Last updated on April 16th, 2024.

Embark on a culinary journey to Italy with a classic dessert that embodies rustic elegance: the Italian-style apple crostata. This beloved pastry combines tender apples with a buttery crust, creating a comforting and sophisticated dessert. 

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top view of lattice italian apple tart

Crostata vs. Galette

Before we delve into the world of apple crostata, let’s clarify its distinction from other similar desserts. Crostata is an Italian tart typically made with a buttery shortcrust pastry filled with fruit preserves or fresh fruit. On the other hand, Galette is a French pastry with a free form pie made with an all-butter crust folded over a fruit filling. 

This easy recipe for Apple Crostata is the perfect way to use fresh apples, whether during or off apple season. Check out my Jewish Apple Cake, Mini Apple Galette, Italian Apple Cake, and this Torta Della Nonna for more Italian and apple recipes.  


You will only need simple recipes to make this easy apple crostata.

  • Pasta Frolla, or Pate Sablee .Divide the dough into 2/3 and 1/3 parts and wrap each with a plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to use.  ( If using Pate Sablee, make a double recipe to have enough dough for the crust and the lattice topping. )
  • Apples. Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, or a combination of both. 
  • Granulated sugar. If you prefer, you can use brown sugar.
  • The zest and juice of one lemon. Or, use the juice and orange zest to half an orange.
  • Cinnamon.
ingredients for Italian apple tart

How to Make Italian-Style Apple Crostata

The complete apple crostata recipe, including measurements, can be found in the recipe card below.

Make the Filling

  1. Peel, core, and slice the apples into 1/4-inch slices, then toss the slices with the lemon juice in a large bowl. In a medium bowl mix the cinnamon and sugar.
  2. Place the apple slices in a medium saucepan, add the lemon zest, sprinkle the cinnamon sugar, and mix to distribute. 
  3. Cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
making apple filling for a tart


  1. Use a rolling pin to roll the large part of the dough between two pieces of parchment paper into an 11 or 12-inch circle. Remove the top paper and use the bottom paper to line the dough into a nine-inch removable tart pan with a one or 2-inch border. Refrigerate until ready to bake. Remove the top piece of parchment paper, and trim the access dough. Brush the bottom and edges of the dough with an egg white.
  2. Fill the crust with the apple filling.
  3. Roll the second part of the dough into a 10-inch circle and slice it into 1-inch strips. Lay half the strips across the apple mixture horizontally, spacing them evenly apart.
  4. Fold back every other strip halfway. Place a strip of dough perpendicular to the horizontal strips, slightly off-center. Unfold the folded strips over the strip.
  5. Fold back the alternate horizontal strips, then place another strip slightly offset from the first. Repeat until the pie is covered with a lattice pattern.
  6. Brush with an egg wash.
filling a shortcrust shell and topping with lattice top
lattice over apple filling

Tips and Serving Ideas

  • Don’t overcrowd dough strips. The space is necessary for the steam to evaporate during baking.
  • Because we are cooking the apple twice, it is important to use the right apples, like tart apples such as Granny Smith and Honey Crips. Check out my post on The Best Apples For Baking to learn about other options.
  • You can make the dough using a pastry cutter or a food processor. For the ultimate guide, check out my post on how to make Pate Sablee
  • When warming to the oven, place a baking sheet over the rack, then bake the crostata over the pan to collect any oils or liquids that might come out during baking. 
  • It may be a bit tricky to lift the dough strips. If necessary, refrigerate for 5-10 minutes or dust some flour.
  • The pie is ready when the top is golden brown, and you notice a few bubbles coming from the surface.
  • Variation: Add a dash of nutmeg or clove for a fall-season feeling. Drizzle about 1/2 cup of caramel over the top of the apples before forming the lattice.
  • Dust the crostata with powdered sugar, or top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


Store any leftover apple crostata in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days. For longer storage, refrigerate and reheat before serving.


 Can I use pre-made pie crust instead of making my own?

 You should remember that store-bought crust is not sweet, unlike shortcrust.

Can I freeze the crostata before baking?

  Yes, you can assemble the crostata and freeze it before baking. When ready to bake, place it in the oven straight from the freezer, adding a few extra minutes to the baking time.

Can I bake this recipe like a French galette?

Yes, but you must shape the galette inside a pan, not a free-form rustic tart. 

a slice of apple crostata with a fork

More Desserts Recipes You Might Enjoy

Torta Tenderina, Choux A La Creme, Italian Cream Puffs

Apple Crostata Recipe

A tender shortcrust dough filled with apples and tipped with lattice-designed dough.

Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American, European
Keyword apple cake, apple crumble cake
Prep Time 45 minutes
Servings 10 people
Author Dikla


Shortcrust Dough

  • 1 Pasta Frolla dough Dvided into 2/3 and 1/3. Each part is wrapped with plastic wrap and refrigerated.

Apple Layer

  • 6-8 Medium Apples (1 KG / 2.2 LBS)
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar (50 g / 2 oz)
  • 3 teaspoons Cinnamon
  • Fresh Lemon Zest from one lemon
  • Fresh lemon juice from one lemon
  • 1 Large Egg, unbeaten for brushing the dough.


  1. Peel and core the apples. Slice them into 1/4-inch slices.

  2. Toss the apple slices with the orange juice in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, mix the cinnamon and sugar.

  3. Place the apples in a medium-sized saucepan, mix in the lemon zest, then sprinkle in the cinnamon sugar and mix to distribute.

  4. Cook over medium heat for about 15 minutes, until the apples release their water, but are still crispy to the bite.

  5. Remove from the heat

  6. Remove from heat and allow to cool.


  1. Preheat oven to 350F (180C), and place a large baking sheet over the second oven rack.

  2. Roll the large part of the dough between two pieces of parchment paper into an 11-12-inch circle.

    Remove the top piece of parchment paper, then use the bottom piece to lift the dough and press it into a greased 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Place in the refrigerator while you get the lattice strips ready.

  3. Roll the smaller dough into a 10-inch circle, and use a sharp knife to cut it into 1-inch thick strips.

    Roll the dough between two pieces of parchment paper, and if needed, take turns to remove the paper and dust it with flour.

  4. Remove the tart from the refrigerator, remove the top piece of parchment, and trim the extra dough. Save the scraps in case you need more dough for more stips.

  5. Brush the bottom and sides of the tart shell with an egg white.

  6. Fill the shell with the chilled apple filling.

  7. Line the top of the tart with some of the dough strips leaving some gap between each strip.

  8. Roll every other strip back and place a strip of dough horizontally to the strips, slightly off-center. Unfold the folded strips back over, and do the same with the strip you did not fold.

  9. Repeat the process until the tart is topped, then press the edges and trim any access dough.

  10. Beat the egg you use to brush the empty tart shell and bake over the baking sheet in the oven for 30-35 minutes.

    The tart is ready when the top is golden brown, and you can notice some bubbles in between the gaps of the lattice.

  11. Remove from the oven and let the crostata cool completely before inverting and serving.

Recipe Notes

  • The best apples for this recipes are granny smith and apple crisp. The keep their texture even after cooking them twice.
  • Store the tart at room temperature for up to three days or in the refrigerator, covered for up to five days.
  • Dust the crostata with some powdered sugar, drizzle with caramel, or topped with vanilla ice cream.
  • If you notice that the apples release more than a 1/4 cup of liquid (there should be a very thin layer of liquid at the bottom so that you can eyeball it), Mix two teaspoons of cornstarch with one tablespoon of water and add it to the apples. Cook until thickened. 
  • Don’t overcrowd dough strips. The space is necessary for the steam to evaporate during baking.
Dee Signature
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