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Sour Cream Apple Pie: When sliced apples are nestled in a custard-filled pie and piled high with giant crumbs, could you possibly choose pumpkin over apple pie?

Given the choice of pumpkin pie or apple pie, I always choose apple.  Always.  It’s almost as if there is no need to make a choice.  Pumpkin pie to me is just meh. But apple pie…how could you not love it? Sweet, tart, buttery…apple pie is the pie of choice for most of us.

But can you believe I’ve only made it once?  And that was years ago for a church fair where I didn’t even get to taste it!  So when Kyle and I went apple picking earlier this fall, I decided it was time to make some pie.

I couldn’t go traditional though.  That would be too…conventional.  I found this Sour Cream Apple Pie recipe in one of my newer cookbooks and was immediately sold.

It’s got a crumb topping.

Turns out this pie is very much like the Peach Cream Cheese Tarts I made over the summer, with a baked custard filling with apples floating throughout the custard.  I loved those peach tarts and I loved this pie.

Did I say that it’s got a crumb topping?  Yeah, it’s got a crumb topping.

And I’m not talking about one of those toppings where there isn’t enough to cover the whole pie…this one has plenty of crumbs – big crumbs like you’d find on a good NY crumb cake. You’ll see by the directions below that this is a really easy pie to make.  There’s no stress about whether the apples will be soft enough or if the filling will be thick enough – everything works out beautifully with this pie!

sour cream apple pie

So tell me, will apple pie make it to your Thanksgiving table this year?

Sour-Cream Apple Pie

  • Prep Time: 1hr 30min
  • Cook Time: 1hr
  • Yield: 12-16 servings


One 9-inch pie crust, unbaked

For the Apple Filling:
2 lbs Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
4 tbsp unsalted butter
½ cup sugar

For the Sour Cream Custard:
2 tbsp flour
¼ cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
¾ cup sour cream

For the Crumb Topping:
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
8 tbsp unsalted butter, melted


  • 01

    Set a rack on the lowest level of the oven and preheat to 350° F.  Roll out dough on a well-floured surface and transfer to a 9-inch pie dish, crimping the edges as desired with fingers or a fork.

  • 02

    To make the filling, place apples in a large saute pan with butter and sugar.  Cook over high heat, stirring and tossing, for 5-7 minutes until about half of the apples have dissolved.  Transfer the apple mixture to a bowl to cool.

  • 03

    To make the custard, whisk together the flour and sugar in a bowl, then whisk in the eggs, vanilla, and sour cream in that order.

  • 04

    To make the topping, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and cinnamon together in a bowl.  Pour in the melted butter and stir until the mixture forms a crumbly mass.

  • 05

    Stir the cooked apples into the sour-cream custard filling and pour into the dough-lined pan.  Sprinkle the crumbs over the filling.

  • 06

    Bake the pie until the dough is baked through, the filling is set, and the crumbs are a deep golden color, 50-60 minutes.  Cool the pie on a rack. This pie is served best when completely cooled at room temperature.

adapted from The Modern Baker by Nick Malgieri

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  • November 18, 2010 at 7:25 AM

    I love that texture this cake has.
    I agree, I’m not a huge pumpkin pie fan.

  • Liz @ Blog is the New Black
    November 18, 2010 at 8:32 AM

    YUM! Gorgeous pics.

  • November 18, 2010 at 8:33 AM

    i love applie pies with crumb topping, this version looks so delicious

  • November 18, 2010 at 8:57 AM

    This sounds great! Definitely has a nice moist and rich look to it.

  • November 18, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    I always go for the apple pie as well. 😉 Lovely pie and what a neat filling.

  • November 18, 2010 at 9:20 AM

    This looks wonderful! Love the sour cream custard!

  • November 18, 2010 at 10:44 AM

    I’m with you! Pumpkin pie ehw…apple pie wow! I just love apple dessert soo much more and this cake with the sour cream custard brings the apple pie to a whole new level! Thanks for sharing

  • November 18, 2010 at 12:00 PM

    I should not have clicked on this post before lunch. Now all I can think of is PIE.

  • November 18, 2010 at 4:08 PM

    This looks absolutely delicious.. I love crumble top pies! I am bookmarking this and making it sometime in the near future.

  • Ann
    November 19, 2010 at 8:39 PM

    Now, I’m dying for apple pie. I love this recipe with the sour cream custard filling.

  • November 22, 2010 at 6:46 PM

    This is a special pie. The photos are great too. But it’s that custard that is going to haunt me. GREG

  • Constance
    November 28, 2010 at 4:51 PM

    it was soooo delicious!!! everyone should at least try this pie once! apple pies are my favorite so i try different versions all the time. my sister said it was the best one i ever made!!! thank you so much for sharing 🙂

  • December 10, 2010 at 8:46 AM

    Wow, this sounds fantastic and seems quite simple, I think I need to make this pie in the very near future, I have everything I need to make it:)

  • September 18, 2012 at 8:28 PM

    Hey! Nice twist on apple pie! Looks absolutely scrumptious! I recently discovered Apple Crostata!!! So simple and soooooo delicious! I plan to make and make the crostata…

  • […] Sour Cream Apple Pie from Smells Like Home […]

  • December 15, 2014 at 11:26 AM

    So great to hear! This pie is delicious!

  • […] my dad knew a thing or two about good pie. Thanks Dad!     SOUR CREAM APPLE PIE  (adapted from Smells Like Home) Makes 2 shallow pies or 1 really tall pie (if you have a deep pie dish, I don’t) […]

  • Anna
    November 6, 2019 at 2:35 PM

    Can you make this recipe with frozen pie crust?

    • Tara
      November 12, 2019 at 2:51 PM

      Yes, you certainly could! Happy baking!

  • Anna
    November 15, 2019 at 9:40 AM

    Thank You! Would I have to thaw the crusts first?

    • Tara
      November 15, 2019 at 9:48 AM

      Yes, Thaw the crusts first but keep them cold in the fridge until you’re ready to use them. You always want to bake your pies when you crusts are cold because this helps to make the crust flaky when it’s baked. If you think your crust might have come to room temperature while you fill it with the pie filling and topping, slip the pie back in the fridge for 15 to 30 minutes before you bake it. I hope you love this pie as much as we did!!

  • Dianne Duprez
    September 3, 2020 at 5:16 PM

    But, really, choose some apples with character and flavor! Not bland Golden Delicious….

    • Tara
      September 28, 2020 at 10:37 AM

      To each their own! I love baking with golden delicious apples!

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