Spiced Cider Custard Pie


Author Erin McDowell says even apple pie purists will fall for this cider-spiked twist. Pipe with whipped cream dollops for a graphic effect.

Spiced Cider Custard Pie
Photo: Blaine Moats
Hands On Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 15 mins
1 9-inch pie


  • 4 cup apple cider

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • ¾ cup heavy cream

  • ¾ cup packed light brown sugar

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt

  • 1 recipe Erin's Cinnamon All Buttah Piecrust, parbaked and cooled

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • cup powdered sugar

  • 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Erin's All-Buttah Piecrust

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour

  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

  • ¼ cup ice water, plus more as needed


  1. For cider syrup: In a large saucepan bring cider to a simmer over medium. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer 1 to 2 hours (depends on pot size), uncovered, until mixture is reduced to 1/2 cup. Let cool completely.

  2. In a large liquid measuring cup, whisk together cider syrup, milk, and 3/4 cup cream.

  3. In a medium bowl whisk together brown sugar, flour, 1 tsp. cinnamon, and the salt. Add cider mixture. Stir until combined.

  4. Place a baking sheet on bottom oven rack. Preheat oven to 375°F. Place pie plate on center oven rack. Pour custard into piecrust. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until custard appears set at edges but is still slightly jiggly in center. Let cool completely.

  5. For topping: In a medium bowl whisk together 1 cup cream, the powdered sugar, vanilla, and 1 tsp. cinnamon to medium-stiff peaks. Spread in an even layer over top of pie. (Alternately, spoon whipped topping into a piping bag; pipe onto pie.) Keep chilled until ready to serve. If desired, sprinkle with additional ground cinnamon. Serves 8.

Erin's All-Buttah Piecrust

  1. In a medium bowl whisk together flour and salt. Using your hands, toss butter through flour until each piece is well-coated. Cut butter into flour by pressing butter between your fingers and thumbs, flattening the cubes into big shards. For a flaky crust, mix until butter pieces are about the width of walnut halves. For a sturdier crust (for custard pies and for use with decorative techniques), mix until the butter is about the size of peas.

  2. Make a well in center of flour mixture. Start by adding 1/4 cup ice water and tossing the flour mixture gently (rather than stirring) to moisten and incorporate the water without overworking the flour. Continue adding water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, and tossing until dough comes together. (Dough should hold together easily without feeling wet or sticky.)

  3. Form dough into a disk and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.

  4. Once well chilled, roll out dough on a lightly floured surface until it's about 1/8-inch thick. Press firmly and evenly, rotating the dough as you work to prevent sticking without adding too much flour. (Ideally dough will also be about 1 inch wider than your pie plate on all sides.)

  5. To transfer dough to pie plate, starting at one end of dough, wrap it around the rolling pin. Lift pin to edge of pie plate and unfurl the dough. Press dough into the base of the pie plate and trim excess dough to 1/2 inch around outside edge of pie plate. Tuck dough under to be flush with the outer rim of pie plate. Crimp edges as desired, then refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

  6. To parbake: Use a fork to prick chilled crust all over base and sides. Cut a square of parchment paper slightly larger than pie plate and press it into base of chilled crust. Fill crust with pie weights (such as dried beans) to brim, making sure weights are flush against sides. Place pie plate on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake on bottom rack of 425°F oven (preferably on a preheated baking stone) 12 to 15 minutes or until outer edge begins to brown. Remove parchment and pie weights and bake 2 to 3 minutes more or until bottom crust appears set. If crust puffs at any point, prick air bubble with a fork to deflate. Let cool completely before filling. Makes one single crust.

You can also skip the process of making the cider syrup yourself and purchase bottled boiled cider, such as King Arthur Flour. Skip Step 1 and use 1/2 cup of the bottled boiled cider.

Make dough, wrap tightly, and refrigerate up to 2 days. For longer storage, wrap in plastic wrap then heavy foil and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in refrigerator and let stand at room temperature to soften slightly.

Cinnamon Crust

Add 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon and 1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg to the flour.

Gingerbread Crust

Add 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, 3/4 tsp. ground ginger, 1/2 tsp. ground allspice, and 1/4 tsp. ground cloves to the flour.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

580 Calories
32g Fat
67g Carbs
6g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 580
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 32g 41%
Saturated Fat 18g 90%
Cholesterol 78mg 26%
Sodium 378mg 16%
Total Carbohydrate 67g 24%
Total Sugars 41g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 0.3mg 2%
Calcium 99mg 8%
Iron 1.7mg 10%
Potassium 297mg 6%
Fatty acids, total trans 2g
Folate, total 61.3mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.2mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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