Apple Custard Crisp


Apple Custard Crisp is an all-time family dessert recipe that tops the list for being delicious and easy to prepare. With crisp topping and apple cinnamon flavors, this twist on a classic dessert is sure to impress. There’s nothing better than biting into a crisp pie with fresh apples and cinnamon. It’s this rich, wholesome flavor that fills your mouth with goodness.

Apple Crumble Recipe with Custard

Apple Crumble Recipe with Custard is a classic autumn dessert except with a sweet vanilla custard added to the apples before baking. Plus, the buttery crumble topping is out of this world. This Dorie Greenspan Apple Crisp Recipe has an ice cream-like sauce coating every sweet apple nugget!

I found some Northern Spys, my favorite pie baking apple, and as soon as I spotted Dorie’s recipe, I knew her Easy Apple Crisp would be on our menu. The unusual addition of custard was a game-changer. With a scoop of vanilla ice cream, there was comfort in every bite.

Apple crumble on a white plate with a scoop of ice cream

Why You’ll Love this Crumble Recipe

  • Apples are always in season, so this is an easy recipe you can make any time of year!
  • It’s comfort food at its best especially served warm with a scoop of premium vanila ice cream
  • This apple crumble has custard (which is basically like melted vanilla ice cream!) mixed with the apples to make a richer version of a traditional fruit crumble.

Our oldest was by a couple of times last week and he was smitten with this easy apple dessert…even without ice cream the second go ’round! It was the combination of using delicious baking apples and the custard mixed in with the apples that made for such a simple yet spectacular dessert. If you love apple crisps and crumbles, you must give this recipe a try!

Apple crumble with a scoop of ice cream on a white dessert plate

What is the Difference Between Crisps, Crumbles, Cobblers, and More

There are so many fruit dessert recipes with similar toppings, but different names. Dorie’s recipe is very much like the Easy Apple Crisp which I make at least once a year. But I wanted to do some research to find out the exact definitions of these desserts. I turned to my  Food Lover’s Companion.

  • Crumble: A British dessert with raw fruit baked with a crumbly pastry mixture on top. The topping doesn’t usually contain oats.
  • Crisp: Just like a crumble but with oats in the topping. Oops, my crisp is really a crumble!
  • Cobbler: A deep-dish fruit dessert with a biscuit topping.
  • Buckle: An American term for a one layer cake made with berries, most frequently blueberries.
  • Grunt or Slump: An old-fashioned stewed dessert made of fruit topped with biscuit dough.
  • Betty: An American dessert from colonial times. It’s a baked pudding with layers of spiced fruit and buttered breadcrumbs. Most notable is the Apple Brown Betty.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Make an Apple Crumble?

An apple crumble or crisp is really a very easy recipe. The apples are tossed with sugar and spices, then topped with an oat-free crumble made with butter, sugar, and flour. It’s then baked until the fruit is tender, the filling is bubbly, and the topping is golden brown.

But to make a crumble with custard, cream, eggs, and flavorings are whisked with the sugar, etc. then tossed with the apples. It’s like baking vanilla ice cream with fruit!

How Long to Bake an Apple Crumble?

An apple crumble will take from 45-60 minutes, but will depend on a few variables. The kind of apples you choose, the way your oven bakes, and the recipe you use will all play into determining the baking time.

Does an Apple Crumble Need to be Refrigerated?

Typically, no. But with cream and eggs in the filling this crumble needs to be refrigerated.

Can You Freeze an Apple Crumble?

Yes, you can freeze a baked or unbaked apple crumble for up to 3 months. It should be wrapped airtight before freezing. To bake, first defrost overnight in the refrigerator

Apple and Custard Crumble

Serves 8

Apple and Custard Crumble

Combine apples and custard with a traditional topping for a clever twist on a British classic. A perfect dessert or tea-time treat from The Great British Bake Off: Winter Kitchen cookbook.


Everyone loves a good crumble with lashings of thick custard, so why not combine the two? Having the custard inside the crumble adds a completely new dimension – tender chunks of tart apple encased in a rich custard blanket with a crumbly topping.


  • 8 cups (2 L) sliced peeled apples (about 8)
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) sugar
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cinnamon
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup (250 mL) Milk
  • Grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
  • Crumble
  • 2/3 cup (160 mL) quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) ground cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) butter cubed
  • 35 % cream


Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C). Lightly butter or spray 8-inch (20 cm) square glass baking dish. Layer apple slices in dish.

In bowl, whisk together sugar, flour and cinnamon; whisk in eggs until frothy. Whisk in milk, lemon rind and vanilla extract; pour over apples. Spread evenly on top and press to flatten apples.


In bowl, combine oats, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. With fingers, mix in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle over apple mixture. Bake for about 50 min or until apples are tender, custard is thickened and topping is golden. Serve warm or cold with a dollop of real whipping cream.


Tart baking apples such as Northern Spy, Granny Smith, Spartan, Crispin (Mutsu) or Cortland give the best fruit flavour and texture.

Healthy Eating Tip: Absorbing Facts- milk is one of the few foods that contains vitamin D. That’s important because we need vitamin D to help our body absorb and use calcium.

For the Adventurous: Sprinkle 1/2 cup (125 mL) of dried cranberries over apple slices.


  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4tsp fine sea salt
  • 5 1/2 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 lbs Golden Delicious apples
  • zest and juice of 1 juicy lemon
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger or cardamom
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk


Servings 8
Preparation time 30mins
Cooking time 90mins



CRISP TOPPING: IN a bowl, whisk together flour, both sugars, cinnamon and salt. Drop in cubes of cold butter and toss with fingers until butter is coated. Squeeze and rub ingredients together to form moist clumps and curds. Sprinkle with vanilla and toss to blend. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 4 days.

APPLE CUSTARD BASE: Preheat oven to 375 and set rack in center position. Place a deep dish 9 inch pie plate on a baking sheet lined with parchment to catch spills. Peel, halve, core and cut apples into 1 1/2 inch cubes. Transfer apples to pie plate. Stir in lemon zest and juice. In a medium bowl, whisk together cream, brown sugar, spice, egg and egg yolk to blend thoroughly, about 1 minute. Whisk in Calvados and vanilla. Pour custard over apples and jiggle pie plate to encourage custard to slide into all the spaces. Scatter the apple custard base with crisp topping and tap topping lightly with your fingers so it sticks. Transfer to oven and bake until crisp is golden brown and apples are tender, 50-60 minutes. If crisp appears to be browning too quickly, tent loosely with foil. Transfer baking sheet to a wire rack and let crisp rest at least 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.​

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