Does Apple Pie Need To Be Refrigerated?

Apple pie is one of the nation’s most favorite desserts and it’s easy to understand why. It’s got a unique, sweet taste and the addition of beautiful aromatic spices make us think of home.

But a lot of the time, we make too much apple pie and we have leftovers. So when this happens, do we need to refrigerate the apple pie?

Well the answer is – it depends. If apple pie has sugar, it can be left out for two days without refrigeration in normal settings.

Does Apple Pie Need To Be Refrigerated?

However, if it contains perishable ingredients like cream, it must be refrigerated.

We’re going to look at what you need to know about refrigerating apple pies here with this handy guide.

Read on to learn more.

Do I Need To Refrigerate Apple Pie?

As we said, the answer depends on how you have made your apple pie.

Generally speaking, if apple pies just contain sugar, you can leave it out unrefrigerated for two days and you won’t have to worry about it expiring.

This is because sugar does not promote microbial growth on its own.

However, if you include perishable ingredients such as eggs, cream, milk or similar products, then you will need to refrigerate your apple pie as soon as possible.

Factors To Think About

Of course, with this answer there are going to be a number of factors you must consider when it comes to putting your apple pie in the refrigerator. Here are some of the most important to think about.


So, we’ll start with perhaps the most obvious. If you’ve used perishable ingredients like eggs or cream, these will expire within the apple pie pretty quickly. 

However, you can’t just stick a warm or hot apple pie in the refrigerator right away. You must let it cool and then properly wrap it and store it.

The apple pie will be fine until it cools, which can be up to a maximum of two hours.

If you have just used sugar, the time can increase to two days.

It’s also important to note here that if you are using a sugar substitute like Splenda, you must refrigerate the apple pie, as the properties are completely different.

However, you should still cover your apple pie with a cake container or something similar. 

The Room

There are two big factors when it comes to the room you leave the apple pie in. Generally speaking, you will leave your apple pie in the kitchen. However, different places will have different room temperatures.

If the room temperature is particularly high, you’re advised to try to put your apple pie in the refrigerator as soon as you possibly can to avoid any contamination or ruin your dessert.

Similarly, if you have multiple open windows, it’s likely that pests such as flies can get into the room and land on your apple pie, which causes a significant health risk. 

This is why it is so vital that if you are going to leave your apple pie out, you should cover it with a cake container or similar. 

Can I Freeze My Apple Pie?

If you’re looking to extend the life of your apple pie, then yes – of course it would be a fantastic idea to freeze your apple pie.

However, it should be noted as said earlier that you cannot instantly freeze an apple pie. You need to let it cool first and then choose a container that is appropriate for your freezer.

One of the most recommended are small, plastic containers that you can label and place individual slices of apple pie in for each one. 

With the right airtight container, apple pie can last for up to three months in the freezer.

It should also be noted here though, that freezing things that contain cream, eggs or milk will normally decrease their quality. 

Correct Refrigeration Practice

If you’ve decided that you are going to put your leftover apple pie in the refrigerator, then you need to consider a few things. Bear these points in mind.


Do you have enough space in your refrigerator for the amount of leftovers you have? Are you going to eat all of this in the coming days?

If the answer to these questions is no, then you should consider freezing the leftovers instead.


The right place to put your leftovers in the refrigerator is critical. You do not want to risk cross contamination, so there are two places you can put your leftovers.

  • Vegetable and fruit drawer 
  • The highest point in the fridge 

These areas will avoid things like raw and cooked meats which are among the biggest causes of contamination, which can lead to food borne illnesses. 


You must wrap the leftovers tightly with plastic wrap and then place them in an appropriate container.

If you have airtight containers like small plastic tubs, then these are ideal for both the refrigerator and the freezer. 

Remember, wrapping your leftovers should only be done after the apple pie has cooled down, to avoid “sweating”. This is where condensation will ruin the consistency of the dessert. 

This is also important if you are going to leave your apple pie leftovers out. It’s always going to be required to wrap the leftovers to prevent contamination through pests, and even household pets. 

How Long Will My Pie Last?

It depends on how you’ve made the apple pie and how you’ve stored it. It can last anytime from a few hours to three months, but it depends. 

It’s recommended that you consume the pie as soon as possible regardless of these factors, however if you want to extend its life – consider freezing. 

The Bottom Line

Apple pies do not necessarily need to be refrigerated, but it is recommended that you do so within the correct time frame.

Mark Williams