Dutch Apple Pie vs Apple Pie: How To Tell The Difference!

Dutch apple vs apple pie: what’s the difference? If you’ve been brought up in the United States, then you know that apple pie is just about as all-American as you can get. In fact, you’ll probably know this to be true even if you’ve never set foot in the States – the apple pie has become a huge part of the American image.

But as great as the American apple pie is, we want to introduce you to the Dutch apple pie, an equally delicious yet subtly different version of the humble pie that claims its heritage from the Netherlands!

Both of these are fantastic desserts, and in this article, we’ll explain those subtle differences and show you how to make your own Dutch apple pie at home. Get your apples and your apple peeler ready, because it’s time to start baking!

The Origins of Apple Pie 

While we see apple pie as a distinctly American dessert, the apple pie’s popularity in the USA is actually a relatively new phenomenon. The apple pie as we know it was originally an English dessert, and records and recipes date back hundreds of years.

The apple pie made its way over to America, where apples now abound, and over the last century, it’s become a staple and an icon of American culture. While the American apple pie is closest in appearance to the classic English pie it claims descent from, it’s also been influenced and shaped by Europe’s lesser-known apple pies.

That’s right, apple pie isn’t just for English-speakers! Historically, Europeans have had just as much love for apple-based desserts. There’s the German strudel, the French apple tart, and the easy Dutch apple pie, to name just a few. 

All use a similar sweet apple pie filling and are wrapped up in a delicious pastry. But all have their own unique recipes – and they all look remarkably different when you pull them out of the oven!

What is the Difference Between Apple Pie and Dutch Apple Pie?

The Dutch apple pie is becoming increasingly popular in the US, as it offers a lovely variation on the traditional American pie – and let’s face it, variety really is the spice of life!

But what is Dutch apple pie? Well, the Dutch apple pie is said to have originated in the Netherlands. Like the traditional English apple pie, the Dutch apple pie made its way over to the US with European settlers, where it then evolved into its current form. 

The Dutch apple pie has many similarities, too. Any Dutch apple pie recipe calls for a sweet, apple pie filling (Granny Smith apples work wonders in a Dutch apple pie!), as well as a hard pastry crust to keep all that goodness inside the pie.

The major difference between American apple pie vs Dutch apple pie, however, is the topping. American apple pies have a crusty topping. This can be a hard pastry lattice or an all-encompassing pastry topping that encloses the pie. A Dutch apple pie recipe needs a crumbly top - there’s no hard pastry crust on top of the pie.

This crumble is known as astreusel, and it’s prepared using a combination of oats, flour, butter, and sugar. It’s wonderfully sweet, not quite as filing, and makes for a lighter variation on the classic American apple pie. 

Plus, the Dutch apple pie still goes exceptionally well with a large scoop of ice cream on top!

Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

Let’s take a look at an easy Dutch apple pie recipe, so you can start to visualize the real difference between Dutch apple pie vs apple pie. This Dutch apple pie recipe makes 8 slices of Dutch apple pie!

Pie crust ingredients

  • 9 inch pie crust (deep dish)
  • 1 beaten egg white

Dutch apple pie filling ingredients 

  • 5 Granny Smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 ½ tbsp of all-purpose flour
  • ¼ c of sugar
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp of nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp of allspice

Dutch apple pie crumble ingredients 

  • ½ c of rolled oats
  • ½ c of all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ c of brown sugar
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of room temperature butter 

Directions for Dutch apple pie 

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit while you prepare the pie.
  2. Start with the crust. Use a brush to give the pie crust a light layer of egg white coating. Place the crust into a pie dish. 
  3. Next, move onto the Dutch apple pie filling. Peel and slice your Granny Smith apples before mixing them with flour, sugar, and spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice). 
  4. Spread the spiced apple filling evenly over the interior of the pie crust, then par-bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
  5. While the crust and filling are par-baking, it’s time to make the crumble topping. Mix together rolled oats, flour, brown sugar, and salt with a few teaspoons of olive oil to help it all stick together. Mix in the butter, and keep stirring until you have a crumbly texture. 
  6. Remove the pie crust from the oven after 10 minutes and add an even topping of crumble. Now, lower the oven’s temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit before baking the Dutch apple pie for a further 30 minutes. 
  7. When the pie looks golden brown and delicious, it’s time to serve it up!

Can I Freeze Homemade Apple Pie? 

What do you do with any leftovers? If you’ve got no more space for eating apple pie, then don’t worry, because you can easily freeze the leftover slices.

Place the slices into individual freezer-proof bags or containers. They’ll last for at least 6 months in the freezer. You can also make the filling and freeze this for later if you have lots of apples to use up!

What’s the Difference Between Dutch vs French Apple Pie?

Now that we’ve got you hooked on the different apple pie possibilities that are out there, let’s see what the difference is between a French and a Dutch apple pie recipe!

The major difference is the lack of topping. That’s right, a French apple pie, ortarte tatin, is essentially an open faced pie. The apple filling is baked first, then added to a pie crust. The pie is baked upside down, then turned around at the end!

Dutch Apple Pie vs Apple Pie: What’s Your Favorite? 

The American apple pie might be a classic, but the Dutch apple has just as much history and just as much taste. If you’re looking for a new way to bake your apples, then the added sweetness of the Dutch pie filling combined with the crumbly topping is a great way to go!

And while you’re at it, you can start preparing French and German apple pies too! Why not bookmark our guide to Dutch apple pies, so you always remember the difference?