Dutch Apple Pie

5 from 33 votes

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You have got to try this Dutch apple pie in a bag! Baked with tart apples and a sweet crumb topping, this is a delightful twist on traditional apple pie.

A whole Dutch apple pie with a slice of pie to the side.
Featured with this recipe
  1. Homemade Crust Ingredients
  2. Apple Pie Filling Ingredients
  3. Easy Crumb Topping
  4. How to Make Dutch Apple Pie from Scratch
  5. Tips for an Easy Dutch Apple Pie Recipe
  6. Using a Brown Paper Bag Tips
  7. Optional Toppings
  8. Frequently Asked Questions
  9. Storing and Reheating Dutch Apple Pie
  10. More Delicious Pie Recipes
  11. How to Make Dutch Apple Pie
  12. Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

Dutch apple pie takes a classic apple pie recipe and changes the topping to have a crumble topping or streusel topping instead of a traditional lattice top. To make this even better, the Dutch apple pie is baked inside a brown paper bag. It’s the ONLY apple pie dessert that I make and is a family staple at Thanksgiving and Fourth of July. A

This is the best Dutch apple pie recipe you will ever have! It has all the flavor of an apple pie with the extra texture on top of the brown bag baking trick! Sweet and tender apples are filled to the top with a crumbly streusel topping. Serve this with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream to this apple crumble pie and you will enjoy every bite!

Homemade Crust Ingredients

The homemade crust is a simple circular crust that will be on the bottom of the pie plate. It can be homemade or store-bought. It is simple to make and roll out to use on the bottom of the Dutch apple pie. This is a classic dough crust that is used on all types of apple pies.

  • Flour – All-purpose flour works great! This will hold together the ingredients.
  • Sugar – Sweeten the crust with just about a teaspoon of sugar, or a little more for extra sweetness.
  • Salt – Needed just to balance the sweetness and help during the baking process.
  • Oil – I like to use olive oil, but you could use vegetable oil too.
  • Milk – Just a little bit to give the dough some moisture.

Apple Pie Filling Ingredients

We love making this apple pie filling! You can smell the flavors and seasonings combined as you are peeling, slicing, and mixing the apples with the filling ingredients. It is the perfect combination!

  • Apples – The apples are the main event! Peel and slice each apple. We love to use tart green apples like 5-6 Honeycrisp, Jonagold, Pink Lady, or Granny Smith apples. 
  • Seasonings – Ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg are both used in the apple pie filling. These are both fall favorites that are warm and pair well with tart apples.
  • Almond extract – Rather than using vanilla extract we have found that almond adds just a touch of savory and sweet to the apple pie filling ingredients. It gives the filling a warm, rich flavor that is so delicious!

Easy Crumb Topping

I love how easy Dutch apple pie is to make! The crust topping comes together with just a little mixing. No rolling pin, no store-bought crust, or chilling pie dough for hours. This crust topping is a crumbly mixture that is baked a golden brown crispy color. It is a sweet and delicious crust!

  • Flour – All-purpose flour is used for the base and thickness of the crumbs.
  • Butter – Take the butter out of the fridge and slice it into small cubes. Use a pastry cutter or fork to mix the ingredients together. The pastry cutter will give it a crumbly topping appearance.
  • Sugar – Granulated white sugar is mixed in for sweetness. This also aids in helping the topping get a nice golden bake on top.

How to Make Dutch Apple Pie from Scratch

Homemade Dutch apple pie is formed in layers like most pies! First, make the crust for the bottom to hold the apple filling together. Layer the apple pie filling with fresh apples and sweet and savory seasonings, then lastly add the crumble topping for the perfect Dutch apple pie recipe!

  1. Crust – Combine all the crust ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix well and pat into the bottom and sides of a pie pan. Don’t roll the dough out.
  2. Topping – Use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the flour and sugar, and mix until crumbly. Set aside.
  3. Combine and layer – Combine all ingredients, except the apples, in a large bowl. Mix well, then toss the apples in the mixture. Put the apple filling into the unbaked pie crust. Top with crumb topping.
  4. Bake – Place the pie inside a brown paper bag. Once the pie is inside, roll up the top of the bag and close it together with either staples or large paper clips. Place the bag on the lowest shelf in the oven.
  5. Cool – Don’t open the bag until the time is up and you have let it cool outside the oven for about 5 minutes. Allow the pie to cool to room temperature.
Whole Dutch apple pie with green apples on the side

Tips for an Easy Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

Follow these helpful tips to make the best Dutch apple pie! Preparing apples and making the crust are two important parts of this Dutch apple pie recipe. Use these tips to help make it easier and quicker for you to make this pie recipe over and over again!

  • Apples – Make the right choice with green apples that are a little tart. If you are worried about the flavor you can add one or two red apples in with the green.
  • Lemon juice – After slicing apples, they tend to go brown quickly. Soak the apples into the lemon juice. This enhances apple skin to a bright creamy, white color.
  • Slice apples – Evenly slice the apples so they are the same size to ensure the apples are baking together at the same time. This is mainly for baking purposes.
  • Crust – Prebake the crust before adding the apple pie filling to the crust. This will help it not be soggy from the filling.
  • Food processor – You can use a food processor or just your fingers to get a pea-sized crumble. Sprinkle it over the top and bake in a paper bag!
  • Crumb topping – Some people love adding nuts to their desserts. This is a great recipe to add to it! Add in chopped nuts, rolled oats of a pinch of cardamom for extra flavor and texture!
  • Caramel – If you love caramel apples then this extra is for you! Drizzle overtop the pie and even a scoop of vanilla ice cream homemade caramel or storebought for an extra sweetness!

Using a Brown Paper Bag Tips

Don’t skip this step! A lot of people are nervous about this recipe because you bake the pie in a brown paper bag. Don’t worry, the bag will not catch on fire, you will not open the oven to find flames. The flash point of paper is extremely high and won’t be reached in your oven.

  • Place on the center rack – Just be sure to have it centered on the bottom rack and that the bag is at least a good six inches from the burners along the top of the oven.
  • Brown bag magic – The brown bag is seriously magic. It helps the pie cook evenly and keeps the crumb topping from burning, all while giving the crust a gorgeous golden brown color.
  • Where to find – I can always find brown bags at Trader Joe’s or Albertsons, but if you absolutely can’t get your hands on a brown paper bag,
  • Aluminum foil – You will need to cover the top of your Dutch apple pie with aluminum foil instead if you can not find a brown bag.
A brown paper bag with a Dutch apple pie inside

Optional Toppings

When it comes to ice cream versus whipped cream, I am not picking a side! Even though this delicious Dutch apple pie recipe can totally stand on its own, who can resist a little topping of all kinds?! The toppings are endless and SO good!

  • Ice cream – Serve up a slice a la mode, with our fabulous homemade vanilla ice cream.
  • Whipped topping – Top with our yummy homemade whipped topping! It’s really easy to make!
  • Caramel sauce – Top with a drizzle of caramel sauce and some chopped walnuts or pecans.
  • Brown sugar – Sprinkle brown sugar over the top of your ice cream for a pretty garnish.

“This is SO good! Have made it a few times, and the results are yummy! People are amazed that the bag doesn’t catch on fire! Heat does weaken the bag, so pick it up carefully from the bottom!😋😋”


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a Dutch apple pie and an apple pie?

The difference is at the top of the pie. A Dutch apple pie has a crumb topping while a traditional apple pie is topped with a pie crust.

What is a Dutch apple pie topping made of?

A simple crumb topping made of flour, sugar, and butter. It is a simple combination!

Why do they call it a Dutch apple pie?

Some say there was an apple pie in a Dutch cookbook from the 1500s, other sources say the crumb topping comes from the Pennsylvania colonists and is not Dutch at all, but is an Americanized version of a Dutch “Appeltaart.”

Can I use red delicious apples in this pie?

The key is using tart and crisp apples, like Granny Smiths or Pink Ladies. Red Delicious apples won’t taste as good and will get too mushy. Braeburn and Galas work great for this recipe too!

Can I make Dutch apple pie in advance?

Yes! You can prepare the pie a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Bake the pie in advance and let it cool. Once the pie has cooled place the pie in the fridge overnight.

How do I prevent the streusel topping from over-browning?

If you feel that the streusel topping is browning fast you can cover the pie with aluminum foil when there are 10 to 15 minutes left on the baking time.

Can I make Dutch apple pie with a gluten-free crust?

Yes, you can use a gluten-free pie crust on the bottom. For the crumble topping, you can use a gluten-free flour mixture for the all-purpose flour ingredient.

Storing and Reheating Dutch Apple Pie

It is always nice to see an extra slice of pie sitting on your counter or stored in the refrigerator! We always love having leftovers of dessert that are convenient and easy to store and heat up. Follow these ways that are best for you to store your Dutch apple pie recipe!

  • Room temperature – Since the Dutch apple pie does not have any cream in the filling the pie can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Place in an airtight container and store the pie dish in the fridge.
  • Refrigerator – Cover the baking pie dish with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in the refrigerator for one week.
  • Freezing – Wrap the apple pie tightly in plastic wrap then another layer of aluminum foil. If it fits in an airtight container or ziplock bag place that around the layered wrapping. Store in the freezer for two to three months.
  • Thawing – Place the frozen Dutch apple pie in the refrigerator to let it thaw before reheating.
  • Reheating – It is best to reheat a slice or the whole pie plate in the oven until it is warmed through. You can also warm it up in the microwave. Reheating times will vary depending on how big the Dutch apple pie slice or pie is.

More Delicious Pie Recipes

It is hard to resist the perfect piece of pie! From cream pies to fruit pies to ice cream pies, we have so many mouthwatering pie recipes to try! Don’t let pies scare you! They are easy to make and come together quicker than you think! Try one today!

How to Make Dutch Apple Pie

Slice of Dutch apple pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top

Dutch Apple Pie

5 from 33 votes
This Dutch Apple Pie is our favorite Fall pie. It is filled with tart apples and baked with a sweet and buttery crumb topping.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dutch
Servings 8



  • Conventional Oven


For the Crust:

For the Apple Filling:

For the Crumb Topping:


For the Crust:

  • Combine all the crust ingredients in a bowl. Mix well and pat into the bottom and sides of a pie pan. Don't roll the dough out.
    Pie dough for Dutch apple pie mixed in a clear bowl

For the Crumb Topping:

  • Use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the flour and sugar, and mix until crumbly. Set aside.
    Crumb topping for Dutch apple pie in a clear bowl

For the Apple Filling:

  • Combine all ingredients, except the apples, in a bowl. Mix well, then toss the apples in the mixture. Put the apple filling into the unbaked pie crust.
    A clear bowl of sliced apples with sugar and seasoning on top
  • Top with crumb topping.
    A Dutch apple pie prepared to go in the oven
  • Place the pie inside a brown paper bag. Once the pie is inside, roll up the top of the bag and close it together with either staples or large paper clips. Place the bag on the lowest shelf in the oven. Bake at 350 for 90 minutes. Don't open the bag until the time is up and you have let it cool outside the oven for about 5 minutes.
    A brown paper bag with a Dutch apple pie inside
  • Allow the pie to cool to room temperature.
    Whole Dutch apple pie with green apples on the side
  • Serve with vanilla ice cream.
    Slice of Dutch apple pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top


  • Best apples for this pie: Granny Smith apples, Honeycrisp apples, Jonagold apples, or Pink Lady apples. You can also do a mix of a couple of varieties of apples.
  • Let the brown paper bag do its job. Once you close the pie inside the bag, staple it shut, and don’t peek until the timer goes off! Let the pie sit inside the bag for about five minutes, then take it out and cool before slicing.
  • To store leftovers, cover slices of pie with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to five days. Any longer than that and the crust can get soggy. Remove the plastic wrap before warming slices of pie in the microwave, or eat it cold for breakfast!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 554kcalCarbohydrates: 80gProtein: 4gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 386mgPotassium: 170mgFiber: 4gSugar: 50gVitamin A: 424IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 22mgIron: 2mg

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About the author

Emily Walker

Emily lives in Meridian, Idaho, with her husband, Beau, a physician assistant, and her three incredible children: a son and two daughters. Travel is one of her favorite ways to experience new cultures and cuisines, and she has a love for all things Disney.

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How many stars would you give this recipe?


  1. 5 stars
    It’s not the holidays in my home until there’s the slight smell of singed paper bag! My grandmother passed this recipe down to us. Ours bakes at 425, so you have to be sure your oven temp is right because paper burns at 451*!

  2. We don’t really have brown paper bags in Hungary. Do you think an oven bag would work instead of the brown paper bag?

    1. You definitely can, but I don’t think it will cook as evenly. I haven’t done it, let me know if it works out. 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    I’ve made this pie for about 15 years and it always turns out. I don’t even remember where the recipe came from!

    1. 5 stars
      We love this pie. I always place the bag on a cookie sheet before baking because sometimes the juices seep through the bag.

      1. I used butter for the bottom crust….it I should still I need the oven…will report how it went…I’m a butter lover!

  4. What kind of paper bag? Just a regular brown one? Also, I had to use regular tub butter..will that make too much of a difference?

    1. Yes, just a regular brown paper bag from the grocery store. The tub butter won’t be quite as good but should work.

  5. My oven is electric, if I put the bag on lowest rack the bag would be about two inches from red hot heating element. Would it work putting it on a cookie sheet?

  6. 5 stars
    My daughter makes this and puts a little grated parmesan cheese in the topping. Best pie we’ve ever had 🙂

  7. 5 stars
    I have made this pie twice. The first time I put the pie in the bag as directed. It came ou perfect. I served it at a bridal shower and it was a favorite by far! The second time, which was late last night, I had the wrong type of paper bag. I tried it out, and I could smell the bag burning. In fear that my house would burn down, I took the bag out and put the pie in my turkey pan with the lid, thinking it would at least not be in direct heat. Well….I will never again do that. The pie is still tasty, but the topping did not get crispy like it does putting it in a bag. I love this pie, and will search the world to find more of the bags I used the first time. I used a thick paper bag, like what you put freezer stuff in at the store. I couldn’t find any big enough this time and just bought the ones you put grass clippings in. THIS RECIPE IS DEFINITELY A KEEPER THOUGH!!

  8. 5 stars
    I made this apple pie for all of my friends this past weekend! It was excellent..very flavorful! I did put the paperbag on a cookie sheet…and it baked perfectly! Thank you for a recipe I will definately make again!

  9. My paper bag isn’t burning but the whole house sure smells like I’ve been sawing wood. But, I can’t wait to see and eat the results :).

  10. No, we have a gas oven too and it hasn't burned down the house yet! Just make sure you put the racks low and the paper bag isn't sticking up too high.

      1. We haven’t tried it that way before so I can’t say for sure if it will taste the same. If you try it, let us know how it turns out!

  11. This looks DELICIOUS! Question, I have a gas oven, will this cause my house to burn down if I use the brown paper bag? 🙂

  12. I'm not sure how the paper bag does it, but it makes a difference in the way it cooks. It creates a perfectly evenly cooked pie.

  13. I've never heard of putting a pie in a bag for baking, but I'd say the proof is in the picture…looks amazing!

  14. 5 stars
    I found this recipe a few weeks ago on big oven and was totally paranoid about putting the bag in the oven. I'm not a huge apple pie fan, but this really is amazing! Everyone loved it!

  15. Long time reader! We've loved your chicken satay, bbq ribs, avocado grilled quesadillas and more.

    I'm commenting because: WHAT IN THE HECK DOES THE BROWN BAG DO? What culinary purpose does it perform? So crazy.