Off-Grid Apple Pie

Even the recipe is home-made
Recipe provided by Corey Naughton

Being off-grid comprises more than a few solar panels and a bit of food storage. A true “off-gridder” will always have a garden – a perpetual source of sustenance with no shelf life limits.

Most are unable to produce butters/oils however and those who can produce or can store have the fun of trying to keep an item which doesn’t store well due to rancidification. Therefore, this pie recipe is designed to accomodate the unique situations that accompany the true off-gridder. It uses items which both store well and are easy to produce for yourself or store long term. For more recipes that eliminate oil see “No Oil Cooking” by Sanjay Kapoor.

This recipe is for Apple pie specifically but you can modify it for whatever filling type you desire. If you’re a true off-gridder and/or prepper then you should have all of these items on hand (especially in this season).

Pie Crust

Every pie crust recipe you’re likely to find contains some sort of oil. While shortening is perhaps the best storing form of oil (up to 2 years unopened) it still spoils and cannot be produced easily. That’s why this pie crust recipe doesn’t use shortening, butter, margarine (yuck), or any other form of oil!


1 apple, peeled and cored
1-1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbs. vodka or rum
1 tsp. baking powder


Boil apple until soft. Place all ingredients in a food processor and spin until it forms a ball. (Or, Push the apple through a sieve and then mix together with other ingredients.)
Refrigerate 2-3 hours.
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Roll out the dough and spread in pie pan.
Bake 15 minutes.
Allow to cool on a rack before filling.
Filling (Apple)

This filling recipe is designed for canning. It produces ~7 quarts and can be canned in a regular water bath canner. Obviously, you wont need all 7 quarts to fill the one pie but it will store for years so long as you keep the jars out of direct sunlight!


4.5 cups of white sugar

1 cup cornstarch

2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 to 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

2 tsp salt

10 cups water

2 tbs lemon juice

6 lbs of whole apples (pick and choose your favorite variety)


Mix: sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Then add water and mix well. Bring to a boil and cook over low/medium heat until thick.
Remove from heat and add lemon juice.
Peel/core/slice apples. Pack the sliced apples into hot canning jars, leaving a 1/2 inch headspace.
Fill jars with hot syrup, and gently remove air bubbles with a knife.
Put lids on and process in a water bath canner for 20 minutes.
Directions for the whole pie

You can add the filling mix directly into the pie crust or store and use at your liesure. If you wish for your apple pie (or other type) to have a top then simple multiply your crust recipe by 1.5 and remove a portion to be rolled out and made into your pies covering (cut slits into the covering before baking). If you like softer apples you may cook the apple slices in the syrup on low for 15 minutes prior to filling.

Bake at 425F for 15 minutes, reduce heat to 350F, bake for another 40-45 minutes until crust is golden and filling is bubbly.

Adjust baking times and temps as needed when using other fillings.


3 Responses

  1. i know when baking bread, the basic bread recipe allows me to substitute any grain/flour/cereal for 1/2 of the flour in a recipe. i recommend looking at the automatic bread baker recipe books, one had an explanation of each ingredient’s purpose in the reciipe and what types of substitutions allowed, the science allowed me to design my own reciipes for bread. i think that the substitutions will work in other recipes.

  2. This is Corey – I’m going to experiment with using flours other than the all purpose bleached junk. If anyone else wants to do the same then I’d suggest using the same amount of flour but trading some water for an egg. That way it holds together despite the lower gluten levels.

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