Baking all manner of apple-y treats is undoubtedly one of the best things about this time of year. Pie, turnovers, crumb bars, muffins, and the list just goes on. Sometimes I have the urge to bake but I know it could dissipate at any moment. Those are the times when I do not want to find myself elbow deep in some super involved, complex recipe and realize I have lost interest. Those are the times when apple custard bars are the answer.

This recipe has so many things going for it. Short ingredient list, fast and easy prep, and on top of all that, it makes use of that mandoline you just had to have but probably only use twice a year at most. (I know I can’t be the only one!) These are a fun and unique way to enjoy the bounty of gorgeous fall apples without investing a huge amount of time or effort.

  • Yield about 12-16 servings


  • 3 medium apples, such as gala or pink lady, peeled
  • ½ cup (68 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. grated nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (67 grams) sugar
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp. whole milk, at room temperature
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled


  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 400˚ F. Line an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper and lightly butter to grease the inside.

  • 02

    Use a mandoline to slice the apples as thinly as possible without them being transparent or breaking easily (on my mandoline, the best setting was 1/8-inch.) Discard the cores.

  • 03

    In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk to blend.

  • 04

    In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar and salt. Whisk constantly until the eggs are pale and the sugar dissolves, about 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the vanilla, then the milk and the melted butter. Add the flour mixture to the bowl and whisk until the batter is smooth. Add the apples to the bowl and gently fold with the custard mixture until the slices are all coated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing into as even a layer as possible.

  • 05

    Bake 40-50 minutes or until golden brown and puffed. Transfer to a wire rack and cool at least 15 minutes. Use the parchment to lift the bars out of the pan. Slice into squares and serve.