Beetlejuice Apple Pie

"Bugs in your food are typically frowned upon, but when they're as adorable and delicious and these hand-crafted critters, It's unlikely you'll get too much judgment. While it may look somewhat grotesque (covered in creepy crawlies and dripping with green goo), I promise I haven't scrimped on flavor with this recipe. You can simply think of it as a deceptively delicious Nightmare Before Thanksgiving."
photo by ChristineMcConnell photo by ChristineMcConnell
photo by ChristineMcConnell
photo by ChristineMcConnell photo by ChristineMcConnell
photo by ChristineMcConnell photo by ChristineMcConnell
photo by ChristineMcConnell photo by ChristineMcConnell
Ready In:
1hr 30mins
8 slices




  • For pie crust- In a large bowl, mix 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon fine salt and 5 tablespoons granulated white sugar. Using a pastry cutter, incorporate shortening. Once crumbly, add 12 tablespoons cubed butter and cut in until evenly mixed. Slowly add ice water mixing with a fork as you go. Separate into two even foil sheets and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Key tips for a perfect pie crust: use hands as little as possible (I try to only use my hands when transferring to foil and when shaping the crust edge. ALWAYS make sure all ingredients are cold and stay cold until just ready to pop in the oven. Do not overmix ingredients and when in doubt with your measurements, err on the side of too much moisture rather than too little—working with a dry pie crust is never fun. For a golden crust, baste with egg yolk just before baking.
  • For apple pie- Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Pour lemon juice into a large bowl. Start dicing apples, leaving the skin and tossing in the lemon juice after each apple is cored and sliced. In a small bowl, mix 1 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon and pour over apple slices. Mix in green food coloring and cover until ready to pour into pie crust.
  • Roll out half of pie crust and lay over buttered and floured pie dish. Fill in a mound with apples and add a few dabs of butter. Roll out second half of dough and cover the top of your pie. Trim edges and use excess to create decorative embellishment.
  • For crust topping- In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup diced pecans, 1/3 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup softened butter. Baste top of your pie crust with egg yolk and apply crust topping. Place in pre-heated oven and bake for 15 minutes. Then lower temp to 350 and allow to continue baking for 40-45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  • For beetles- You can either make homemade caramel for dipping or melt down a package of Werthers Original candies in a 300 degree oven and then dip.
  • Insert toothpick into the end of a pecan and dip into caramel. I pre-drilled the pecans to ensure they wouldn't break with a clean Drimmel tool I only use for baking purposes—sound excessive? It is ;).
  • Allow to cool before painting with edible paint. Create legs if desired by stretching a few bits of caramel and adhering by heating up the joint with a flame and then immediately applying. I attached the eyes using this method and then painted on a pupil using edible powder paints. The eyes are simple sugar beads sold at any Michaels or cake supply. I adhered them with the tiniest bit of heated caramel. Once completed, place about the top of your pie and even insert a few halfway into the crust.

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Artist, photographer, baker and author of Deceptive Desserts
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