Apple Crisp is a classic dessert recipe that’s perfect for summer and fall. Tender and spicy apples are topped with a sweet and hearty oat topping.
Although apple picking season is still a few months away, it’s never a bad time to enjoy a crumby, ice cream-topped square of Apple Crisp, amirite? As a matter of fact, I love making Apple Crisp all year round, even in the summer!
For one, this fruit-filled dessert doesn’t sit too heavy, and topped with a scoop of ice cream — or eaten straight from the fridge — it’s irresistibly delicious, even on a warm day.
Second, this nostalgic dessert is super easy to make and share with all your friends and family.
And third, whoever said you could only enjoy this spice-filled treat at a certain time of year?
In this easy dessert recipe, the apples are baked with butter, sugar, and spices to create a luscious bottom layer. The topping, which combines oatmeal and flour with butter, flour, sugar, and cinnamon, creates a crumbly top layer that turns golden brown in the oven.
That buttery, brown sugar-laced topping is what makes Apple Crisp totally irresistible. While there are a lot of versions out there, I prefer this recipe because it includes oatmeal, making the crumble dense and hearty.
How To Make Apple Crisp
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9×9-inch baking dish.
- Once you’ve sliced the apples, stir them with the other apple mixture ingredients in a large bowl. Add the apples to the prepared baking dish.
- Top with sliced of butter.
- Mix together the cold butter with the other topping ingredients in a mixing bowl until a thick crumble forms. Spoon out over the apple mixture and gently press to cover.
- Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the apples are tender and the top is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and serve warm or at room temperature with ice cream and whip cream, if desired.
Is Apple Crisp the same as Apple Crumble?
It’s also almost always made with cinnamon and sometimes nuts are added to it as well. Crisps and crumbles are pretty much the same but technically the topping on a crisp is supposed to be a bit finer so it’s crunchier.
A crumble which is a common dessert in the UK is apples baked with a topping of flour, butter, and sugar. In North America, we have crisp which is basically the same thing, but the topping is made primarily with rolled oats rather than flour.
What Are the Best Apples to use in an Apple Crisp?
This might be the most important question to ask when making this recipe, honestly, though, it comes down to personal preference, but here are my top recommendations for this recipe!
- Honeycrisp – This is my personal favorite for baked apple dishes like this crisp, Apple Brown Betty, and Apple Pie. They bake up great, I can almost always find them, and they add a slight touch of honey to the recipe.
- McIntosh – Not my first choice, but they are very common here in Maine in the fall and are usually more affordable. They actually work REALLY well in this recipe since we use flour to coat the apples and this helps thicken the juice. They are really soft and juicy and break down quite a bit when cooked, so flour is necessary.
- Granny Smith – This tends to be the go-to apple for most bakers because tart apples add some zing to baked dishes which prevents them from being too sweet, they also hold their shape the best during baking.
- Cortland – This apple tends to bake up a little softer, but it doesn’t turn to mush. Its flavor profile is a mix of sweet and tart.
- Braeburn – Another great choice with a mixture of sweet and tart flavors. This is a great one to pair with granny smith apples for a bit of contrast in the recipe. This is a drier apple, so if using this, your filling will be less juicy.
- Empire – This is a cross between a McIntosh apple and a Red Delicious. It stays firm during baking and has a sweet flavor.
- Jonathan – This apple isn’t as common across the country, but if you can find them, it’s a great choice. They have a tart and spicy profile that lends well to baking.
Do I Have To Use Flour In Apple Crisp?
Yes, flour is essential for giving the apples that gooey and saucy coating instead of being watery. It’s also essential in the crumble structure. However, if looking for a gluten-free option, 1 to 1 flour should work instead.
Do you have to keep Apple Crisp in the fridge?
Yes and no. When it first comes out of the oven, it should be left on the counter to come to room temperature, although you can indulge right away if you’d like (those apples will be very hot though)!
Once it comes to room temperature, it can usually stay there for the day but should be refrigerated overnight.
Everyone loves a tried-and-true classic, plus it’s hard to mess up this easy dessert! This great recipe can be made and enjoyed during any season! It’s cozy in the cooler months but served with a scoop of ice cream, you can cool it down and enjoy it all summer long.
More Delicious Apple Recipes:
- Apple Crumble Cocktail – This is basically like drinking apple pie!
- Apple Cider Meatballs – Always a hit at parties and so easy to make!
- Cranberry Apple Brie – An elegant and delicious appetizer!
- Apple Iced Tea – Just two ingredients and so refreshing!
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This recipe was originally published in June 2018 but was retested and updated with modifications in October 2022.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Add chopped apples, brown sugar, flour, lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to a large bowl and stir until evenly coated. Transfer the mixture to a 9×9-inch baking dish.5 cups chopped apples, ½ cup light brown sugar, 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon salt
- Place the slices of butter on top of the apple mixture.½ cup cold unsalted butter
- Mix together the topping ingredients until a crumble forms, you can use a pastry cutter or I prefer to work with my hands. Spread the topping out over the apple mixture.1 cup 1-minute oats, 1 cup light brown sugar, 1 cup all-purpose flour, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ cup cold unsalted butter
- Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the crisp is browning and the apple mixture is bubbling around the edges.
- Remove from oven and serve warm or at room temperature with ice cream and whip cream.
- You can slice your apples as thick or thin as you want, I prefer to chop mine.
- I recommend using Honeycrisp, MacIntosh, or Granny Smith apples.
- If you want to prep this ahead of time, mix apple mixture in one bowl and crisp topping in another, cover each, and store in the fridge until ready to bake. Add butter sliced between the layers when assembling.
- Originally published recipe ingredients:
- Apple Filling (mix everything together):
- 5 apples, peeled, cored, sliced
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
- Crisp Topping (mix everything together):
- 1 cup 1-minute oats
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- Apple Filling (mix everything together):