Thanksgiving Apple Desserts
Country Apple Galette
Jacques Pépin loves to serve this delicate apple tart as a buffet dessert, since it’s beautiful, easy to slice and simple to eat, pizza-style, while standing. The miraculously easy and versatile pastry dough comes together in a food processor in less than 20 seconds and can be filled with all sorts of fruits or vegetables. Because the tart is free-form, the pastry can be rolled into either a round or a rectangle.
Apple Crostada with Brown Butter Streusel
Lee's Apple Pie
David Tanis’s cinnamon-and-cardamom-spiced pie is a nod to Napa winemaker Lee Hudson’s Texas background. It has a classic mountaintop profile, because it’s packed with lots of tart, crisp apples.
Apple Brown Betty
Michael Symon usually doesn't make dessert for holidays. Still, his version of this classic is great after a big meal because it isn’t too sweet or too heavy. He layers brioche bread crumbs with sliced apples and a cinnamon-citrus sugar, baking everything together so it becomes wonderfully soft.
Apple Tart with Bananas and Cranberries
Chefs Eric Bromberg and Bruce Bromberg developed this holiday version of a traditional apple pie, with rum and dried cranberries added to boost the flavor
Spiced Upside-Down Apple Bundt Cake
David Guas tops his apple Bundt cake with a nicely salty streusel of pecans and toasted rolled oats. He bakes the streusel on its own to make it extraordinarily crisp, then pats it over the warm cake right out of the oven.
Caramel Apple Parfaits
The parfait can also be assembled in one large glass bowl.
Tarte Tatin with Crème Fraîche
The apples in this luscious tart are cooked in a rich caramel sauce. When turned out of the pan, the lightly spiced apples are melt-in-your-mouth tender.
Old-Fashioned Apple Pie
AJ Perry, the owner and baker at Columbus, Ohio’s Sassafras Bakery, uses a combination of sweet and tart apples for this double-crust pie. Perry starts the pie at a high oven temperature, so the pastry sets before the filling softens, creating a beautiful domed crust. This is a purists’ pie that tastes of nothing but apples, with just a hint of spice and butter.
Apples Baked in Pastry with Plum Sauce
These apple pastries can be prepared using 2 pounds of thawed frozen all-butter puff pastry.
Warm Apple Cider Cake with Pumpkin Seed Brittle
Thanksgiving Make-Ahead Tip: The cake and cider sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.
Apple Cake with Toffee Crust
Thanksgiving Make-Ahead Tip: The unmolded cake can be stored in an airtight container overnight at room temperature. The toffee sauce can also be prepared in advance and refrigerated for up to 1 week; reheat gently before serving.
Free-Form Apple Tart
Sam Mogannam’s wife, Anne Walker, usually makes this dessert with Arkansas Black apples—an heirloom variety—from Mogannam’s parents’ orchard near Sacramento. The dense, tart apples are harvested late in the season, making them a good Thanksgiving choice. Granny Smiths are an easier-to-find alternative.
Raisin-Studded Apple Bread Pudding
David Page tosses sweet golden raisins into his apple bread pudding, which he developed years ago with baker Melissa Murphy of Brooklyn, New York’s Sweet Melissa’s Pâtisserie.
Maple-Apple Upside-Down Cake
This is one of the best upside-down cakes ever—the maple syrup infuses both the apples and the cake, making the dessert taste like a stack of apple pancakes.
Apples baked in flaky pastry with cinnamon sugar are irresistible, especially when served with vanilla ice cream. To save preparation time, we use frozen puff-pastry sheets.
Apple Crisp with Sweet Ginger and Macadamia Nuts
To make chopping macadamia nuts easy, Greg Patent suggests, put them in a resealable plastic bag and breaking them up with a rolling pin.
Apple Cider Cream Pie
In 2009, Allison Kave and her boyfriend, Jay Horton, were winners in Brooklyn, New York’s Pie Bake-Off with this clever pie. The challenge was to use a local ingredient, so they chose apple cider and developed this delicious combination of cream pie and apple pie. Winning the contest was the impetus for Kave to open First Prize Pies in Brooklyn.
Apple Crumble Cakes with Chestnuts
This recipe is based on an American-style streusel-topped coffee cake. Han Feng bakes the cakes in oversize teacups, but ramekins are perfect substitutes.
Apple Blintz Hand Pies
These sweet little pies have a lovely filling that combines tart and sweet apples with farmer cheese and cinnamon.
Granny Smith Apple and Brown Butter Custard Tart
Kate Neumann often showcases rich, nutty, fragrant browned butter in her desserts. Here, she adds it to a sweet custard loaded with caramelized apples and baked in a buttery tart shell.
Apple Crisp with Granola Topping
Tip: Buying nutmeg whole has several advantages. Not only does it have a longer shelf life than the packaged variety, but it tastes and smells more intense when grated fresh and is just as easy to use. Little nutmeg graters are available in cookware stores for this purpose, but any small, sharp grater will do.
Dutch Apple Pie
F&W’s Grace Parisi uses a mix of Granny Smith, Pink Lady and Golden Delicious apples for this iconic dessert.
Autumn Apple Buckle
Buckles, simple streusel-topped cakes studded with fruit, are traditionally made with summer berries. For his autumn version, Jan Birnbaum substitutes tart apples, for a denser, more coffee-cake-like dessert.