Homemade Apple Crisp Topping


This Homemade Apple Crisp Topping is delicious served over Blueberry Cobbler. It also makes a great topping for ice cream or pancakes! I like to use a mixture of Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Gala and Braeburn apples for this recipe. This Homemade Caramel Apple Crisp is so good and very easy to throw together!

Apple is an edible fruit that belongs to a number of related species in the rose family. Here are some health benefits of eating apples, with a few recipes as well.

Homemade Apple Crisp Topping

The Best Ever Apple Crisp has a juicy caramel filling and topped with the perfect blend of sugary crumble on top. Eat it warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an amazing dessert!

The Best Ever Apple Crisp has a juicy caramel filling and topped with the perfect blend of sugary crumble on top. Eat it warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an amazing dessert!

Apple Crisp served up on a white plate topped with a scoop of ice cream and caramel.

Warm, homemade apple crisp feels like coming home. We have so many fond memories over the years of eating apple crisp at holidays, family parties, birthdays, and really most large gatherings. Was it the warm, gooey apples? The cinnamon-sugary crisp topping? The guarantee of vanilla ice cream to go on the side? Yes, yes, and definitely yes. It is always a crowd pleaser, and you should definitely whip one up for your next gathering!


There are four things you can do when you are in the store to see if the apples you are buying is good and fresh:

  • Look for any visible bruises, wormholes, cuts, and brown spots.
  • Make sure the color is appropriate to the variety of apple you’re inspecting
  • Give it a smell test to make sure it’s not rancid or has any foul odors
  • Check the firmness to make sure there aren’t any squishy spots.


Warm apple crisp is the best! To reheat apple crisp put some on a plate and pop it in the microwave and warm it up in 30-second increments until it is warmed up to your liking. BUT! please be careful as the sauce can get hot and cause burns if you heat it up too much.


There are hundreds of varieties of apples so it can be hard to know which to purchase. There are a number of commonly sold apples that are great for baking. Green apples like Granny Smith provide a nice tart flavor and are great for baking. Other yellow and red varieties that are good for baking include Golden Delicious, Honey Crisp, Braeburn, Jonathan, Fuji, and Pink Lady. Check the apple for freshness, it should be nice and hard. If the apple is squishy, is bruised, or discolored, you will want to discard them.

Apple Crisp in a baking dish with a wooden spoon in it.


Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. 

How to Make Oatmeal Apple Crisp

Combine multiple apple varieties for deep flavor.

Start to Finish: 60 minutes Servings: 4 to 6 Difficulty Level: Beginner

With lightly spiced apples — cooked down until they melt in your mouth — and crunchy oatmeal topping that’s buttery and sweet, apple crisp tastes like autumn, no matter when you make it. You can use any apple variety for this recipe, but Golden Delicious and Granny Smith are two of your best bets.


  • Filling 5 large or 6 medium apples 1 tablespoon cornstarch 2 tablespoons white sugar 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon 1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened
  • Topping 1/2 cup packed brown sugar 1/2 cup white flour 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon salt * 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold

Prepare the Filling

  • Heat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Wash, peel and core the apples. Cut the apples into slices that are about 1/2-inch thick. Transfer the slices to a large bowl. Add the cornstarch, sugar, cinnamon, zest and lemon juice. Stir the apples until they’re evenly coated with the sugar mixture.
  • Using clean fingers, spread the butter over the bottom and sides of an 8-inch-by-8-inch or 9-inch-by-9-inch glass baking dish. Pour in the apple slices.

Make the Topping, and Assemble

  • In a clean bowl, combine the first six topping ingredients. Add the cold butter. Use a pastry blender or a fork to press the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Alternatively, prepare the topping in your food processor. Pour in the dry ingredients and let the processor run for a few seconds to combine them. Add the butter and pulse the mixture until it’s the correct texture.
  • Sprinkle the oat topping in an even layer over the apple slices. Bake the dish for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the crust is a deep golden color and the apples are soft when pierced with a knife.
  • Let the crisp cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Top it with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Tips and Suggestions

  • Berries and nuts make ideal companions for apples and oats. Add a cup of **blueberries or mixed berries** to the apple filling, or add **1/2 cup of chopped and lightly toasted pecans** to the crumb topping.
  • Make individual dishes of apple crisp using **ramekins** instead of a larger baking dish.
  • Refrigerate apple crisp for up to **three days**. Always reheat it in the oven to get the topping crunchy again — 10 minutes at 350 degrees should crisp it nicely. You may also freeze an unbaked apple crisp for up to **six months**. Tightly seal the dish with plastic wrap and a layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil.

Caramel Apple Crisp

Easy old-fashioned Caramel Apple Crisp made from scratch. If you’re looking for a delicious fall dessert, consider this fall baked apple dessert with a double delicious buttery oat crisp topping. The perfect deep-dish apple dessert recipe to use leftover fruit in.

This classic apple crisp recipe features an extra layer of buttery oat crisp topping that traditional apple crisp so very much needs! Yes, I said it! I love apple crisp but the topping is JUST as important as the filling.

Apple recipes are a real treat. Once August arrives, I’m ready to head to an apple orchard and pick a variety of apples. I like to use those apples in homemade applesauce, which, if you have not made before, you need to try it! Then, I make my mom’s favorite dessert, apple crisp and apple cupcakes. Any leftover apples get used to make homemade apple jello shots which is fun for a girls weekend.

What is Apple Crisp?

Apple Crisp is an American dessert that’s typically made during the fall months of September through October. That’s because apple harvest takes place in the fall during cooler weather. Of course, apple dessert recipes can be baked any time of the year.

  • Apple crisp is a deep dish fruit dessert made with a distinct crisp/crumble or streusel topping and baked until the apples are tender.
  • It is a casserole style dessert.
  • The crumbly topping is made with a mixture of butter, old-fashioned oats (rolled oats), flour, brown sugar, and warm spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • The filling is from scratch with fresh apples that will need to be peeled, cored, and sliced and then tossed in lemon juice to prevent browning. In addition, the homemade apple filling ingredients also include sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  • Make apple crisp for a fall or winter holiday. I make this dessert for Thanksgiving, and sometimes Christmas.
  • Apple crisp is not the same as an apple brown betty, crumble, cobbler, buckle, clafoutis, or spoon pie.

How Do You Make Apple Crisp?

Making a crisp is the best way to use leftover fruit.

  • Peel, core, and slice apples then toss in lemon juice. Mix in sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. When I bake, I like to use tart apples because they told their shape best. Use Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Golden Delicious, or Pink Lady apples. 
  • Make crumb topping by cutting butter into a mixture of flour, rolled oats, brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg until it resembles small crumbs covered in butter. I’ve included a tip below in my post about this step.
  • Cut crumb topping in half and press 1/2 of it into the bottom of a baking dish.
  • Top with the apple filling.
  • Sprinkle remaining crumb topping over the apples.
  • Bake in oven 30-40 minutes, or until golden brown and apples are soft.

NEVER WATERY: This old fashioned caramel apple crisp is not soggy like most recipes I have tried. That’s because my recipe has a crumble topping on the bottom of the baking dish as well the traditional crisp topping. This helps to absorb a light amount of natural sugar and liquid from the apples as it bakes in the oven. In fact, I often hear that this recipe tastes even better the second day once all the juices settle. Adding caramel sauce will give it some more moisture to the top layer.

Baking Tips

Apple Best for Baking Apple Crisp: Use tart apples like Granny Smitch, Honeycrisp, Golden Delicious, or Pink Lady (Cripps Pink).

  • Old-FASHIONED OATS: Made from steel-cut oats that are rolled to make them flat. In addition, they cook faster than steel-cut oats. They are also called whole oats, rolled oats. I like to use Quaker Old-fashioned Oats.
  • When is the best time of year to pick apples? Apple harvest typically takes place during the coolor months from September through October. If you’ve picked your own apples, this apple recipe won’t disapoint.
  • CARAMEL SAUCE: I like to drizzle caramel sauce over the apple crisp before serving. Here is a homemade caramel sauce recipe I like to use for this apple dessert. 
  • CRISP TOPPING TECHNIQUE: Cut butter into small cubes and allow to come to room temperature. Toss the butter in a little at a time and use your hands to ensure the dry ingredients is generally coated in the butter. You may use a mixer, but make sure the crisp topping texture is still crumbly. Feel free to add your favorite nuts like pecans, almonds, or walnuts to the topping.
  • TOPPING REDUCTION: This recipe is for a double layer of apple crisp oat topping. It can easily be modified for 1 oat topping. Simply split the topping ingredients in half and only use as a topping to the apple crisp.


1. Apples May Lower High Cholesterol and Blood Pressure

Savor a juicy apple and you may help keep your ticker healthy in the process. “Studies have linked apple consumption with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, which may be related to the cholesterol-lowering benefits of the soluble fiber found in apples,” says Anzlovar.

Soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material, according to Mayo Clinic. 

According to the University of Illinois, soluble fiber helps prevent cholesterol buildup in the lining of blood vessel walls, therefore lowering the incidence of atherosclerosis (restricted blood flow in the arteries due to plaque buildup) and heart disease. It can also help lower blood pressure levels: One past review found that a higher intake of soluble fiber was associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Past research shows that eating apples (or pears) regularly was associated with a 52 percent lower stroke risk. Furthermore, a study published in February 2020 in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that eating two apples a day helped study participants lower both their LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

2. Eating Foods With Fiber, Including Apples, Can Aid Digestion

You’ve likely heard that fiber is good for digestion — and what you’ve heard is true! According to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, both types of fiber (soluble and insoluble, which means it can’t be absorbed in water) are important for digestion. And you’re in luck — apples have both types, according to the University of Illinois.

Soluble fiber helps slow down digestion, allowing you to feel full, and also slows the digestion of glucose, which helps control your blood sugar. Meanwhile, insoluble fiber can help move food through your system and aid with constipation and regularity, per Harvard.

Be sure to eat the apple skin, which contains much of the apple’s insoluble fiber, according to the University of Illinois.

3. Apples Can Support a Healthy Immune System

Who doesn’t want a stronger immune system going into autumn? Apples can be an important tool in your immune-supporting tool kit.

According to past research in animals, a diet filled with soluble fiber helped convert immune cells that were pro-inflammatory into anti-inflammatory and immune-supporting ones. Another animal study, published in May 2018 in the journal Immunity, found that a diet high in dietary fiber helped protect mice against the flu. (It’s not clear whether these effects would occur in humans, though.)

Still, there’s reason to believe that apples may bolster immunity, in part because they contain immune-boosting vitamin C. One past large review found that regular consumption of vitamin C plays many roles in helping the immune system function. For example, it can help strengthen the epithelial (a type of tissue) barrier against pathogens and guard against environmental oxidative stress, such as pollution and radiation, according to past research.

4. Apples Are a Diabetes-Friendly Fruit

If you have type 2 diabetes, consider adding apples to your diet. Sure, they’re a fruit, but it’s a common misconception that people with diabetes can’t eat fruit.

In this case, apples’ soluble fiber can help slow the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream and may improve blood sugar levels, Mayo Clinic notes. Plus, per Mayo, a healthy diet that includes insoluble fiber can lower your odds of developing type 2 diabetes in the first place.

Furthermore, a study of people with type 2 diabetes, published in August 2016 in Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine, found that regularly consuming soluble fiber helped reduce insulin resistance and improved blood sugar and triglyceride levels.

5. The Antioxidants in Apples May Play a Role in Cancer Prevention

While there’s no one surefire way to prevent cancer, apples may help play a role in fighting off these diseases. “Apples may reduce the risk of certain cancers, which researchers speculate is related to the antioxidants found in apples,” says Anzlovar. Past research suggests that apples are high in antioxidants, and in laboratory studies, these antioxidants have been shown to limit cancer cell growth.

A review published in October 2016 in Public Health Nutrition found that eating apples regularly is associated with a reduced risk of certain cancers, including colorectal, oral cavity, esophageal, and breast cancers.

The fiber in apples may provide cancer-preventing perks. A study published in March 2016 in the journal Pediatrics found that women who ate more high-fiber foods during adolescence and young adulthood (especially lots of fruits and vegetables) had a lower breast cancer risk later in life.

And another study, published in January 2019 in the journal The Lancet, found that a diet high in dietary fiber could help protect against colorectal cancer and breast cancer, as well as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

6. Eating Apples Can Support Healthy Weight Loss

A diet rich in fruit (and vegetables) can help you maintain a healthy weight — or shed pounds — according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Because apples are filled with dietary fiber, they are high on this list. “Fiber slows digestion and the rise of blood sugar, keeping you satiated and less likely to overeat,” says Levinson.

According to that study in The Lancet, people who ate the most fiber had a significantly lower body weight. Past research shows that overweight women who ate three apples a day lost 1.22 kilogram (2.7 pounds) after 12 weeks.

At only 95 calories for a medium-sized apple, this fruit is one you’ll want to keep on hand when sweet cravings strike.

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