Apple Pie in a Bag Recipe - Golden Delicious Apples, Cinnamon, and Orange Zest

Apple Pie in a Bag

Apple Pie in a Bag Recipe - Golden Delicious Apples, Cinnamon, and Orange Zest
Region / culture: USA | Preparation time: 30 minutes | Cooking time: 1 hour and 10 minutes | Servings: 8


Apple Pie in a Bag
Apple Pie in a Bag

Apple Pie in a Bag is a delightful twist on the classic apple pie recipe. This unique method of baking the pie inside a parchment paper bag results in a moist, perfectly cooked filling and a beautifully browned crust. The combination of golden delicious apples, a hint of orange juice and zest, and a crumbly topping makes this pie a standout dessert. Whether you're a seasoned baker or new to the kitchen, this recipe offers a fun and foolproof way to create a delicious apple pie that's sure to impress.


The concept of baking pie in a bag has its roots in the desire to achieve the perfect pie: one with a well-cooked filling and a crust that's neither too soggy nor too burnt. This method has been embraced by home cooks and professional bakers alike for its ability to retain the pie's moisture while evenly cooking the filling and preventing the crust from over-browning. The Apple Pie in a Bag recipe combines traditional apple pie ingredients with this innovative cooking technique, creating a modern classic beloved by many.


How to prepare

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C).
  2. In a bowl, toss the apples with orange juice, cinnamon, and 2 tbsp each of flour and sugar.
  3. Fill the pastry shell with the apple mixture, mounding it in the center.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the remaining flour and sugar. Using a pastry blender or fork, cut in the butter until the mixture becomes crumbly.
  5. Stir in the orange zest.
  6. Gather the mixture together to form a soft dough.
  7. Flatten small pieces of dough between your fingers and arrange them on top of the apple filling. Note that the dough will not completely cover the filling.
  8. Wrap the pie in a 30- by 15-inch piece of parchment paper, folding the parchment over the top of the pie. Make sure the parchment does not touch the pie, and staple the ends of the parchment to seal it.
  9. Place the pie on a rack in the center of the oven and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
  10. Carefully open the parchment to allow steam to escape.
  11. Remove the pie from the parchment and let it cool on a wire rack.


  • Consider adding a mix of apple varieties for a more complex flavor profile or incorporating nuts like walnuts or pecans into the crumbly topping for added texture. Spices such as nutmeg or allspice can also be added to the apple mixture for a deeper spice flavor.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure the best results when making Apple Pie in a Bag, consider the following tips and tricks:

- Use high-quality, ripe golden delicious apples for the best flavor and texture.

- Thinly slice the apples to ensure they cook evenly and become tender.

- Be sure to seal the parchment paper bag well to trap steam and prevent the crust from burning.

- Allow the pie to cool on a wire rack after baking to prevent the bottom from becoming soggy.

Serving Suggestions

Serve Apple Pie in a Bag warm or at room temperature with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream for an extra special treat. A sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg on top can also enhance the flavors.

Cooking Techniques

Baking the pie in a parchment paper bag is a unique technique that helps to evenly cook the filling and protect the crust. Ensuring the parchment does not touch the pie directly and allowing steam to escape at the end of baking are key steps in this method.

Ingredient Substitutions

For a healthier version, whole wheat flour can be used in place of all-purpose flour, and the sugar can be reduced or substituted with a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup. For a dairy-free version, ensure the margarine and pie shell are dairy-free.

Make Ahead Tips

The apple filling can be prepared a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to assemble the pie. The assembled pie can also be frozen before baking; just add about 20 minutes to the baking time if baking from frozen.

Presentation Ideas

For a rustic look, serve the pie directly in the parchment paper bag, opened to reveal the golden crust. Alternatively, transfer the pie to a serving dish and garnish with fresh apple slices and orange zest for a more elegant presentation.

Pairing Recommendations

Apple Pie in a Bag pairs beautifully with a cup of hot coffee or tea. For a wine pairing, consider a sweet Riesling or a sparkling Moscato to complement the pie's flavors.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store leftover pie in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 3 days. To reheat, place in a 350°F (177°C) oven for about 10 minutes or until warmed through. The pie can also be frozen for up to 2 months; thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Apple Pie in a Bag contains approximately 300-400 calories. The exact calorie count can vary based on the size of the servings and any modifications to the recipe.


This Apple Pie in a Bag recipe contains carbohydrates primarily from the apples, all-purpose flour, and sugar. Each serving provides approximately 45-55 grams of carbohydrates, making it a significant source of energy. The natural sugars from the apples and the added sugar contribute to the sweetness and overall flavor of the pie.


The fats in this recipe come from the margarine used in the crumbly topping and the pie shell. Each serving contains about 10-15 grams of fat, which contributes to the pie's rich flavor and satisfying texture. Using margarine instead of butter can slightly alter the fat composition, often resulting in lower saturated fat content.


Apple Pie in a Bag is not a significant source of protein, with each serving containing approximately 2-3 grams. The small amount of protein present comes from the all-purpose flour and to a lesser extent from the apples.

Vitamins and minerals

This apple pie recipe is a good source of several vitamins and minerals, particularly from the apples. Apples are rich in vitamin C, potassium, and various antioxidants. The orange juice and zest also add a modest amount of vitamin C, enhancing the nutritional profile of the pie.


Common allergens in this recipe include wheat (from the all-purpose flour) and potentially dairy (if the margarine contains milk derivatives). It's important to check the ingredients of the pie shell and margarine for any other potential allergens.


Overall, Apple Pie in a Bag is a delicious dessert that provides energy primarily through carbohydrates and fats. While not a significant source of protein, it does offer some vitamins and minerals, particularly from the apples. Being mindful of portion sizes can help manage calorie intake.


Apple Pie in a Bag is a delightful and innovative take on the classic apple pie. With its moist filling, perfectly cooked crust, and the added hint of orange, it's a recipe that's sure to become a favorite. By following the tips and variations provided, you can customize the pie to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Whether for a special occasion or a cozy night in, this apple pie is a comforting and delicious treat.

How did I get this recipe?

I can still remember the exact moment I discovered this recipe for Apple Pie in a Bag. It was a warm summer afternoon, and I was visiting my dear friend, Mrs. Jenkins, who lived just down the street from me. Mrs. Jenkins was known for her delicious baked goods, and on that particular day, she had just taken a piping hot apple pie out of the oven. The sweet aroma of cinnamon and apples filled her cozy kitchen, and I couldn't resist asking her for the recipe.

Mrs. Jenkins, a kind and generous soul, was more than happy to share her secret with me. She explained that the key to her delicious apple pie was baking it in a brown paper bag. Intrigued by this unconventional method, I eagerly listened as she walked me through the steps of making the pie.

First, she instructed me to gather all the necessary ingredients: apples, sugar, cinnamon, flour, butter, and of course, a brown paper bag. As we peeled and sliced the apples, Mrs. Jenkins shared with me the history behind the recipe. She explained that she had learned it from her own grandmother, who had passed it down through the generations.

As we assembled the pie, layering the apples with sugar and cinnamon, Mrs. Jenkins shared with me some of the memories she had of baking this pie with her grandmother as a young girl. She told me about the laughter they shared in the kitchen, the stories they swapped, and the bond they formed over a simple recipe.

Once the pie was assembled, Mrs. Jenkins carefully placed it in the brown paper bag, folded the top over, and popped it in the oven. As we waited for the pie to bake, the anticipation grew, and the kitchen filled with the mouth-watering scent of apples and cinnamon.

Finally, the timer went off, and Mrs. Jenkins pulled the pie out of the oven. The bag was golden brown and slightly crisped from the heat, and as she cut into it, the sweet aroma of apples and cinnamon filled the air. We each took a slice and savored the warm, gooey goodness of the pie.

From that day on, Apple Pie in a Bag became a staple in my own kitchen. I made it for family gatherings, potlucks, and special occasions, each time thinking of Mrs. Jenkins and the special bond we shared over a simple recipe.

Over the years, I added my own twists to the recipe, experimenting with different types of apples, spices, and toppings. But no matter how many variations I tried, the original recipe remained my favorite. There was something special about baking a pie in a brown paper bag that brought me back to that warm summer afternoon in Mrs. Jenkins' kitchen.

Now, as I pass the recipe on to my own grandchildren, I hope that they too will cherish the memories and traditions that come with baking this simple, yet delicious, Apple Pie in a Bag. And who knows, maybe one day they'll be sharing this recipe with their own friends and loved ones, spreading the joy and warmth that comes with a homemade pie.


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