Paleo Apple Crisp

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This Paleo Apple Crisp tastes so good. Like I could eat the whole pan myself good, but I know that if I would that I would not feel good afterwards. All of these delicious ingredients come together perfectly to create a sweet but still slightly tart dessert. This recipe is even gluten and dairy free!

Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp {Vegan}

A healthy version of a classic fall dessert, this Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp is the perfect warm and sweet comfort food on cozy nights.  It’s grain free, gluten free, paleo, vegan, and soy free with simple whole ingredients and the fall flavors you crave.

I used to make non-paleo versions of apple crisp a few times every fall.

In fact, the first thing Adam ever witnessed me cook/bake was an apple crisp!  We were dating for less than a month, and he was clearly impressed and still talks about the apple crisp day!

So, apple crisp was my original claim to fame with my husband.

I knew I had to get the paleo version of this right and luckily I came up with a crisp topping that’s SO delicious and made with good for you ingredients.

Toasty, crispy, just sweet enough.  I know you’ll love it!

This recipe is such a hit with my family that whenever I make it it’s gone within a couple of hours.

A healthy version of a classic fall dessert, this Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp is the perfect warm and sweet comfort food on cozy nights.  It's grain free, gluten free, paleo, vegan, and soy free with simple whole ingredients and the fall flavors you crave. #paleo #vegan #cleaneating #applecrisp #healthybaking

The topping has a taste more along the lines of granola than anything paleo, so the seeds were definitely planted for a few of my homemade granola recipes!

I’ve said before that I used to have a major cereal habit and granola was probably my favorite of all.  I LOVE my paleo versions now!

But let’s get into all the apple crisp details now 🙂

Ingredients Needed for Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp

For the filling:

  • Apples
  • Cinnamon, nutmeg, & ginger
  • Maple syrup (optional)

6 apples is the perfect amount for this Maple Pecan Apple Crisp. Make sure that you wash them well, then peel them, core them, and sliced into 1/4 inch thick pieces.

For the topping:

  • Coconut oil
  • Raw pecans
  • Almond flour
  • Maple syrup
  • Coconut flakes
  • Vanilla extract
  • Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, & allspice
  • Sea Salt

What type of apples should I use?

There are lots of great apple varieties that are perfect for baking and since they’re in season right now, they’re even more flavorful than ever! I used Pink Lady apples but you could also use Jonagold, Honeycrisp, or Braeburn for a delicious apple crisp.

A healthy version of a classic fall dessert, this Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp is the perfect warm and sweet comfort food on cozy nights.  It's grain free, gluten free, paleo, vegan, and soy free with simple whole ingredients and the fall flavors you crave. #paleo #vegan #cleaneating #applecrisp #healthybaking

How to Make Paleo Maple Pecan Apple Crisp:

First, you’ll make the filling. Place the apple slices, spices, and maple syrup in a large bowl and toss everything together. Place everything in a baking dish, then set that aside and make the crisp topping.

The crisp topping is so easy – just place all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse or process until a crumbly paste forms.

Crumble the topping over the apples and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until the the topping has browned and the apple filling is bubbling.

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APPLE CRISP (PALEO, VEGAN, GLUTEN-FREE)

Topped with a nutty, cinnamon-infused, oat-free crunchy crust, this gluten-free, paleo, vegan, and grain-free apple crisp recipe will knock your socks off. You’ll be proud to serve this better-for-you apple crisp to your friends and family—and as it bakes, it’ll will make your house smell amazing, too!

EASIEST FALL APPLE DESSERT!

I love my paleo berry crisp recipe because it’s not just an easy and versatile dessert—it also looks and tastes impressive enough to serve to guests. But when the weather turns chilly, my cravings shift from summer berries to baked cinnamon-apple-y goodness. That’s why I adapted my berry crisp recipe to make this amazing apple crisp. It’s like apple pie without all the work!

PALEO, VEGAN-FRIENDLY, AND OAT-FREE APPLE CRISP

This simple apple crisp satisfies my deepest cravings for a cinnamon-infused fruity dessert topped with a crunchy, nutty topping. While many crisp recipes use oats as the main component of the streusel topping, I’ve found that replacing them with more nuts and coconut yields a tastier, crisper top. Plus, if you substitute chilled coconut oil for the ghee, you can even serve this dessert to your vegan and dairy-free pals. It goes without saying that this crisp tastes even better with a big dollop of whipped coconut cream or a scoop of plant-based ice cream!

Topping a shallow bowl filled with paleo apple crisp with whipped coconut cream.

MAKE-AHEAD TIPS

If you’re like me, you love apple crisp and want to be able to eat it at a moment’s notice. So make a big batch of the crisp topping and freeze it for up to 6 months in an airtight container! With this secret weapon in your freezer, you can make a crisp anytime you’re in the mood for one (or if company drops by unexpectedly).

I don’t recommend making the entire apple crisp well in advance of eating it; after all, it really does taste best when it’s still warm from the oven. That said, I’m happy to report that leftovers can be kept in the fridge for up to 4 days and you can warm them up in the microwave or oven. Unlike traditional apple crisps, my grain-free topping doesn’t get all mushy because it’s mostly comprised of nuts and coconut!

WHAT ARE THE BEST APPLES FOR BAKING?

The best baking apples to use in this homemade apple crisp recipe are the varieties with great flavor that hold their shape while they cook: Golden DeliciousGalaJonagoldHoneycrispMutsuBraeburnCortlandEmpire, and Pink Lady apples are fantastic for baking. Although Granny Smith apples hold their shape when baked, they can be too tart if used by themselves.

The one variety I don’t recommend for baking is Red Delicious—they get too mushy when cooked.

INGREDIENTS

These ingredients for my apple crisp are simple to find and can easily transform a humble bowl of fruit into something spectacular!

TOPPING

  • Almond flour: replaces all-purpose flour and adds even more nuttiness to the topping.
  • Maple sugar or coconut sugar: either will work and they’re both good replacements for brown sugar in a traditional crisp.
  • Diamond Crystal kosher salt: IMHO, a little bit of salt always balances out the sweetness in desserts.
  • Ground cinnamon + cardamom: I love the combination of cinnamon and cardamom together, but you can use cinnamon only or a mix of cinnamon and nutmeg if you prefer.
  • Chilled ghee or refined coconut oil: the chilled fat helps bind the streusel topping together. I throw the ghee or coconut oil in the freezer for 20 minutes if I forget to chill it well ahead of time.
  • Whole raw pecans and almonds: feel free to mix and match the nuts in the topping (e.g., walnuts and hazelnuts are fantastic in the topping), but the combination of pecans + almonds is my favorite.
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes: make sure you buy unsweetened flakes! Also, I find that the large flakes offer a better texture than finely shredded coconut.

FRUIT FILLING

  • Apples: you’ll need 2½ pounds of apples, about 4 large ones (see above for the best varieties to use). I always peel them first because I don’t like the texture of baked apple skins. I prefer to cut my apples into ¼-inch wedges so they cook evenly in the time it takes the topping to get a golden crust.
  • Maple sugar or coconut sugar: adds a little extra sweetness and helps the apples release some liquid.
  • Tapioca starch: a grain-free thickener for the filling.
  • Ground cinnamon: I love the combination of warm apples and cinnamon!
  • Lemon zest and lemon juice: adds some zing to the filling. Make sure you zest the lemon before you juice it. It’s freaking hard to zest a cut-up lemon, people.

Paleo Apple Crisp

a simple and easy paleo apple crisp recipe that yields gooey cinnamon apple filling with a delicious crisp topping! the best paleo apple crisp made with whole ingredients.

Who’s ready for ALL the fall-inspired desserts? Today, I’m sharing a reader-loved Beaming Baker recipe for Paleo Apple Crisp… with updated photos, slightly revamped recipe and more!

Are you ready for it? Let’s do this!

Let’s welcome fall with open arms, open mouths (what a visual), and open forks (how one does that, we might never know). Just… get ready to spear that fork right into a nice, warm, gooey, crispy-topped Paleo Apple Crisp made with coconut and pecans!

A simple and easy paleo apple crisp recipe that yields gooey cinnamon apple filling with a delicious crisp topping! The best paleo apple crisp made with whole ingredients. #AppleCrisp #Paleo #Apples #AppleCrumble | Recipe at BeamingBaker.com

paleo apple crisp with pecans & coconut!

This paleo apple crisp recipe started pretty innocently as a regular ol’ gluten free apple crisp. There were oats involved, hopes for a beautiful crumble top that even Betty Crocker would give me the stinkeye for in a local bake-off.

As if she would stoop to my level.

Anywho, oats were involved and things looked promising. But (isn’t there always a big old butt??), that ol’ jerk wonderfully versatile ingredient named coconut oil reared its difficult head. Dagnabit.

Truth is, coconut oil just doesn’t work like butter. There. I said it. In the case of making a deliciously crispy apple crumble topping, it was not to be. At least not with the ingredients I knew were traditionally expected.

So after Erik and I peeled apples til our eyes were crossed joyfully reveled in the delight that is peeling and coring 20 apples for those sanity questioning incredibly educational apple crisp trials, I decided to change directions.

the making of this paleo apple crisp

Sometimes, you just have to scrap everything you know and start fresh.

Once Erik begrudgingly bemoaned playfully and happily agreed to help peel more apples with me, we began again. One thing I learned from the previous apple crisp trials was how little added sugar I could use to still create a gooey and perfectly sweet apple filling.

Now that I had the grain free apple crisp filling nailed down, all I needed to figure out was the topping. I went around the internet, searching for the most negative feedback on traditional apple crisp recipes.

One thing I learned: people really don’t like a non-crispy topping.

As such, one of my top goals was: Make a Crispy Topping.

After some soul searching, a few semi-snide passive aggressive comments lovingly traded between me and Erik, then a few be-cool-guys-don’t-let-the-apples-get-to-you BB team talks, I had an epiphany.

paleo apple crisp that’s actually crisp!

Let’s make this apple crisp PALEO.

YES!!! Throw away the flour, throw away the grains, and start fresh. But, don’t throw stuff away because it’s expensive and that’s wasteful. Just… throw it away figuratively.

I used elements from my super crispy, grain free paleo granola to create the lovely paleo apple crumble-worthy topping for this delicious paleo apple crisp!

Paleo Apple Crisp

  •  Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  •  Yield: 12-16 servings 1x

A simple and easy paleo apple crisp recipe that yields gooey cinnamon apple filling with a delicious crisp topping! The best paleo apple crisp made with whole ingredients. Grain-Free.

INGREDIENTS

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paleo apple crisp filling

  • 3 medium apples, peeled and thinly sliced* (4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon blanched almond flour
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1–2 tablespoons water (optional)

pecan coconut crisp topping

  • ¾ cup pecans, chopped
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes or raw coconut chips
  • ¼ cup blanched almond flour
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan with coconut oil. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, add all Filling ingredients: apples, coconut sugar, maple syrup, almond flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract. Using a rubber spatula, stir and fold until apples are fully coated and sugar has dissolved. If your mixture isn’t very wet, add in water—you’ll want to see 1-2 tablespoons liquid at the bottom of your mixing bowl. I used 1 ½ tablespoons water in mine.
  3. Pour this mixture into the prepared baking pan. Use the spatula to smooth apples into an even layer.
  4. Add all Topping ingredients to a medium bowl. Using a fork, stir and fold until crumbles form. Gently spoon evenly over apples, making sure to keep crumbles intact.
  5. Bake for 40-60 minutes. Mine took 45 minutes. It’s done when the topping is a deep golden brown and the juice around the filling has thickened. To test, use a spoon to carefully lift up a corner of the crisp to see the juices. If it’s still watery, bake for another 5 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool for 10-15 mins. Serve warm with a scoop with dairy-free ice cream on top. Enjoy! Storing instructions below.

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