Mini Apple Shortbread Pies marries ripe, juicy apples with cinnamon sugar for a delightful pie filling nestled in a buttery cookie crust. These individual apple pies are full of all the comforts of fall.
Just when I thought that fall temperatures were in full force, BAM! We’re back to muggy 70 degrees F. You do you, Mother Nature. I’ll never complain about 70 degree days in October. I’m still craving all the fall flavors–especially if pumpkin and apples are involved. Visions of Pumpkin Kiss Cookies, Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls, and hot apple cider with Apple Cinnamon Doughnuts are swirl in my head on a 24/7 rotation. I just adore this time of year. My soccer team does too, because they benefit from my baking cravings.
I’m not exactly sure when it happened, but I started baking for my soccer team a few years ago. I think that it started as a reward for showing up to every practice each week. I continued baking for them as a little something to look forward to after playing games All the Inclement Weather. As I’ve coached most of the kids on my team for going on three years, so they’ve come to expect freshly baked treats after our doubleheaders on Saturdays.
We’ve officially advanced to the point that my budding soccer stars not only look forward to the treats, but they’ve started putting in requests.
Mind you, these requests usually occur as we finish practice at sunset on Friday night and have to report back at 8 a.m. the next day for our games. For at least the past two years, Scarmie, Bug, and Kit-Kat have been
begging politely requesting mini apple pies for Saturday treats. To which I always reply, “If y’all want mini pies, you best come over and help me make them!” They always enthusiastically agree. Then their moms act like the voice of reason in explaining that if we started baking after practice, we’d be up all night and wouldn’t play well the next day. Thank goodness someone acts like a proper adult in this scenario because I’d be planning a Midnight Baking Party.
Although to be honest, the thought of baking into the night only to get up before sunrise isn’t all that appealing on a Friday night.
Ya feel me?
But I love those kids like they’re my own, so I always bake something anyway. I try to keep it simple so that I might get a touch of sleep before the games.
Then some weeks my inspiration and logic fail to intersect, and I end up staying up longer than I should just so I can bake those little mini pies for my team.
Last week was one of those weeks.
Mini Apple Shortbread Pies marry ripe, juicy apples with cinnamon sugar for a delightful pie filling nestled in a buttery cookie crust. These individual apple pies are full of all the comforts of fall. If you’re like me, Mini Apple Shortbread Pies are totally worth losing a little sleep in order to see the pure joy on 14 sweet faces when they see that you “finally made mini apple pies because we’ve been asking for-ever!” If you’re a normal person, then just make the Mini Apple Shortbread Pies at a normal hour and bring joy to people’s faces after a full night’s sleep.
All the goodness of apple pie in the palm of your hand!
Yields 24 Mini Pies
Mini Apple Shortbread Pies marry ripe, juicy apples with cinnamon sugar for a delightful pie filling nestled in a buttery cookie crust. These individual apple pies are full of all the comforts of fall.
1 hr, 15 Prep Time
15 minCook Time
1 hr, 30 Total Time
- 1 recipe shortbread cookie dough , chilled
- 5 small apples
- 1/3 C. granulated sugar
- ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. unsalted butter
- Additional granulated sugar for dusting, optional
- Prepare the shortbread cookie dough and chill in the refrigerator, as directed by the recipe.
- While the cookie dough is chilling, prepare the apple filling by peeling, coring, and dicing the apples. Five small apples should yield six cups of diced apples. Melt the butter in a skillet set over medium heat. Once the butter begins to froth, stir in the diced apples. Sprinkle the sugar and cinnamon over the apples, stirring well to coat the apples. Sauté the apple mixture until apples for 3 to 5 minutes or until the apples are just tender but not yet soft. Remove the apples from the heat. Transfer the apple filling to a glass or ceramic bowl to cool to room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Gather two standard muffin pans with 12 wells each.
- While the apple filling is cooling, set the chilled cookie dough onto the counter to warm enough to roll without cracking; about 10 minutes. Roll the shortbread dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Use a 3-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter to cut 24 circles of dough. Line each of the interior wells of a standard muffin pan with a circle of dough. Gently lift the sides of the circles in the pan to ensure that the dough is fully seated into the bottom of each well. Briefly chill the dough lined muffin pans while working with the remaining cookie dough.
- Piece together the scraps of dough left from cutting the circles. Reroll the dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Use a 2-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter to cut 24 top “crusts” for the miniature pies. Set the top crusts about 2 inches apart on the prepared half sheet pan as they are cut. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until just barely beginning to brown around the edges. Cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- While the top crust cookies are baking, remove the muffin pans from the refrigerator. Spoon 1 ½ to 2 tablespoons of apple filling into each of the dough lined muffin cups. Bake the mini pies for 15 to 18 minutes or until the edges of the crusts are golden brown.
- Remove the mini pies from the oven and center a top crust cookie on each one. Cool the mini pies in the muffin pans for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, gently run a thin, sharp knife around the edges of the mini pies to loosen and pop them out of the pan. Set the mini pies on a wire rack to cool before serving.
This recipe was developed using the specified shortbread cookie dough recipe as the basis of these mini pies. I find that the buttery texture closely mimics that of actual pie dough. The lack of leavening in the cookie dough also aids in prohibiting the “spread” of the dough as it bakes. Please prepare this recipe using the specific shortbread cookie dough linked herein. Results using any other recipe or store bought dough cannot be guaranteed. Letting the baked mini pies to briefly cool in the pans gives the dough time to firm up before transfer to the wire rack. Allowing the mini pies to complete the cooling process on the rack will give the cookie crusts time to set, and therefore be less apt to fall apart when serving.
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