Gluten Free Berry and Apple Pie
Celebrate summer with this apple pie (and a berry pie variation for my low FODMAP friends)!
If you follow me on Instagram, you probably noticed a lot of pies floating around on my stories recently. It was Marc’s birthday last week, and since pie is his absolute favorite dessert, I spent all day making him a pie (and making a mess in the process… obviously) because I love him.
Hopefully if you’re looking at this pie recipe you already know, but I need to be frank here: pies are a lot of work. And so I’ve made it a tradition for the past few years to make pies just twice a year: pumpkin pie in the fall, and this funny-looking apple/berry pie combo in the summer. I posted the pumpkin pie recipe ages ago, so I figured it was high time I shared my summer pie recipe!
I’m sure you’re wondering what’s up with this weird half and half pie situation. I’m going to blame it on Marc again — you see, he always wants apple pie in the summer, but of course apples are very high in FODMAPs! And I’m not about to spend all day making something that I can’t enjoy, plus berry pie is my favorite kind of pie. So over the years, we’ve perfected the art of making a pie that’s half apple and half berry. You of course don’t have to do this — you can just take the recipe below and double either of the fillings to make a berry or apple pie — but it’s also fun to have options!
The pie crust is the same tried and true crust from my pumpkin pie, which I adapted from Alana at The Bojon Gourmet. I’ve been using it for years and it’s the absolute best pie crust recipe (never mind that it’s also 100% gluten free!). I also adapted both the berry and apple fillings from her book, Alternative Baker. My pies aren’t anywhere as photogenic as hers, but they are still delicious! 😋
The trickiest part of this pie is clearly constructing the wall to separate the different fillings. Especially if you’re sensitive to FODMAPs — you don’t want apple juices sneaking into your berry side! The key is to make it tall enough so you have enough dough to press securely into the bottom and sides of the pie, creating a seal. Then when you pre-bake the crust, push your pie weights up to the wall to keep it upright. But don’t worry too much about getting it perfect — I can assure you that I’ve messed it up plenty of times in the past and the pies are still just as good. 😉
Alright! Let’s eat some pie!
(bonus: you get this ridiculous-looking peace sign pie situation after you’ve eaten a slice of each 😂)
Berry and Apple Pie
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons ice water from 1 cup ice cubes filled with cool water
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons cold buttermilk (or lemon juice / vinegar + milk, see notes)
- ¾ cup sticky rice flour
- ½ cup oat flour
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons millet flour
- 3 tablespoons tapioca starch
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons cornstarch (or more tapioca starch, but cornstarch will keep the crust from getting soggy)
- 4 tablespoons ground flax seed or chia seeds
- 1 ½ tablespoons sugar
- ¾ teaspoons salt
- 12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (1.5 sticks)
- ½-¾ box strawberries
- ½ box blueberries
- Zest from half a lemon
- ¼ lemon juiced
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch or tapioca starch
- Pinch salt
- 2 medium apples (I usually do one granny smith and one honeycrisp)
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch or tapioca starch
- 1 tablespoon rum or bourbon optional
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch salt
Crumble (for apple pie)
- ¼ cup oat flour
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup walnut pieces optional
Mix (15 mins)
- Fill a 1 cup measuring cup with ice and pour water into it — this is your ice water. If you’re making buttermilk with vinegar + milk, go ahead and mix that too (pour 2 teaspoons vinegar or lemon juice in a ½ cup measuring cup and filling the rest of it with milk).
- In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients: sticky rice, oat, millet flours, tapioca starch, cornstarch, ground flax or chia seed, sugar, and salt.
- Cut the butter into ¼" squares and scatter on top of the dry ingredients. Cut into dough with a pastry cutter or your hands. You want the butter to be a little larger than typical pie dough – Alana recommends a gravely texture with lots of almond-size chunks and some smaller pieces.
- Measure out ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons of water from the cup of ice and water (if you run out of water, just pour some more over the ice), and pour into a small bowl. Add the buttermilk and mix. Pour this into the flour mixture 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with a spatula to mix everything evenly. Only add enough liquid for the dough to hold together when you squeeze it — this will mean that there are still some dry bits around the edges but this is ok. It’s better to add too little liquid than too much. (You'll probably end up adding in somewhere from 6-8 tbl.) Gather the dough up as much as you can in the bowl, kneading a little, to get it to come together.
- Time to fraisage. This creates a flakier dough as we’re going to flatten the butter chunks. Pour the dough onto your counter and, using the heel of your hand, drag sections of the dough across the counter several inches. (See photos in this post if you'd like a visual.) This will be messy, and dough will stick to your counter — it’s ok. Do this a few times to get all the butter, but keep in mind the more you work with the dough, the sticker it’s going to get. If you have a dough scraper, use it to get the dough off the counter (or just use a spatula), and form the dough into a ball.
Chill (30 mins)
- Flatten the dough slightly and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate the dough until firm, about 30 mins.
Fold + Chill (45 mins)
- Optional (but recommended): Fold the dough. This is a technique pastry chefs use to give croissants and the like their flaky laters. Read: the secret to flaky pie crust. It’s technically an option, but you should do it. Take the dough out of the refrigerator (let it sit on the counter for a sec if it’s gotten too hard to roll). Dust your counter with sticky rice flour, and roll the dough into a circle/rectangle that’s ~¼ inch thick (it helps to start by gently pressing down with the rolling pin until it’s softened enough to actually roll). If the edges crack, press them back together. You’ll get a shape that’s just a tad smaller than what you’d make a pie crust. Now, fold the dough into thirds — like a letter — and then thirds again. (Like this and this.)
- Re-wrap and refrigerate for another 30 minutes. At this point you can refrigerate the dough for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 2 months.
Shape + chill (60 mins)
- Grease a 9-inch pie plate with butter. Take the dough out of the refrigerator (let it sit on the counter for a sec if it’s too hard to work with, but don't let it warm up too much or it'll be very hard to work with). Dust the counter with flour and roll out the dough into about a 14-inch circle (remember, press gently with the rolling pin first until it’s soft enough to roll, and press the edges together when they crack). Flip the dough over occasionally so it doesn’t stick, and when it gets too big to flip, lift one side at a time to re-distribute flour under the crust. Try to do this quickly so the dough doesn't warm up too much.
- Fold the crust in half and then half again and ease it into the pie plate. Trim the edges to slightly larger than the plate, reserving the scraps for any needed repairs and to build your "wall". Fold the edges under and give the crust a wavy edge by shaping it with your index finger and thumb.
- Gather together the remaining crust and roll into a rectangle that's a few inches longer than the width of your pie plate and a few inches wide. Press the "wall" into the bottom and sides of your pie crust to create a tight seal.
- Prick the bottom all over with a fork. Refrigerate for 20 minutes, and then freeze for at least 20 minutes or until solid. (Start preheating the oven when you put the crust in the refrigerator — see below)
Pre-bake (45 mins)
- While the pie chills, preheat the oven. Move an oven rack to the lower third of the oven and remove all other racks. Preheat the oven to 400°F. If you have a baking stone, place it on the rack.
- Remove the crust from the freezer. Line with parchment paper and fill it to the top with pie weights (clean pennies, dry beans, rice, or quinoa work too). Make sure the pie is filled enough that the weights press into the sides, otherwise your crust will collapse which is sad.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the dough can hold its form without the parchment. Remove the parchment and weights and cook for another 8-12 minutes, until the bottom is dry and slightly toasty. Reduce the oven temp to 375°F (if you’re using a pizza stone, leave it in the oven).
Make filling (15 mins)
- For the berry filling: While the crust bakes, wash berries, and hull and quarter strawberries. Place the berries in a medium bowl and add the lemon zest and juice, sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Toss gently to combine, and then set aside.
- For the apple filling: Peel apples, cut off the core, and slice them about ¼" thick. Place the apple slices in a medium bowl and gently toss with maple syrup, lemon juice, starch, cinnamon, salt, and liquor if using. Set aside to soak up the juices while you prepare the rest of the pie.
- For the apple side crumble: Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in small bowl and whisk to combine. Cut butter into small pieces and then use a pastry cutter or your hands to work the butter. Keep crumbling everything together until it looks like a coarse meal. Stir in walnuts if using. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Bake (60 mins)
- Spoon the berry filling into one half of the pie. Place apple slices into the other half, overlapping them so they're packed tightly. Sprinkle the crumble over the apple half.
- Place the pie on the pizza stone or baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 40 minutes. If the pie isn't done after 40 minutes, reduce oven to 350 and bake for another 10-15 minutes, until both sides are bubbling — especially the berries.
Cool (2 hrs)
- Allow the pie to cool at least 2 hours to let the fruit set. (I know you want to skip this step, but it's important!) Pie is best served slightly warm (you can warm it in the oven again if you like), and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
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