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My Perfect Flaky Apple Pie Recipe – How to Make it in 15 Simple Steps

A freshly-baked homemade apple pie.

It’s sad to say, but many are intimidated by the idea of making a pie from scratch, mostly because they believe that creating your own pastry crust is difficult. Of course, making a pie crust does take a bit of a knack, but after you’ve done it a few times, you’ll start to find it getting easier for you. The easiest pie crust to make is a shortening pie crust.

A freshly-baked homemade apple pie.

Flaky Apple Pie Recipe

April Freeman
Apple Pie is a dish that pretty much everyone who wants to cook well should be able to prepare. This recipe for Apple Pie is just your basic pie. It includes apples, cinnamon, and a shortening pie crust baked in a pan. Almost everyone likes Apple Pie so why not create this recipe for your next potluck dinner at work or for guests at home?
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Cooling Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 50 mins
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people


  • Rolling Pin
  • Oven
  • Pie Dish
  • Medium-Sized Bowl


  • 3 lbs. Favorite cooking apples
  • .75 cup Sugar
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • .25 tsp Salt
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 2.25 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • .75 cup vegetable shortening
  • .75 cup ice water


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
    Peel and slice the apples, placing them in a large bowl. The bowl should be large enough to toss the apples without spilling them.
  • Add the sugar, cinnamon, salt, and flour. Stir the apples to coat them with these ingredients. Set this bowl aside and move on to making the pie crust. As you work on the crust, pause every now and then to stir the apples a bit.
  • CRUST:
    In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the flour and salt.
  • Using a pastry blender, cut in the vegetable shortening until the mixture looks about like cornmeal, with small bits of shortening distributed throughout the mixture.
  • Add a half cup of the water and stir gently. Work with a light touch. Do not beat or pound the pie crust mixture or it will become tough.
  • If there are still areas of the pie crust mixture that are dry and crumbly, add a little more water, stirring and adding water just until the dough begins to stick together. Using your hands, press the dough together, turning to make sure that it’s all dampened. It should be similar to the texture of playdough.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently shape it into an oblong shape. Cut this in half, and set aside one half.
  • Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out the pie dough until it is about 11 to 12 inches in diameter. Gently place the dough in the bottom of a pie pan.
    The dough is formed and flattened on a floured surface.
  • Add the apples to the bottom crust of the pie pan, and return to roll out the remaining dough to about a 10-inch circle. Place this top crust atop the apples and crimp the edges to seal.
  • Cut eight vents in the top of the pie crust.
    The pie is covered with a crust and holes are made for air to escape.
  • Place the pie in the oven, shielding the edges as described above. Bake the pie for about 35 minutes.
  • Remove the pie from the oven and place it on a cookie sheet. This will keep it from boiling over and messing up the bottom of your stove. At this point, you can also remove the pie shields. Return the pie to the oven and bake it for 20 or 30 more minutes, until the top of the pie is golden brown and the filling is bubbly.
  • Allow the pie to cool for about 30 minutes before serving.
    A freshly-baked batch of apple pie.
  • Store leftovers wrapped in aluminum foil in the refrigerator.


Shortening pie crusts are a bit easier to handle because you don’t have to worry about the butter getting too soft in the warmth of your kitchen and making your pie crust sticky and hard to handle while you are rolling it out. If you’ve never made a pie crust before, this is a great one to start with.
When you make an apple pie, be sure that you have the right apples on hand. Not just any apple bakes up well in a pie because some varieties simply turn to mush when exposed to heat. Apples like Jonagold, Granny Smith, and Golden Delicious are good pie apples that keep their shape while being baked.
We used Ginger Gold apples for our pie, and we added a couple of Granny Smith apples as well to create a more complex flavor in the apple pie filling. If you want to use just one variety that is fine, or you can mix in up to three varieties to kick up the flavor.
Have you ever cut into a pie and been disappointed to find that the bottom crust is gooey and undercooked? Soggy bottom crusts often happen when bakers use the wrong pan to make a pie. Those flimsy disposable aluminum foil pans are usually the culprit when you find that your pie has a soggy bottom.
Those pie pans are not a good idea for Apple Pie.  If you must use a metal pan, choose the heaviest weight pan that you can find. Cast iron is a great choice. Additionally, ceramic or glass pie pans make wonderful pies that bake all the way through. An added bonus is that a classic glass pie pan can be found at any discount or grocery store. A pie pan doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive to make a great pie!
Another common problem for novice pie bakers is that the edges of the crust begin to get overly brown before the rest of the pie is baked. To avoid this, cover the edges of the pie with strips of aluminum foil, folding them around the circumference of the pie.
This will shield the pie during the first part of baking. When you get to the last 20 minutes of baking time, remove the foil and continue to let it bake. You can also buy what is called a pie shield, a premade, reusable lightweight aluminum ring that sits on top of the pie to keep the edges from over baking.
Keyword Apple Pie, Dessert, Recipe

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Related: What Goes Well with Apple Pie Apple Pie Recipes

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