The differences between Dutch and French apple pie are slight. Both pies have a traditional crust. They’re filled with spiced apples and have crumbly toppings. The pies also taste similar but recipes vary, depending on the baker.
Basic recipes for both Dutch and French apple pie have very similar ingredients. However, some French apple pie recipes use less sugar in the filling and topping than Dutch apple pie recipes. In fact, the topping may be the key difference between the two pies, where the Dutch version’s topping is more like streusel and the French version’s topping is more like bread crumbs.
The slight differences in sugar content impact pie flavor. You may find that Dutch apple pie has more of a molasses flavor, with its extra brown sugar, than French apple pie. Dutch apple pie’s topping typically has a crunchier texture.
Of course, you can vary any apple pie recipe. Country Living magazine offers a version of Dutch apple pie that uses sour cream and eggs in the filling, and adds walnuts, cinnamon and orange peel to the topping.
Betty Crocker offers a version of French apple pie that includes eggs and milk in the filling and nuts in the topping.