Deconstructed Healthy Apple Pie

October 12, 2020

I present to you the world’s easiest apple pie! Now look, if you are looking for a fancy apple pie with a perfect lattice crust, then this recipe is not for you. Now don’t get my wrong, I totally and love and appreciate that too, but I don’t have time to spend endless hours in the kitchen, rolling dough to make the perfect apple pie crust. But, I don’t want to sacrifice taste either.

That’s why I created this Deconstructed Healthy Apple Pie! While it doesn’t have a crust on the bottom, it does, in fact have a perfectly flaky pie crust on top, which is really all you need anyway. Because in my opinion, when it comes to pie, the filling should always be the star of the show. And in this case, you get lots of apple-y goodness because it’s not sandwiched between mountains of crust.

This apple pie also happens to be gluten-free and you can make it vegan, too! Just follow my instructions below, and it will come out perfect every single time.

My favorite way to enjoy this pie is with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, when it’s fresh out of the oven.

What’s inside my Deconstructed Apple Pie?

This pie is made with just a handful of ingredients and it’s pretty customizable – yay!

  • Apples – Apples are the star if this recipe, and it’s a fact that some apples are good for snacking, and others are better suited for baking. In my opinion, I think Granny Smith apples are the best for baking, because they’re tart and firm, keeping their shape while providing a perfect balance to the sweet ingredients. Honeycrisp and Macintosh are my next favorite apple to bake with. But if you can’t find any of these apple varieties, don’t let that discourage you from making this recipe. You’ll still get a perfect apple pie, just make sure the apples are nice and firm.
  • Gluten-free baking flour – Because so many of my readers are gluten-free, I developed this recipe using gluten-free flour. But you can definitely use regular all purpose flour and you’ll achieve the same result. I haven’t tested other flours, so if you do, please let us know in the comments below how it turned out – sharing is caring!
  • Coconut sugar – Coconut sugar is so good in this recipe because it already has somewhat of a caramel-like flavor, so when the apples cook, that caramel-like flavor really soaks into the apples. Don’t have coconut sugar? That’s ok, you can use cane sugar if you like, or any other non-liquid sugar substitute.
  • Butter or vegan butter – Part of what makes a perfect pie crust is having a nice, buttery, flaky top. If you don’t have an aversion to butter, use real butter! If you can find pasture raised, organic butter, you get extra brownie points. For a vegan option, use a plant based butter substitute and you’ll get the same result. I find the Miyoko’s Creamery brand to be one of my favorites for baking purposes.
  • Egg – You will be using one egg in this entire recipe. I did not like the texture when I tested this recipe with a flax egg, so if you want to test the recipe with another egg substitute (perhaps a chia egg!), let me know how it turns out. The eggs provides the moisture needed and the texture to the pie dough, so if you can use it, I definitely recommend it.
  • Vanilla – Vanilla extract is always an essential ingredient, as it elevates all the flavors in a dish, and without it, food can sometimes taste bland. And no one wants that!
  • Cinnamon – This recipe calls for cinnamon, because every apple pie on the planet needs that yummy cinnamon taste. Feel free to be a little heavy-handed with it, it’s so good!
  • Pecans – I absolutely love the addition of pecans in this recipe; the flavors go so well. But you can leave them out all together or substitute for another nut of choice. I made this recipe using walnuts last week, and that was one of the best choices I’ve ever made.

Is this a crumble or a pie?

I know from this photo, that you could mistake this for an apple crumble or an apple cobbler. But make no mistake, it’s not a crumble or cobbler. A crumble/cobbler has bits and pieces of dough sprinkled on top of the fruit. Here, we get a perfect pie crust-topping that forms on top. The only thing they have in common is that they both pair well with ice cream 🙂

Storage instructions

I typically include storage instructions in my posts, but this is one of those rare recipes that is best eaten once it comes out of the oven. If you need to store leftovers, just place them in a glass pyrex and store in the refrigerator for a few days.

If you make this recipe, be sure to comment below and tag me on Instagram so I can repost your creations!

Deconstructed Healthy Apple Pie

Author: Nicole Modic of @KALEJUNKIE

SERVES 8
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Ingredients

  • 4 large apples peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup gluten free baking flour or regular, all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 5 tablespoons vegan butter or regular butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Instructions

  • Pre-oven to 350.
  • Grease a 9-inch pie dish or baking dish well.
  • Set aside.
  • Peel apples and slice into pieces about 1/2 inch thick - chunky apples are fine!
  • Place the apples in the dish.
  • Sprinkle 1 tablespoon coconut sugar and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon over the apples.
  • Next, in a medium bowl, add the flour, coconut sugar, melted butter, vanilla extract, and sea salt.
  • Stir well, then add in the egg and pecans.
  • Once everything is incorporated, scoop the batter on top of the apples, using your hands to make even.
  • Bake 45-50 minutes, until the crust is nice and golden.
  • Enjoy!

Did you make this recipe?

I’d love to see what you made - tag @kalejunkie
in your posts and I’ll re-share!

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  1. 5 stars
    So so good! My sister and I made this several times and no crumb was ever left behind. We love it hot out of the oven but also eat it cold the next day and its just as good. Will definitely be a permanent fall time/Thanksgiving recipe. Thank you 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    Yum!! This was sooo good! Tastes almost like apple pie meets pecan pie in the best way!

    Ps I think you may have forgotten to write when to use the salt and the second part of the cinnamon.