Fresh apples and a homemade biscuit topping make this Apple Cobbler dessert tender and sweet, with hints of savoriness. And it’s an absolute delight served warm with a scoop of cold vanilla ice cream.
The apples on our apple tree in the backyard are reaching their ruddy ripeness. Last year, a few got made into sauce and desserts. We don’t normally get a big harvest — the squirrels and birds get to the apples first — but I try to use what we can.
The irony isn’t lost on me that when I tried to grow apple trees years ago, they failed miserably — but I ended up renting a place with an apple tree that no one even noticed was there until the second autumn we lived here.
We’re not really sure what the variety is — the apples are small, pink and green in color and tart in flavor. They aren’t crab apples, for sure. Last year, when rains were scarce, all of those qualities were exasperated. Perhaps they will be a touch sweeter this year, in a normal rain year?
At the farmers markets, here in Maine, vendors are starting to bring in fresh apples. These Paula Reds and Jersey Macs have grown outside, ripened in the sun and are now ready to be enjoyed.
But which ones are ideal for baking? Granny smith apples, with their sweet-tart flavor, are the go-to for many a baker. But don’t be afraid to branch out. Bon Appetit says that Jonagold, Braeburn and Pink Lady, among others, are also good for baking. Why not give them a try?
And why not do so in this biscuit-topped apple dessert? This one includes an easy homemade biscuit dough and an easy fruit filling. Sure, it takes about an hour between preparation and cooking, but it’s totally worth it.
Making Apple Cobbler
For this Apple Cobbler, start with four cups of apple chunks (no need to peel them). That’s roughly four apples worth (or a few more, if the apples are small).
Those apple chunks are mixed with spices and brown sugar and spread into a pan.
A homemade biscuit topping, based on my favorite baking powder biscuit dough, tops it all off.
Then, it’s baked. The top is rendered golden brown. The apples get warm, soft and syrupy. And the result is a lovely, fresh dessert that isn’t too, too sweet.
Fall is the time to make desserts like Apple Cobbler — when the cool night temperatures make warm desserts like a comforting hug, and cold ice cream provides a refreshing contrast.
Dig in and enjoy.
- 4 cups fresh apple chunks (do not peel)
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp fresh ground nutmeg
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 2 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
- ⅓ cup milk
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a 2-quart square glass baking dish, combine the apple chunks, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir well and spread out.
- In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking powder, sugar and cinnamon. Using either two knives or a pastry cutter, cut the cold butter into the flour mixture until it looks like coarse crumbs. Stir in the milk until the dough holds together.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured board and gently knead until it forms a smooth dough. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough into a square approximately the size of the glass baking dish. Gently transfer it to top the apples.
- Slide the baking dish into the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, until bubbling at the sides and golden on top. This is delightful served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of several cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.