Caramel Apple Crumble

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Caramel Apple Crumble — I made this today. Not something I’d normally make, but the feeling it gave me was something else all together. I decided that I had to try and replicate the smell of autumn in a food. Caramel apples are delicious but they’re messy and time consuming to make. So, I got searching around until I found some recipes for apple crumble.

Caramel Apple Crumble

Caramel apple crumble is the ultimate fall dessert. It’s so quick and easy to make—no mixer necessary—and can be served warm or cold. Tart apples, creamy caramel sauce, and a buttery crumb topping combine to make it completely irresistible, especially topped with ice cream!

crumble in the pan on a wire rack with one serving taken out of the pan

Imagine: sweet-tart apples tossed with a little cinnamon, covered in caramel sauce, topped with a soft and buttery streusel. Are you swooning yet?

Because this caramel apple crumble has it all. If you’re deep in fall dessert mode at this point you NEED to make this one next.

Serve it with some ice cream and a whole lot of extra caramel sauce and you can’t go wrong!

Why you’ll love this caramel apple crumble:

Caramel Apple Crumble

  • This is a really easy recipe—you don’t need a mixer or anything, just a bowl and a spatula
  • The filling and topping are both made with brown sugar, which complements the caramel sauce beautifully; brown sugar provides a deeper flavor than granulated sugar would
  • Because there’s a little baking powder added to the crumble topping, you’re ensured a soft and delicate crumb
  • This crumble can be served warm or cold; it’s equally delicious either way!

HOW TO MAKE YOUR CRUMBLE

how to make caramel apple crumble step by step
  • Stir brown sugar, cornstarch, and a couple other ingredients together
  • Add sliced apples
  • Stir until the apples are evenly coated
how to make crumble step by step
  • Spread into a baking dish
  • Pour caramel sauce evenly over the apples
how to make streusel topping for a crumble
  • Stir flour, brown sugar, and a couple other ingredients together
  • Add room temperature butter and use your fingers to mix them until the topping forms large crumbles
  • Sprinkle the topping evenly over the caramel sauce

Then you’ll bake for about half an hour, until the juices and caramel are bubbling and the top is light golden in color.

Cool for a bit to let the juices set up and you’re ready to serve!

RECIPE NOTES AND TIPS

  • You’ll need between 3 and 5 apples for this recipe, depending on size (if they’re really small you may need more).
  • Use a good baking apple such as Granny Smith, Jonagold, Pink Lady, or Honeycrisp (or a combination).
  • I prefer to use Granny Smith apples for this crumble because their tart flavor provides a nice contrast to the caramel sauce.
  • Be sure to slice your apples fairly thinly, no more than 1/4-inch-thick. If they’re too thick they won’t soften enough while they bake.
  • I used Smuckers caramel sauce for my crumble but whatever brand you have is fine. You can use either salted caramel sauce or regular; both are delicious here.
  • If your brown sugar is really hard and clumps together, you can pop it in the microwave for a few seconds (or more than a few depending on how hard it is). The microwave will loosen the sugar up and make it easier to measure.
  • If you like a lot of cinnamon in your apple desserts you can add a little more (I wouldn’t add more than an additional teaspoon). This recipe only calls for a 1/2-teaspoon because I wanted the apple and caramel flavors to shine through more than the cinnamon.

HOW TO STORE YOUR CRUMBLE

You can store uneaten crumble, covered, in the fridge for 3 or 4 days. Be sure to let your crumble cool to room temperature before covering and refrigerating.

If you don’t cool it first it could sweat once it’s covered.

You can reheat the crumble in the microwave but I actually think it’s delicious cold.

SERVING IDEAS

I love to serve this with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and lots of caramel sauce (I always buy two jars to be sure I have enough). But here are a few other ideas:

  • Whipped cream
  • Cinnamon ice cream
  • Pumpkin ice cream
  • Marshmallow sauce and a sprinkle of cinnamon (this is delicious!)
  • Or some combination of the above!

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CRUMBLE AND A CRISP?

While both crumbles and crisps are made with fruit (fresh, frozen, or even canned fruit!), they are a little different.

Ingredients

  • 8 eating apples , peeled, cored and cubed
  • 6 tbsp Carnation caramel cream (this comes in a can or a squeezy tube)
  • 50g plain flour
  • 50g porridge oat
  • 50g cold butter , diced

Method

  • STEP 1Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Put the apples into a saucepan with a splash of water, cover, then cook over a high heat for 4-5 mins, stirring now and then until just soft. Stir in 3 tbsp of the caramel, then tip into small ovenproof dishes. Dot small spoonfuls of caramel cream over the apples until only 1 tbsp is left.
  • STEP 2Mix the flour and oats together, then rub in the butter with your fingers until you have a crumbly mixture. Stir in the remaining caramel, then scatter over the apples. Bake for 18-20 mins until golden and crisp on top.
RECIPE TIPS
BANOFFEE SUNDAES

Cut 4 bananas into chunks, then warm 6 tbsp caramel cream until runny. Layer the banana with 400ml natural yogurt, 200g granola and the caramel in 4 glasses, then chill before eating.

USE UP YOUR CARAMEL CREAM

Sticky baked apples: Heat oven to 200C/ fan 180C/gas 6. Mix 4 tbsp caramel cream with 4 chopped dates, then push into 4 cored apples. Sit in an ovenproof dish, then drizzle with a little apple juice. Bake for 30 mins, then serve with fromage frais.

CHOC ‘N’ TOFFEE ICE-CREAM SAUCE

Melt 4 tbsp caramel cream, remove from heat, then add 25g chopped milk chocolate, 2 tbsp milk and a dash vanilla extract. Leave for 1 min to melt, then stir together.

Salted Caramel Apple Crumble

This Salted Caramel Apple Crumble recipe that will have you licking your plate clean! Soft apples, topped with a buttery crumble top and homemade salted caramel sauce. Pure heaven!

top down view of salted caramel apple crumble with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

Salted Caramel Apple Crumble

I remember being a little girl and watching my mom make her recipe for apple crumble which was heavy on the apples and very light on the crumble and I remember thinking what a travesty it was. I was probably 5.

So, as an adult armed with a decent amount of kitchen knowledge, I took matters into my own hands promising myself that I would create a recipe that even I, the cooked fruit hater, could love.

And I did it! I took it pretty easy on the apples, doubled the normal amount of crumble topping, and was quite heavy-handed with the warm salted caramel sauce for the ultimate fall dessert that everyone and their mom will love. So let’s make this baby!

top down view of ingredients in bowls

Main Ingredients Needed

This apple crumble recipe has three main components. The sauce, crumble, and apple filling. Each section needs its own set of ingredients and so I’m going to break it down for you so you know exactly what you have already and what you need to go buy.

For the Caramel Sauce

All pretty basic pantry staples. If you really aren’t wanting to make caramel sauce you can always buy the pre-made stuff.

  • Sugar – the base of all caramel sauce! Sticky sweet goodness.
  • Water – this helps dissolve the sugar so you get a smooth caramel.
  • Sea Salt – I love flavoring this sauce with sea salt but you could always leave it out.
  • Heavy Cream – for creaminess.
  • Butter – this provides silky texture.
  • Vanilla – for flavor!

Amazing Salted Caramel Apple Crumble

Salted Caramel Apple Crumble

For the Crumble

If you like to bake you should already have this stuff, which means, you could probably make this dessert today!

  • Flour – this holds the butter together so it doesn’t create a melty mess.
  • Granulated + Brown Sugar – both are used to sweeten.
  • Butter – this creates a great flavorful crumb.
  • Salt – this balances out the flavors.

For the Apples

Do you see a pattern here? This recipe is set up to be ready to make and super easy to follow!

  • Apples – the best apples to use for this dish are granny smith apples. This is simply because of their taste, texture, and good baking qualities.
  • Butter – to provide flavor while cooking the apples.
  • Lemon Juice – this brightens the flavor of the apples while also keeping them from browning.
  • Salt – this balances out the flavors.
salted caramel in a pot with a whisk

How to Make Salted Caramel Apple Crumble

For full details on how to make Salted Caramel Apple Crumble, see the recipe card down below 🙂

Step 1: Make the Crumble Topping

The first step is to prepare the crumble topping. This is a super easy process where you just measure, dump, and mix. The mixture will be crumbly but stay together when squeezed. Set aside.

Step 2: Make Salted Caramel Sauce

The hardest part of this recipe is probably making the homemade salted caramel. I’m going to walk you through the steps pretty well but if it still intimidates you in any way, there are plenty of salted caramel sauces on the market which are great options. Even warming up Hershey’s caramel sauce and adding in a little sea salt will work too. Here we go 🙂

  1. Heat sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat to melt the sugar. Continue cooking and swirling sugar until it turns amber in color.
  2. Whisk in sea salt and heavy cream. The mixture will bubble up violently briefly. Continue whisking until the sauce is smooth.
  3. Stir in butter and vanilla. Set aside.
peeled and sliced apples in a glass bowl

Step 3: Prep Apples + Cook

Prepare apples and toss in lemon juice.

Cook apples in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat in butter to draw out moisture. Sprinkle with salt to draw out all the moisture possible. Drain apples and place back into skillet. This process should take about 5-7 minutes of cooking.

Step 4: Layer Apple Crumble

Pour 3/4 of prepared caramel sauce into the apples and stir gently. Top with the crumble topping.

Step 5: Bake + Serve

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes and serve with remaining caramel sauce.

pouring salted caramel sauce over cooked apples all in a cast iron skillet

Toppings

Besides the caramel sauce, you can also top this dessert with ice cream or whipped cream. Kinda think of it as a deconstructed apple pie. So all that creaminess perfectly compliments this apple crumble recipe.

pouring more salted caramel sauce over crumble topping

Leftovers

I doubt you’ll have any leftovers because this dessert is SO divine! But if you do, don’t worry. Cover with plastic wrap and store your apple crumble in the fridge for up to 4 days.

You can reheat it in the microwave for a few seconds at a time or pop it into the oven to warm it up.

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