Cheez-It® Apple Pie
This one is for all the Cheez-It® lovers out there! If you’re a cheese lover and a fiend for Cheez-It® crackers like me, you’ll love this pie mashup. Crushed Cheez-Its® are incorporated into the pie dough for a cheesy flavor that pairs perfectly with tart apples. Weird? Yes. Delicious? Yes. Will other people think it's gross and you're weird. Yes definitely, but that shouldn't stop you from making this pie.
Let’s be clear. This is not a gourmet cheese pie crust. If you’re a purist looking for gourmet cheese flavor, just use a nice grated sharp cheddar cheese incorporated into your pie dough. If you have a trashy affinity for Cheez-It® like me and want to know how to make a Cheez-It Pie that tastes amazing and not like an abomination, keep reading.
Which Flavor Cheez-It® Is Best?
Any flavor you like will totally work for this pie. I personally love White Cheddar Cheez-It® and that’s what I used in my pie. But if you like the Original flavor, or Parmesan, or Pepper Jack, or Cheddar Jack it’s all good. Even the Hot & Spicy could be good? Pick your favorite flavor to smash into this pie. The only flavor I’m dubious of is the Buffalo Wing because even though I also clucking love buffalo wing sauce almost as much as I love cheese, I’m not sure it belongs with apples. Maybe I’m wrong! Someone try it and report back.
Perfect Pie Crust Tips! If you’re a pie crust newbie and want to know how to make the perfect pie crust, check out my tips. Video instructions
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Get the Recipe
Cheez-It® Apple Pie
A savory, cheesy Cheez-It® cracker pie crust filled with spiced apples for an untraditional take on Classic Apple Pie. It’s an American snack cracker version of a slice of cheddar cheese on top of an apple pie.
Time to Prepare: 2 hours (plus 1 hour dough chill time)
Makes 1 9-inch pie with top and bottom crust
Cheez-It® Pie Crust:
1 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
2 cups Cheez-It® crackers, crushed
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
6 to 8 tablespoons ice water
8 cups peeled, sliced apple (from about 3 pounds whole apples - Granny Smith, Pink Lady, or any other tart apple)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons butter, diced in small pieces
Make the Cheez-It® Pie Crust
1. Mix 1 cup flour, 2 cups crushed Cheez-It® crackers, 1 teaspoon granulated sugar, and ½ teaspoon salt -- in a large bowl or in a food processor.
2. Add 2 sticks cold butter, cut in the butter into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingers. If using a food processor, add half at a time, pulsing several times after each addition. Pulse to cut in the butter and mix until the texture is like soft wet sand with butter chunks no larger than pea-sized. OK if there are large chunks of Cheez-It® crackers.
3. Slowly drizzle ice water a little at a time to the dough. Mix with your hands or pulse in food processor. Then add more ice water a tablespoon at a time until the dough just starts to hold together.
4. Press pie dough to see if it holds together. You know that the mixture is ready if when you pinch some of the crumbly dough together with your fingers, it holds together. Don’t add too much water or your dough will be tough.
5. Gather the mixture and divide the dough into two halves. Knead just enough for the dough to hold together, but don’t over-knead. Press the dough together and form two flat dough disks. This will help when you need to roll it out.
6. You’ll see cold butter chunks and streaks of Cheez-It® crackers speckling the dough. These small bits of butter will spread out into layers as the crust bakes to create a flaky crust.
7. Wrap each dough disk in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for one hour or up to 2 days.
Make the Apple Filling:
1. Peel apples and cut into chunky slices. Combine the sliced apples and lemon juice in a large mixing bowl.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cornstarch, salt, and spices. Sprinkle the mixture over the apples, and stir to coat them. Stir in the vanilla. Set aside to macerate while you roll out the pie dough.
Assemble the Pie:
1. Remove one crust disk from the refrigerator and place on a rolling surface between two large sheets of parchment paper. Very lightly flour the dough disk to help it stick less to the parchment.
2. Roll out with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8-inch thick. As you roll out the dough, if the parchment is getting wrinkled on the dough, peel the parchment off the dough to straighten out the paper, sprinkle lightly with flour, and continue rolling.
3. Peel the parchment slowly and carefully off the dough on one side. If it’s very sticky, put it in the fridge for a little bit to chill and stiffen. Place the parchment back on top and flip the dough with both parchment papers over. Peel the parchment off the other side.
4. Place a 9-inch pie plate upside-down on top of the dough. Grab the side of the pie plate along with the parchment paper with both hands and flip them right-side up.
5. Take the sides of the dough and lift them gently to fall into the pie pan so that it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Don’t stretch or press the dough down. Use a pair of kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1-inch of the edge of the pie dish.
6. Roll out the second disk of dough, as before. Leave the second pie dough on the parchment paper.
7. Add apple filling into pie pan, place the apples as closely together as possible so the filling shrinks less while baking. Gently place the second dough onto the top of the filling in the pie.
8. Trim excess dough on the sides, leaving a 3/4 inch overhang. Fold the edge of the top piece of dough over and under the edge of the bottom piece of dough, press and crimp together using thumb and forefinger or press with a fork.
9. Score the top of the pie with four 2-inch long cuts, so that steam from the pie can escape while baking.
10. Place pie in the freezer and freeze for 30-45 minutes before baking. This will help set the pie dough so the crust holds its shape better as it bakes.
11. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the slightly frozen pie on a parchment or foil-lined baking sheet to catch any drips. Bake the pie on the bottom rack of the oven for 20 minutes at 425°F, then reduce the oven temperature to 375°F and bake for another 40-45 minutes until you see the filling bubbling inside the pie and crust is golden brown. Turn the pie 180 degrees halfway through baking to brown evenly on both sides.
12. Remove from oven and cool completely before slicing and eating. Hot pie is runny pie, it's worth the wait. Cooled pie will be more solidified and easier to slice.
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