This Healthy Apple Crisp Recipe is the perfect fall dessert. It’s vegan, gluten-free, and made with no added sugar!
Okay I’m just going to say it. Crisps > pies. Do you agree?
Here’s why I will choose to make a crisp over a pie any day of the week. I’m a busy mom and pies are fussy. Crisps? Oh, a crisp is simple. It’s a throw-together-quickly kind of dessert and it’s much easier to make a healthy apple crisp than a healthy apple pie.
So there you have it. I choose easy.
Plus, that oat topping? Oh, I live for it. Fall is the perfect time for apple crisp and I can’t believe I don’t have a recipe for one on Happy Healthy Mama yet. That needed to change!
(I do have one for the Instant Pot in my I Love My Instant Pot Anti-Inflammatory Diet Recipe Book. Today’s version is slightly different but I do add Instant Pot instructions if you’d like to try this in your Instant Pot.)
Traditional Apple Crisp is usually made with lots of sugar and butter. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I wanted to create a healthier version.
The difference between this recipe and traditional apple crisp is that it’s vegan, gluten-free, and made without any added sugar! The juicy, tender apples are perfectly sweet, and the oat topping gives it the perfect crunch. It’s healthier, but definitely not lacking in flavor. If you want to bring it to the next level, top it off with some vegan ice cream and my Vegan Caramel Sauce or the vegan salted caramel sauce here.
This Healthy Apple Crisp Recipe took me a while to get just right, but the result was just what I was hoping for!
- Make sure your vegan butter is cold when you mix it into the topping ingredients. If it’s room temperature, the crumble mixture won’t be the right consistency.
- I like to chop my apples for this crisp, but you an also slice them. Just make sure to slice them thinly so they cook through.
- Use a combination of sweet and tart apples to get the best flavor! I like using gala, honey crisp, pink lady, and granny smith apples.
- If you’re planning on bringing this to a dinner party, I recommend baking it when you get there! I think the topping has the best crunchy texture right after you bake it.
- If you want the best flavor, let your apples sit for about 30 minutes after you cut them and mix in the filling ingredients. This will allow the natural juices and sugars from the apples to really come out. Yes, this is an extra step, but it’s hands-off time!
- Serve it warm with some ice cream–there are tons of delicious vegan ice cream options out there.
I hope you make this recipe, and enjoy it as much as my family does!
Apples– The star ingredient in this homemade Apple Crisp! You can peel them if you would like, but leaving the skin on is okay, too. It’s a preference thing. I like to use different kinds such as honey crisp, granny smith, and pink lady apples.
Lemon Juice– Lemon juice prevents the apples from oxidizing, or from turning brown.
Erythritol– Erythritol is a healthier sugar replacement. It acts as an antioxidant, and doesn’t contain any calories, and has zero net carbs.
Cinnamon– Cinnamon is the perfect fall spice. It adds the best flavor in this recipe. It also contains antioxidants, has prebiotic properties, and can reduce blood pressure.
Vanilla Extract– Just a little bit of vanilla enhances all the other flavors.
Salt-I’ve learned that making apple crisp without salt can make the flavors fall flat.
Flour– I used almond flour to make this recipe gluten-free. You can also use a GF blend like I do in this Peach Blueberry Crisp recipe, oat flour, regular all purpose, or whole wheat flour. If you would like to make your own almond or oat flour, all you have to do is blend either your oats or almonds in a food processor until it’s a flour-like consistency.
Oats– Rolled oats are perfect in the topping! They’re a great source of minerals, vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants. Use old fashioned rolled oats for the best, crunchy texture.
Vegan Butter/Coconut Oil– I use vegan butter or coconut oil. You can use regular butter if you’d like. I wouldn’t recommend using a different oil than coconut oil because you need a solid fat for the topping.
How to make Healthy Apple Crisp
In the Oven:
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8×8 2 quart baking dish.
- In a bowl, combine the apple filling ingredients. Transfer the apple mixture to the baking dish.
- In a separate bowl, combine all of the crumble topping ingredients except the oats. Use a pastry cutter or your hands to combine your butter or oil into the ingredients, then stir in the oats.
- Pour the crisp topping on top of the apple mixture in the pan.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, until it starts to bubble. Allow to sit a few minutes before serving. Enjoy!
- In a bowl, combine the apple filling ingredients. Transfer the apple mixture to a 6″ cake pan.
- In another bowl, combine the crumble topping ingredients. Use a pastry cutter or your hands to combine your butter or oil into the ingredients.
- Pour the crisp topping on top of the apple mixture in the pan.
- Pour 2 cups of water into the inner pot, and place the steam rack inside. Place the pan on top of the rack and secure the lid.
- Press the manual or pressure cook button, and adjust the timer to 17 minutes,
- When the timer beeps, quick-release pressure until the float valve drops, and then unlock the lid. Allow to sit a few minutes before serving. Enjoy!
Healthy Apple Crisp FAQS
What type of apples should I use?
I like to use a mixture of sweet and tart apples. I think the best apples to use are golden delicious, pink lady, gala, honey crisp, and granny smith apples.
Can I substitute the Erythritol?
Monk fruit is another natural sweetener I like to use if I don’t have any erythritol on hand. You could also use coconut sugar, granulated sugar, or brown sugar if you would like. You can use a liquid sweetener like maple syrup in the filling, but not the topping.
Can I use almond meal instead of almond flour?
Yes. Almond flour and almond meal are basically the same thing, the only difference being the texture and slightly different color. Almond flour is made from blanched (peeled) almonds and has a finer texture. Almond meal is made from raw (unpeeled) almonds. Some baking recipes you’ll notice a difference in texture, but it won’t affect this one much.
Should I peel the apples?
That’s completely up to you. My family prefers the apples to be peeled, but you definitely don’t have to peel them. Apple peels actually contain a lot of fiber and nutrients.
Does is matter what kind of oats I use in the topping?
You can use rolled oats, old-fashioned oats, or quick oats for the oat topping and the texture will vary slightly. If you use steel cut oats, the topping’s texture would will be much chewier. My recommendation is old-fashioned rolled oats for the best texture.
What is the difference between apple crisp and apple crumble?
The two are pretty similar. The only difference is that apple crumble doesn’t usually contain any oats or nuts in the topping.
Can I make my own almond flour?
Yes! All you have to do is put your almonds in a food processor until they are a flour-like consistency.
What’s the best way to serve this Healthy Apple Crisp?
I like to serve warm Apple Crisp with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (vegan or regular). You can even take it to the next level by drizzling some caramel or maple syrup.
How long will this Apple Crisp last?
Once you bake it, you can store leftovers in an airtight container for 5-6 days.
Do I need to store leftovers in the fridge?
Since it’s baked, you can store leftovers in room temperature or in the fridge. It will only last about 2 days at room temperature, and longer if you store it in the fridge. You can also freeze it!
Looking for other ways to use in-season apples? Try my Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars, Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Cups, Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal, Simple Baked Apples, Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal, Apple Peanut Butter Overnight Oats, or Apple Pear Snack Cake!
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