Southern Living Apple Cobbler


Are you tired of your boring old apple pies? This article will teach you how to make a delicious Southern Living style Apple Cobbler that is sure to please! There are very few desserts that are associated with the southern culture more than a good old pan of scrumptious cobbler. Cobbler is typically made with a mixture of tart fruit, sugar and butter.

Classic Apple Cobbler Recipe

Classic Apple Cobbler Recipe

60 mins

Cool Time:

30 mins

Total Time:

2 hrs 10 mins


6 serves


  • 2 ½ pounds Granny Smith apples (about 5 large), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
  • 2 ½ pounds Braeburn apples (about 5 large), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
  • 1 ¼ cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter, divided
  • 2 cups self-rising soft wheat flour (such as White Lily)
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ cup cold salted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh juice (from 1 lemon)
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ – 1 cup cold heavy cream, divided
  • Vanilla ice cream


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Toss together apples, brown sugar, and all-purpose flour in a large bowl. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high. Add apple mixture, and cook, stirring often, until apples are tender and syrup thickens, 20 to 25 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, stir together self-rising flour and 2 tablespoons of the granulated sugar in a large bowl. Cut 1/2 cup cold butter cubes into self-rising flour mixture with a pastry blender or fork until mixture is crumbly and resembles small peas; freeze 10 minutes.
  3. Remove apples from heat; stir in lemon zest and juice, cinnamon, and salt. Spoon apple mixture into a lightly greased 8-inch square (2-quart) baking dish. Bake in preheated oven 15 minutes, placing a baking sheet on oven rack directly below dish to catch any drips.
  4. Meanwhile, make a well in center of flour mixture. Add 3/4 cup cream; stir just until dough comes together, adding additional cream up to 1 cup, 1 tablespoon at a time, if needed. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead lightly 3 or 4 times. Roll or pat dough to 3/4- to 1-inch thickness. Cut with a 2 1/2-inch round cutter; reroll scraps once, and repeat process to make 9 biscuits.
  5. Place biscuits on top of hot apple mixture in baking dish. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter, and brush over biscuits. Sprinkle biscuits with remaining 1 tablespoon granulated sugar. Return cobbler to oven, and bake until biscuits are golden and done, 15 to 17 minutes. Cool 30 minutes; top servings with ice cream.

For a Single Serving

Preheat oven and prepare apple filling as directed in Step 1. Prepare biscuit dough as directed in Step 2. Proceed with Step 3, omitting baking dish and dividing filling evenly among 8 lightly greased 8-oz. ramekins. Place ramekins on a baking sheet; bake in preheated oven 10 minutes. Proceed with Step 4, reducing total number of biscuits to 8. Proceed with Step 5, placing 1 biscuit on top of hot filling in each ramekin. Brush each with melted butter, and sprinkle with sugar. Bake and cool as directed. Top servings with ice cream.

Here’s How To Make the Best-Ever Apple Cobbler

Welcome fall with this hot, bubbling, old-fashioned apple dessert

Classic Apple Cobbler

Cobbler may be one of the homiest-looking desserts, but it’s actually a delicate balancing act between the tender topping and cooked fruit. Overdo it on the filling, and you’re digging into a soupy pie; add too much topping, and you’re eating biscuits with fruit sauce. But get the ratio just right, and it’s pure comfort in a bowl.

How you decide to top a cobbler is a matter of personal preference. Some cooks choose a chewy layer of piecrust, others like craggy drop biscuits, and some opt for a thin and cakelike batter that bakes up around the fruit. (Just don’t use streusel—that’s a crisp, folks.) While we would never turn down a bowl of any of these cobblers, our Test Kitchen prefers the look and taste of tender, flaky biscuits that are made with a round cutter for our Classic Apple Cobbler.

The second key to mastering this classic is to cook the fruit before the crust is added, which prevents “al dente” apples and infuses the fruit with cinnamon, lemon, and brown sugar.

While we love summer cobblers made with peaches or berries, fall might be our favorite time of year for this cozy dessert. A fresh crop of apples is in season, the weather is cool enough to turn on the oven, and there aren’t many desserts that taste better topped with a dollop of vanilla ice cream—our third secret to a great apple cobbler.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when putting together an apple cobbler.

Apples for the Picking

You could use any kind of apple in this cobbler, but you’ll get better results if you combine two or more types. Different kinds keep the flavor and texture of the filling from being one-note. We’re partial to crisp-tart apples like Granny Smith and Braeburn, but Pink Lady, Winesap, and Jonagold are also good choices.

The Right Sugar

Light brown sugar is a perfect match for apples and cinnamon; it’s more complex than granulated sugar but not as intense as dark brown sugar.

The Perfect Flour

White Lily self-rising soft wheat flour is our Test Kitchen’s go-to for the lightest, most tender biscuits. We use all-purpose flour to thicken the filling.

A Touch of Lemon Zest and Juice

A little fresh lemon brightens the sweetness of the apples.

Super Easy Apple Cobbler Recipe

Total Time:30 MINUTES

This Super Easy Apple Cobbler Recipe is made with refrigerated crescent dough and a cinnamon sugar caramel sauce that is completely scrumptious. 

close up top view of apple cobbler with a fork on a plate.

Why This Recipe Works

Unique: I will admit that this apple cobbler recipe is different than most, but trust me – it’s all for the better. This retro recipe I borrowed from my mother’s archives uses store bought crescent rolls that we use to wrap up the apples into little cobbler bundles. My favorite part is the caramelizing magic of a can of soda combined with sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla!

Super Easy: As the title hints, this is a super easy apple cobbler recipe. You don’t have to make your own dough since the store bought crescent rolls are already delicious. All you have to do is assemble, create your sauce, bake, and top with some vanilla ice cream!

Versatile: You can change out the apples for a variety of fruits. Try using peaches, pears, or even mixed berries!

a hand holding up a spoon with some apple cobbler on it above a round tray of more cobbler.


  • Apples– You will want to slice your apples pretty thin and get rid of the core.
  • Brown Sugar– a quintessential part of all cobblers, for a more caramely flavor.
  • Cinnamon– Season with cinnamon for a classic apple cobbler taste.
  • Refrigerated Crescent Dough– I like using the store bought crescent dough, but if you have a croissant dough that you love then use that!
  • Sugar– Regular sugar will become part of your caramel sauce.
  • 7UP– Use 7UP of a similar soda as part of your caramel sauce. This is really the key to this shortcut apple cobbler and creates such a gooey delicious caramel sauce you will love.
  • Vanilla Ice Cream– Top it all off with vanilla ice cream!

How to Make This Super Easy Apple Cobbler Recipe

Step by Step Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F and grease a baking dish or casserole dish.
  2. Combine apple slices, butter, cinnamon and brown sugar in a skillet. Sauté over medium heat for 5-7 minutes until the sauce is bubbly and the apples are tender.
  3. Arrange crescents on a clean, flat surface. Spoon about two apple slices with sauce onto the wide end of the crescent triangle. Tightly roll up the crescent starting with the wide end and finishing at the opposite, pointed end. Place in the prepared baking dish.
  4. In a bowl, whisk together the sugar, remaining cinnamon, vanilla and 7UP. Pour the sauce over the crescent rolls in the baking dish.
  5. Bake, uncovered for 15-20 minutes until browned and sauce is bubbly and dark. Spoon some of the sauce from the bottom of the dish over the top of the crescents. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream and enjoy!
top view of apple cobbler with a spoon in a round tray.

Expert Tips

  • Some people prefer to leave the apple skin on their apples in this recipe. You can do either, but I think it is easier to just leave the peels on!
  • If you have leftovers, you can store your apple cobbler in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. When you are ready to eat it again, pop it in a low oven to crisp it up again!
  • The 7UP in this recipe will not make your crescent rolls soggy. In fact, the sugar in the soda will caramelize in the oven and make the crescent rolls crispy.

Easy Caramel Apple Cobbler

Fresh apples are cooked with brown sugar and fall spices, then topped with a delicious sugar cookie-like topping.  Perfect with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

In this recipe: This perfect fall dessert blends apples and warm spices in a classic filling, then tops it off with a sugar cookie-inspired cobbler topping. You’ll never go back to any other cobbler technique after you try this one.

finished cobbler with scoop missing

❤️ why you’ll love this recipe

  • So easy. Pie is hard. Cobbler is a breeze. No rolling pins, no chilling, no making things look perfect.
  • The flavors are amazing together. Caramel, tender apples, cinnamon, and vanilla ice cream on top. What’s not to love.
  • Warm and cozy. It’s a classic fall dessert that will make your house smell like the holidays.

This is an overview of the ingredients. You’ll find the full measurements and instructions in the printable recipe at the bottom of the page.

ingredients on white tile counter

You’ll need the following for this easy dessert:

  • tart apples
  • light brown sugar
  • cornstarch
  • cinnamon
  • cloves
  • allspice
  • salted butter
  • granulated sugar
  • egg
  • all-purpose flour
  • baking powder
  • salt
  • prepared caramel sauce


step one: make the filling

diced apples in bowl

Preheat the oven and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. If your filling overflows, you’ll be glad.

We begin with four apples. First, you peel them, then dice.

It’s better to dice the apples, rather than slice them. It makes your scoops neater and looks better. I go for about 1-inch cubes, but no need to get particular about it. Once you have diced the apples, they should measure about 8-9cups.  

Then we prepare the filling in a mixing bowl. This is basically an apple pie filling. In a large bowl, mix the apples, brown sugar, cornstarch cinnamon, cloves, and allspice. 

step two: pre-bake the filling

filling in baking dish

Pour the filling into a deep round baking dish or a 9×9 square baking dish. Cover it tightly with foil (just the filling!) and bake it for 20 minutes.

Why are we doing this? Because we want the apples to release their juices, mix with the cornstarch and sugar, and thicken. They are going to get a head start so this can happen without the topping over-browning.  

step three: make the topping

dough in bowl and on top of filling

While the filling is baking, let’s start the topping. This is easy. It’s like making the world’ simplest cookie dough.

Beat the sugar and butter with an electric mixer until they are fluffy, for about three minutes. Then add the egg yolk, then the dry ingredients. Just flour, baking powder, and salt.  

Mix on low until everything is combined

Remove the fruit filling from the oven when the time is up. It will look juicy and slightly browned from the brown sugar.

Then, we just scoop out the cookie dough with a spoon and dot it on top of the apple filling.

step four: bake

baked cobbler with caramel sauce

Back in the oven it goes for 40 minutes, until the topping is golden brown and the filling is bubbly. Then pour on the caramel sauce, about ¼ cup. It’s beautiful, isn’t it! If you want to make homemade caramel, of course, you can! But it’s not necessary.

step five: serve

Let it cool for at least 20 minutes before serving. You can also pop it in the fridge and either eat it cold or warm it for a few minutes in the oven.

Of course, you must serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

🥫 storage instructions

First, let the cobbler cool completely. Then, cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place it in the fridge. If you have a small amount of leftovers, transfer them to an airtight container rather than leaving them in the casserole dish.

You can warm it up in a 300-degree oven for about 15 minutes, or until heated through.

This recipe does not freeze well.

🔍 faqs

Do you serve cobbler warm or cold?

I like to serve warm cobbler that came out of the oven about 20-30 minutes before. But leftovers cold out of the fridge are still delicious topped with a little cool whip or ice cream.

Can I make apple cobbler ahead of time?

No, it really doesn’t work that well. The filling gets soggy and it’s definitely best the day it’s made. To cut down on prep time, you could prepare the filling and topping and refrigerate them separately, then assemble right beforehand.

👩🏻‍🍳 expert tips

  • If you have chosen a sweeter apple variety, like Honeycrisp apples or Gala apples, either reduce the sugar slightly or add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to the filling.
  • Be sure to dice your apples! Sliced apples are a pain to scoop. 😊
  • If you like nuts, try sprinkling chopped pecans on top of the dough when it comes out of the oven.
  • If you haven’t tried any of my cobbler recipes, the topping may seem weird to you. It’s the best and you’ll just have to trust me on this one.
  • You can cut the recipe in half and bake in quiche dish or deep pie plate.

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