Desserts, Pies, Tarts & Pastries

Apple Dumplings

2 Comments 18 December 2013

FYI, folks, this will be our last post of 2013, the Holidays swiftly approaching and all. There’s presents to wrap! Nog to drink! Christmas movies to watch! Ugly sweaters to wear! These things, they take time. So here’s to 2013, you were an….interesting year. Yeah, that’s it! We at Full Fork Ahead wish you a wonderful Holiday Season, a very Merry Christmas and after the delightful little dumplings discussed below, we’ll see you bright and early on New Year’s day, 2014. Ah, the circle of yearly circular-ness. Good stuff.

Apple Dumplings-1

Yes, that’s a can of biscuits and by their presence alone you should know this is a shortcut kind of recipe. Awwww yeah! We like. If making an apple pie is just too much work for you then these little apple dumplings are probably as easy as it gets and as close to a similar taste experience as you can get. From start to finish it barely took us an hour.

The moral of that short story is – you could totes make these for breakfast, too! A show of hands, please, for those that like dessert for breakfast sometimes. Mmm hmm, I just knew it.

Apple Dumplings-2

Have your “bath” of lemon water ready before peeling, coring and slicing your two apples. Just makes everything easier.

In retrospect, I’d have liked a little lemony zing to the overall apple experience with these dumplings, so next time I might save a little fresh lemon juice to put in the liquid mixture the dumplings cook in.

Apple Dumplings-3

Have a paper towel or two handy to blot your apple slices on or else the dough doesn’t want to fold and seal around the apple very well. Either flatten the biscuit half on your board a little or stretch it slightly with your fingers to accommodate the apple slice.

Apple Dumplings-4

Simply fold the stretched biscuit half up and around the apple slice and seal it closed with your fingers. Our store-brand canned biscuits were a little difficult to split evenly in half, but in the end they worked well enough. The dough will of course puff up some while baking and there was really plenty of dough surrounding each apple slice.

Apple Dumplings-5

A hot mixture of butter, vanilla, sugar and water is poured over the dumplings, and as the recipe author (Ms. Trisha Yearwood herself) indicated on her show, this does indeed seem like way too much liquid. Go with it, most of it is absorbed and cooks down while baking.

Again, this is where I’d add a little lemon juice for some zing and added flavor, maybe a tablespoon or so. You can always start smaller and add more. I will also try it with less butter in the hot mixture. If anything stood out too much to me, it was the butter.

Apple Dumplings-6

In reading reviews on Food Network, the most consistent complaint I saw was too much cinnamon sugar mixture on top of the dumplings. While one-quarter cup sugar really didn’t sound like a lot to me at first, keep in mind there’s also three-quarters cup of sugar in the hot liquid mixture. We ended up using all but a third of our cinnamon sugar mixture on top and were glad because these really are pretty sweet. Next time I’d use even less on top.

Apple Dumplings-11

For a quick, easy fix, this recipe is a pretty good jumping off point, you just need to consider the ingredients and maybe adjust some things to suit your tastes. Or maybe it’s perfect for you as-is, whichever works. I’m seriously considering making these for a small Christmas eve gathering because not only are they quick and easy and have just as good a flavor as a homemade apple pie, they’re also cheap to make. Can’t beat that! The liquid does cook down a lot, but there was just enough of a slightly thicked sauce left to drizzle over the dumplings. Serve them warm with ice cream or fresh whipped cream and yums away!

Apple Dumplings

by Trisha Yearwood via

Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: about 35 minutes Level: Easy Makes: 16 dumplings

  • 2 Granny Smith apples
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 canned buttermilk biscuits
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Peel, core and slice the apples vertically into 8 slices each. Squeeze the lemon into a bowl of water and add the apple slices to keep from turning brown.

In a medium saucepan, mix 1 cup water, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the butter and vanilla. Bring the sugar mixture to a boil over medium heat.

Separate each biscuit into 2 layers. Wrap a biscuit layer around a slice of apple, stretching the biscuit slightly to overlap, and seal on the bottom. Place the wrapped slices, sealed-side down, in a 9- by 12- by 2-inch casserole dish. Pour the hot sugar mixture over the apple slices. Mix the remaining 1/4 cup sugar with the cinnamon and sprinkle the mixture over the tops of the wrapped apples. Bake until golden brown, 35 minutes.


Being that these are small dumplings, each just a little bigger than the individual apple slice inside, you’d probably want to allow for two per person. Count on being able to serve about 8 people with the recipe as-is.

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- who has written 347 posts on Full Fork Ahead.

Wife, mom, indulgent reader and Day Job Do-er, who occasionally likes to think she can cook. Sometimes she's right, sometimes she's wrong.

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2 Comments so far

  1. Persnickety says:

    A great recipe I can’t wait to try out. I love apples and cinnamon, and especially dumplings!

    I came up with a related recipe for Apple Dumplings in a cinnamon sauce. While different from your own, I think mine is a unique take on the dish. I’m new to the Food Blog scene and would love some feedback from a pro like you. Check out my recipe if have time.

    • KMont says:

      Hi there! Your apple dumplings looked beautiful! If you’re developing your own recipes, that’s great and many food bloggers do so. We however review recipes we find and photograph our efforts while trying them out. Every once in a while we try something we sort of just made up, but for the most part we’re a review type of site, trying out new things and ideas. Best of luck to you, you seem to have a good start!

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