It's apple-picking season! Now is the time to plan a trip to the orchard -- whether heading up to New Hampshire or Vermont to see some of the brilliant foliage, or just out to the neighborhood farm, it's time to pull on a flannel, grab a basket, and fill it with beautiful, luscious fruit.

Fresh picked, local apples (and produce in general) always taste better than anything that has been coated in wax and shipped cross country or beyond.

The sweet and sour pucker that occurs when you first pierce the skin of a ripe apple is the exact flavor balance for great pie filling. When mixed with the hearty warmth of pie spices, a little bit of vanilla, sugar and a hint of lemon, your apples will be really ready to strut their stuff and prove why they are the star of the season, and your table's center piece.

Having said that, I've got just the twist on traditional apple pie that transforms the dessert into smaller, individual portions that is irresistible to kids and adults alike.


This recipe calls for a muffin pan, which is used to bake 12 mini pies simultaneously. Additionally, if you have filling left over, it's a great idea to cook it down (instructions below) and serve atop each portion. You can use homemade pie dough from your favorite recipe, store bought, or bakery made. Just make sure that you are able to roll out or cut directly from it, and not already in a pie dish form. Check out the Your Personal Chef blog online for my grandmother's secret recipe!

Mini Apple Pies


  • 2 large apples, peeled, cored and diced small
  • 1 pie crust dough, rolled out thin (can be homemade or store bought)
  • 2 Tbs. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg or ground clove
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 lemon, for juice
  • 1 dozen count muffin pan
  • Muffin pan liners


Jessica Roy takes mini apple pies out of the oven.
Jessica Roy takes mini apple pies out of the oven. (sun/jon hill)
  • 1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place muffin cup liners into each section of the muffin pan.
  • 2. In a medium size bowl, mix the diced apples, sugar, spices, vanilla and lemon juice and set aside.
  • 3. Meanwhile, roll out the pie dough on a lightly floured surface. With a knife, gently cut 3-3.5 inch circles or squares of dough. Press dough into the muffin liners In the pan, making a thin even layer on the bottom and around the sides. Cut leftover dough into strips to lay across the top.
  • 3. Spoon apple filling into each cup. Crisscross the remaining dough pieces across the top of each mini pie, and lightly press into the sides.
  • 4. Bake at 375 degrees F for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly.
  • 5. If you have any apple filling left over, place in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and bring to a small simmer. Allow to cook, while giving a few good stirs, for about 10 minutes until it softens, and resembles a rustic apple sauce. Serve atop the tarts for maximum flavor potential.