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Topped with a buttery, crumbly oat topping, this Gluten Free Apple Crisp is the perfect dessert for fall. This easy recipe comes together in minutes and is even better when you serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Healthy Apple Crisp Recipe
When it comes to fall desserts, many people go straight for the pumpkin pie or apple pie. While I do enjoy a lively slice of Gluten Free Apple Crumb Pie, let’s be real. I can totally forego crust and just dig into those sweet, cinnamon apples and buttery crumb toppings.
That’s why I love a good Gluten Free Apple Crisp. It’s all apples and all crumbs, with no need to fuss with a crust. That actually makes this a healthier dessert too. The apples themselves are tossed with just a bit of sugar. And that topping is loaded with old-fashioned rolled oats and almond flour. So yes, it’s a sweet treat that even packs in protein and fiber. I think that calls for a second serving.
Don’t forget the scoop of ice cream!
Are Oats Gluten Free?
I mention that this is a Gluten Free Apple Crisp recipe, but you may be wondering whether oats are gluten free. This may be confusing because oats are not a gluten-containing grain, like wheat, barley, and rye. However, in the grocery store, you will see packages and containers of oatmeal with no labels and some that are labeled as certified gluten free.
The issue comes in where and how they are planted and processed. Many times, oats are grown in fields that are near or were previously used for growing gluten-containing grains. And they may commonly be sorted and process on shared equipment that is used for these grains. For those with celiac disease or a severe intolerance or allergy, this risk of cross-contamination may be a concern. Therefore, you may find and your doctor may advise that you need to only consume oats that are certified gluten free.
For the apple filling
- Apples: Peeled and sliced. As I will mention below, I like to use Golden Delicious, but use your favorite.
- Granulated sugar: Just a bit. Feel free to use another sweetener.
- Cinnamon: Always makes aples taste better.
- Lemon juice: Keeps the apples from turning brown and the acid brightens the flavors.
What are the Best Apples to Use?
Generally, for baked apple desserts, you want to use an apple that is firm enough to not break down completely while baking. Otherwise, you will end up with a mushy crisp. And nobody wants that.
So crisp apples like Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, and Golden Delicious are all good choices. The Granny Smith is a go-to for many people, but it can be a bit tart, which is why I usually choose Golden Delicious. But feel free to choose what you like best, or try a mixture, since all bring a slightly different flavor and texture.
For something different, you can even try Pink Lady, Crispin, Fuji, or Jonagold.
For the oat topping
- Old fashioned oats: Not quick or instant. As discussed above, be sure they are certified gluten free if needed.
- Almond flour: Adds a little texture, protein, fiber, and a nice, nutty flavor.
- Gluten free flour: I used a 1:1 blend. For this recipe, somethign like Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 or Cup4Cup work great.
- Brown sugar: Sweetens and adds a nice molasses flavor.
- Cinnamon: For nice, warm spice.
- Unsalted butter: Holds everything together.
How to Make Gluten Free Apple Crisp
Now that you have all of your ingredients, let’s get started.
Prepare the apples: Heat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 2-quart casserole dish glass baking dish (this is usually about 7×11-inches or 8×11-inches, depending on the brand) with nonstick cooking spray. Peel and evenly slice your apples, then toss them in a bowl with granulated sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Transfer to the prepared baking dish.
Make the topping: In a medium bowl, combine the oats, almond flour, gluten-free flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Toss everything together with a fork or spatula. Pour in the melted butter and stir together until everything is thoroughly combined. It will be quite thick and crumbly. Scatter the topping over the apples.
Bake the apple crisp: Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the crisp is bubbly and the topping is golden brown. Let it cool for 5 minutes before eating.
Powdered sugar: If you want to keep it really simple, a little sprinkle of powdered sugar is all your need.
Whipped cream: Whether you get it from a can or container or make your own freshly whipped cream, it’s delightful to add a creamy element to the sweet-tart apples.
Ice cream: Personally, this is the only way I go. You can stick with vanilla from the store, or double up on the apple flavor by making No-Churn Caramel Apple Ice Cream.
Yogurt: Either frozen yogurt or a dollop of sweetened Greek yogurt will give you that creamy contrast in a healthier way.
Tips for the Best Crisp
Cut the apples evenly: You want the apple slices about the same size so that they bake evenly. I like to use one of those apple corers and slicers that you press down on the apple to form wedges. Then I cut each of those slices in half. You can also cut the apple into quarters, cut out the core, and cut each quarter into three or four slices.
Don’t work it too much: While you want the topping ingredients combined, you don’t want to overmix it because you’ll want to be able to scatter it over the apples so that when it bakes, it forms a nice crumbly topping.
Feed a crowd: If you need more servings, you can double the recipe and bae it in a 9×13-inch baking dish.
Use unrefined sugars: Try using coconut sugar or a low carb sweetener like Serve Brown for the topping. You can swap the sugar in the filling for maple syrup or raw honey, which will also give it a great flavor.
Make it nutty: Try adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts to the topping mixture for extra crunch.
Mix something in: Feel free to add a handful of raisins or dried cranberries in the apple filling mixture, if that’s your thing. You can also swap some or all of the apples for pears.
Turn it into a cobbler: You can make the same filling and top it with the dough from this Gluten Free Peach Cobbler.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Cover any leftover gluten free apple crisp with plastic wrap, or transfer it to an airtight container. Then store it in the refrigerator, but be sure to enjoy it within 3 or 4 days.
To reheat it, you can place the entire baking dish in the oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes. Or microwave individual servings on a microwave-safe plate or bowl.
Shop the Recipe
GLUTEN FREE OATS: Remember, you’ll want to look for certified gluten free oats.
BAKING DISH: I used a basic 7×11-inch glass Pyrex baking dish. Though it would also bake up nicely and look a little more elegant in a 2-quart ceramic casserole.
APPLE SLICER: I like to use this tool to get nice, even apple slices. After I slice it, I cut each wedge in half.
Gluten Free Apple Crisp
For the apple filling:
- 6 cups peeled and sliced golden delicious apples (about 6-7, can substitute your favorite variety)
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
For the oat crumb topping:
- 1 cup old fashioned oats , certified gluten-free if needed
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- ½ cup 1-to-1 gluten-free all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup (one stick) unsalted butter, melted
- Heat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 2-quart casserole dish or 7×11-inch or 8×11-inch glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, add the sliced apples, and sprinkle with the sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Toss everything together to coat the apples evenly, and transfer them to the prepared baking dish.
- In a medium bowl, combine the oats, almond flour, gluten-free flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Toss together with a fork or spatula.
- Pour in the melted butter and stir together until everything is thoroughly combined. Scatter the topping over the apples.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the crisp is bubbly and the topping is golden brown. Let it cool for 5 minutes before eating. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.
More apple recipes
When fall is here, there is nothing better than apple desserts like these: