This homemade Apple Pie Filling recipe is SO EASY to make! Store the filling in the freezer and enjoy apple desserts all year long!
We grew up with an apple tree in our backyard. Every fall my mom would spend a day making apple pie filling for the freezer. Then, all winter long she could pull a bag out of the freezer to make delicious apple desserts.
It’s convenient to buy cans of apple pie filling but if you have a little extra time, making homemade apple pie filling is totally worth it!
Where is the apple pie filling recipe? In this post, I will share step-by-step instructions with photos for how to make the filling, as well as answering FAQs about the recipe and sharing a short video showing the recipe in motion. But you can go directly to the recipe by scrolling down to the bottom of the post.
What are the best apples for baking?
Apple pie filling starts with the apples, of course! When baking with apples, you’ll want to choose crisp tart apples to offset the sweetness of the filling. Also, make sure to use firm apples that will hold up to baking and won’t turn mushy.
Granny Smith, Empire, Pink Lady, Braeburn, and Honeycrisp are a few of the best apples for baking. I like using Granny Smith because they are often cheaper than some of the other apples.
Some people prefer using two kinds of apples when making desserts for the combination of flavors as well as the optimal sweetness and tartness. So, that is something you can experiment with and is good to know if you have two kinds of apples on hand.
How To Make Apple Pie Filling
What is the best way to peel and slice apples?
The best way to peel and slice apples is whatever you have available in your kitchen. You can use a knife, a combination of a vegetable peeler and a knife, or an apple peeler slicer corer like the one above.
The advantage of using a knife is that everyone has them in their kitchens but also it gives you full control of exactly how you want the apples sliced. You can make thick or thin, large or small pieces.
On the other hand, an apple peeler slicer corer is the fastest way to prep the apples. You put the apple on the prongs and simply turn the crank to peel, slice, and core the apple. It cuts the apple into a spiral and the slices are somewhat thin.
Once the apples have been peeled, sliced, and cored, move them to a cutting board and use a knife to cut them down to the size you want.
I’ve never liked it when deserts have large pieces of fruit that have to be cut while eating. So, I cut the apples into smaller pieces for the apple pie filling.
How to prevent apples from browning?
Some varieties of apples are naturally slow to brown and others brown quickly. To prevent apples from browning, soak them in club soda for three minutes and then drain and set aside.
Another option is to toss them with three tablespoons of lemon juice. I prefer using club soda to prevent browning because it doesn’t alter the taste of the apples.
Or you can even skip this step if you aren’t worried about a little browning and can cut the apple quickly so they aren’t sitting out for a long period of time.
Now that the apples are prepared, it is time to make the filling. Put the sugars, cornstarch, and spices in a large pot and whisk to combine.
Then, slowly whisk in the water. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring often. Boil it for two minutes, stirring constantly, to thicken the sauce.
Now, add the sliced apples and stir to coat them with the sauce.
Reduce the heat, cover the pot, and simmer the apples for 6-9 minutes, stirring often until they are soft.
Allow the apple pie filling to cool somewhat and then put it into freezer safe containers or plastic zip-top freezer bags.
Can I freeze apple pie filling?
Yes, you can freeze apple pie filling! Once you’ve portioned out the filling, label the containers or bags with the contents, date, and amount.
As a frame of reference, one can of apple pie filling is about 2 1/3 cups. An apple pie takes about two cans of apple pie filling or 4 2/3 cups.
Store the containers or bags of apple pie filling in the fridge for 2-3 days or in the freezer for up to a year.
When you are ready to use the apple pie filling, simply thaw one container (or more). If you know ahead of time that you will be baking, you can thaw the filling in the fridge overnight.
Ways To Use Apple Pie Filling
The most obvious away to use apple pie filling is to make an apple pie! But you can use it in so many other ways. Try it on pancakes or waffles, use it on ice cream, or make one of the following recipes.
This Caramel Apple Cheesecake Dessert recipe is perfect for fall with a cheesecake layer topped with apple pie filling, caramel sauce, and whipped cream.
Easy Apple Crisp recipe with sweet, tender apples topped with a crunchy crumb topping. Apple crisp is best served warm with vanilla ice cream and caramel!
Apple Pie Taquitos from Jo Cooks are crispy, sweet, and delicious, these taquitos are simple to make. All the makings of a great apple pie, in a fun taquito form.
Apple Cinnamon French Toast Casserole is the perfect breakfast for fall weekends, overnight guests, or holiday brunch. It can be prepared the night before!