be any leftovers (although I wouldn’t blame you if there aren’t), here’s how you can store your French Apple Pie to keep it fresh:

  1. Cover with Care: Once your pie has cooled completely, cover it loosely with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. This will protect it from drying out while still allowing air circulation.
  2. Room Temperature: To maintain the optimal texture and flavor, store your pie at room temperature. This will keep it from becoming too firm.

By following these simple storage steps, you can enjoy your French Apple Pie for up to 2-3 days after baking – though it’s so delicious, it may not last that long! 

FAQs

Here are some of the questions people have asked me:

What variety of apples should I use?

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

chart of different varieties of apples

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, I discovered they were actually Granny Smith apples.

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

Slice of Dutch Apple Pie in white pie plate

Where did I get my inspiration for this recipe?

I actually got this recipe from my daughter – She made one the other day – One of her best pies, I was so proud! 

If you want a really easy dessert recipe, you can even use Pillsbury cinnamon rolls and that’s great because they are so easy to use.

However, I made a batch of fresh buttery pastry (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!

You might also like…

If you loved this French Apple Pie with Streusel Topping recipe, then next time try one of my other recipes:

I’ve also got a whole roundup of Apple Dessert Recipes for you to take a look at. 

Final thoughts

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

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

THANKS SO MUCH for following and being part of the Pie Lady Bakes community! We’re all about sharing easy-to-make vintage recipes that remind us of the ones our moms and grandmas used to make.

If you haven’t already, you can sign up for my weekly email newsletter using this link. It’s absolutely free, and you’ll never miss out on any of my new recipes.

See you soon!

Judy

★★★★★ 

If you’ve made this delicious French Apple Pie, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Be sure to give us a 5-star rating!

★★★★★ 

Slice of Apple Pie with cinnamon roll pie crust on a white pie plate
Yield: 8 slices

French Apple Pie Recipe | Dutch Apple Pie!

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! 🙂

Ingredients

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

Instructions

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.

      Notes

      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

      Like this recipe?

      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

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      Judy Kahansky is an experienced writer and baker, creating delicious desserts (including pie!) for over 40 years. 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.

      Share with friends!

      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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