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Autumn Leaves Apple Pie

This delightfully colorful autumn leaves apple pie may look like it’s difficult to make but with my tips and tricks, you too can make this adorable (and delicious) showstopping apple pie!

Overhead photo of a pie pan with an autumn leaves apple pie, colorful napkins, a pie server, and apples.

*Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links where I can earn commissions from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

Our lives are so much busier during the fall and holiday season.

With cooking, baking, shopping, and entertaining, who’s got time to whip up a fancy pie crust design?!?!

YOU do!

**Please Note – The printable recipe card with detailed instructions and complete ingredient measurements for making Colorful Autumn Leaves Apple Pie is available near the end of this post. OR click on the “jump to recipe” button (found above) to be taken directly to the recipe.

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Vertical image of an apple pie with autumn leaves and apples.

The ingredient list for making autumn leaves apple pie:

**Note – The following lists of ingredients plus kitchen tools and equipment contain affiliate links (highlighted in blue) for your consideration and shopping convenience.

  • Apples (I used Granny Smith)
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Brown Sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Pure Vanilla Extract
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Frozen Prepared Pie Crust, or homemade crust (for the top crust)
  • Deep Dish Pie Crust (for the bottom crust)
  • Egg

Kitchen tools and equipment needed:

Why this recipe works:

Since this beauty takes advantage of store-bought pie dough and takes virtually no painting or artistic ability (honest), anyone will be successful at making this autumn leaves apple pie.

text over an image of autumn leaves apple pie.

How long with this colorful autumn leaves pie take to make?

If using store-bought pie dough (as I did), this pie will be ready for the oven in approximately 30 minutes.

Since painting the leaves for this painted pie crust takes no artistic skill whatsoever, this can be performed relatively quickly.

How long does this pie take to bake pie crust designs in the oven?

Approximately 60 minutes.

Once you see the juices ooze and smell the incredible aroma wafting from the oven, you know your pie is ready!

Can this decorative pie crust pie be frozen?

By all means…YES!!

Once it is completely cooled, wrap it well in several layers of cling wrap. This pie can be frozen for up to 2 months.

Unwrap, and thaw completely at room temperature before serving.

A look back at the inspiration for this fancy pie crust design:

If I’m going to be totally honest here (and if you know me at all, you know that I’m all about honesty and integrity), the idea for this colorful autumn leaves apple pie came to me due to the overwhelming popularity and success of my Adorable Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie (pictured below)

Overhead photo of a turkey crust pumpkin pie.

Naturally, I’d like to do my part in keeping the excitement alive for creative pie crusts, and this colorful fall pie is hopefully one that excites and inspires you in your own kitchen.

Overhead photo of an autumn leaves apple pie with a pie server and apples.

I’m always extremely proud to place a decorative pie with a fancy pie crust design on any dessert table. They’re not only pretty, but they’re also conversation starters.

Want more dramatic pie crust ideas?

How to make autumn leaves apple pie:

  • Peel, core, and slice 6 Granny Smith apples.
  • Toss them in a large bowl with 1 teaspoon lemon juice, granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt.
Colorful Autumn Leaves Crusted Pie
  • Pile the sugared coated apples in a deep-dish pie crust (I used a preformed store-bought deep dish pie crust), and dot with butter.
  • Set aside while preparing the leaves.
Apple Pie with Colorful Fall Leaves
  • Unroll a store-bought pie crust and use a leaf maple leaf cookie cutter to cut out 8 leaves.
  • Use a paring knife to score the veins in each leaf.
Apple Pie with colorful Autumn Leaves Crust
  • In a small bowl, make an egg wash of 1 egg, 2 tablespoons water, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
  • Divide the egg wash evenly between five small dishes or paper cups.
  • Add 3-4 drops of gel food color (red, orange, green, yellow, brown) to each of the dishes, and use a fork to mix the colors thoroughly in the egg wash.
  • Use a clean paintbrush to liberally, and with utter abandon, “paint” each leaf. *Note – It’s best to start with yellow as painting yellow over another color will not work. As we all know, no two leaves are perfect or ever the same, so go at this with a sense of fun and don’t worry about perfection.
Colorful Autumn Leaves Crusted Apple Pie
  • Once the leaves are painted, place them over the apples in the pie dish, in different directions. *Note – the leaves will not cover the apples completely. This is part of the charm.
  • Top the leaves with a generous coating of granulated sugar.
  • Place the pie on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 50-60 minutes, or until the pie juices run liberally from the crust.
  • Cool completely. Serve and enjoy!
Delightfully Colorful Autumn Leaves Crusted Apple Pie
Overhead photo of an autumn leaves apple pie in a pie dish with apples.

Can homemade pie dough for this decorative pie crust?

If you’re not pressed for time and feel at ease in making your own pie dough, I fully urge you to do so.

Since I wanted to make it this recipe less intimidating for all my readers, store-bought seemed to be the way for me to go.

The leaf cookie cutter I used is 3″ in diameter.

Other size cutters (or shapes) can be used if desired, but this recipe was written using a 3″ cutter.

Have fun making this pie, and get creative if you feel comfortable. As always, I completely encourage you to play with your food!

What if I don’t want to use food color for this apple pie crust design?

Not a problem. Just don’t use it!

This pie will be just as spectacular with plain pie leaves as with colored leaves.

Get creative! It’s your pie, make it your way!!

Below is the full-length live video. Please enjoy!

A vertical closeup photo of an apple pie with colorful autumn leaves crust and a title text overlay graphic

Below is the printable recipe card along with the nutritional information for making today’s Autumn Leaves Apple Pie

If you’ve made this recipe, or are excited to make this recipe, I’d appreciate it if you’d take a moment to leave it a star rating in the recipe card, along with a comment if you’re so inclined. Thank you. 🙂

Yield: 8 slices

Autumn Leaves Apple Pie

Apple Pie with Colorful Pie Crust Leaves

This Delightfully Colorful Autumn Leaves Crusted Apple Pie may look like it's difficult to make, but with my easy tips and tricks, you too can make this adorable (and delicious) apple pie!

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced into ¼" slices
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup sugar, plus 2 tablespoons for topping
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla, divided
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 9" deep-dish pie shell, found in the freezer section or homemade pie dough for 2 crust pie.
  • gel food color, yellow, red, orange, green and brown
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons water

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350-degrees.
  2. Place the sliced apples, lemon juice, 3/4 cup sugar, brown sugar, salt, flour, cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a large bowl and toss to coat the apples evenly in the mixture.
  3. Pile the sugar-coated apples in the deep dish pie shell and dot the top with butter. Set aside.
  4. Unroll a flat, round pie dough (found in the refrigerated section) press out any broken areas (if needed).
  5. Use the cookie cutter to cut 8 leaves into the round pie dough. Remove the scraps, leaving only the leaves. *Note - if desired place the scraps on a separate baking sheet. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, and bake for 10-12 minutes at 350 until crispy.
  6. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, water, and 1 teaspoon vanilla until blended.
  7. Divide the egg wash into 5 separate small dishes (or paper cups), and add a few drops of each gel color to each dish. Mix each color thoroughly with a fork.
  8. Use a paring knife to gently score the veins on each leaf.
  9. Liberally paint the leaves with the gel egg wash (starting with yellow) and adding color as you like to each leaf. *Note the colors will intensify slightly during the baking process.
  10. Place the leaves in random fashion over the apples in the pie plate and sprinkle the leaves with the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  11. Place the pie on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, or until the pie juices are flowing.
  12. Remove and cool on a baking rack.
  13. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

Tools and equipment:

1 - 3" maple leaf cookie cutter, 1 baking sheet, gel food coloring (yellow, red, orange, green, and brown), paring knife, 5 small dishes or 5 paper cups, fork (for mixing egg wash and food color), clean paintbrush, large bowl (for tossing the apples and sugar mixture)

The nutritional information and calorie count provided is intended as a guideline only and has been provided by third-party software.

Nutrition Information

Yield

8

Serving Size

1 slice

Amount Per Serving Calories 223Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 3gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 32mgSodium 122mgCarbohydrates 46gFiber 3gSugar 40gProtein 1g

Did you make this recipe?

I'm excited to see your creation. Please don't be shy and share a photo with me!

I’m proud and pleased to say that this autumn leaves apple pie crust design was featured in an easy Thanksgiving dessert post on Shari’s Berries blog.

Check it out along with all sorts of other delicious (and easy) desserts to grace your Thanksgiving table! Thanks, Shari’s Berries!!

Thank you so much for visiting me here today in my Kudos Kitchen!

I sincerely hope you’ve enjoyed today’s easy apple pie recipe and crust design as much as I’ve enjoyed bringing it to you.

Closeup title text image of a colorful autumn leaves apple pie.

Should you have any questions or comments regarding this recipe or anything else you’ve seen on my site, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. It is always my distinct pleasure to get back with a reply just as soon as I possibly can!

For more Kudos Kitchen recipe information, please follow me on my social medial channels (listed below), and don’t forget to TAG me @kudoskitchen with photos so I can view all your delicious recipe creations! It’s exciting for me when you share them, so don’t be shy!

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Until we eat again, I hope you have a delicious day!

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Grace Down

Friday 2nd of October 2020

I made this pie today. It looks & tastes great. I baked it for recommended maximum time. Was disappointed that apples didn’t cook down more and there is so much juice, it filled up empty spot where first slice was cut. What could have gone wrong?

Grace Down

Saturday 3rd of October 2020

@Renée, I did let the pie cool on rack for many hours. I also used flour for thickening. Could it have been too much lemon juice? Should I have baked bottom crust first? Would Macintosh apples be better? Like I said everything else was great. I poured out all the extra juice and sent 1/4 of the pie for my son-in-law and he loved it. ☺️

Renée

Saturday 3rd of October 2020

Hello, Grace! Thanks for your question. The first thing I thought of when you stated how juicy your pie was, was possibly you cut into it before it had cooled sufficiently, and the juices had no time to thicken? Or, I also wonder if maybe you'd forgotten the thickening agent (the flour) in the filling? Since the apples didn't cook down as much as you'd hoped, I'm wondering where all that extra juice came from? I'm curious...After the pie had cooled a bit, how were the other slices? I wish I had more specific answers for you but those are the things that first came to mind. In any case, I'm glad you were happy with the looks, and the taste. Those are the most important. Take good care, Renee

Shadi Hasanzadenemati

Sunday 6th of September 2020

This is such a delicious recipe! Can’t wait to try it!

Renée

Monday 7th of September 2020

Thanks, Shadi! Enjoy!

Dave wallace

Sunday 6th of September 2020

How do you prevent 'soggy bottom' ? I have made this twice, and had soggy bottom both times!??

Renée

Sunday 6th of September 2020

Sorry to hear that, Dave. Although I've never had that problem, I'll give you a few potential solutions to prevent a soggy bottom. 1. Perhaps blind baking your bottom pie crust before filling may help. I wouldn't bake it too long, maybe only like 3-5 minutes in a preheated 350-degree will help seal the crust. Since you'll be baking the pie longer than the recipe calls for (with this method), make sure to keep an eye on the bottom crust edges and cover them with foil during the last minutes of baking (after filling) so the edges don't get too brown. 2. Try brushing on a thin layer of a complimentary flavor of jam or jelly before adding the filling and bake as instructed. 3. Add a light eggwash brushed on the bottom crust and then a pre-bake for 3-5 or so minutes before filling and continuing with the recipe. Make sure to watch the bottom crust during the final minutes of baking. 4. Cut back the amount of butter used for the filling. Perhaps the filling is too juicy. 5. OR increase the amount of flour in the filling a tiny bit to thicken the juices even more. I hope these suggestions are helpful. Please let me know as I want you to be happy and successful when making my recipes in your kitchen. Take good care, Renee

Linda

Tuesday 1st of October 2019

I am using your pie as an inspiration for an apple pecan pie. I have been requested so many times to dress it up. I usually concentrate on the fillings. I will give you credit for the inspiration when I post it on my blog!

Renée

Wednesday 2nd of October 2019

I'm thrilled to be of inspiration to you, Linda. When you post to social media, I do hope you'll tag me @kudoskitchen Thanks so much!! Renee

wilhelmina

Monday 2nd of September 2019

Mine wasn't nearly as pretty as yours, but it sure tasted delicious!

Renée

Tuesday 3rd of September 2019

It's the taste that really counts. I'm glad to hear it Wilhelmina!

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