My Grandma’s Apple Roly Poly

When I was a little girl, my family would travel to Adelaide to visit my Mother’s parents for a holiday. I have the most wonderful memories from my trips to this beautiful part of the world, it really is very special to me and as I have grown older I have come to appreciate it more and more. The city has a wonderful relaxed charm to it (much like Perth does), that is somewhere between familiar country town and bigger city living – whatever it is, I love it. It always feels like home when I visit.

As a treat, my Grandma would bake this wonderful dessert for us – from scratch of course –  and I would practically squeal with delight when I saw green apples on the counter, because I knew what was coming after dinner. Even now, I can recall the smell of the baking Roly Poly drifting tantalizingly through her house…and ever impatient, I would watch the oven until dessert was ready.

So it won’t come as a surprise that every year on my birthday I pick a really nostalgic dessert from my childhood – my Mum lets us pick whatever we want – and my choices are always the same. This year, unsurprisingly, I asked for her Mother’s Apple Roly Poly and it was just as wonderful as I remember. The slightly crispy dough on top then turns wonderfully soft and almost pudding-like as your spoon dives eagerly downwards, deeper into the sweet apple below…pure perfection.

It’s by no means a fancy dessert, rather a homely one, completely unpretentious, honest and warming. But, most importantly for me, it makes me remember the wonderful evenings spent around my Grandma’s dining table with my family – and that’s pretty special.

Also – this mixture has a bit of ‘feel’ need for it – i.e. if the dough looks too wet, add more flour. Too dry – add more milk. Just use your instincts, you will be fine, I promise.

Serves 6.

My Grandma's Apple Roly Poly

My Grandma’s Apple Roly Poly


The list:

120gm butter
2 cups SR flour
Pinch of salt
1 – 1½ cups of milk
3 large Granny Smith apples (or 6 smaller sized), peeled and grated (reserve the juices)
2 tsp ground cinnamon

For the syrup

1 Tbs golden syrup (or honey)
½ cup raw sugar
1 cup hot water
1 Tbs butter
Pinch of salt

The method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Rub butter into SR flour and salt until combined, it will go slightly crumbly. You can use a bench-top mixer to do this with the dough-hook attachment.
  3. Slowly add milk (roughly 1 – 1½ cups) until a stiff dough forms. Pour out onto a flour dusted bench-top and knead dough until smooth.
  4. Roll out dough fairly thinly (but not so thin that it rips) and cover with grated apple. Sprinkle to taste with cinnamon (you can omit if you prefer).
  5. Roll up the pastry so that it looks like a long sausage and cut into thick slices (roughly 6cm). Place slices cut-side up, into an oven-proof baking dish deep enough so that the Roly Poly slices are not higher than the dish.
  6. Mix together all of the syrup mixture ingredients (including any juice from grating the apples) and pour over the Roly Poly.
  7. Bake in oven for 30 – 40 minutes or until the Roly Poly is golden on top. Serve hot with ice-cream, cream or custard.


Apple Roly Poly is easy to make and is always a winner

Apple Roly Poly is easy to make and is always a crowd pleaser


  1. These look so yum! Sadly I am on a super detox diet this month and I have become completely uninspired for my blog as I cannot bear to make anything yummy. Once I touch the jar of flour, that will be the end of my detox haha! At least there is still your blog to stare at pretty pictures of food that I cannot yet have. Soon……

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t see why you couldn’t – it would just turn out a little differently. The syrup might make it too soggy. The thing with the texture is that the pastry I use expands a lot and turns quite pudding like with the syrup, but if you give it a try let me know and I’ll make a note in the blog about if you thought it worked or not. Hope that helps! 🙂


  2. Anonymous

    I made this a couple of night’s ago when it was really cold, and it was so good! It reminded me a little bit of golden syrup dumplings:) Delicious- thank you!


  3. Belinda

    I have made this multiple times and it’s so delicious! It reminds me of golden syrup dumplings crossed with my Mum’s apple raisin roly poly (baked in a long log). Tastes so homely, warming, sweet and just yummy! Thanks for sharing 🙂


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