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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Gluten Free Apple Pie

Miniature Apple Pies for National Apple Pie Day 
Free of gluten, nuts, eggs, soy, with sugar and dairy free options

Gluten Free Miniature Apple Pies for National Apple Pie Day

 I’m finally ahead of time for once!  Those of you who follow me on Google +, Twitter or Facebook know that I sometimes post about funny food days.  Some of you have asked that I include a recipe or info about those days.  A while back I managed to post a tutorial for making Turkish Coffee  on National Coffee Day, but I finally managed to plan ahead and get one done early! 

This apple pie is made especially in honour of December 5, National Apple Pie day.  The origins of this mysterious day appear unknown, but apparently there is also an Apple Pie day in May, too. 

Apple pie is so awesome it gets TWO national days.  

Hubby, who has no gluten problems, liked these so much that he ate two in a row.  Then he suggested we just have apple pie for dinner…

So this recipe is a bit of a modification of my Miniature GroundCherry Pie recipe .  It’s simpler and less time consuming.  The inspiration for this particular form of pie comes from a great post on the Nourishing Gourmet.  However, since that recipe calls for almond flour, which I’m allergic to, I stuck with my original recipe and just modified it a little bit. 

I suspect that these would freeze well, too, because the ground cherry pies froze quite well.  We, of course, have eaten them all before freezing became necessary!  

 The directions are written out below, but here are some pics to help familiarize yourself with the process of prepping these tasty little hand pies. 

Rolling out apple pie crust

Filling and covering the pies

Using up the scrap
Funny how a photo of one's own hand usually looks rather grotesque and huge, eh?

Gluten Free Pie Dough Ingredients: (Makes about 9 mini pies)

¾ c either brown rice flour or sorghum flour
½ c tapioca starch (or arrowroot starch)
¼ c sweet rice flour (aka glutinous rice flour – don’t worry, it’s gluten free, it’s just called that because it’s made from sticky rice)
8 Tbsp butter or dairy free alternative like Earth Balance chilled and chopped into chunks (you can also use half coconut oil, if desired)*
¾ tsp xanthan or guar gum {update Oct. 4, 2013-I've tried this without gum and it's even better}
¼ c cold water + extra as needed

*Updated for clarity - I've tried this using 4Tbsp butter and 4Tbsp coconut oil instead of 8Tbsp and it was fine. I haven't tried using just 8 Tbsp of coconut oil so I don't know how it will work out)

Apple Pie Filling:

2 c finely diced apples (about 2 apples, peeled)
¾ tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp rice flour
A dash of salt
(Optional, 1 Tbsp brown sugar and ¼ tsp cinnamon for sprinkling on top)


1. To make the dough: In a food processor, add all the dough ingredients except the water.  Pulse to blend. 

2. Slowly add the water and continue pulsing until the dough forms a ball.  Add more water by the tablespoon if the dough is too dry.   

3. Turn the ball of dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap or wax paper, wrap, and chill about 30 minutes. 
4. In the meantime, prepare the filling.  Mix together all the filling ingredients.  Now I kind of cheated and tossed this in the microwave for 5 minutes.  This serves 2 purposes: it brings out the pectin and makes the filling gel together.  If you have oral allergy syndrome, this and the baking process help to kill the allergen proteins and make the apples safer to eat. 

If you don’t like microwaves, you can cook this on the stove just until the apples become a bit soft.  Don’t overcook, though, you don’t want applesauce. 

5. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. 

6. Roll out the dough about ¼” thick between two sheets of wax paper.  Hint: This will roll much better if you sprinkle the dough with a bit of rice flour on both sides.

7. Using a circular object of the desired size (i.e. a glass with a large rim, the edge of a glass jar, or a metal jar lid) cut out circles to make the tops and bottoms of the pies and arrange on the baking sheet.  Keep re-rolling and cutting out the dough until all that’s left is a scrap.  

I flattened this little bit in my hand, scooped a tiny bit of filling into it, then formed a bowl around the filling.  This made a perfect bite sized pie!

8. On half of the circles, scoop about 2 Tablespoons worth of filling into the centre.  Dip your finger in a small bowl of water and dampen the edges of the circle. 

9. Place the remaining circles over top the filling and press down around the edges. At intervals, indent a little harder around the edges for a wave-like effect. 

10. Using a sharp knife, score a little X on the top to allow steam to escape. 

11. If using the cinnamon and sugar, sprinkle around the top and press down gently. 

12.  Preheat oven to 350F and bake for 15 minutes, until the dough is fairly firm.  These won’t really brown because gluten free flour doesn’t seem to do brown like regular flour.  

And there you have it, miniature pies perfect for National Apple Pie Day!!  
Any plans to celebrate?! 

Do your lips tingle when you eat fresh fruits or vegetables? 
You might want to check out my cookbook, Living with Oral Allergy Syndrome: A Gluten and Meat-Free Cookbook for Wheat, Soy, Nut, Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Allergies!

Get it in print from:
or ask at your local bookstore if they can order it for you!


  1. These are adorable! Just because they're tiny and cute, I might even get my kids to try apple pie! Thanks for linking up on Gluten-Free Monday at (Can't wait for you post. I started working on it today, and I definitely will be making some drawstring bags!)

    1. Hi Heidi, yes, I think you can feed these little pies to your kids pretty guilt free (we even had them with breakfast the other morning ;).

      And I'm very happy to be posting on the 12 Days of Christmas!

  2. I love this recipe! One question - I can't get the dough right. It just always seems to be too dry. This is the first gluten free recipe I've made...what am I doing wrong?

    1. Hi Lyz, do you mean that the dough is too dry to work with, or too dry after it's baked? If you're following my recipe, I suggest adding cold water by the Tablespoon and then mixing until you get a more doughy, workable consistency. Depending on your flour combo sometimes you'll need to add more or less water. Then make sure you refrigerate it for about 30 minutes before rolling it. I've also found that the pie is best eaten heated up a little, it softens the dough (although I think pie should almost always be eaten warm!). If that doesn't help, let me know and I'll try and help you figure out what went wrong.

      Although this particular recipe should not be at all dry, either as dough or when baked, GF dough often does have a different consistency than regular dough, unfortunately!

  3. Looks delicious! As far as the "half coconut oil" Does that mean if using coconut oil, you'd only need 4 tbsp, or that one should only use half coconut oil with either butter or earth balance? Thanks for your help, I'm dairy free and I live in Tokyo, so finding things like earth balance is difficult.

    1. Hi Lindsey, sorry for the confusion, I meant you can use 4 Tbsp of coconut oil AND 4 Tbsp of butter or earth balance. That said, you could probably get away with using ALL coconut oil, I just haven't tried it that way so (I don't see why it wouldn't work, though). It just might give it a strong coconut flavour, depending on your oil.

  4. These are very cool. I have been wondering about making little pies/pockets but wasn't sure if I could do it GF, so I am excited to try these!!
    Thank you for sharing on Natural Living Monday!

    1. Hi Angela, thanks so much for hosting the link up :) I hope you enjoy the pies!!

  5. so yummy! This recipe IS being featured! Thanks for linking up to Tasteful Tuesdays at Nap-Time Creations. The features are already up on Facebook and the new party with features will go live Monday night at 8:30 pm.

    1. Yay! Thanks so much, Emily :) And thanks for hosting Tasteful Tuesdays!

  6. Hi Danielle,
    What awesome little Apple Pies and a great holiday treat. Hope you have a great week and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  7. What perfect little hand pies! I love it! Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :)
    I hope to see you again this week!

    Stop by this week to see if you were the winner of the Sugar and Spice Prize pack! We had a super great variety of recipes and entries this week!

    Cindy from

  8. Awesome Gluten Free apple pie with crumble topping nutrition facts and nutritional information. This is a good site to spent time on .I just stumbled upon your informative blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts.

  9. How important is the xanthan or guar gum? I don't like using those products, but your crust looks wonderful!

    1. That's a really good question. I'm trying to challenge myself and move away from using gums, too, but I haven't tried the pie crust without it. I suspect that the sweet rice flour would help to bind everything so there's a decent chance you might be able to do away with the gum. If you try it, let me know, and the next time I make it I'll try it without the gums and report back here :)

    2. I tried it yesterday without the gums and it turned out awesome, and my husband said he loved it :) It's flakier, so I've changed the recipe above to eliminate the need for gums. Thanks for asking!

  10. Thanks to Carole's Chatter 'Food on Fridays', I found your recipe for buns, and then I found this recipe. I think I will try this for a gathering I go to on Friday's. With so many people who are eating gluten free these days, I'm trying to expand my baking repetoire to include more gluten free recipes.
    I do have a question though. Can I substitute potato starch for the tapioca starch? Well, I am going to try it anyway. Thanks for a interesting recipe.

    1. Hi Sid, I'm really sorry, I haven't tried it with potato starch so I can't say for sure. I find tapioca starch to be a little better than potato for most baked goods, but if you do give it a try, let me know if it worked out for you!

  11. Instead of making mini pies, can I use this recipe for just a regular size pie? If yes, do you have a recipe for a regular size apple pie? Thank you.

    1. Hi Irene, you'd need to double it to make enough for a crust on the bottom and one on top. There will be some dough leftover, so you could always use the leftover to make mini apple pies on the side, or use the rest for my Mini Chocolate Pudding Pies ;)

  12. Oh my gosh these look so yummy!! I love apple pie, anytime, anywhere.

    1. They're delicious. You could even have them for breakfast, like pop-tarts ;)


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