If you ever get to know me or read my personal blog, you’d quickly realize that I am food obsessed. I’m pretty game to try any type of food and grew up in an eclectic household where traditional Japanese food of octopus and sashimi were devoured and Norwegian meat cakes were a family favorite. But, when it comes to my all-time favorite food, I go all-American. For me, it doesn’t get better than apple pie!
There’s something about that flakey crust and baked gooey apple mixture that gets my heart beating. There’s nothing more comforting for me than pulling out a warm and steamy pie from the oven and having a slice with my morning latte. I probably differ from most people, though, in that my favorite part of the pie isn’t just the filling. Instead, I love that warm buttery crust that’s topped with juuuust the right amount of gooey pie filling to give it the perfect amount of sweetness. To up my crust-to-filling-ratio, I decided that I needed to transform my favorite food into cookie form. That way, my food of choice would be portable (helloo breakfast on a busy day!) and extra cute! That’s my personal heaven right there!
There is one pie recipe that I’ve been making for a few year now that involves making a homemade salted caramel sauce. I wanted to incorporate the same thing into these apple pie cookies, but knew that a a caramel sauce would leak out of the cookies. Then it hit me! I drove to the drugstore, picked up some chewy caramels, and was ready to go. To make this recipes, simply peel and slice up your apples, mix them with a little sugar and cinnamon, place them on the cut pie crusts, add a few pieces of diced caramels, sprinkle on some sea salt, and bake them away! Super easy and super fast!
This recipe is made easier and more convenient by using pre made pie dough. I know there are people who are all about things being 100% homemade, but trust me on this one. Store-bought pie crust is just as good and I usually use Pillsbury as my go-to crust and have a funny story that pertains to it. Back in my high school, I was always known as the baker. A couple of times each week, you could find me handing out baked goods to all my friends and classmates. One day, I brought in an apple pie to my French class and, after just one bite, my French teacher turned to me and said that she had never tasted such a delicious pie and she was completely blown away by the crust. She told me that even though she had grown up in the south with mountains of homemade biscuits and crusts, she had never had one so flakey and utterly delicious! I didn’t have the heart to tell her that it was good ol’ Pillsbury!
This recipe is the perfect way to ease yourself out of the post-Christmas blues. I actually missed out on most of the Christmas fun this year since I traveled to Japan with most of my entire extended family on my asian side. Turns out, Christmas doesn’t seem to be that big of a thing in Japan- at least from what I can tell! I lived vicariously through my friends in terms of baking, but I know that I’m going to be baking up these delicious pretty little things as soon as I get home from my trip!
Pie for breakfast! Pie for lunch! Pie for dinner! I don’t discriminate.
Salted Caramel Apple Hand Pies
- 2 cups diced apples (I used Granny Smith)
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ cup + 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp flour
- 1 refrigerated pie crust
- 10 soft caramels, roughly chopped
- sea salt
- one beaten egg (for egg wash)
- In a large bowl, mix together the apples, cinnamon, sugar, and flour until evenly combined.
- Unroll the pre-made pie dough and use a biscuit cutter or the rim of a glass to cut out circular pieces of dough.
- To assemble the mini pies, place a tablespoon of the apple mixture on to a piece of the dough and top it with about a ½ tbsp of the roughly chopped soft caramels. Top with another circular disk of dough and crimp the edges down with your hand or a fork. Use a fork to pierce a small vent on the top of the dough. If desired, make decorations out of extra pieces of dough! Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle sea salt on top.
- Bake at 350 for 11-13 minutes or until the pie crust is golden. Enjoy!