This Healthy Apple Crisp has a layer of juicy apples topped with a crunchy oat-walnut topping! It's vegan, gluten-free, and can be enjoyed as breakfast or dessert!
This recipe was updated on 25/02/22 to include better content.
This healthier version of the beloved apple crisp is lower in sugar and higher in fiber, yet it's still comforting and indulgent!
It's one of my favorite desserts to prepare over the holidays, no one can guess it's made without flour and butter!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Oat flour: You can make your own oat flour by grinding oats in a blender until a fine powder has formed.
- Oats: Make sure to use rolled oats, not steel-cut oats or quick-cooking oats.
- Walnuts: If you want to make this recipe nut-free, you can use sunflower seeds instead. Or feel free to use any nuts you like such as pecans or almonds.
- Pepitas: If you're not a fan, you can use another nut/seed of choice instead.
- Cinnamon: Brings warmth and flavors the crisp. If you want to level it up, use pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice instead!
How to make healthy apple crisp
Prepare the apples. Core, peel, and cut them into small pieces. Add to a baking dish and toss with cinnamon, sugar, and lemon juice.
To make the oat topping, add all of the ingredients to a bowl and mix well. It's best to use your hands or a fork.
To assemble them together, cover the apples with the oat topping and bake for 35 minutes, or until the top is golden and the apples are bubbly.
- Peel the apples for a smoother consistency. If you don't mind apple skin, you can leave it in, but I personally prefer to remove it.
- Allow time to cool. The crisp will continue to set as it cools and it will be easier to scoop and serve.
- Cut the apples into small pieces. This ensures that your apples will cook through and be soft by the time the topping has browned.
- Use gluten-free certified oats to ensure that your crisp is gluten-free.
- Use solid, but scoopable coconut oil. It makes for a better texture of the oat topping and ensures that it will be light and crumbly.
Apple crisp is almost always made with an oat-nut topping, while apple crumble is made with just plain flour. There are different variations though and in some countries, they mean the same thing.
Not enough fat and/or sugar can cause that. If your topping appears dry and way too crumbly, add a bit more coconut oil, one tablespoon at a time. And for the sugar, we suggest not going below ¼ cup.
It's best to use a combination of honey crisp and granny smith. However, if you want a sweeter apple crisp, use all honey crisp apples. If you want more of a tangier taste, use all granny smith.
Yes, you can assemble the crisp the night before, wrap it in foil, and bake the next day.
Yes. Let the crisp cool completely then cover it with a double layer of foil (either plastic or aluminum), and freeze for 3 months. Let it thaw overnight before reheating.
Apple crisp can lose its crispiness as it cools, so we always suggest reheating it in the oven for best results, although the microwave can work as well.
- Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C). Place leftovers in a baking tray and optionally spray coconut oil over the topping. Cover with aluminum foil and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. To crisp the topping, remove the foil for the last 3 to 5 minutes of cooking.
- Microwave: Add crisp to a microwave-safe plate and cook for 1-2 minutes or until warmed through.
More Fruit Desserts
Healthy Apple Crisp (Vegan and Gluten-free)
For the filling
- 3-4 medium-large apples, optional to be peeled (*see notes for type guide)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice)
- 2 tablespoon brown sugar (or any other sugar you like)
- A squeeze of lemon juice
For the topping
- 1 cup oat flour** (use gluten-free if needed)
- 1 cup rolled oats (use gluten-free if needed)
- ¼ cup brown sugar, packed (or any other sugar you like)
- ⅓ cup coconut oil, solid but scoopable
- ⅓ cup walnuts or pecans***, roughly chopped
- ⅓ cup pepitas
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice)
- A pinch of salt
- Preheat oven to 180C (350F). Start by cutting apples in quarters, then remove the cores. if you don't like the texture of the skin, feel free to peel them as well.
- Add the apples to the baking dish and toss with sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice.
- To prepare the topping, add all of the ingredients to a bow- oat flour, rolled oats, sugar, coconut oil, pepitas, walnuts, pumpkin spice, and salt. Use a fork or your hands to mix everything well.
- Transfer the topping over the apples in an even layer and bake for 35-40 minutes. Let it rest at least 15 minutes before serving.
- Top with ice cream, yogurt, or plant milk (all optional) and serve right away!