This Apple Delight recipe is the perfect fall dessert with a buttery graham cracker crust and layers of fluffy cream cheese, apple pie filling, and whipped cream.
You’ll love how simple this recipe is to put together, and your guests or family will love the creamy texture and delicious fall flavors. With apple pie filling, cream cheese, and whipped cream, how could it not be outstanding?
With only the crust being baked, the rest of the apple delight is layered and then chilled, making it the easiest dessert you’ll make this fall.
Why You Will Love This Apple Delight
- It’s simple - There’s no fussy measuring or complicated baking instructions here. Just a simple, layered dessert that takes only minutes to throw together.
- It’s full of fall flavors - Apple pie is such a quintessential fall dish, but can take more time to make. Here we’re combing a spiced apple pie filling with ingredients like pecans, cinnamon, and brown sugar to make a new dish that won’t have you in the kitchen long.
- The textures - This apple delight dessert is fluffy and creamy. The crunchy graham cracker crust and the pecans give it a contrasting crunch that is so satisfying.
Apple recipes are a favorite at our house and what I love about this apple delight recipe is that it uses apple pie filling so it can be enjoyed year-round.
See printable recipe card below for all ingredients, specific measurements, and complete instructions.
- Graham crackers- Crushed graham cracker crumbs will form the foundation for the apple delight crust.
- Butter- Just a bit of melted butter goes into the graham cracker crust.
- Pecans- Crushed pecans will go in the crust and chopped pecans will be sprinkled over the top for a delightful crunch.
- Light brown sugar- To sweeten the crust.
- Ground cinnamon- To add a fall warmth to the crust.
- Cream cheese- Softened cream cheese puts just about any dessert over the top.
- Vanilla extract- Add an extra layer of flavor to the cream cheese filling.
- Confectioners sugar- To sweeten the cream cheese layer
- Whipped topping - This whipped topping (cool whip) will keep the cream cheese layer light and fluffy and will be spread across the top of the apple delight.
- Apple pie filling- This will add a fruity fall flavor to the whole dish.
How To Make Apple Delight
Start by preheating the oven to 350°F and preparing your baking dish.
Make the crust. To make the crust you first need to crush the graham crackers and pecans. I like to crush them in a food processor. If you don't have a food processor you can put them in a a plastic Ziploc bag and use a rolling pin to crush them.
Once crushed add the graham crackers and pecans to a large mixing bowl along with the melted butter, brown sugar and ground cinnamon. Mix until well combined.
Bake crust. Press the crust mixture into a prepared 9x13 baking dish and bake in the oven for 8 minutes. Then remove and allow the crust to completely cool.
Cream cheese layer. To make the cream cheese layer beat the softened cream cheese and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl until smooth. Slowly add in the powdered sugar into the cream cheese and mix until fully incorporated.
Then add half of the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture and stir until combined.
Add layers. Evenly spread the cream cheese mixture over the top of the crust. Then spoon the apple pie filling over the top of the cream cheese layer.
Next, add the remaining whipped topping and spread over the apple pie filling layer.
I like to add chopped pecans as a garnish on top of the whipped topping.
Chill. Place in the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours or overnight before serving.
Storing and Freezing
Make Ahead - This recipe can be prepared the night before and refrigerated overnight.
Leftovers - Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Freezing - You can freeze this apple delight in a sealed container for 2-4 weeks. To defrost, place in the refrigerator the night before serving.
- It will take about 14 rectangular graham crackers to make 2 cups of graham cracker crumbs.
- Let your cream cheese get to room temperature before beginning this recipe- It will be so much easier to work with!
- The crust may be soft when it comes out of the oven, but it will harden when it cools.
- If you prefer smaller slices of apples you can take a knife and make cross cuts to the apples in the can several times to cut them into smaller pieces.
Substitutions and Variations
- Use a different type of cookie crumbs for the crust. Shortbread, sugar cookie, and snickerdoodle crumbs would all be divine in this crust.
- Leave out the pecans if you’re not into nuts in your desserts, or switch them out for walnuts if you prefer.
- Drizzle caramel sauce over the top. Apples and caramel are a delicious flavor combination.
- Allow at minimum 4 hours for this dessert to chill in the refrigerator. This allows the layers time to set up before serving and makes it easier to slice and serve.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! Feel free to leave out the pecans if you’d like. You can also use a different type of cookie in place of the graham crackers. Nilla wafers, shortbread, or sugar cookie crumbs would be great!
Yes! People call this dish all sorts of things. Apple lush, apple delight, and apple dream can all be used to describe this dessert.
Of course! This is a great way to save time.
If you love apple recipes here are a few more to try!
This layered apple delight dish is light, refreshing, and delicious. The flavors of cream cheese, autumn apples, and pecans come together to make a delicious dessert that the whole family will love.
If you try it, be sure to come back here to rate the recipe and leave a comment.
Apple Delight Recipe
- 2 cups graham crackers, crushed
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- ¼ cup crushed pecans
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup confectioners sugar
- 16 ounces whipped topping, divided
- 2 cans apple pie filling (21 ounces each)
- ½ cup chopped pecans
- cooking spray
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.
- Crush graham crackers in a food processor or crush in a plastic Ziploc bag with a rolling pin.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the graham crackers, melted butter, crushed pecans, brown sugar and ground cinnamon until well combined.
- Spread and press down the crust mixture into a 9x13 baking dish with your hands or the back of a spatula. Bake the crust in the oven for 8 minutes, then remove and allow the crust to fully cool.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the softened cream cheese and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. Slowly mix the powdered sugar into the cream cheese until fully incorporated.
- Stir half of the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture until well mixed.
- Spread the cream cheese mixture evenly across the top of the cooled graham cracker crust.
- Evenly add the apple pie filling across the top of the cream cheese layer.
- Next, spread the remaining whipped topping over the top of the apple pie filling layer.
- Garnish the whipped topping layer with the chopped pecans.
- Chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, or overnight before serving. Slice and serve, enjoy!