When I was in 8th Grade, I lost the class spelling bee on the world CARAMEL! After correctly spelling words like mischievous, amateur, and hierarchy, it was down to just me and one other girl. The class was getting restless as we were late for lunch due to the intense standoff! My next word was Caramel, and as the class groaned at the simpleness of the word, knowing they were going to be a few more minutes late for lunch…I confidently stated C A R M E L…and class was dismissed!
Now, my bitterness about this sad spelling event has waned and each time I eat a delicious Caramel Conconction, it wanes a bit more! This Caramel Apple pie is one of our favorite family Fall pies and it is the second installation of my Caramel Apple Series! I hope you will enjoy it as much as we have in all of its Caramelly Appley gooeyness!
CARAMEL APPLE PIE
- 1 Pie Crust, either homemade, or store bought. I am not a pie crust maker and always get mine at Trader Joe’s, because they are wonderful and only about 3 dollars for two. It saves A LOT of time!
- 6 cups of Apples peeled and sliced 4-5 big apples.
- 1/2 cup White Sugar
- 1/2 cup Brown Sugar plus 3 more Tbls
- 1 Tbls Lemon Juice
- 2 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup Flour
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 4 Tbls Butter
- 1/2 cup Caramel Topping (optional but HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!)
- 2 Tbls Heavy Cream
- 1/2 cup Flour
- 3 Tbls white Sugar
- 2 Tbls Brown Sugar
- 3 Tbls Butter
- 4 Tbls chopped Toffee Bits (again, optional but HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!)
First Step is to peel and slice the apples I like a mixed apple pie, but you can use any kind of apples you like. I used two Green Apples, two Granny Smith, and 1 Fuji.
Next Step is to add in the Lemon Juice, Brown and White Sugar, Flour, Cinnamon Salt and Nutmeg, and stir to combine evenly over all of the apples.
NOW…NOW Is the time to make your delicious Caramel! Start by melting your 4 Tbls of Butter in a large saucepan. Then add in the 3 Tbls of brown Sugar, Heavy Cream, and Vanilla and cook for 3 minutes over medium low heat constantly stirring.
Now, this next step is optional, but as I stated above, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. For me it provides extra yummy Caramel flavor and extra soothing to my caramel induced spelling wounds! This is where you add in 1/2 cup of Caramel ice cream topping or sauce into your homemade sauce and stir to combine. Feel free to just proceed with just the homemade caramel if you would like.
To this delicious caramel sauce, add in your apple mixture and stir to combine.
I cook this mixture for 8-10 minutes on Medium heat as it helps the apples start cooking before adding to the Pie. Personally, I do not LOVE crunchy apples in an apple pie. I like them to be all the way cooked, but not mushy. I find that sauteing the apples in the caramel mixture before adding to the pie helps them to reach the perfect texture within the finished pie. Make sure you stir this mix a lot while cooking as you don’t want the caramel to burn on the bottom, and you want the apples to be evenly cooked.
During this 8-10 minutes I usually put together my Streusel topping. You simply mix together the flour, sugar and cinnamon and then mix in the Cold 3 Tbls of Butter until the butter is about the size of peas. I mix this with my hands as it makes a more flaky topping in my opinion. After the butter is mixed in, I add in the 4 Tbls of toffee bits and stir to combine.
Sometime a few of the Toffee Bits accidentally end up in my mouth…actually…every single time! haha.
I also usually have my Pie Crust prepped and in the Pie Pan ready to go at this point. It is time to assemble this glorious pie!
Pour the Caramel Apples into your prepared Pie Crust and make sure they are a flat and even layer for your topping. Then Sprinkle your Streusel topping over the apples in an even layer as well. And try not to pick out too many of the toffee bits at this point…you want to leave a few for the pie!
Bake this Pie at 415 degrees for 15 minutes. At that point, turn the temperature down to 350 degrees and bake for 30-40 minutes more until bubbly at the corners. Also, you will want to cover your pie crust with foil at this point so it doesn’t burn. I take a big piece of foil and cut out a circle and lay that over the pie to protect my crust from burning.
This Pie is more of a Pie/Crisp/Streusel hybrid as it does not have a LOT of crust and doesn’t have a crust topping. Neither me or my husband LOVE pie crust and maybe that is why this pie is one of our favorites as it is more of a Crisp with a little crust underneath! Because of this fact it also does not hold a great pie piece shape when you serve it. It sort of melts into a pile of tasty goodness without being the prettiest piece of pie! If you are a CRUST lover…feel free to just add in crust on the top and skip the Streusel topping!
Once the pie is done, take it out of the oven and cool it at least an hour before eating or the caramel will run out all over the place! Even when it does cool down, it still might be runny, but that is part of its Caramelly goodness! I am going to post a few pictures of the pie served hot and runny and then also served cold the next day when it was holding its pie shape a little better! It tasted equally delicious both ways!
Happy C A R A M E L Apple Pie…ing!