Cheddar apple pie is a delicious version of the classic fall dessert. This pie is really easy to make and the cheddar crumb topping is absolutely wonderful with the sweet cinnamon-y apple filling!
Let me note at the top, in case cheddar apple pie sounds weird to you, that it’s not like some unholy grilled cheese-apple pie mashup. I promise.
The cheddar crumb topping on the pie doesn’t really taste cheesy at all; the cheese just adds a little something extra, a bit of a salty bite to cut through the sweet apple filling.
And it totally works! Cheddar apple pie is my absolute favorite way to enjoy the classic fall treat—I think it might become yours too.
Why you’ll love this cheddar apple pie:
- It’s really easy to make
- You probably have all the ingredients on hand right now!
- You can easily make the pie a day ahead to free up oven space for the holidays
How to make cheddar crumb topping
- Stir together flour, sugar, and salt
- Use your fingers to cut chunks of butter into the dry ingredients
- Add finely grated cheese
- Stir to combine, then refrigerate
How to slice apples for apple pie
I peel my apples, then quarter and core them, then slice each quarter thinly, like in the pic above.
This is just my preference though. If you prefer chopped apples you can certainly chop up those slices instead. Or you can slice them a little thicker than I do–it’s your pie so slice those apples however you prefer!
You can see that I don’t take off every bit of peel; not only is that tedious, but I like the little bit of color a few flecks of peel give the filling. But again, it’s totally up to you and your preferences.
How to make apple pie filling
- Combine all of your filling ingredients EXCEPT apples
- Stir together
- Add the apples
- Then stir until they’re evenly coated
- Spoon the filling into a pie shell
- Top with the refrigerated crumb topping
Then you’ll bake for about 40 minutes, until the apple juices are bubbling.
That’s it! Pie doesn’t have to be complicated—cheddar apple pie is super simple.
Baker’s tip: I always set my fruit pies on baking sheets before I put them in the oven. That way if the juices bubble over, the baking sheet catches the drips. This has saved me from cleaning my oven many, many times.
How to store cheddar apple pie
Store uneaten pie in the fridge, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 4 days.
You can easily make your cheddar apple pie a day ahead and refrigerate it—it’s actually easier to slice neatly if it’s chilled for awhile. If you prefer your pie warm, you can just zap it in the microwave for a few seconds.
Why do people combine cheese with apple pie?
Well, the origins of this practice are a little hard to pinpoint.
According to Southern Living, it may go back to England in the 17th and 18th centuries, when it was common to top pies with a dairy-based custard—which then somehow evolved into serving pie with a slice of cheese.
But it also may go back even further, to Medieval times, when cheese was apparently served after a meal to aid in digestion.
Wherever its origins, it’s not uncommon in the Northeast and Midwest of the US to find apple pie served with a little cheese. Sometimes the cheese is melted on top, sometimes it’s just a slice served next to the pie.
And sometimes it’s not cheddar—blue cheese and camembert both are served with apple pie. Salt and sweet go well together!
And my mother is fond of saying (weirdly because she’s not a pie-eater) “apple pie without the cheese is like a kiss without the squeeze.”
She didn’t make that up—it’s actually a saying. Which just goes to show that lots of people out there are enjoying a little cheddar with their apple pie!
Did you make this cheddar apple pie? Awesome! Let me know what you think with a comment and a rating below. Then post a pic on Insta–tag @theitsybitsykitchen so I can see (and share) your delicious creations!
Cheddar apple pie combines a salty sweet cheddar crumb topping with a sweet cinnamon apple filling. It's a delicious addition to your holiday menus!
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons very cold unsalted butter cut into 8 chunks
- 1/2 cup finely grated sharp cheddar cheese
- single crust for a 9-inch pie homemade or store-bought
- 2 1/2 to 3 pounds apples*
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- finely grated zest of half a lemon
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Combine the flour, sugar, and salt in a small bowl; stir to combine. Use your fingers to cut the chunks of butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse sand. Stir in the cheese.
- Refrigerate while you make the pie.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Roll the pie crust out to an 11-inch circle. Carefully transfer to a 9-inch pie plate and flute the edges. Refrigerate while you work on the filling.
- Peel, core, and thinly slice your apples.
- Combine the sugar, flour, lemon zest, cinnamon, and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add the apples and toss to coat.
- Spoon the filling into the refrigerated pie crust and sprinkle with the crumb topping.
- Set the pie on a large baking sheet (to catch any dripand bake 40 to 55 minutes, or until the topping is light golden and the juices are bubbling.
- Cool on a wire rack, then serve.
- Uneaten pie can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 4 days.
- *You’ll need about 5 or 6 apples depending on their size. Granny Smith, Braeburn, Jonagold, and Pink Lady are all good apples for pie; I like to use a combination of Granny Smith and Braeburn.
Pie adapted from Dallas Dish