Healthy Apple Crisp – Easy & Refined Sugar-free

You’re going to love this easy healthy Apple Crisp Recipe made from scratch! Soft baked cinnamon apples with a buttery and crisp pecan nut, coconut sugar & oat topping. Refined sugar-free and can be made gluten-free. Vegan option included, too.

overhead shot of two bowls with healthy apple crisp served with vanilla ice cream

Warm soft apples laced with cinnamon and a crispy coconut sugar & oat topping… meet my Homemade Healthy Apple Crisp! It’s like a deconstructed apple pie, but a lot healthier (and just as delicious!).

I love topping mine with vanilla ice cream for that warm-cold contrast. A hug in a bowl, that’s what this is! Cozy, comforting, cinnamon-spiced & absolutely irresistible yet free of refined sugar and easily made gluten-free, too if you need to!

a bowl with easy healthy apple crisp with a spoon on the side

Apple Crisp vs. A Crumble

Ever wondered what makes this recipe a crisp and not an apple crumble? Yes, me too! After some googling, I learned that the main difference between the two is the apple crisp topping, which always contains oats whereas a crumble topping is more like a streusel topping.

The addition of oats and often nuts like in this recipe creates a crispier topping than crumble, which is exactly what we want!

Ingredients for Healthy Apple Crisp:

Here is everything you’ll need to make this healthy apple crisp recipe:

  • Apples – duh! I recommend using a few different apple varieties for the best flavor and texture. Go for firm apples. Good apples to choose would be Golden Delicious, Pink Lady, Jazz and Jonagold, Granny Smith, Braeburn, Idared and Northern Spy.
  • Coconut Sugar – This is used to sweeten the filling and to help caramelize the baked apples. Brown sugar is a good substitute.
  • Butter – melted butter to be exact! This adds flavor and helps cook the apples. You can use coconut oil.
  • Cornstarch or arrowroot  – to thicken the sauce created when the apples are baked.
  • Cinnamon & nutmeg– Warm and comforting apple pie spices!
  • Lemon Juice – some fresh flavor to compliment the apples.
  • All-Purpose Flour, Coconut Sugar, Butter, Pecans, and Rolled Oats – these are all of the ingredients for the crisp topping!

overhead shot of a serving of healthy apple crisp with a spoon on the side

How to make Healthy Apple Crisp:

thin apple slices being tossed with cinnamon sugar in a casserole dish

Prep – Preheat the oven to 350F/180C.

Step 1-3 – Arrange thinly sliced apples in a large baking dish (like a 10″x15″ or a 9″x13”). Sprinkle with cornstarch, sugar, cinnamon and drizzle with lemon juice and water. Mix thoroughly, until the apples are well coated (as always, using your hands is easier – and fun!). Spread into an even layer.

picture collage demonstrating how to make oat topping for apple crisp

Step 4 – In a medium bowl, combine oats, flour, pecans, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg if using. Melt butter and pour over oat mixture. Mix well and sprinkle over apples.

Step 5Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until topping is golden brown and the apples are super tender (test with a knife, especially in the center). If the topping starts becoming too brown before the apples are ready, cover with foil until they are done.

Step 6 – Remove from the oven, set aside for about 10-15 minutes to allow the crisp to set a bit and serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or greek yogurt.

close-up of a serving of healthy apple crisp in a white bowl served with vanilla ice cream

Can I make this vegan?

Yes, totally! Just use coconut oil instead of butter! This healthy apple crisp is actually my twist on this vegan apple crisp recipe so you can be sure it will be amazing without the butter.

What to serve with Apple Crisp?

You want a nice contrast to the sweet, warm apple crisp, so go for a cold, creamy, and not too sweet topping. I recommend finishing this crisp off with some vanilla ice cream, Greek yogurt, or Frozen Yogurt and maybe, just maybe some warm caramel sauce.

Make ahead option:

You can make and assemble the apple crisp up to 6 hours in advance! Store in the fridge until you’re ready to bake. For baking ahead of time, follow the recipe as described, cool the crisp completely, cover and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave or the oven.

Tips:

  • Peel the apples. The skin doesn’t break down during baking and can make for a tougher texture.
  • Be sure to slice your apples evenly so that they bake evenly!
  • Give the crisp ample time to bake. I bake it for almost an hour – it will depend on the pan! Make sure to give the apple slices time to soften and really release their juices. Those juices will thicken as they cook and the apple crisp should be bubbling when you take it out of the oven.  Look for bubbles around the edges, but also in the center.

Healthy Apple Crisp

You’re going to love this healthy Apple Crisp Recipe made from scratch! Soft baked cinnamon apples with a buttery and crisp pecan nut, brown sugar & oat topping.

 

Course Breakfast, brunch
Cuisine American
Keyword apple crisp recipe, easy apple crisp, healthy apple crisp
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 368 kcal

Ingredients

Filling

  • 8 large apples peeled and sliced very thinly (I recommend using a few different apples varieties for the best flavor and texture)
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch - or arrowroot
  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar - or brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup water

Topping

  • 2 cups old fashioned oats aka rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup flour AP, whole wheat or gluten free
  • 1/2 cup pecans roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar - or brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg optional
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter 3.5 oz /100 grams – or coconut oil

To serve

  • Vanilla ice-cream or
  • Greek yogurt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F/180C.
  2. Arrange sliced apples in a large baking dish (like a 10"x15" or a 9"x13”). Sprinkle with cornstarch, sugar, cinnamon and drizzle with lemon juice and water. Mix thoroughly, until the apples are well coated (as always, using your hands is easier – and fun!). Spread into an even layer.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine oats, flour, pecans, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg if using. Melt butter and pour over oat mixture. Mix well and sprinkle over apples.
  4. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until topping is golden brown and the apples are super tender (test with a knife, especially in the center). If the topping starts becoming too brown before the apples are ready, cover with foil until they are done.
  5. Remove from the oven, set aside for about 10-15 minutes to allow the crisp to set a bit and serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or greek yogurt.

Recipe Notes

  • Peel the apples. The skin doesn’t break down during baking and can make for a tougher texture.
  • Be sure to slice your apples evenly so that they bake evenly!
  • Give the crisp ample time to bake. I bake it for almost an hour - it will depend on the pan! Make sure to give the apple slices time to soften and really release their juices. Those juices will thicken as they cook and the apple crisp should be bubbling when you take it out of the oven.  Look for bubbles around the edges, but also in the center.

 

 

Nutrition Facts
Healthy Apple Crisp
Amount Per Serving (1 /8)
Calories 368 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 15mg5%
Sodium 41mg2%
Potassium 302mg9%
Carbohydrates 65g22%
Fiber 8g33%
Sugar 31g34%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 276IU6%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 35mg4%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

If you tried this Healthy Apple Crisp recipe don’t forget to rate the recipe below and let me know how it went in the comments – I love hearing from you! You can also follow me on InstagramPinterest and Facebook for more deliciousness and behind-the-scenes!

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