When Harry Met Sally (1989): Apple Pie

When Harry Met Sally is a timeless romantic comedy that explores the complex dynamics of friendship and love. One of the most memorable scenes in the film is when Harry (played by Billy Crystal) and Sally (played by Meg Ryan) visit a diner and Sally orders a slice of apple pie. As she begins to eat the pie, Harry watches her with a mixture of curiosity and amusement, leading to a playful and memorable exchange between the two.

The scene has become iconic for its portrayal of the romantic tension between Harry and Sally, as well as its focus on the simple pleasures of food and dining. The apple pie itself is a classic American dessert that’s both comforting and delicious, and the way in which Sally savours each bite of the pie adds to the scene’s sense of warmth and intimacy.

But the apple pie scene in “When Harry Met Sally” is about more than just food. It’s a subtle yet powerful example of the way in which shared experiences can bring people together, even in unexpected ways. Harry and Sally may have very different personalities and perspectives on life, but at that moment, they are both able to connect over the enjoyment of a good slice of pie.

The scene also highlights the importance of communication and the way in which small gestures can often speak volumes. The way in which Harry watches Sally eat the pie, and the way in which Sally responds to his gaze, suggests a deeper level of understanding and connection between the two characters.

Overall, the apple pie scene in “When Harry Met Sally” is a beautiful and memorable moment in the film that perfectly captures the spirit of the romantic comedy genre. It’s a celebration of the simple pleasures in life, as well as the power of food and shared experiences to bring people together. Whether you’re a fan of the film or simply looking for a delicious dessert to enjoy, apple pie is a classic and timeless option that’s sure to please.

How to make a gorgeous Apple Pie

Course: DessertDifficulty: **

We applaud Sally Albright (Meg Ryan) as a woman who knows what she wants in “When Harry Met Sally…”: “I’d like the chef’s salad, please, with the oil and vinegar on the side and the apple pie a la mode. But I’d like the pie heated, and I don’t want the ice cream on top. I want it on the side. And I’d like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it. If not, then no ice cream — just whipped cream, but only if it’s real. If it’s out of a can, then nothing.” Phew! Try our brown-butter apple pie — it’s spectacular straight or with ice cream or whipped cream on the side.


  • 1/2 stick of unsalted butter

  • 3 pounds Granny Smith apples (6 to 7), peeled, cored, and cut into eighths

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling

  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar

  • 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

  • Double-Crust Pie Dough

  • Water, for brushing

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

  • Coarse sanding sugar, for sprinkling


  • Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and cook, swirling pan occasionally, until butter is golden brown and fragrant, about 8 minutes; let cool. Toss together apples and lemon juice in a large bowl. Combine flour, salt, granulated and brown sugars, and vanilla-bean seeds in another bowl, breaking up clumps and combining with a fork or fingers. Add browned butter to the apples. Stir in the flour mixture.
  • Roll out 1 disk of dough to just under 1/4 inch thick on a lightly floured surface and fit into a 9-inch glass pie plate. Roll out the remaining disk of dough to a 13-inch round. The rolled-out dough can be refrigerated for up to 8 hours. (Be sure to let the 13-inch round sit at room temperature until pliable before topping the pie, or it will break.) Place apples in pie shell, brush edges with water and cover the pie with top crust. Trim excess, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Fold the top edge over the bottom crust to seal, and crimp as desired. Cut steam vents in the top crust. Freeze the pie for 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees with the rack in the lowest position. Brush the pie with egg wash and sprinkle with sanding sugar. Place a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet on the floor of the oven to catch any drips. Bake the pie on the lowest rack for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake until well browned about 1 hour. Tent pie with foil and continue to bake until bubbling through vents, about 20 minutes more. Let cool completely on a wire rack, for at least 6 hours. Pie can be made 1 day ahead and stored at room temperature.

Recipe Video


  • Brown butter imparts a rich nuttiness to the apple filling for this next-level pie.