Go Back
+ servings

Apple Pandowdy

Apple Pandowdy is an old-fashioned apple dessert sweetened with maple syrup and topped with a pie pastry. The dough is pressed into the bubbling juices (dowdying) part-way through baking.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Dessert, Pie
Servings: 8
Author: Tricia


For the crust:

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons solid shortening, like Crisco
  • 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons ice cold water

For the apple filling:

  • 3 1/2 pounds fresh apples, peeled, cored and sliced (about 6 or 7 apples depending on size)
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced (if desired)
  • 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened apple cider
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons coarse sugar for sprinkling
  • 1 tablespoon milk or cream for brushing on the crust pieces


To prepare the crust:

  • Combine the flour, Crisco, butter and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse for 2-3 seconds. Do not over process. You want the butter to still be in small chunks. Add the ice cold water and pulse for 5 more times. Pinch a piece of the dough together to see if it holds a shape. If the pastry holds together, gather the dough into a disc and wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Roll the dough out into a 9x12 inch rectangle, a little less than 1/4 inch thick. Cut the dough into 3 inch squares or use a cookie cutter as desired. Place the cut pieces of dough on a parchment lined baking sheet and put back in the refrigerator until needed.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

For the apples:

  • Lightly grease a 9 or 10 inch cast iron skillet or casserole dish. Add the apples (tossed in the lemon juice if not using an iron skillet) and distribute evenly. In a small dish combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and cloves. Sprinkle over the apples. In a 2 cup measure, combine the apple cider and maple syrup. Pour over the apples.
  • Place the prepared crust over the apple mixture. Brush the pieces gently with milk and sprinkle with coarse sugar.
  • Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until the juices are bubbling. Remove the dessert from the oven and gently press the dough into the juices using a spatula. You don't have to dowdy the entire crust but as much as you can is fine.
  • Return to the oven and bake another 15 minutes or until the crust is nicely browned and glazed and the juices thickened.
  • Cool slightly and serve with ice cream if desired.


  • I used a combination of Granny Smith and Empire apples
  • Unsweetened apple juice can be substituted for the cider
  • A refrigerated pre-made pie dough will work just fine too