Small Apple Crisp


I think that the Small Apple Crisp is one of those recipes that everyone has on hand. You know the one. It’s basically just a combination of all the apple scraps left over from the week. I’m serious — it really doesn’t get easier than this recipe (at least, not any easier and still taste good). Small Apple Crisp recipe, a quick & easy dessert that takes less than 30 minutes and is perfect for fall.

Small Batch Apple Crisp For Two

Small Batch Apple Crisp for two is the perfect, easy fall dessert.  Just the right amount for two and a the crunchy topping has a secret ingredient!

Apples and fall are a perfect combo and this Easy Apple Pie is one of our favorite ways to enjoy apples.  It’s extra yummy when you top it with some Apple Pie Ice Cream.   Caramelized Apples and Dulce de Leche is an easy way to enjoy all the flavors of an apple pie with less work.

Small Batch Apple Crisp

One of the biggest challenges of cooking for two is dessert.  Most dessert recipes make way too much for just two people, 2 dozen cookies or an entire cake or pie.  That leads to problems, you either eat way too much or end up throwing part of it away.

Thanks to this recipe, we are able to enjoy one of our favorite desserts and not be tempted to eat way too much of it.

What Kind Of Apples Are Best For Apple Crisp?

I prefer a firm, crisp, tart apple like a Granny Smith Apple but you can also use a Honey Crisp or a Golden Delicious. These apples stand up well to baking.

How To Make Apple Crisp For Two

  • Mix together your crisp topping.  I like a lot of topping on my apple crisp so this is a generous amount. Use cold butter so that you end up with a crumbly mixture.
  • Slice or dice your apple, either shape  will work.  Just make sure all your apple pieces are a similar size so that they cook evenly. If you want to prepare your crisp ahead of time use the trick below to stop your apples from turning brown.
  • Fill dish with apples slices. I use a 10 oz. ramekin and one apple per ramekin.
  • Sprinkle each container with 1/2 tsp of sugar.
  • Sprinkle apples with crisp topping.  I like a lot of topping so the recipe makes a generous amount.
  • Bake the apple crisp at 350 for 20-25 minutes.  Time will vary depending on how thick or thin you sliced your apples.  I cut my apples about 1/4 inch thick.  I don’t like mushy apples so bake them so they are cooked through but not mushy.

How To Keep Apples From Turning Brown

  • Slice your apple.
  • Fill a bowl with water, enough to cover your apples and add 1/2 tsp – 1 tsp of salt, depending on how many apples you have.
  • Make sure apple slices are totally covered with water and let sit for a few minutes.
  • Drain and pat dry.
  • Apples can then be used or stored and will not turn brown.  It’s magic.

This trick allows you to prep your apple crisp ahead of time and not have to worry about the apples turning brown.

You can assemble the dessert the day before and just keep refrigerated until ready to bake.  If you bake it chilled, allow a few more minutes to bake.


This Apple Crisp for Two is easy to make and a perfect small batch dessert for fall!

Do you ever have those moments when you’re craving a dessert, but the last thing you want to do is make a huge batch?  Or maybe there are just two people living in your home and you don’t like having a ton of leftovers just sitting around your house.

That’s where small-batch desserts come in handy.  And today’s recipe?  It’s ridiculously easy to throw together and only makes two servings.  You can even use the same bowl to mix up the filling and topping, so there’s hardly any cleanup.  This recipe is one that you have to keep on hand because you’ll want to make it all of the time.  I’m speaking from experience over here.

So, let’s talk about the recipe a bit.  The filling is just a simple mixture of apples, a little bit of flour, and some brown sugar.  I prefer to use Granny Smith apples in this recipe because they pair so well with the sweetness of everything.  You can use any apple you like, just adjust the sugar in the filling if needed.

One little quick tip for the apples – make sure and chop them up about the same size so they bake evenly.  It doesn’t have to be absolutely perfect, just do your best to get them all about the same size.  You can also feel free to slice the apples instead of chopping them, but the chopped pieces tend to work better in the ramekins.

Speaking of the ramekins, I used 10-ounce ones for these apple crisps.  The 10-ounce ramekins are the perfect size for this recipe and everything fits perfectly into them.  I picked up a couple from the store for just a couple dollars each.  So worth it, and you can use them for so many other things.  Or keep reusing them to bake these apple crisps.  Seriously.

Once you mix up the filling, just divide it between the two ramekins.  For easier cleanup, wipe out the bowl you mixed the filling in and reuse it to make the topping.  For the topping, you’ll also need a bit of flour, brown sugar, rolled oats, cinnamon, a tiny pinch of salt, and some butter.  You can work the mixture together with your hands or a fork, sprinkle it over the apples, then pop it into the oven and bake!  This recipe is so easy and you can prep everything and have it baking while you’re eating dinner.

Apple Crisp for Two

This warm, cozy apple crisp for two made from scratch is the best way to use 3 apples. The filling is sweet and delicious, just like apple pie, and the crisp oat topping is everything apple crisp should be. Bake in a small gratin dish with a 3-cup capacity, or bake it in ramekins, it’s your choice. But don’t let Fall go by without enjoying it at least once!

Apple Crisp for Two

The ingredients of an apple crisp are very simple, yet this was one of the hardest recipes for me to scale down to two servings. The problem lies with the apples:  a single apple does not give off much juice. The only reason a typical apple crisp is juicy is because it’s filled with 6 to 8 apples. When a smaller version is made with just 2 or 3 apples, a dry dessert is the result. After many attempts, I discovered a touch of maple syrup brings moisture and a delicious flavor. I use Grade A maple syrup for its smokiness.

We’re always thinking about how much moisture apples exude when baked, and it always depends on the end goal of the recipe. For my mini apple pies, we don’t want a soggy crust, so we keep the liquid to a minimum. However, for an apple crisp for two, we want plenty of liquid in the final result, so that is why we’re adding a touch of maple syrup.

Best apples for apple crisp:

If I could go back in time, I might write my Master’s thesis on cooked apple behavior. Instead, I wrote my thesis on the best way to manage weeds in organic lettuce and celery fields, but that’s a story for another day. But what endlessly fascinates me now is every variety of apple varies in texture, flavor, juiciness, and ability to withstand heat so much.

The best way to handle the variation among apples is to bake with a mix of varieties. It’s a wonderful world of apples, but we must start with Granny Smith apples. They’re tart, firm, and they hold their shape while being baked, even for long amounts of time in a homemade apple pie. Granny Smith apples are welcome in every single apple dessert I bake, and we need 2 medium ones for this recipe. And for sweetness, we’re using a single Honey Crisp. You might be living under a rock if you haven’t tried the Honey Crisp apple. It’s crisp, sweet and melts perfectly when cooked. It’s the world’s most perfect apple, and I will die on that hill.

If you’re wondering what you can make with soft, local apples, try my caramel apple cinnamon rolls. Yes, you can use small local apples for this recipe, too, but if the variety of apple turns to mush while baking, just be aware the bake time here is 40 minutes.


  • Butter. Keep the butter cold, because we’re making a crumble topping for the apple crisp for two.
  • Granulated Sugar.
  • All-Purpose Flour.
  • Cinnamon.
  • Rolled Oats. Rolled oats are the same as old fashioned oats. Rolled oats are flat and cook in 5 minutes. You can use 1-minute oats here, but do not use steel-cut or Irish oats.
  • Granny Smith Apples. Two medium bright green Granny Smith apples.
  • Honey Crisp Apple. You can sub any super sweet and crisp apple for a Honey Crisp.
  • Maple Syrup. You can use grade A or grade B maple syrup, your choice.
  • Nutmeg. Freshly grated is always best, and in my opinion, nutmeg is even better than cinnamon when it comes to apples!
  • Lemon. We’ll use a pinch of lemon zest (about ¼ teaspoon) and ½ teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice from one whole lemon.


  1. First, gather the ingredients, and have ready a 3-quart small baking dish, or 3-4 ramekins. Preheat the oven to 375-degrees Fahrenheit and ensure a rack is in the center position of the oven.
    Ingredients for apple crisp on table.
  2. Let’s make the crisp topping first: in a medium bowl, combine the cold diced butter, 2 tablespoons of the sugar, flour, half of the cinnamon, oats, and the salt. Use a pastry blender or two forks to bring the mixture together. 
    Ingredients for the topping for apple crisp with oats in bowl.
  3. Really work the butter into the ingredients until a crumbly topping forms that holds together when you squeeze it in your hand. Set aside.
    Apple crisp topping with oats in bowl.
  4. Now, peel, core, and dice all of the apples into 1-inch chunks.
    Peeled and sliced apples on cutting board with knife.
  5. Place the apple chunks in a bowl, and add the remaining ingredients: the rest of the sugar, the other half of the cinnamon, maple syrup, nutmeg, lemon zest and lemon juice.
    Apples tossed with spices and sugar.
  6. Once the apples are fully coated with all of the ingredients, tip them into the awaiting baking dish. Scatter the crumble evenly on top.
    Raw apple crisp with topping before being baked.
  7. Bake the dish for 40 minutes, and broil it for 5 minutes at the end for an extra crisp topping, if that’s your preference.

Is this apple crisp recipe healthy?

I include calorie counts on all of my recipes that can be found within the recipe card. In my non-expert opinion, apple crisp contains plenty of fiber from the apples, antioxidants from both the apples and maple syrup, and whole grain from the rolled oats. That is a very loose interpretation of the word ‘health,’ but I’ll justify dessert any way I can.

Can I make this without oats?

If you’re avoiding oats, you can swap in quinoa flakes for the rolled oats in this recipe. I do this frequently to up the protein in my desserts that my kids might eat. You can also use coconut flakes or almond flour instead of the oats.

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