19 Best Apple Dessert Recipes To Sweeten Up Your Fall

While pumpkin seems to become all the rage once the leaves start turning colors, there's another produce item that deserves some credit in the fall, and we're talking about good old apples. As a snack, apples are a year-round favorite, but once fall strikes, warm and spiced apple desserts suddenly seem like quite the seasonal delicacy. And, believe it or not, there's an entire world of apple desserts out there — ones that go far beyond classic apple pie, delicious as it may be. 

If you're looking to impress at your holiday gathering or seasonal party, then these fall desserts will certainly deliver on that end. That said, there are also plenty of options that are perfectly fit for a quiet evening with your family. You can't go wrong with a classic apple crisp to follow up a hearty fall dinner, but you might also be inspired to make an Italian crostata or French clafoutis. No matter the occasion and no matter your level of baking skill, our best apple desserts will satisfy your sweet tooth and add a warming touch to the chilly season.

1. Classic Apple Crisp

Apple crisp is the type of dessert that one might make when they want something as warm and delicious as apple pie but they don't want to spend hours in the kitchen making said pie. This classic apple crisp will be ready to go in less than an hour, and you certainly won't have to worry about making the perfect lattice top or assembling an immaculate pie — a crisp is meant to look rustic!

As for the flavors, you can anticipate sweetness from the apples and brown sugar, warmth from the cinnamon, and plenty of rich goodness from the buttery, oat-infused crisp topping. Do yourself a favor and serve the apple crisp with ice cream for the ideal combination of warm apples with cool creaminess.

Recipe: Classic Apple Crisp

2. Dutch Apple Pie (with a Sugar Cookie Crust)

This isn't your grandma's apple pie — unless, of course, you're grandma is Dutch, in which case this pie is probably pretty familiar. Unlike most Dutch apple pies that feature a crumbly topping, this apple pie features a sugar cookie-like crust both on the bottom and top. This pie also differs from American-style apple pie that might feature thin-sliced apples and a lattice top; it's a unique take on apple pie and a gourmet one at that.

If you're looking to impress this holiday season, this pie will do the trick. This isn't the easiest recipe to execute and will require some time spent in the kitchen, but if you're willing to make the crust and filling entirely from scratch, then the labor will be well worth the results.

Recipe: Dutch Apple Pie (with a Sugar Cookie Crust) 

3. Mini Apple Dumplings

For those nights when you're craving a warm apple dessert but only have a few ingredients on hand, this mini apple dumplings recipe will come in handy. This recipe puts canned crescent rolls to good use, serving as the dumpling "shell" whereas the filling is made from, of course, apples.

Another perk to this recipe is that it yields mini-sized treats, so it's ideal for those who just need a little something to satisfy their sweet tooth. Even if you want a full-sized helping of dessert, you can easily enjoy two or three of these mini dumplings to get your sweet and spiced fix. 

Recipe: Mini Apple Dumplings

4. Spiced Baked Apple Crumb

This apple crumb recipe is similar to a crisp recipe, but instead of making a topping filled with oats, you'll make one that consists of brown sugar, flour, and butter. When combined, those ingredients create a crumb-like garnish that works oh-so well atop a baking dish full of spiced apples.

While many apple-forward recipes use cinnamon as the source of warmth and spice, this recipe puts apple pie spice to good use to help amp up those fall flavors. This is a great dessert for those who want the taste and feel of a freshly baked apple pie without the fuss. 

Recipe: Spiced Baked Apple Crumb

5. Maple Apple Crostata

Fans of French galettes or tarts will no doubt love this Italian crostata recipe, which features apples and maple syrup to double down on those fall flavors. While this elegant dessert may look like a tough one to pull off at first glance, it's actually a pretty beginner-friendly recipe thanks to the use of premade pie dough (of course, if you want to make your own pastry crust, that would work just as well). 

You'll make the spiced, maple-infused apple filling on the stovetop, then you'll layer the filling into the dough, fold over the edges, and bake. It really is as simple as that, and luckily, a crostata is a dessert that looks better rustic, so there's no need to fuss over creating the perfect folds. 

Recipe: Maple Apple Crostata

6. White Wine-Baked Apples

There are plenty of apple recipes that call for using sliced or cubed apples, but why not keep the whole apple intact? That's exactly what this white wine-baked apple recipe does — instead of slicing and dicing, you'll bake the apples whole, or at least mostly whole.

You will make a small indent at the top of the apple, which doubles in functionality to remove the stem and seeds and also create a pocket for a spiced sugar mixture. Then you'll bake the apples in white wine and apple juice mixture, and by the time they come out of the oven, your apples will be perfectly softened and infused with decadent flavor. Top off your elegant treat with a scoop of ice cream and perhaps even a drizzle of honey.

Recipe: White Wine-Baked Apples

7. Simple Apple Strudel

There's nothing better than finding clever shortcuts to ease the burden of intensive recipes, and that's exactly what this simple apple strudel accomplishes. Instead of stressing over making your own pastry dough, you'll use frozen puff pastry to serve as the base of your strudel — the most difficult part there is waiting for the pastry to thaw.

As for the apple filling, our favorite fall fruit gets a boost from allspice, cinnamon, and raisins. Then it's just a matter of assembling and baking; you'll want to make sure that the pastry fully folds over the filling so that none oozes out while in the oven. Otherwise, this strudel recipe really lives up to the simplicity that its name implies, but it doesn't skimp on any of that warm goodness.

Recipe: Simple Apple Strudel

8. Apple Clafoutis

Clafoutis is a classic French dessert that looks somewhat like a tart, but instead of assembling fruit in a crust, you'll pour a sweet batter over the fruit itself. In this case, the fruit in question is of course apples, and you'll build the clafoutis in a cast-iron pan to make for optimal counter-to-stovetop-to-oven-to-serving ease.

If you've never made a clafoutis before then you may worry that it's a difficult dessert to master, seeing that it does have quite an elegant look to it. Luckily, making a clafoutis is pretty straightforward, and for this recipe, you'll start by preparing the buttery, cinnamony apples, then you'll layer those into the skillet along with the eggy batter. From there, it's just a matter of letting the oven do its thing, and then voila — a beautiful French dessert that only looks like it took hours to make.

Recipe: Apple Clafoutis

9. Simple Spiced Apple Cake

In a world where apples are so often pigeonholed into pies or crisps, it's nice to see the autumnal fruit shine in a different dessert: cake. Sure, apple might not be the first fruit you'd think to incorporate into a cake, but it does add a nice flavor and an even better adornment to the top of the cake.

As for the spiced aspect of this cake, British mixed spice plays a crucial role in achieving all of those warm flavors. If you don't have access to such a blend, fear not — pumpkin pie spice will deliver similar results, or you could simply add equal parts cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg. 

Recipe: Simple Spiced Apple Cake

10. Classic Apple Cobbler

It's pretty hard to resist a good cobbler, and though peach or blueberry may be more commonly used fruits for such a dessert, apples get their rightful time to shine thanks to this recipe. If you're the type of person who likes to make everything from scratch but ultimately leans more on the no-frills side of baking, then this classic apple cobbler combines the best of both worlds. 

The cobbler aspect of this dessert comes in the form of a biscuit-like dough, which helps add to the overall ease of this recipe. Anyone who has made biscuits knows that they aren't hard to make nor do they require a plethora of ingredients — but once all is said and done and your apple cobbler is on the dinner table, you can still claim bragging rights for making an entirely from scratch dessert. 

Recipe: Classic Apple Cobbler

11. Apple Dump Cake

Though the name doesn't conjure up the prettiest of images, dump cake is actually quite the lovely dessert, and even more so when it incorporates apples. This fall-inspired apple dump cake would make for the perfect weeknight dessert, especially if you have boxed cake mix collecting dust in your pantry.

While you will essentially dump ingredients into the pan to make this cake (hence the name), you will have to be slightly strategic about it. You'll start by layering in the sliced apples, then you'll sprinkle on sugar and cinnamon, then you'll add in the cake mix, and finally, you'll top it all off with butter. With everything layered in the pan, you want to be careful not to mix it all up; a simple shake of the dish should help lock everything in place, and then the oven will work its magic and dessert will be ready to go in record time.

Recipe: Apple Dump Cake

12. Southern Fried Apples

You could incorporate apples into just about any dessert under the sun — cakes, pies, cobblers, or crisps — but sometimes the best apple-themed desserts highlight the fruit alone. Take these Southern fried apples, for example — the ingredients list is incredibly minimal, and the apples themselves are the star of the show.

Of course, the apples don't stand entirely alone in this dessert. Spices like cinnamon and nutmeg add warmth to the dish, whereas both brown and white sugars add plenty of sweetness. Best of all, the entire dessert comes together after just 15 minutes of stovetop simmering, so if you're in need of a warming dessert right away, these fried apples will do the trick.

Recipe: Warm Spiced Southern Fried Apples

13. Easy Candy Apples

Candy apples may not be everyone's cup of tea (especially those with sensitive teeth), but if you happen to love the classic carnival treat, then you'll be thrilled to learn that it's incredibly easy to make them at home. Even better yet, you only need six ingredients to make the magic happen, and we can guarantee that your home-sourced ingredients will be much cheaper than anything you might find at the fair.

The trickiest part of making these candy apples is ensuring that your sugar mixture gets to the hard crack stage, but if you have a candy thermometer then you have nothing to worry about. A touch of patience is in order as you wait for the sugar to get to just the right temperature, but once you've dunked those apples and have given them a few minutes to harden, you can enjoy your favorite carnival treat without having to step foot outside.

Recipe: Easy Candy Apples

14. Apple Pie Cinnamon Rolls

It's hard to beat a classic cinnamon roll, but these apple pie cinnamon rolls prove to be worthy competition. In fact, one bite of a warm, gooey apple pie cinnamon roll may have you wondering why you weren't incorporating apples into the mix all along.

The distinction between regular cinnamon rolls and this apple pie variation comes by way of the filling. Whereas classic rolls get a hearty dose of butter, sugar, and cinnamon, you'll make a from-scratch caramelized apple filling with this recipe. Of course, your rolls will still have plenty of sweet, cinnamony, buttery goodness, but that added edge of warm apples is pretty hard to beat, especially when you top off the whole roll with a fresh drizzle of honey-infused glaze.

Recipe: Apple Pie Cinnamon Rolls

15. Baked Cinnamon Apple Roses

Sometimes less visually appealing dishes end up being the tastiest ones, but that sentiment does not reign true for these cinnamon apple roses. Instead, the most beautiful dish happens to be the most delicious — that's a more accurate statement.

If you're looking for a dessert that will delight the eyes as much as the palate, then these fall-themed baked roses are a foolproof option. You'll make a simple dough to serve as the base of the roses, then thinly sliced (we're talking mandoline-thin) apples will serve as the rose petals. Aptly adorned with a brown sugar and cinnamon mixture, these roses bake to perfection and get a final garnish of powdered sugar for an elegant final look.

Recipe: Baked Cinnamon Apple Roses

16. Fried Apple Hand Pie

There are many reasons to love classic, lattice-topped apple pie, but its capacity for being handheld or an on-the-go treat is not one of them. If you want all of the goodness of apple pie but in a compact, self-contained format, then these fried apple hand pies may be just what you're looking for.

As the name suggests, you'll be frying these hand pies instead of baking them, which not only adds to their decadence but also ensures that the crust on these pies will be unbelievably crispy. As for the filling, two popular types of apples (Granny Smith and Honeycrisp) come together along with raisins and plenty of cinnamon to help create that classic apple pie taste and feel that we all know and love.

Recipe: Fried Apple Hand Pies

17. Apple Cider Magic Cake

If you're looking for a magical dessert, then you certainly can't go wrong with a cake that has magic in the name. Enter this apple cider magic cake, which doesn't involve apples themselves (a plus for those who are tired of slicing and dicing) but instead relies on the sweet autumnal beverage to provide that sweet and crisp flavor profile.

The fluffy yet dense texture of this cake comes to life thanks to the clever usage of eggs — you'll start by whipping the yolks, then you'll fold in the whites right before baking. And you won't simply add apple cider to the mix; instead, you'll reduce it down to a honey-like consistency, then you'll incorporate it into the batter to add a delightfully sweet, apple-infused flavor. But be careful not to add all of the cider reduction to the mix, as you'll want to have leftovers to drizzle on top of the finished cake.

Recipe: Apple Cider Magic Cake

18. Apple Fritters

It's hard to resist a good fritter, and this apple fritter recipe comes with the added bonus of fried decadence. You'll start by making a simple fritter batter — with the special inclusion of Pink Lady apples, of course — then you'll dollop spoonfuls of said batter into oil until they're golden and perfectly crispy.

The best part of this recipe is that it's one of the quickest options on this list; if you want a sweet treat in less than 20 minutes, then these fritters are just the dessert for you. While they're perfectly delicious enough on their own, you might opt to drizzle the fritters with a simple glaze to really hone in on the sweetness. 

Recipe: Best Apple Fritters

19. Spiced Rum Apple Turnover

These spiced rum apple turnovers look like something that you might pick up at a bakery, with their perfectly golden pastry shells and immaculate finishing drizzle of icing. Looks aside, these turnovers are just as good on the inside, and apples get a boozy kick thanks to the clever inclusion of spiced rum.

Though these turnovers may look like a tricky pastry to master, they're actually much easier to make than it might seem. You don't have to worry about making the pastry dough yourself — store-bought puff pastry will work just fine. The apple and spiced rum filling comes together in a breeze, so the trickiest part of making these turnovers is nailing that classic turnover shape. Luckily, if you're at all familiar with a triangle, then it shouldn't be too hard to get right.

Recipe: Spiced Rum Apple Turnovers