Apple Picking and Apple Crumb Pie

Apple Crumb Pie

Apple picking is a fun activity the whole family can enjoy. Unlike blueberry or strawberry picking, apple picking is easy even for the littlest of hands. Small children can quickly see their efforts add up, which gives them a real sense of accomplishment. Recently, our 18-month-old picked his weight in apples (when he wasn’t busy eating his weight in them). “Jubilant” is a great word to describe how my children felt about the whole experience.

Apple Picking Family

Apple picking is not only a fun form of entertainment, and a wonderful way for the family to work together, but it’s also a great way to save money! That’s because picking your own seasonal produce is often cheaper than what you can buy at the grocery store. And the benefits are many. Local produce picked by you, is picked at the peak of ripeness, which means it’s higher in enzymes that aid digestion. And vitamins are at their highest levels in just picked, ripe produce – giving you the most bang for your buck!

Apple Picking

Since picking apples is so easy, they accumulate quickly. We came away with 100+lbs, which we then preserved as a family – another great relationship building experience! Each child had a job, even the littlest.  Daddy and the six-year-old peeled, our five-year-old was responsible for washing the apples, our three-year-old was responsible for bringing the washed apples to Daddy, and our 18-month-old was busy putting all the apples in the sink to be washed.   I was busy cooking, and canning the abundance into apple pie filling, applesauce, and apple butter. It was a great opportunity to teach our children that when we work together we can accomplish much in a little amount of time.

Apple Crumb Pie - Ready to Serve

But we didn’t can all of the harvest.  We kept some fresh for eating and pie baking. One of my favorite apple pies is Apple Crumb Pie, the crunchy topping and warm, sweet apple inside with a soft bottom crust give the mouth a full multi-sensory experience in apple pie eating, especially when topped with cold vanilla ice cream. So, gather your kids into the kitchen with you and have them help you assemble the pie, then read the book How To Make an Apple Pie and See the World’ (affiliate link) as part of your homeschooling curriculum, or just for fun!

Apple Crumb Pie {with gluten-free options}



  • 6 cups apples, sliced
  • 1/2 cup sugar or sucanat
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon all spice


  • 2/3 cup flour or gluten-free all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats (use GF oats for a GF pie or omit)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar or sucanat
  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened


  1. In a large bowl combine all the ingredients for the filling and stir to coat apples.
  2. Place apple filling into your favorite pie crust.
  3. In a medium bowl combine all the ingredients for the topping, cut in the butter using a fork until the mixture resembles course crumbles.
  4. Sprinkle the crumb mixture over the apple pie filling taking care to cover the whole pie.
  5. Bake on the middle rack at 375 for 45-60 minutes until filling is hot and bubbly.


Katie, SimpleFoody.org

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  1. YUM! What a perfect recipe for fall! We love to go apple picking too and find all kinds of creative ways to use our bounty. The book you mentioned sounds so fun! Thanks for sharing! Blessings, Kelly

  2. do you have a certain kind of Apple you would recommend? Also, I would love for you to share a pie crust recipe to go with this pie. looks yummy, can’t wait to try it!

    1. Nikki, I use a mix from Bob’s Red Mill that makes a gluten-free pie crust since we are a gluten-free family. You can use any apple, but my favorite is Mutsu apple as it is sweet yet keeps a firm texture once cooked.

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