Apple Pie Bites

by angelika on September 13, 2011

It’s Plant Food Fabulous’s first anniversary! I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun this year has been for me, and how grateful I am for all of you who follow along and cook my food. A year ago I was wondering how I would make time for this project. I work full time and have two young kids after all. It turns out, making time for this blog really helped me make time for me. It’s been such a wonderful rebirth of my creative side. So thank you, from the bottom of my heart for sharing this journey with me.

A year ago this blog started with apple pie. We live on an apple orchard, and making my apple pie had become a tradition at the annual preschool potluck. This year we could not make it to the potluck, so I decided to reinvent the pie into these little apple pie bites, which were sent for our turn on snack day. They are super cute, perfectly bite sized, (which frankly is a bit dangerous when you keep popping them like chips) and very kid friendly. We used apples from our orchard, which really seems to make them even more special. Little Man made sure to tell all the kids in his class all about it, at length and in detail apparently.

In a large bowl whisk together both flours and salt. If you don’t have whole wheat pastry flour you can use all AP, but I prefer to add whole grains where ever I can, and I really like the nuttiness it adds to the crust.
Using a pastry cutter mix in the shortening and the butter. I like to chop the butter into pieces and then put them back in the fridge. You want the butter really cold. The blend of butter and shorting is essential. The butter gives a gorgeous flavor and the shortening a flaky crust. You want to keep mixing until the dough resembles peas and cornmeal.

 

 

this is what it looks like when I am done
Add iced water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing with a fork, until the dough comes together. You want the dough to start pulling together well, but not be at all wet.

 

this is what it looks like when I decide it is perfect
you can see that it comes together easily when I kneed it against the bowl
You want the dough to come together with the least amount of water possible to ensure that it is flaky. You should also try to handle it quickly and gently so as not to melt all the butter.
worked into a ball
Work it into a ball, cut the ball in half, work each half into a disk and then wrap it it wax paper or plastic wrap. Let the disk rest in the fridge for at least 30 min. An hour is better. You can also wrap tightly and freeze at this point. Just defrost in refrigerator overnight. I use this crust for pot pies and tarts as well and will often make a double batch just to have on hand.
Peel, core and dice your apples. I did a 2″ dice and it was too big. I ended up taking an emersion blender to the whole thing. The thing about these tiny bites, you don’t have time for the filling to cook inside the pie, so it has to be pretty well cooked before you bake the pies. The larger dice made it take a while for the filling to cook, and even then the apples were too big. The nice thing is that the filling will keep in the refrigerator for a week or two, so you can make this ahead and fill them when you are ready to go. I had left over filling and made a few mini apple pie crumbles as well.
Add the diced apples to a bowl waiting with the lemon juice. Swish them around with every addition of apple. In a small bowl mix all the dry ingredients except the brown sugar. Pour the flour mixture over the apples and mix well.
Melt two tablespoons of butter in a large dutch oven, or deep pot. Add the apple mixture and then pour over the brown sugar and mix it in. Cover the pot and let it simmer, on medium low, until the apples are cooked through. About 20 minutes for me. Stir often so as not to burn the sugars.
If your chunks are too big, break the whole mixture up a bit with an emersion blender. Large apple pieces tend to break the top pie crust. These little babies are a bit delicate.
Preheat the oven to 375º.
Roll the dough out between two sheets of waked paper. Use a 2″ cookie cutter to cut the bottom of the pie bites. I used a 2.5″ cookie cutter to cut the top. I found it was easier than trying to stretch the 2″, but you can use either. Lay the circles on a baking sheet lined with parchment.

I found the dough would get too warm to deal with quickly, so I would cut 12 or so circles and set them on the tray, then put the dough in the freezer for 10 minutes before trying to release the circles. I got 24 circles from each ball of dough, cutting 12 and then re-rolling.

Fill each circle with a teaspoon of filling. Spread egg wash around the outside rim, them top with the larger circle. Use a fork to crimp the sides and seal the pies. Cover with an egg wash and poke a couple of vent holes in each pie.
If you are not sending them to a school which cares about sugar, dust the top of each pie with some sugar in the raw or other large crystal sugar.
Bake the pies for 15-20 minutes looking for them to be golden brown. Let them cool for 5 minutes on the tray, then transfer them to a cooling rack. Enjoy while still warm or at room temperature, and try to eat just one! I dare you.
Apple Pie Bites
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
bite size apple pies
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cold butter, cubed
  • ¼ cup shortening (non hydrogenated)
  • 4-5 tablespoons ice water
  • filling
  • ½ cup organic cane sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg (fresh grated is best and in that case eyeball it)
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 6 cups sliced and peeled apples
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ⅔ cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg for egg wash
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl whisk together both flours and salt.
  2. Using a pastry cutter mix in the shortening and the butter. You want to keep mixing until the dough resembles peas and cornmeal.
  3. Add iced water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing with a fork, until the dough comes together. You want the dough to start pulling together well, but not be at all wet.
  4. You want the dough to come together with the least amount of water possible to ensure that it is flaky. You should also try to handle it quickly and gently so as not to melt all the butter.
  5. Work it into a ball, cut the ball in half, work each half into a disk and then wrap it it wax paper or plastic wrap. Let the disk rest in the fridge for at least 30 min.
  6. Peel, core and dice your apples. 1″ dice or smaller is best.
  7. Add the diced apples to a bowl waiting with the lemon juice. Swish them around with every addition of apple. In a small bowl mix all the dry ingredients except the brown sugar. Pour the flour mixture over the apples and mix well.
  8. Melt two tablespoons of butter in a large dutch oven, or deep pot. Add the apple mixture and then pour over the brown sugar and mix it in. Cover the pot and let it simmer, on medium low, until the apples are cooked through. About 20 minutes for me. Stir often so as not to burn the sugars.
  9. f your chunks are too big, break the whole mixture up a bit with an emersion blender. Large apple pieces tend to break the top pie crust.
  10. Preheat the oven to 375º.
  11. Roll the dough out between two sheets of waked paper. Use a 2″ cookie cutter to cut the bottom of the pie bites. I used a 2.5″ cookie cutter to cut the top. I found it was easier than trying to stretch the 2″, but you can use either. Lay the circles on a baking sheet lined with parchment.
  12. I found the dough would get too warm to deal with quickly, so I would cut 12 or so circles and set them on the tray, then put the dough in the freezer for 10 minutes before trying to release the circles. I got 24 circles from each ball of dough, cutting 12 and then re-rolling.
  13. Fill each circle with a teaspoon of filling. Spread egg wash around the outside rim, them top with the larger circle. Use a fork to crimp the sides and seal the pies. Cover with an egg wash and poke a couple of vent holes in each pie.
  14. If you are not sending them to a school which cares about sugar, dust the top of each pie with some sugar in the raw or other large crystal sugar.
  15. Bake the pies for 15-20 minutes looking for them to be golden brown. Let them cool for 5 minutes on the tray, then transfer them to a cooling rack.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Anushruti | Divine Taste September 23, 2011 at 10:19 am

This looks very cute! And perfect for little ones!

Reply

Roxee September 23, 2011 at 5:55 pm

This is great for a party or catering style event! I am still going to create those, since I am vegan, I have to tweak it a bit….

Reply

nice site October 10, 2012 at 11:16 am

Great info and entertainingly written. Keep up the great stuff!

Reply

Angelika September 23, 2011 at 5:58 pm

Hi Roxee,

I have make my pie vegan many times. I sub earth balace for the butter in the crust. So I do half shortening half earth balance. This way you still get some of the buttery flavor in the crust. Then instead of an egg wash you can do a hot water and corn syrup glaze on top the pie 5 minutes before it comes out of the oven. I have also used hot water to seal the pie, but these little ones have a tendency to want to burst, so maybe you have a better idea. Let me know how it turns out!

Angelika

Reply

Ricki September 25, 2011 at 9:14 pm

These are adorable! I can't even imagine all the work involved in making so many little pies. . . I think I'd prefer to eat them than make them. ;)

Reply

Angelika September 25, 2011 at 11:08 pm

Ricki- they are not any harder than filled cookies, truly. Especially if you have the filling ready. Not a monday night kind of a project, but a weekend day for sure. That said, about 3/4 way through the rolling out process I was questioning my thought process in bringing these for preschool snack. ;)

Reply

Natasha July 29, 2012 at 3:00 am

Yum these look amazing! I love apple pie, and they are like little apple pie cookies :-)

Reply

Salvuccio September 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm

Oh my gosh that is simple and it sndous delicious. I love the idea of using the ready made pie crusts since I can’t make a pie crust to save my life…lol

Reply

Sarah July 29, 2012 at 6:49 am

This is one of the first things I baked on my blog! Yours look delicious! I’m jealous of your apple orchard.

Reply

pic rest September 12, 2012 at 10:27 am

Excellent recipe. Simple and delicious recipes

Reply

Jennifer September 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm

These are adorable! I’ve had mini pies on my bucket list for a long time, and now that autumn is coming, it might just be time to cross it off my list. I was always intimidated, but this recipe might just be doable :) Congrats on your one-year mark!

Reply

Kristin September 19, 2012 at 9:38 pm

So, we have an over load of apples. I am going away and I am afraid they will go bad. Do you think you could make the filling and then freeze it??? Just curious, then I could make the bites in a few weeks. Thanks, they look delicious!!! Also, have you ever frozen them all made?? Just weighing all the options :)

Reply

angelika September 19, 2012 at 11:45 pm

You could absolutely do either. I have made and frozen pies a lot, it’s the best way to make them ahead of an event or party. The filling would freeze too, and you can freeze the pie crust as well- then assemble when you have time. Any way you decide to go about it, it will work. This recipe lends itself to being made ahead. :)

Reply

Kristin September 29, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Thank you!!

Reply

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