This Anna Olson Apple Pie recipe makes a warm and gooey classic apple pie made completely from scratch. This fool-proof pie crust uses a secret ingredient to make a buttery, flaky and sturdy pie crust. No soggy bottoms about it!
Apple pie is my favorite pie, hands down. My apple pie recipe my friend Mary Jane shared with me has been my number one for almost 15 years but one bite of this Anna Olson apple pie and my recipe fell securely into 2nd place.
On a trip to London, Wes and I took advantage of access to the Food Network and watched a Bake with Anna Olson marathon. I was especially intrigued with her pie crust recipe because as a mediocre pie crust maker I thought her technique would improve my homemade pie crusts. I was right!
Her secret to phenomenal pie crust is adding oil to the flour before adding the butter. This brilliant trick prevents over-mixing the butter. The oil coats the flour, so it can not soak up all of the butter. She also only cooks half of the apples before adding them to the filling to cut back on the liquid released. Any excess liquid from the apples is soaked up by oats.
I made this pie as soon as we returned from our trip. I followed Anna Olson’s tips for no soggy bottoms, and it was THE BEST apple pie I’ve ever made. I served it with some salted caramel ice cream for breakfast (don’t judge), but when I want to be even more extra, I drizzle this scrumptious apple pie with maple bourbon caramel. YUM.
To make a double pie crust, you’ll need:
- Flour – is the structure of the pie crust and holds the dough together.
- Sugar – sweetens pie crust.
- Salt – enhances the sweet flavors of the buttery crust.
- Vegetable Oil – coats the flour and helps prevent over-mixing.
- Butter – cool but not ice cold.
- Cold Water & Vinegar (or lemon juice) – moistens the crust dough.
To make homemade apple pie filling, you’ll need:
- Apples (thinly sliced) – The best apples for apple pie have a tangy-crisp bite. I like using a mixture of golden delicious, honey crisp, and granny smith apples.
- Lemon Juice – prevents the sliced apples from browning.
- Sugar – sweetens the filling.
- Light Brown Sugar – gives the filing a deeper color and richer flavor.
- Cinnamon, Ground Allspice & Freshly Ground Nutmeg – the perfect blend of spices to give apple pie crave-worthy warming flavor.
- Pinch of Salt – enhances flavor.
- Old-fashioned Rolled Oats – A sprinkle of rolled oats in between layers helps absorb excess liquid that may make the pie too soft.
- Butter – cut into small pieces.
To coat the surface of the pie crust, you’ll need:
- Egg (mixed with 2 tablespoons water)
- Cinnamon & Sugar
- Mixing Bowls
- Standing Mixer (or heavy spoon) – I made mine in a stand mixer, but you can use a pastry cutter or a food processor.
- Plastic Wrap
- Frying Pan
- Slotted Spoon
- Rolling Pin
- 9″ Pie Pan
- Scissors (or a knife)
- Basting Brush
- Cooling Rack
How to Make // The Steps
Make apple pie crust dough from scratch:
- In a large bowl, add flour, sugar, and salt. Mix well to combine. Then, add the oil and mix until the flour is coated and starts to clump into crumbs.
- Cut the butter into the mixture so that small pieces of the butter are still visible.
- In a small bowl, stir water and vinegar together and then pour it in with the flour mixture. Mix until the dough just comes together.
- Turn the dough out and gently work it until a firm dough forms. Cut the dough in half and wrap each piece in plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge to chill for at least an hour. Remove from fridge 15 minutes before rolling.
Make classic apple pie filling:
- In a large bowl, toss apples and lemon juice together.
- In a pan, over medium heat, saute HALF of the apples until most of the juices cook out and the apples have softened (about 10 minutes).
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer sauteed apples to the bowl with the remaining uncooked apples.
- To the bowl, add sugar, light brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well.
Assemble and bake apple pie:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and coat a sanitized work surface with flour. Dust a 9″ pie plate with flour.
- Place one of the balls of dough on the work surface and roll it to a little less than a 1/4 inch thickness.
- Transfer the dough to the pie pan and gently mold it to the bottom.
- Sprinkle a layer of oats over the dough followed by the apple pie filling. Dot with butter.
- Place the other ball of dough on the work surface and roll it out to the same thickness and drape it over the apple filling.
- Trim away excess dough. Tuck the dough draped over the top under and then pinch it together all the way around to create a fluted age.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 2 tablespoons of water. Brush the mixture over the surface of the pie and then sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
- Use scissors to make several symmetrical snips in the pie crust to act as vents and release steam.
- Place the pie on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue baking for 40 to 50 minutes (or until the crust is golden brown and steam is coming out of the vents from the hot and bubbly filling).
- Transfer pie plate to a cooling rack and cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.
Tips & Tricks
- I took a tip from Anna Olson and only cooked half of the apples for the filling. Doing so reduces the moisture within the pie and helps prevent soggy bottoms. This apple pie is flaky, firm and delicious and it cuts like a dream.
- It’s okay if the butter isn’t room temperature but it shouldn’t be ice cold. Softer butter is easier to work with and makes the flaky, tender crust.
- If you notice the top of the pie is getting too brown and the bottom is soft and not cooked enough, you can loosely drape a piece of foil over the pie and continue baking it a little longer.
Why is Anna Olson Apple Pie So Good?
- Making homemade apple pie is easier than you think! With these easy-to-follow instructions, you’ll make perfect apple pie every time.
- Perfectly spiced and packed with fall flavors but great year-round.
- The fool-proof method helps prevent soggy bottom pie crust.
- Great way to use up in-season autumn apples.
Variations & Substitutions //
- Follow this recipe replacing half of the apple with pear to make a delicious apple-pear pie.
- Serve Anna Olsen apple pie warmed through with a cool and creamy side of ice cream and whipped cream.
- Add a splash of bourbon to the pan while the apples are sauteing.
How to Store and Freeze //
Storing Homemade Pie Crust Dough: Freshly prepared pie dough can be refrigerated for 2 days and frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw and remove from the fridge 15 minutes before rolling it out.
Storing Unbaked Apple Pie: You can make this apple pie in advance. Wrap it in plastic and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Likewise, to freeze you can securely wrap uncooked apple pie in a few layers of plastic wrap and put the whole pie in a freezer-safe bag. Use within 2 months. Defrost in the fridge before baking.
Storing Baked Apple Pie: Once cooked and sliced, store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. To freeze, wrap individual slices or the whole pie in a few layers of plastic wrap and store in a freezer-safe bag for up to 4 months.
Tender, sweet and crisp apples make the best apple pie. Honey crisp, gala, pink lady, and granny smith are all delicious options.
Precooking at least half of the apples before adding them into the filling ensures a balanced flavor and reduces the chances of the pie being soggy.
The moisture released from the apples during baking weighed down the crust making it soggy. To avoid this, sprinkle dough with oats and cook at least half of the apples before adding them to the filling.