These are the very apple dumplings my Grandma Lucille used to make. Old Fashioned Apple Dumplings with Warm Cinnamon Sauce are best served right from the oven, topped with your favorite vanilla ice cream. Apple dumplings are a classic dessert your family will love, no matter the occasion.
Old Fashioned Apple Dumplings with Warm Cinnamon Sauce Recipe
Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’…. Shall We?? 🙂
Apple dumplings bring back such good memories. I remember my Grandma Lucille making apple dumplings for us and how good they made the whole house smell as they baked. We could hardly wait to enjoy them, still warm from the oven, and topped with vanilla ice cream. And at Grandma’s house, you could eat as much as you wanted! Those were the days.
Grandma Lucille also made a pretty mean sugar cookie. I’m betting, though, that you may have never experienced a sugar cookie quite like hers – they are like a sugar cookie crossed with a biscuit….fat and puffy and just a little bit sweet. I hope you’ll try them and let me know what you think.
6 easy steps for making apple dumplings
- Creating the dough.
- Simmering the sauce.
- Making the brown sugar/pecan filling.
- Stuffing the apples.
- Wrapping the stuffed apple with pie dough.
- Bake and enjoy!
Ingredients you’ll need to make easy homemade apple dumplings
- Pie crust dough
- Granulated sugar and brown sugar
- Spices: cinnamon, kosher salt
How to Make Easy Homemade Apple Dumplings Using Refrigerated Pie Crust Dough
Use a grapefruit spoon to remove the center (where the seeds and membrane are) of the apple, working from the top. Leave the skin on the apple while doing this step to keep the apple flesh in tact while you work.
Once you’ve removed the center of each apple, go ahead and peel each one. Next, combine the ingredients to make the brown sugar/pecan filling, then fill the center of each apple as shown above. Meanwhile, place the sauce ingredients into a sauce pan over medium high heat and whisk until smooth; bring to a boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes; reserve.
Open the box of pie crust dough and lay both crusts out onto a lightly flour work surface. Using a rolling pin, roll each one out just a bit to make it a little thinner. Now, use a paring knife to cut each pie crust into thirds to make 6 pieces of dough. Don’t worry that these pieces are unevenly shaped! Wrap the dough around each stuffed apple, then place each one into a greased 11×7-inch baking dish, standing inverted. Pour half of the sauce around the base of the apples in the bottom of the baking dish.
Bake the apple dumplings, uncovered, in a preheated 375 degree F. oven for 30 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and continue to bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. The dumplings are done when they are fork-tender at the center.
Serve the apple dumplings warm, drizzled with more sauce, if desired, with vanilla or caramel ice cream.
Answers to Common Questions Asked About This Recipe
Which tools are helpful for making pie crust apple dumplings?
For coring my apples for the filling, I like using a grapefruit spoon – this makes the task so easy. And, of course, you’ll need a peeler and maybe a paring knife along the way for this recipe.
I use an 11×7 baking pan for making this recipe since it holds 6 apples just perfectly. You can use a 9×13 inch baking pan but it doesn’t hold the apples as securely and sometimes they can fall over if they aren’t completely level on the bottom.
This is my favorite rolling pin since you can roll out dough with one hand and also feel the dough as you go with the other – super handy. Or, if you prefer a traditional rolling pin, I like this one.
For whisking the sauce in the sauce pan as it simmers, you’ll really like using a flat whisk which is made for a pan, not a bowl like a balloon whisk is. If you want to protect the finish on your pans, get a flat whisk that is silicone coated.
For drizzling the warm sauce over the apple dumplings right before serving them, I really like using this small ladle with a pouring spout.
If I want to make homemade pie crust for my dumplings, which recipe should I use?
- So glad you asked. My favorite pastry dough for making pie crust is here. It’s a very buttery crust that is worth the work, which really isn’t much in the scheme of things. I like to make several batches
Are these dumplings good without the sauce? I’m not sure my family would like the sauce.
- No worries. If you make the dumplings and just bake them until golden brown and flakey, they are absolutely delicious as is.
Can I skip the pecans in the filling?
- Totally. I like the pecans for a bit of added texture, but if you’re fam prefers no nuts, the dumplings are still completely delicious. Feel free to substitute walnuts for the pecans, too.
What kind of apples work best for making apple dumplings?
- I prefer a tart apple for making apple dumplings. My favorite tart apples are Granny Smith and Jonathon, but any in reality, nearly any type of small, crisp apple will work. I love the tartness of the apple with the sweetness of the sugar paired together.
Why does this apple dumpling recipe instruct to not peel the apples before coring them?
Glad you pointed this out. If you leave the apples peeled while you are working to remove the center (core them), the skin of the apple holds the flesh together to keep it from breaking apart. Yes, you can do this in reverse, but it makes the job a lot more challenging!
Why does this recipe instruct to sprinkle the apple dumplings and the sauce with salt before baking them?
This is just because the salt enhances and mellows the sweetness of the entire dessert. Be sure you try it! Also, if you’d like the cinnamon sauce to be a bit “rosy” in color, add a tiny drop of red food coloring.
How long will apple dumplings keep?
- Apple dumplings don’t keep well for long which is really no problem since they are typically devoured and gone before you can shake a stick. At best, they will keep up to a day or two before the crust begins to get soggy from the moisture of the apple inside.
More favorite recipes to enjoy
- PECAN KRINGLE DESSERT
- SUPER MOIST CARAMEL APPLE CAKE
- MAPLE PECAN SCONES
- SALTED KETTLE CORN CRUNCH AND MUNCH
- AMBROSIA HONEY BUTTER SPREAD
Printable Old Fashioned Apple Dumplings with Warm Cinnamon Sauce Recipe
Old Fashion Apple Dumplings with Cinnamon Sauce
Pie Dough (Pastry Crust Dough)
- 1 box refrigerated pastry crust, containing 2 rolls of pie crust dough
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1/8 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
Brown Sugar Pecan Filling
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
- 1 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup chopped toasted pecans
- 6 small Granny Smith or Jonathon apples, any tart apple works great
Make the Cinnamon Sauce
- Place all ingredients into a medium sauce pan over medium high heat; bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and let the sauce simmer for 10-15 minutes, whisking occasionally; remove from heat and reserve.
Make the Brown Sugar Pecan Filling
- In a small mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour until smooth; stir in pecans.
Core the Apples
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Leaving the apples peeled at this point, use a grapefruit spoon to remove the center of each apple and the seeds, leaving some of the apple intact at the bottom; repeat with the remaining 5 apples. **You can also use an apple corer for this task, just be sure you don't make the hole go all the way through the bottom of the apple. Otherwise, your filling will run out of the bottom of each one.
- Once you've created the cavity in each apple, now go ahead and peel each one. **Leaving the peeling on each apple until it's fully cored keeps the apple flesh from breaking as you are working on each one.
- Place the apples into a greased 11x7 inch greased baking dish to see if they will sit up properly. If they are lopsided, use a paring knife or peeler to adjust on the bottom until they are more even when standing.
Fill the Apples
- Use your fingers to fill the cavity of each apple with the brown sugar/pecan filling, gently pressing it down inside to compact it a bit.
Wrap the Apples with Pie Crust Dough
- Unwrap and unroll the pie crust dough, working one at a time. Place the pastry dough onto a lightly floured work surface; use a rolling pin to roll it out just a bit. Now cut the dough into 3 pieces; repeat with the remaining pie crust roll.
- Wrap each of the filling apples with the pie crust dough pieces, shaping the dough around the apple however you can. They should look rather "rustic" and not perfect at all. Place dough-wrapped apples into the greased casserole dish; gently pour half of the prepared cinnamon sauce around the base of the apples. Sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt.
Bake the Apple Dumplings
- Bake the apple dumplings, uncovered, at 375 degrees F. for 30 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. ; continue to bake an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the apples are nicely tender when tested with a fork. Apple dumplings should be golden brown and flakey.
Serve the Apple Dumplings
- Serve the apple dumplings warm, drizzled with additional warm cinnamon sauce and topped with vanilla ice cream. **Apple dumplings can be reheated in the microwave to serve later.
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