How to Make Fried Apple Pies

Golden brown outside and sweet and fruity inside, these fried apple pies are perfect hand-held treats. Take them to picnics or potlucks, or fry 'em up any time you need a quick and portable piece of pie.

What could be better than a slice of sweet apple pie? A hand-held fried apple pie you can take anywhere! This recipe for half-moon pastries is based on Amish fry pies, delectable little hand pies found in bakeries and roadside stands all around the rolling hills of Amish country.

Filled with pre-cooked apples, they resemble Southern fried pies or apple turnovers, but made with a flaky dough that withstands a full dip in hot oil versus biscuit dough or puff pastry. Once fried to a golden brown, they’re dusted in cinnamon sugar or drizzled with a simple glaze for extra deliciousness.

Serve these fried apple pies as individual desserts, arrange them on a buffet table, take them to a picnic or grab one on your way out of the house in the morning. Because there’s nothing better than breakfast pie! Read on to get started.

Fried Apple Pie Recipe


  • 4-1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 3/4 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

For Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 5 cups finely chopped peeled tart apples
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Oil for deep-fat frying
  • Cinnamon sugar, optional


Step 1: Make the dough

fried apple pie doughTMB Studio

In a large bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Cut in shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In another bowl, combine the eggs and milk, and add to the crumb mixture. Toss with a fork until a ball forms. Cover and chill several hours.

Step 2: Cook the apple filling

apples cooking on the stoveTMB Studio

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat butter over medium heat. Add apples and cook and stir for 5 minutes. Mix brown sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon together and add to the apples. Cook until the apples begin to soften and caramelize, about 7-8 minutes longer, making sure to stir frequently so the apples don’t stick to the pan.

Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and vanilla. Cool completely at room temperature, or spread on a baking sheet and place in the fridge for 20 minutes or the freezer for about 10.

Step 3: Stuff and shape the mini pies

stuff and shape mini apple piesTMB Studio

Divide the dough into 25 portions. On a floured surface, roll each portion into a 4-inch circle. Spoon 2-1/2 tablespoons of the filling on half of each circle. Don’t overstuff or the pies might burst in the fryer. Moisten edges of circle with water and fold the other half over filling. Press edges with a fork to seal.

Step 4: Fry the apple pies

frying apple piesTMB Studio

In a deep cast-iron or electric skillet, heat 1 inch of oil to 375°F. Start with one pie as a test, then fry pies in batches until golden brown, about 3 minutes total, turning once. Drain on paper towels. If desired, roll in cinnamon sugar while still warm so it sticks.

How to Store Fried Apple Pies

fried apple piesTMB Studio

Do fried apple pies need to be refrigerated?

Like regular apple pie, apple fried pies can be stored at room temperature for up to two days. For longer storage, cover loosely and store in the refrigerator for up to two more days. Learn more about refrigerating apple pie and how to properly store the fall dessert.

Can homemade fried apple pies be frozen?

Yes! You can prepare the pies in advance and freeze them raw or freeze after frying. If you want to freeze the pies raw, spread out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place in the freezer. Once frozen, place the pies in a tightly sealed container or freezer bag. They can go directly from the freezer to the oil, but you may need to increase frying time.

If you freeze already cooked pies, consider baking them in a 350° oven or popping in an air-fryer instead of deep frying again, so as not to soak up more oil. Don’t coat the pies in sugar or glaze before freezing.

Tips for Making Fried Apple Pies

What kind of apples are best for fried apple pies?

We’d recommend a tart apple, such as Granny Smith, for these mini apple pies, but you could also go for something a little sweeter like Braeburn as well. Here are more of the best apples for apple pie.

Can you use store-bought pie dough for fried apple pies?

Yes, but you will get a different texture. This is more of a fried dough than a pie crust. If you use store-bought pie crust, consider baking the pies instead.

What kind of oil should I use to fry the pies?

Any neutral oil with a high smoke point, like canola, vegetable or peanut oil, will do. Make sure to use a thermometer to ensure the right frying temp. If the oil is too hot, the pie exterior could get overcooked. If it’s not hot enough, you’ll end up with greasy apple fried pies.

My apple pies burst while frying. What can I do?

We suggest testing one pie before frying them all. If your tester pie didn’t hold together, make sure the remaining pies are moistened with enough water and tightly sealed with a fork before frying.

Can fried apple pies be glazed?

Absolutely! Traditionally, Amish fried pies are finished with a light glaze (think: Hostess apple pies). Instead of cinnamon-sugar, make a simple glaze with powdered sugar thinned with a bit of milk and a touch of vanilla. After the pies have cooled slightly, pour the glaze over the pies, let sit for a few minutes and serve.

Lesley Balla
As an associate food editor for Taste of Home, Lesley writes and edits recipes, works closely with freelancers, and tracks cooking and food trends. After working in hospitality for a decade, Lesley went on to report on the food industry for national, regional and local print and digital publications. Throughout her career, she’s highlighted both famous and unsung culinary heroes, featured up-and-coming wine and spirits destinations, and closely followed the food scenes and chefs in many cities. Her own cooking style has been influenced by the places she's lived: Ohio, Key West, Massachusetts, Oregon, and a long stint in Southern California, where she still visits as often as possible, if only for the citrus and avocados. When not at her desk, you’ll find Lesley taking photos of everything, hitting farmers markets, baking something delicious at home and road-tripping around the Pacific Northwest with her husband and their bottled-chaos pup, Pucci, shucking oysters and cracking crabs along the way.