Happy Memorial Day and Boozy Caramel Apple Pie

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Happy Memorial Day!




I come from a family full of sailors and soldiers and I just want to say thank you to our service members and their families for the sacrifices you make every single day.




I can’t think of many things that say America more than Apple Pie.




I made this one with something special.




My grandmother’s rolling pin.  My mom gave it to me on Mother’s Day and this was the first time I used it.  It felt right since my grandfather was a World War II Veteran.

While I had my hands where she had hers so many years ago, I couldn’t help wondering what it must have been like to be the equivalent of a single mom in the 1940’s.  To have to go to work in a factory and raise children alone.  Although she only had 2 at the time since my mom was the youngest of 3 and a product of her father’s return from the South Pacific.  🙂




I say a big cheers to our service members by adding beer to every part of this pie.  It’s called Victory at Sea by Ballast Point.  This also just seemed right.




I wish all of you a safe and happy Memorial Day and I’ll leave you with some pictures of my grandparents.  I hijacked them from my mom’s Facebook page.






Happy Memorial Day and Boozy Caramel Apple Pie

Happy Memorial Day and Boozy Caramel Apple Pie


    For the Crust
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 12 tablespoons butter (1 and 1/2 sticks)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup cold vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup cold imperial coffee vanilla porter, reserve the rest of the 12 oz bottle - I used Ballast Point Victory at Sea
    For the Filling
  • 10 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4 - 1/2 inch slices
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon nut meg
  • 4 oz imperial coffee vanilla porter (remainder of the bottle used for the crust)
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
    For the Caramel Sauce
  • Reserved beer from making the apple filling
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon sugar


    Make the Pie Crust
  1. Measure vegetable shortening and chill in fridge if not already chilled
  2. Cut the butter into 1/2 inch pieces and refrigerate (both of these steps can be done the day before)
  3. Add flour, salt, and sugar to the bowl of a food processor and pulse 3 or 4 times to combine
  4. Add butter and shortening and pulse 12 - 14 times until you have butter about the size of peas
  5. Slowly pour the beer in while pulsing until dough forms
  6. Turn out onto a piece of plastic wrap, form into a ball, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes
    Make the Filling
  1. In a Dutch Oven, combine apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, and remaining 4 ounces of beer
  2. Cook apple mixture uncovered over medium heat until apples are soft, but not mushy, stirring frequently - about 15 - 20 minutes
  3. Remove apples from the beer liquid, reserving the liquid and set the apples aside
  4. When apples have cooled, stir in cornstarch
    For the Caramel
  1. In the same Dutch oven with the remaining beer, add the brown sugar, butter, salt and corn syrup and cook over medium heat until it bubbles vigorously.
  2. Continue cooking about 10 - 12 minutes, stirring occasionally
  3. Remove from heat, carefully stir in cream 1/2 cup at a time, let cool
  4. Preheat oven to 400
  5. While caramel is cooling and oven is preheating roll crust
  6. Lightly flour counter
  7. Divide prepared dough in half
  8. Roll one half to a circle that will fit your pie pan (mine is an 11 inch deep dish)
  9. Wrap rolled dough over your rolling pin to transfer to pan
  10. Roll the other half out and cut shapes with a cookie cutter of your choice
  11. Continue rolling and cutting remainder until you have about 12 - 15 shapes
    Assemble the Pie
  1. Add half the apple mixture to the prepared pie pan
  2. Pour on 3/4 cup of the caramel
  3. Repeat with remaining apples and another 3/4 cup of caramel (save remainder caramel for topping or another use)
  4. Top with cut shapes
  5. Brush cut shapes and pie shell edges with egg white
  6. Sprinkle with sugar
  7. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and put the pie on it and bake for 45 - 50 minutes, checking after 30 minutes - if the edges start getting too dark wrap aluminum foil around
  8. Remove and cool on a wire rack
Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin

Crust recipe adapted from Ina Garten

Caramel Apple Pie adapted from Williams-Sonoma

Star crust design inspired by Brit + Co

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38 Responses to Happy Memorial Day and Boozy Caramel Apple Pie

  1. Love the rich family history behind this pie! So cool to see those vintage pics of your grandparents and that you used a family heirloom rolling pin 🙂 Plus, these stars are soooo freaking cool!

    • Thanks so much, Medha! I love that dang rolling pin! I had fun with the stars too! 🙂

  2. Love this post! I too come from a family full of men who have served our country… I actually lost my father due to his service, so this holiday holds a special and heart breaking place in my heart. the photos you shared are beautiful and so is this apple pie! A perfect pie to honor all the men and women who so graciously serve our nation. I LOVE the star crust adornment! Super cute! Thanks for sharing the deliciousness! Hope you are having a great holiday! ♡ cheers!

    • Cheyanne, I didn’t know you lost your dad. I’m very sad to hear that, friend. It does make me very happy that you get the spirit of this post! Beer, pie, WWII rolling pin, and stars – it all just seemed right. Cheers! XO

  3. I’m seriously loving so much about this post! The pictures of your grandparents are incredible. You’re lucky to have such awesome photos of them! And then this pie. This pie looks like something I could down in about one sitting. Haha! (Ok, maybe two.) I hope you had an awesome holiday weekend! 🙂

    • Thanks David! I hijacked those pics from my mom, but they’re mine now! 🙂 We did have an awesome holiday weekend and I hope you did too!

  4. Wow, that’s a pretty amazing rolling pin to have around! I wish I had my grandmother’s. I wonder what happened to it.
    The stars on this pie are awesome, not to mention the fact that you used booze. And caramel sauce! Your desserts are amazing, Rachelle!

    • Thanks Mir! I’ll take that huge compliment from you because your desserts are always stunning! As for your gram’s rolling pin – I hope you find it!

  5. Looks as though your pie was a great addition to the Memorial Day weekend. The starts were very creative. No surprise there. Your tribute to Gram/Pap along with others too numerous to mention was loved by all and brought back happy memories. Now the rolling pin has been handed down to you as the legacy continues. I’m not a pie maker as you know however a huge piece of this is welcome! It sounds delicious.

    • Thanks Mags! I’m glad you liked it and brought back happy memories. And thanks for Gram’s rolling pin! Just let me know if you want me to make you a pie. 🙂

  6. This is seriously the prettiest apple pie that I’ve ever laid my eyes on! Your story is wonderful Rachelle, and thank you for sharing the pictures. And God bless your family and the service that they gave to our country. 🙂

    I can’t wait to make a vegan version of this. Pinned!

    • I can’t say no to caramel and apples either, Erin. We had a great holiday and I hope you did too!

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