Few desserts are as American as apple pie, but when you want something a little different, you might opt for a dutch oven apple cobbler recipe. Though this dish mixes the same apples and seasonings that you might find in a pie, you get the added benefit of a rich cake-like topping.
A dutch oven is a large piece of cast iron cookware with a matching lid. Many of the early models featured three to four small legs on the bottom. Cooks placed the dish inside a wood stove and covered the top with ashes to cook all areas of the dish inside evenly. You can still use a dutch oven outside on a wood fire, but they can be used in your oven as well.
The history of cobbler dates back to the settlers who originally arrived in America during the 17th and 18th centuries. They often used whatever type of fresh fruit they had on hand for the filling and pantry staples to create the dough on top. Most of the early recipes called for stone fruits, including peaches, pears and apples. Those fruits stood up well to long-time cooking without breaking down.
Once you have the recipe for apple cobbler down, you can have fun experimenting with other fruits and spices. After investing in a dutch oven, you'll find plenty of other ways to use the cookware, including for main dishes and other desserts.
Dutch Oven Apple Cobbler Recipe
Serves 8 to 10
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound skinned and sliced apples
1 package white or yellow cake mix
1 1/2 sticks melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour the vegetable oil in the dutch oven, and use a paper towel to gently rub the oil over the bottom and sides.
Place the skinned and sliced apples in a large bowl. Add the vanilla extract and cinnamon. Stir until the vanilla and cinnamon coats each apple. Transfer the apples to the dutch oven.
Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the top of the apples. After melting the butter on the stove or in the microwave, spoon the butter evenly over the top.
Put the lid on top of the dutch oven. Set the dutch oven inside the oven, once it reaches the proper temperature. Bake for 40 to 60 minutes or until the cake sets and is done in the center.
If you're camping or have access to a wood-burning fire, place the dutch oven in the center of the fire and cover the top with some of the hot ashes. The cobbler should take around 40 to 45 minutes in a wood-burning fire.
This apple cobbler tastes amazing on its own, but you might find that it tastes even better with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The ice cream melts into the cobbler, adding an extra hint of sweetness.