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Mama Elle’s Apple Pie… Sort of From Scratch

I was told yesterday that apple pie is “as American as it gets.” Then I was laughed at for never having apple pie. That’s right… I’ve NEVER had apple pie- not even from McDonald’s. Again, I am Jamaican, so apple pie wasn’t a recurring dish in our home. I don’t ever remember seeing apple pie grace our tables. So, I decided to tackle this “all-American dessert” and make some this Fourth of July.

My friend Mama Elle was so kind to share her grandmother’s “secret recipe,” which she found out wasn’t really secret after all.


– 1 Bag Granny Smith Apples

– 1/2 Stick Butter

– 1/4 Cup Sugar

– 1 TBS Cinnamon

– Pinch of Salt

– 1 TSP Milk

– Pre-made Pie Crust (Pillsbury or other)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  2. Wash, peel, and chop apples. Place apples in a large freezer bag.
  3. Mix cinnamon and sugar together.
  4. Pour cinnamon/sugar mixture over the apples in the bag, reserving a couple teaspoons for later. *ADD A PINCH OF SALT TO THE BAG.* Close bag and shake until apples are well coated. Leave the apples in the bag to “marinate” for 5-10 minutes.
    (This will usually take the amount of time it takes to prep the crust.)

  5. Unroll the pie crust from the Pillsbury package.
    I had some excess pie crust that I cut off.
  6. Lay one crust in the bottom of the pan.
  7. Fill with the apples.
    (You might have extra… cook the extras down with a bit of water in a small saucepan for homemade apples for your child OR freeze the apples for a future pie.)
  8. Cut the butter into small pats and place over the apples at random intervals.
  9. Lay the top crust over the apples and “tuck” the bottom and top crust edges together.
  10. Vent the top crust using a sharp knife, but do not push so hard as to cut into the apples.
    (Just make sure the top is pretty evenly vented on all sides.)
  11. Brush on 1 tsp milk with a small cooking paintbrush or your fingertips to the top crust, keeping the milk from seeping down into the vent holes.
  12. Immediately sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon sugar mixture.
  13. Bake for 1 hour or until golden brown.
    (Baking time depends on your oven, elevation, etc. Check on the pie every 10 minutes or so)
  14. Enjoy!

My husband highly recommends some yummy Vanilla Bean ice cream to compliment this pie!

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2 comments to Mama Elle’s Apple Pie… Sort of From Scratch

  • Ellen Beck

    Hey, thats my recipe too! :) I love using Granny Smith-so nice and tart!

  • LOL Like I said, way too easy and basic to be a “secret” recipe. And it actually comes compliments of my Great-Great-Great-Great-Great Grandmother! (That’s about as classic as it gets! :) )

    Thanks for sharing with everyone!
    Elle´s last blog post ..The Blog Post That Wasnt

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