CASA GRANDE -- Wednesday is the first day of fall, and is there any dessert that welcomes the cooler weather better than an apple pie?

Growing up in Maine, I loved fall because it was also apple season, when the orchards throughout the state would be ready to be plucked of their fruit, and apple sauce, pie and cider would be plentiful.

One of my favorite fall-time activities in Maine was visiting various apple orchards and picking buckets of apples. And there’s nothing like a Maine-grown McIntosh apple for an apple pie. The tart-meets-sweet crispy apple is perfect in a lot of different baked goods, or on its own as a snack.

I love apple pie so much that when I ran across a recipe for one that used only two ingredients — store-bought refrigerated cinnamon rolls and canned apple pie filling — I was reluctant to try it. It didn’t seem like a real pie.

But recently I had a craving for apple pie, and short on time, I decided to give it a try. It’s actually pretty good and incredibly quick and easy to make. It has the flavor and texture of a delicious homemade pie.

The recipe begins with two packages of eight-piece refrigerated cinnamon rolls. Each package of rolls is rolled out to create a top and bottom crust for the pie.

Because the rolls are sticky, it’s easiest to roll them between two sheets of parchment paper.

The filling for the pie consists of canned apple pie filling. When I made this pie, I used two 20-ounce cans.

The pie bakes for about 30-40 minutes; then, after it cools a little bit, the frosting from each package of cinnamon rolls is drizzled on top.

The pie tastes much like you would expect — cinnamon rolls with apples. But it is a bit sweeter than a standard apple pie, maybe a little bit too sweet.

While this pie is definitely simple to make and yummy, the next time I make it I will likely use a standard pie crust as the bottom shell and use a can of the cinnamon rolls as the top crust to cut back on the sweetness, or the other way around.

And while the canned apples are great in a pinch, there’s no substitute for fresh apples when making apple pie. I would definitely recommend using fresh, tart apples rather than the canned stuff.

2-ingredient apple pie

2 cans of 8-piece refrigerated cinnamon rolls

2 cans, 20-ounces each, apple pie filling

Create pie crust by placing eight unbaked cinnamon rolls together between two pieces of parchment paper and rolling into a thin circle, large enough to fit into a pie pan. Use the crust to line one greased pie pan.

Pour apple pie filling inside the crust-lined pan.

Roll the second package of eight cinnamon rolls out to create a top crust. Place on top of pie.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. Drizzle glaze from each package of cinnamon rolls over top of pie.

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Melissa St. Aude is the Arts & Entertainment editor at PinalCentral. She can be reached at mstaude@pinalcentral.com.

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