Apple Crisp Recipe With Oats

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Apple crisp recipe with oats!? Yes, you read that right. Oats! The fruit and oat combination make this apple crisp recipe way more flavorful than the original, with all the sweetness of a cinnamon apple pie. If you are fond of apples and want to bake something new for your family, you can try out this recipe. You will be able to know how to prepare Apple Crisp Recipe with oats.

Classic Apple Crisp Recipe

We’re singing all the praises of apple crisp because it’s THE dessert of the season. Featuring warm gooey cinnamon apples and a brown sugar oat topping, this comfort food classic takes half the time and effort that traditional apple pie requires. You just need a handful of basic ingredients to get started including baking apples such as Granny Smith and Honeycrisp.

How many ways can we bake with apples? Hopefully you’ve been enjoying sweet and simple baked apples or even dove headfirst into apple cinnamon bread and caramel apple upside down cake. There’s apple cinnamon babka and so many more apple recipes. But today, let’s get down to the basics. This is pure and simple apple crisp, a timeless dessert highlighting the natural flavor of apples. This apple dessert is an end-of-the-meal treat that delivers BIG flavor for very little work. Let’s be honest– if you can chop apples, you can make apple crisp.

Here’s Why You’ll Love This Apple Crisp

  1. Easier Than Pie: It’s easy to adore apple pie, but there’s no doubt that homemade pie is a labor of love. In this fruit crisp, we’re swapping pie crust for oat streusel topping. Skip all the pie dough chilling and leave your rolling pin in the cabinet.
  2. Basic Ingredients: Crisps are pretty unfussy and there’s no strange ingredients required. Most of the ingredients you need are repeated in both layers, too.
  3. No Eggs: Many bakers have been asking for egg-free baking recipes like this.
  4. Short Cooling Time: As much as we all love homemade pie, it requires a long cooling time to properly set up. Sometimes we need a crowd-pleasing dessert that’s a little quicker, but just as seasonal and impressive.
  5. And It’s Delicious: What’s better than warm cinnamon apples and chewy-crisp oat topping? This is a cold weather must.

And above all else– if you have little ones, this dessert is convenient and manageable. You don’t have to wait for anything to come to room temperature, chill, or cool down. Kids have a ball spreading the apples into the dish and sprinkling the oat crumble on top.

apple crisp in white baking dish

Overview of Apple Crisp Ingredients

There are 2 components in apple crisp: the apple layer and the oat topping. The topping is the same recipe we use for blueberry crumble pie and bourbon cherry crisp, only slightly increased for a larger 9×13 inch dish.

  1. Apples: See below for the best apples to use. You need about 8 medium apples, peeled and chopped into chunks.
  2. Brown Sugar: We use brown sugar to sweeten and bring flavor to the entire dish. You need it for both the apple layer and topping.
  3. Flour: All-purpose flour thickens the apple filling and is the base of the topping. Do you need a gluten free version? Here’s my super flavorful gluten free apple crisp.
  4. Vanilla & Salt: I’ve made a lot of apple crisp recipes and nothing compares to the way I make it now (recipe below). Vanilla complements these warm flavors and salt balances out all the sweetness. Trust me, you don’t want to skip either– the dessert tastes flat otherwise.
  5. Cinnamon & Nutmeg: Use cinnamon and nutmeg in the apple layer and cinnamon again in the topping.
  6. Butter: To prevent it from melting too soon and losing texture, use very cold butter. Take it right from the refrigerator and cut it into cubes. Then use a pastry cutter or fork to mix it into the flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Don’t overcomplicate this step, let the mixture be messy, crumbly, and coarse. Less is more. (Music to our ears!)
  7. Oats: Some oats get a little crispy, some stay soft and chewy. Use whole oats for the best texture. Stir the oats into the topping mixture *after* you cut in the butter. We do this with strawberry crisp as well– you just don’t want the oats to break down too much.

What Are the Best Apples to Use for Baking?

Firmer apples are ideal for baking. Avoid soft, mealy, and mushy apples. For depth of flavor, it’s best to bake with a mix of tart and sweet apples. For apple crisp, I usually use 4 tart and 4 sweet.

  • Tart apples I love to bake with: Granny Smith (in my opinion, this is the best overall apple for baking), Braeburn, Jonathan, and Pacific Rose
  • Sweet apples I love to bake with: Jazz, Pazazz (sometimes harder to find but delicious!), Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, and Fuji

Can I Make Apple Crisp Without Oats?

Yes, absolutely. To make apple crisp without oats, use the topping from apple crumble pie, only slightly increased. Use 3/4 cup (150g) brown sugar, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour, and 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled. Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together. Using a fork, stir in the cooled melted butter until the mixture is thick and crumbly. Don’t over-mix– it will become a paste if you over-mix. Use the same oven temperature and bake time as below. I prefer melted butter to keep the crumble topping on the softer side. If you want a crispy crumble topping, use cold butter and cut it into the mixture just as you do in the recipe below.

How to Make Apple Crisp From Scratch

Adam likes his apple crisp with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and I love an even bigger scoop of whipped cream. Either way, it’s delicious. I should also mention that this is phenomenal cold — sounds a little strange, I know. After a night in the fridge, all the flavors meld and mingle, giving it lots of extra flavor the next day.

Like most baked apple recipes, you’ll want to use flavorful and firm apples when making apple crisp — Granny Smith are our go-to. It’s also nice to combine two varieties. In our photos, we used two baking-friendly apples– Granny Smith and Braeburn.

We also found that by leaving the apples unpeeled, the texture and flavor is better — especially after such a long bake time. Plus, no time needed for peeling! We do the same when making applesauce, here’s our easy cinnamon spiced applesauce recipe.

For the topping, we use melted butter. Spend a few minutes searching “apple crisp recipes” on the internet and you’ll notice most recipes call for cold or room temperature butter. This is exactly what we used to do. Using our fingers or a fork, we’d work the butter into flour and oats until crumbly. This method works well, but we think we’ve found a better way.

We were looking for a tender topping with a little crunch — something to balance the softened apples. When we used the old method with un-melted butter, we noticed that during baking, the topping would melt down over the apples and into the filling below. It tasted great (how could it not, right?), but it wasn’t exactly what we were looking for.

In our updated recipe, by starting with melted butter, the topping stays put and crisps on top of the apples. We use this same topping to make these cinnamon baked apples as well as our ridiculously easy blueberry crumble

Easy Apple Crisp with Oats

  • PREP 15mins
  • COOK 1hr 15mins
  • TOTAL 1hr 30mins

This is a very simple apple crisp. Like most baked apple recipes, you’ll want to use flavorful and firm apples — Granny Smith are our go-to. It’s also nice to combine two varieties. In our photos, we used two baking-friendly apples– Granny Smith and Braeburn. You could even add a handful of blackberries, raisins or cranberries. We also found that by leaving the apples unpeeled, the texture and flavor is better — especially after such a long bake time.

Serve warm or serve our favorite way, which is cold — sounds a little strange, we know. After a night in the fridge, all the flavors meld and mingle, giving it lots of extra flavor the next day.

Makes 8 servings

YOU WILL NEED

FILLING

6 medium baking apples, such as Granny Smith (2 1/2 to 3 pounds)

1 orange, zested and juiced

1/4 to 1/2 cup (50 to 100 g) sugar, depending on tartness of apples

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmegTOPPING

3/4 cup (100 g) all-purpose flour

3/4 cup (65 g) old-fashioned rolled oats

1/2 cup (100 g) sugar, option: combine 1/4 cup brown sugar + 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup (115 g) butter, melted (1 stick)

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

DIRECTIONS

  • MAKE FILLING
  • MAKE TOPPING
  • BAKE CRISP

ADAM AND JOANNE’S TIPS

  • Gluten-free apple crisp: Use you favorite store-bought gluten-free flour blend instead of the all-purpose flour called for above. We are partial to Bob’s Red Mill.
  • Use whole wheat flour: Replace the all-purpose flour with an equal amount of whole wheat flour or use white whole wheat flour.
  • Reduce the sugar: The sugar needed depends on how tart your apples are. We love the crisp to be slightly tart, so reducing the sugar with the apples and in the topping is an option.
  • Nutrition Facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values. We assumed 1/4 cup of sugar for the apple filling.

NUTRITION PER SERVING: Calories 304 / Protein 3 g / Carbohydrate 48 g / Dietary Fiber 4 g / Total Sugars 30 g / Total Fat 12 g / Saturated Fat 7 g / Cholesterol 30 mg

How to Make Apple Crisp

  • Adjust oven rack and preheat oven. Butter baking dish.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together 1/2 cup flour, oats, 1/2 cup brown sugar, baking powder, 1/4 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp salt.
  • Rub butter into dry mixture with fingertips until it comes together into small crumbles. Refrigerate.
  • In a bowl whisk together melted butter and flour until well blended, then mix in water, lemon juice and vanilla. Stir in 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, and pinch of salt.
  • Toss apples with butter mixture in a bowl then pour into prepared baking dish.
  • Sprinkle with crumble apple crisp topping.
  • Bake in preheated oven until top is golden brown and apples are tender.
  • Let cool slightly before serving.

What Are the Best Apples for Apple Crisp?

I prefer using a sturdy cooking apple that’s slightly tart, like Granny Smiths. Other apples would work, like braeburn or golden delicious, but sugar amounts and bake times might need to be adjusted.

Your apples should also be room temperature (this ensures that they bake evenly in the oven).

What Should I Serve on Top?

The best way to serve this always with vanilla ice cream. Then for an added bonus if you have time make some homemade salted caramel sauce.

Tips for the Best Apple Crisp

  • Be sure to slice your apples thinly so they become fully tender. No one wants a crunchy apple in their apple crisp.
  • Stick with granny smith apples for consistent results.
  • If you only have salted butter on hand, reduce the salt in the topping to 1/8 tsp and omit the salt in the filling.
  • Serve this homemade apple crisp freshly baked and warm. It will be okay for a couple of days, but the topping does start to soften up so I like it best fresh.

Crisps and crumbles are one of my favorite desserts because I love fruit and I’m head over heels crazy for a good sweet, crisp topping.

Plus, I love that they are faster than pies and you don’t have to wait 2 hours for pie crust to chill, then 2 hours for the pie to cool.

This is what fall weekend are all about! Walks through the autumn trees where you’re all bundled up cozy, warm apple cider and hot cocoa, pumpkin patch shopping and carving, and this easy apple crisp. It’s a must!

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