If you, too, love apple pie but prefer honey over sugar, this honey apple pie is for you. Just sweet enough and with a nice additional layer of flavour from the honey, it’s a special autumn treat. I’ve spiced it simply with cinnamon but you could jazz it up any way you like.
Pictured is a coconut oil pie crust but you can use your favourite dough recipe. For some more delicious seasonal apple recipes, try my apple crumble cake, easy granola-filled baked apples, or gluten-free apple crumble bars.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Apples: use a fairly sweet thin-skinned apple for this recipe. I don’t like granny smith – they lack flavour and have such a thick, tough skin.
- Honey: any honey will work, but note that the type of honey you use will alter the taste of the pie. I recommend a mild creamed honey to allow the apple taste to come through more strongly.
- Lemon juice: use fresh or bottled, it doesn’t matter for this recipe. This is mostly to prevent the apples browning but also adds a bit of a boost to counteract the sweetness.
- Flour: if you want to make this gluten-free, substitute buckwheat flour or use half the amount of cornstarch.
- Spices: use cinnamon as outlined, or add extra spices like nutmeg, cardamom, or cloves. A warm spice blend like apple pie spice or Lebkuchen spice can also be used.
- Pie crust: pictured is a coconut oil pie crust, but you can use any you’d like. Here’s a good butter pie crust and a vegan pie crust made with shortening or vegan butter (you can also use store-bought crust).
Step by Step
Note that unless you’re using store-bought pie crust, you’ll have to prepare it beforehand and it may need to chill. The coconut oil crust doesn’t need to chill before use.
Step 1: core and chop the apples (peel if desired, see below) and add to a large bowl.
Step 2: mix in the honey and lemon juice, then the flour and cinnamon.
Step 3: roll out the pastry and lay it in a tin. Fill with the apple mixture.
Step 4: add the top layer of pastry, lattice optional.
Step 5: optionally brush with an egg wash or some vegan milk for a plant-based alternative.
Step 6: bake for about 50 minutes, until golden and the filling is bubbly.
It’s imperative to give the pie enough time to set before serving if you want clean slices. If you don’t mind a bit extra liquid and some falling-apart bits, feel free to serve warm (it does taste best that way).
Adding egg wash or milk is to make the top of the pie more golden and shiny, and doesn’t really alter the taste or texture. You can skip this step but note that the top of your pie will be paler than pictured.
You can brush the still-hot pie with honey when it’s fresh out of the oven, but I find that, while it does make it attractively shiny, it simply makes for sticky pie and doesn’t improve the taste. No point really.
The apple pieces are cut quite small because they’re unpeeled, and this makes the peel much less noticeable. If you want to use apple slices, you may prefer to peel the fruit.
How to Store
Storage: pie is best the day it’s baked, but can be stored in a sealed container for 2-3 days at room temperature. The crust will get a bit soft under the fruit and a bit hard on top, but it’ll still taste good.
Freezing: place the cooled pie, in its tin, in an airtight container. Freeze for up to three months. The pie should be frozen the same day of baking for the best results. Thaw at room temperature and reheat in the oven to warm through before serving.
- Bake until bubbly: to thicken the filling properly, it needs to boil. If you do a lattice crust or cut out larger holes in the top crust, you’ll be able to see your filling bubbling close to the end of the baking time.
- Start at higher heat: another step that crisps up the base of the pie to ensure that it cooks through and isn’t too soft after baking.
- Don’t bake on a tray: this is a leading cause of soggy bottoms (unless you preheat the tray like a pizza stone). Adding an extra layer of insulation will prevent heat from reaching the base of the pie tin, keeping it from cooking through. If you’re worried about dripping, place a pan on the next rack below the pie and be sure to use fan-forced rather than standard heat.
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Honey Apple Pie
- 1 batch coconut oil pie crust or any pie dough you'd like
- 1 kilogram apples cut into 4cm (1.5 inch) pieces
- 80 grams honey
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons flour I use spelt flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon or your preferred spice blend
- Egg wash or non-dairy milk for brushing
- Prepare the pie crust if you're making it yourself, and set it aside to rest while you prepare the filling. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) and take out a pie tin.1 batch coconut oil pie crust
- Add the apple pieces, honey, and lemon juice to a mixing bowl. Stir to combine, making sure the honey is dissolved and coating the fruit.1 kilogram apples, 80 grams honey, 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Add the flour and cinnamon to the bowl and mix to coat the fruit.3 tablespoons flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Roll out the pie dough and place the bottom crust into the pie tin. Transfer the filling to the pie, then top with the second crust (in a lattice as pictured, or simply with some holes cut out for steam).
- Brush the top crust with some beaten egg, or non-dairy milk for a plant-based option.Egg wash or non-dairy milk for brushing
- Bake the pie on the centre rack for 10 minutes at 200°C (400°F) then reduce the heat to 180°C (350°F) and continue baking for another 35-45 minutes, or until golden brown and the filling is bubbling.
- Remove from the oven and let the pie cool on a wire rack for at least four hours to set before slicing. Store leftovers in a sealed container for 2-3 days.
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.