The great dilemma:
You are asked to bring a dessert to a potluck, BBQ, or dinner party. Do you stick to your real food convictions and bring something “healthy”, or cave in and bring a standard dessert loaded with white sugar…?
I will confess that I’ve done both. Depending on the crowd, sometimes it’s not worth it to use all my expensive, healthy sweeteners when they won’t eat it anyway.
Thankfully, fruit pies are a great compromise, provided you can make them without adding cups and cups of white sugar.
I LOVE having pie fillings ready to go, whether they are in my freezer or pantry (home canned). When I need a dessert fast, it’s such a relief to pull one out and dump it in a crust. Homemade pie in a hurry!
I was blessed with a box of peaches this year, so after saving some back for eating (Prairie Baby loves her peaches), I turned the rest into freezer pie filling.
I had a hard time finding a peach pie recipe that didn’t call for an obscene amount of sugar. So, I tweaked several and came up with my own. Depending on the sweetness of your peaches, you will need to adjust the amount of sucanat. My filling ended up pleasantly sweet, but definitely not overpowering.
Peach Pie Filling for the Freezer
- 5 cups peeled, sliced peaches (**See peeling tip below)
- 3 Tablespoons arrowroot powder OR cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup (or more to taste) sucanat or other granulated natural sweetener
- 2 Tablespoons pure lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
- Optional: A pinch of Stevia powder can be added to increase the amount of sweetness if needed
**To easily peel whole peaches: Drop the whole peach in a pot of boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Remove from the hot water and immediately place in a bowl of ice cold water for 1-2 minutes. The skin should slip right off with minimal waste. (And be sure to give the peach skins to your chickens, goats, or pig!)
After the peaches are peeled and sliced, drain them to remove the majority of the water and other liquid. Combine the peach slices with arrowroot powder, cinnamon, vanilla, sweetener, lemon juice, nutmeg, and salt. Mix thoroughly.
Place in a gallon-size freezer bag or other freezer safe container (if using glass, be sure to leave plenty of headspace). Label and freeze.
**Alternate Freezing Method: Line a pie pan with foil, then freeze the filling in the shape of a pie. I’ve read that you can put the frozen chunk directly in a crust and then in the oven. However, I’ve never tried this. My pie pans are all different sizes, so I prefer just to use defrosted (or mostly defrosted…) filling. It works.**
When you are in need of a quick pie, defrost the filling and place in a a homemade, shortening-free pie crust. (or use this filling in a peach cobbler instead!) Top with either an additional crust or a crumb topping. Cover the edges with foil or a pie shield, then bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove the shield and bake for an additional 20-30 minutes or until the filling is bubbly and the crust is golden brown. (But whatever you do, please, please don’t overbake your crust. Please.)
Yield: 1 pie. But, of course, this recipe can be doubled, or quadrulpled…
Serve warm or cold (I prefer cold pie for some reason) with homemade ice cream. Or if you are fortunate enough, slap on a dollop of fresh, raw whipped cream. And that my friends, is real-food dessert eating at it’s finest.
- 5 cups peeled, sliced peaches
- 3 Tablespoons arrowroot powder (like this) OR cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¼ cup (or more) sucanat (like this) or other granulated natural sweetener
- 2 Tablespoons pure lemon juice (like this)
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
- Optional:pinch of Stevia powder
- After peeling and slicing peaches, drain to remove water
- Combine peach slices, arrowroot powder, cinnamon, vanilla, sweetener, lemon juice, nutmeg, and salt, mixing thoroughly
- Place in gallon-size freezer bag or freezer safe container (if using glass, leave plenty of headspace)
- Label and freeze
*Alternate Freezing Method: Line a pie pan with foil, then freeze filling in the shape of a pie. I hear you can put the frozen chunk directly in a crust to bake, however, I've never tried this-I just to use mostly defrosted filling. It works.**
In the mood for more pie? Check out my Old-Fashioned Lemon Whey Pie.