When you think of classic fast-food desserts, McDonald’s apple pie is likely to be one of the first that comes to mind. With its warm, flaky crust and sweet, cinnamon-spiced apple filling, it has been a beloved treat for generations of McDonald’s customers. But have you ever wondered what makes this fast-food apple pie so irresistibly delicious?
The Surprising Ingredient: Apple Powder
While some may assume that McDonald’s apple pie is made from scratch, the truth is a bit different. The pies come pre-made, and the secret behind their incredible flavor lies in an unexpected ingredient: apple powder.
This versatile ingredient is a byproduct of the apple juicing process, where the remaining mixture of apple pulp and peels, after extracting the juice, is dehydrated and turned into a fine powder. Combined with citric acid, apple powder becomes an essential component in various foods, known for enhancing flavors and providing added thickness.
The Power of Apple Powder in the Pie Filling
McDonald’s traditional apple pie filling includes fresh apples, sugar, apple pie spice, and a thickener like cornstarch. However, apple powder plays a crucial role in elevating the pie’s taste and texture.
By adding apple powder to the mix, McDonald’s achieves a uniquely strong yet natural apple flavor that keeps customers coming back for more. The powder acts as a thickener, ensuring the filling has the perfect consistency without compromising on the delightful apple taste.
A Recipe Through Time
The history of McDonald’s apple pie is a journey of innovation and refinement. It all started when a franchisee named Litton Cochran introduced his mother’s fried apple pie recipe to his McDonald’s location in Knoxville.
The success of Cochran’s apple pies led McDonald’s to adopt it as its first-ever dessert. Over the years, the recipe evolved, and in 1992, the pies transitioned from fried to baked. But the most significant change came in 2018 when Bama Companies, McDonald’s apple pie producer, collaborated with the fast-food chain to create a new recipe. The revamped pie focused on fewer but higher quality ingredients, with a commitment to omitting artificial components.
Today, McDonald’s apple pie continues to delight customers with its iconic taste and the magic of apple powder, providing a warm and comforting treat that has stood the test of time. So the next time you savor a McDonald’s apple pie, remember the incredible journey of flavors that goes into making this beloved fast-food dessert a true delight for the senses.