Crispy, warm, and full of cinnamon flavor! These Apple Dumplings are a PERFECT weeknight treat when you’re craving a comforting dessert!
I love all things fall – leaves changing colors, nights getting colder, and all things apple flavored. Apple pies, apple crisps, apple cider, and best of all, apple dumplings! There’s almost nothing better than fresh apples wrapped in dough and smothered in warm cinnamon sugar, I’m drooling just thinking about it!
This apple dumpling recipe is unique though, because of one little ingredient that makes it extra special. You’ll never guess the secret ingredient to these amazing apple dumplings, so I’m just going to tell you. I’s a can of Mountain Dew!
I know… sounds crazy, but I promise you, it’s worth it! Looking for some more apple inspiration? Check out my Apple Cobbler!
Like this recipe? Pin it to your DESSERTS pinboard!
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This past weekend we took the kids on my favorite autumn adventure – apple picking! There is something that makes apples you’ve picked straight from the tree SO delicious.
Whenever we get the chance to pick our own apples from the orchard, we do! We love our local apple orchard. Instead of a quick trip to grab some apples, we make it into a whole family fun day.
Yes, we made a whole day of it. Complete with matching family flannel shirts, picking pounds and pounds of apples, and snacking on warm apple cider doughnuts. (And plenty of forced family photo opportunities.)
I love being able to spend time outside with my kids on crisp fall days. There’s something about the air that makes us all feel refreshed and alive!
Now while my favorite fall tradition is actually picking the apples, my kids’ favorite fall tradition is BAKING with the apples we’ve picked! Every year, each of my kids gets to choose their own favorite apple-based recipe to bake together. My oldest almost always choose apple pie. (Can you blame him?? Apple pie is amazing!)
This year my youngest wanted to branch out and try something new. He was tired of pies and crisps, so we did some research and settled on these crescent roll apple dumplings! I am so glad he was feeling adventurous with his dessert choices, because the results from this baking adventure were truly amazing.
Ingredients for Apple Dumplings
There are SO many different types of apples. Some of which are great for eating on their own, others that are perfect for baking. We’ve tried a few different varieties of apples in our baking experiments and I’ve found that our family’s favorite is Granny Smith. They’re great because they’re on the tart side, so they help to keep your desserts from becoming overly sweet.
If you don’t have Granny Smiths on hand, we also love using Honeycrisps. They’re slightly sweeter, but hold up really well while baking (and they’re great for munching on as you bake!!). Here’s what you’ll need for these easy apple dumplings:
- 2 Granny smith apples
- 2 cans crescent rolls
- 1 can Mountain Dew
If you don’t have Mountain Dew on hand, you can make your apple dumplings with Sprite. They’ll turn out just as good.
How to Make Easy Apple Dumplings
These crescent roll apple dumplings are so simple. They’re practically impossible to mess up! So easy you could make them every night if you really wanted to. And believe me, I’ve wanted to!
Start off by coating the inside of a 9-inch x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Then, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
Next, you’re going to prep your apples. Peel and core the apples (nobody wants a rogue seed in their dumpling!!) and then slice them into roughly 1/2 inch thick slices. Check out my favorite apple peeler linked below – it has saved me accidentally slicing my fingertips so many times!
Now wrap each apple slice in a crescent roll, starting with the wide end first.
Arrange your 16 dumplings in the dish in 2 rows – don’t worry if they’re touching, they’ll bake just fine!
Now that the dumplings are formed, it’s time to get working on the sugary topping. In a small saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, and cinnamon over medium heat.
Bring the sugar syrup to a boil, but not for too long – just enough to dissolve the sugar!
Next, pour the sugary sauce over the dumplings. Be careful, it’s VERY hot!
Now for our secret ingredient. Pour the can of Mountain Dew over dumplings. You may be wondering “but WHY the Mountain Dew?” Believe me, I was too.
This sugary soda helps to create the amazing caramel sauce that the apple dumplings swim in! Don’t worry, the finished product doesn’t come out tasting like “the dew”.
Now, bake the dumplings for 35- 45 mins or until golden brown. It’s going to be tough to wait because the overwhelming scent of apple and cinnamon is going to make your mouth water!
When the dumplings are brown and crispy, pull them out of the oven. Pop them on a plate and serve warm with a hefty scoop of vanilla ice cream!
How Long to Cook Apple Dumplings
There is definitely a delicate balance to reach when baking the perfect apple dumplings. You don’t want your apple filling to be raw and crunchy, but you also don’t want the crescent roll crust to be over-baked. I’ve found a few different tips that have helped me to bake the perfect apple dumplings.
- Slice your apples thin, but not too thin! – If your apple slice is too thick, it’ll take much longer to bake than the crescent roll crust. You don’t want it to be too thin, though, because then you lose out on the great apple flavor! I’ve found that the perfect size apple is between 1/4 and 1/2 an inch thick.
- Bake for between 35 and 45 minutes – This requires a bit of watching on your end… every oven is different! You’ll know your dumplings are done when they’re golden brown and that oozy caramel sauce is bubbling around the sides of your pan.
Feeling inspired and ready to make more desserts? Check out these other Real Housemoms Favorites!
- Triple Chocolate Icebox Cake
- Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
- Classic Pumpkin Roll
- Caramel Apple Poke Cake
- Apple Cider Snickerdoodles
- More DESSERT recipes…
Tools Used to make this Apple Dumplings recipe
Apple Peeler: I have nearly sliced my fingers off so many times with other peelers, this one is safe and efficient!
*This post originally posted on 10/24/2012.
- 2 Granny Smith apples peeled and cored
- 2 cans refrigerated crescent roll dough
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 12 ounces Mountain Dew
- Preaht your oven to 350 degrees F. Coat the inside of a 9-inch x 13-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Wrap each apple slice in a crescent roll starting with the wide end of the dough.
- Arrange the dumplings in your baking dish in 2 rows - 8 in each row. It's okay if they touch.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt together butter, and add sugar and cinnamon. Bring to a boil, just enough to dissolve sugar.
- Pour the cinnamon butter mixture over the dumplings. Then pour the whole can of Mountain Dew over the dumplings.
- Bake for 35- 45 minutes or until golden brown.
- Serve warm with vanilla ice cream!