Cream Cheese Apple Pie is the perfect holiday dessert. It’s seasonal spices, sweet apples, soft crust, and decadent cream cheese topping come together for a pie that will wow your guests!
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If you are familiar with the recipes on my website, this pie may look familiar to you. That is because it is inspired by my award-winning Cream Cheese Peach Pie. My Cream Cheese Peach Pie is such a delicious and popular pie, I wanted to come up with a version that was perfect for fall and winter. Of course, apples are the perfect fruit swap in the recipe to make it more suited for the holiday season but there are also some other tweaks. Apple pie spice and apple cider make this pie everything.
Choosing Your Apples
There is a variety of apple choices when it comes to deciding what to bake with. Some of my favorites are Granny Smith, Jonagolds, Honey Crisp, Pink Lady, and Braeburn. For this pie, I went with a combination of Granny Smith and Honey Crisp apples. You can do as I did or choose your own favorites. I really don’t think you can go wrong…
I wash, dry, peel, and dice my apples up into small chunks about 1/2″ or so. You will use 4-5 apples in this recipe. If you end up with extra just toss them with a little lemon juice and stick them in the fridge to snack on later. They are delicious over yogurt!
Pie Pan Rules
This pie must be made in a 10″ pie pan… it must. Please don’t make it in a smaller pie plate and then get upset with me when it spills over the edge. Unfortunately, that will happen. Trust me when I tell you the small investment into the proper sized pan will certainly be worth it. This pie is so delicious you will absolutely make it again. My Peach Cream Cheese Pie also bakes in this pan so you will be able to make that one as well.
Here is my all-time favorite 10″ pie pan that I have had for over 15 years. It’s the perfect size pan for this pie and it has a lid for the refrigerator. Win-win.
Prepping Your Pie Ingredients
You’ll want to start off by greasing your pie pan. I just use non-stick baking spray.
Next, I mix up the cream cheese for the top. The recipe calls for a small amount of apple cider. You can swap it out for vanilla if you don’t have any cider.
BUT, If you use cider and are looking for something to do with the leftover cider, I must point out how perfect my Apple Cider Cakes are for breakfast. You can make the cakes and coat them in sugar the next morning. They are easy to make and will be a great holiday breakfast.
Then you can get those apples chopped up and set them aside next to your cream cheese so you can get started on your crust.
The crust comes together so easily! Just throw everything in one bowl and beat it for a couple of minutes.
Assembling Your Pie
Using an offset spatula, spread the crust batter into the bottom of your greased pie pan. The batter can be a little tricky to spread because it likes to contract (kind of like pizza dough) but just gently keep at it. Only spread it on the bottom of the pan and NOT up the sides.
Once your crust is in a flat even layer in your pan, spread your chopped apples. Make sure you do not spread them to the edge. Leave a gap of about 3/4″ between the apples and the sides of the pan. Don’t stress over measuring the gap, it’s a rustic pie and does not need to be precise. Just be sure the gap is there. This will allow your crust to rise up the sides while the pie bakes.
You’ll sprinkle your first layer of sugar and spice over the apples, then spread the cream cheese mixture. Again be sure not to spread it to the edges. Just cover the apples. See the photo below to get a visual of how it should look in the pan.
Lastly, you’ll sprinkle the second and final layer of sugar and spice over the cream cheese. Then it’s ready to bake!
After Your Pie Bakes
When your pie has finished baking, you will need to completely cool it on a wire rack. Then, transfer your pie to the refrigerator to chill for at least 6 hours before serving.
Happy Holidays! xoxo, Katie
Cream Cheese Apple Pie is the perfect pie for the holiday season. It's so easy to make but tastes like you spent the day in the kitchen working on it.
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 3.4 ounce package instant vanilla pudding mix
- about 4 apples peeled and chopped into 1/2" chunks
- 12 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and spray your 10" pie pan with non-stick baking spray.
Beat together your cream cheese and 3/4 c. sugar until smooth.
Add the apple cider to the cream cheese and beat for 2 minutes on medium speed. Set aside.
Combine flour, baking powder, butter, salt, milk, egg, and pudding mix in a large bowl. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and beaters as needed.
Using an offset spatula, spread the crust evenly in the bottom of your 10" pie pan. Do not spread the batter up the sides of the pan. Only on the bottom.
Spread the apple chunks over the crust. Be sure NOT to spread the apples to the edge. Leave a small gap along the edges to allow the crust to rise while baking.
Combine the 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon apple pie spice. Sprinkle HALF of the sugar and spice mixture over the apples.
Spread the cream cheese mixture you prepared earlier evenly over the top of the apples. Again, be careful NOT to spread the cheese to the edges. Leave the same gap you left with your apples to allow the crust to rise during baking.
Sprinkle the remaining 2 tbsp. sugar and 1 tsp. spice mixture over the top of the cream cheese. It will be a lot... this is a good thing!
Bake the pie for 50 minutes.
Cool pie completely on a wire cooling rack at room temperature and then transfer to the refrigerator where you will store the pie until ready to serve.