Healthified Apple Crisp (1-Bowl!)

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Two bowls of gluten-free vegan Apple Crisp topped with scoops of vanilla ice cream

Sometimes we crave dessert but don’t want the sugar rush that comes with it. This healthier apple crisp is the perfect solution — and a delicious way to make use of all the apples this fall.

Made with just 10 ingredients and in 1 bowl, this recipe is a lower sugar, whole grain, gluten-free version of our Best Vegan Apple Crisp. Let me show you how easy it is!

Assortment of ingredients for making our Healthified Apple Crisp recipe with almond meal, oats, and pecans

We like to use one sweet and one tart apple to give the filling the perfect flavor balance. The apples are peeled and thinly sliced then tossed with lemon juice for a bit of acidity, coconut sugar and cinnamon for a little extra sweetness, and arrowroot starch to help with thickening.

Stirring sliced apples and spices for our Healthified Apple Crisp recipe

Next, we use the same bowl to prepare the crumbly oat topping.

Oats, almond flour, and pecans provide the perfect crunchy texture, and coconut sugar adds a lovely, subtle sweetness that pairs perfectly with the spice of cinnamon and touch of salt. Coconut oil pulls everything together, helps things crisp up, and gives it a gorgeous golden-brown crisp.

Using a wooden spoon to stir the Pecan-Oat Topping for our Healthified Apple Crisp recipe

Into the oven it goes, and soon your kitchen will be infused with the sweet smell of caramelized apples and cinnamon. Swoon!

Spoon resting in a bowl of delicious gluten-free vegan Apple Crisp

We hope you LOVE this crisp as much as we do. It’s:

Crunchy
Healthier
Subtly sweet
Perfectly spiced
Tangy
& Incredibly delicious!

Our favorite way to enjoy this crisp is with scoops of Vanilla Ice Cream (duh!). But for a more breakfast-friendly option, Coconut Yogurt would be lovely.

Into fruit crisps? Be sure to check out our Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Bars, Gluten-Free Raspberry Rhubarb Crisp, Grain-Free Berry Crisp, Creamy Pumpkin Pie Bars, Apple Pie Crumble Bars, and PB&J Snack Bars.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Spoon in a bowl of healthy Apple Crisp with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

Healthified Apple Crisp (1 Bowl!)

1-bowl, gluten-free, lower sugar apple crisp made with oats, pecans, and caramelized apples. A healthier vegan dessert that's perfect for fall!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Bowl of Healthified Apple Crisp with vanilla ice cream
4.89 from 27 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6 (slices)
Course Dessert
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3 Days

Ingredients

APPLES

  • 2 ripe, crisp apples* (1 tart, 1 sweet), peeled, cored, and thinly sliced lengthwise
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp water
  • 2-3 Tbsp coconut sugar (depending on sweetness of apples)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp arrowroot or cornstarch

TOPPING

  • 2/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup almond flour (or almond meal)
  • 3 Tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1/3 cup chopped raw pecans
  • 1 dash sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and set out an 8” x 8” baking pan (or something similar).
  • To a medium mixing bowl, add sliced apples and top with remaining filling ingredients. Toss to combine. Transfer apple mixture to the baking pan and pour any remaining liquid over the apples.
  • Wipe out your mixing bowl and add all topping ingredients. Stir to combine, then use fingers to break down any clumps of sugar. Sprinkle over apples in an even layer.
  • Bake for 45-55 minutes (uncovered) or until the filling is bubbly, the apples are very fork tender (especially in the center of the dish), and the topping is a deep golden brown.
  • Let rest 5 minutes before serving. This crisp is delicious as is, but is elevated with coconut whipped cream or a big scoop of almond or peanut butter for added protein!
  • Leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days or in the freezer up to 1 month. Reheat in the microwave or in a 350 degree F (176C) oven until warmed through.

Video

Notes

*For apples, we prefer one organic Granny Smith and one organic Honeycrisp.
*Recipe adapted from my Best Vegan Apple Crisp.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amount of coconut sugar and without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 6 servings)

Serving: 1 slices Calories: 298 Carbohydrates: 28.5 g Protein: 3.3 g Fat: 20 g Saturated Fat: 10.6 g Sodium: 26 mg Potassium: 181 mg Fiber: 3.9 g Sugar: 17.2 g

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  1. Rose says

    This is, perhaps, the best apple crisp I have ever tasted!
    I made it as the recipe states except I used tapioca starch in place of the arrowroot starch as that is what I has on hand.
    After being placed on a very strict elimination/hypoallergenic diet 10 days ago, I can tell you that this crisp has saved breakfast!! I am making it again today but adding some blueberries to the apples for a different take on the crisp.
    Once I am off this diet, I know I will still make this recipe…so easy and so delicious!

  2. Rose Anderson says

    Question…
    I am going to make this today but I don’t have arrowroot starch and cannot use cornstarch (damn elimination diet!). Could I use an equal amount of tapioca starch instead?
    I love this blog! I have so many recipes on my “to try” list and it just keeps on growing!
    Thank you for being an amazing resource when placed on an elimination diet…the best one I’ve found so far and I have been looking for hours everyday for a week! =)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoy our recipes! Tapioca might work, but we haven’t tried it in this recipe so we’re not certain. Let us know if you try it!

  3. Shane Brannigan says

    Super easy to make and so delicious! Be sure to make it with a friend/flatmate, as it’s incredibly difficult not to eat the entire pan!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Shane. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  4. Sand says

    Would I be able to use almonds instead of pecans in the topping? My brother is allergic to almost all nuts other than almonds. I look forward to making this (and a million other of your recipes) while I’m at home!

      • Tosh says

        This is THE BEST Apple Crisp I’ve ever had! Was craving something sweet and had all the ingredients on hand. I added a little more cinnamon than what the recipe called for. I paired it with Simple Truth Vanilla Bean ice cream. It was very hard to limit myself to one serving. Excellent recipe. I wonder how it’d taste with a few 🍐 in the 🍎 mixture 🤔?!

          • Gabrielle says

            Hi! Is there any way to bake this in individual ramekins? How would that affect the baking time?

          • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

            We think that would work well! Perhaps reduce baking time by ~10 minutes. Let us know if you try it!

  5. Kaitlyn says

    This is an amazing recipe that I’ve used many times!!! ❤️ I would agree that it is my favourite apple crisp!!

  6. Bridget says

    Best apple crisp ever! I’ve made this recipe a couple times now and it’s outstanding! Literally one of the best things I’ve ever made. It’s sweet & comforting. Pairs perfectly with vanilla ice cream (coconut based is great) or coconut whipped cream!

  7. sara says

    So yummy! Made this last night in a standard glass pie dish and heated up leftovers for lunch today. Subbed walnuts since that’s what we hand.

  8. Sara says

    I made this twice this week and I’m bringing it to a dinner party tonight! This is incredibly delicious and satisfying and doesn’t taste too sweet. It is the perfect balance of flavors and it doesn’t make you feel guilting for having dessert!

  9. Nora says

    This recipe is so tasty, and the easiest thing ever! My boyfriend took one bite and said “I want to eat this every single day”. Definitely will be making again, thanks Dana!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, we haven’t tried it. They’re a completely different texture and flavor. Let us know how it goes!

  10. Jessie says

    Made this last night and my boyfriend and I ate the whole thing… last night. It’s so damn good and so easy. Made it exactly as the recipe specifies. I think I went with 2 TBS of sugar on the apples. Served with store-bought organic vanilla ice cream and it was perfect. I think I’m going to make this for my family’s Thanksgiving! Thank you, thank you!

  11. em says

    absolutely loved this recipe! i stuck to the recipe as written and served it with some store-bought vanilla coconut milk ice cream. definitely the perfect healthier fall treat :)

  12. Phoenix says

    This recipe is now my staple crumble for apples, pears, berries, and combos of them all. I sub pecans for walnuts because that’s what I have right now, and I adjust the sugar (coarse brown, not always coconut sugar) based on how ripe the fruit is. A dish of this basically lives in my fridge and it’s dessert when fresh and a “healthy breakfast” with yogurt in the morning. I love it for its simplicity and versatility. Looking forward to experimenting with maple in the topping and maybe finishing with flaky salt, too.

  13. Sheryl Tomczak says

    This was delicious!! The only thing I changed was the sugar….I didn’t have coconut sugar so I substituted monk fruit at half the listed amounts and it turned out perfect! I added coconut cream to each serving while it was warm. This one went into my recipe arsenal :))

  14. Kaitlyn Modz says

    Wow, this was so quick and so delicious! I was really craving a fall dessert and this was just what the doctor ordered. I made this using brown sugar instead of coconut sugar, chose one braeburn and one gala apple, and it turned out awesome. I shared it with my flatmate from Hé Běi, China, who had never had a dessert like it and she was really impressed–said it was better than anything she got here at a store or restaurant.

    A few side notes; I feel this could easily be doubled or tripled to accommodate a crowd, which makes it a really versatile recipe. I also have an inkling that the fruits and nuts could be swapped out for variety as well, so again, very versatile. For those who want to avoid coconut oil (there’s no coconut aftertaste in this dish, by the way), I think sunflower or safflower oil are great neutral oils that might work well as a substitute. Sometimes finding vegan butter can be a little tricky, and avocado oil is pretty expensive.

  15. Annelise says

    I made this recipe 3 times because I was trying to use up a bag of apples from my neighbor’s tree. Twice I doubled the recipe in a 9X13″ pan and once I made the 8X8″ pan recipe. I grew up in a family that baked daily and am quite familiar with the regular butter, brown sugar, oats, flour and cinnamon topping, but wanted a healthier topping that still had that delicious crisp flavor – and I wasn’t disappointed! I didn’t change a thing with the recipe for the topping, except to double it for the larger pan. I recommend this recipe. One thing not to leave out of any butter substitute (as the coconut oil is here) is the salt. It makes the buttery flavor.
    For the apple filling, however, I must say I cannot imagine using only 2 apples for an 8X8″ pan. A normal pie recipe uses at least 4-6 apples and this shouldn’t be any different. I recommend adding the juice of a whole lemon, 2 tsp to 1 TB cinnamon, and a 1/4 cup of coconut sugar to 4-6 good sized apples. I don’t add a cornstarch/water combo because it results in a goopy texture I don’t like. If you want a homemade applesauce type texture without the extra water and thickener, make your apple filling mixture ahead of time to allow more juices to drain out before you bake it. Especially when there is an Indian summer and I’m wanting to use up the apples without adding heat to the house, I prepare the filling the night before, place it in the refrigerator, and bake it first thing in the morning when the temps are still cool. You will also get to eat warm apple crisp for breakfast with this timing. Yummy!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Kelly, vegan butter would probably work best. Or you could try avocado or olive oil. Just not extra virgin (olive) as its flavor can be quite strong. As for sugar, we would say brown sugar would be the best sub. Let us know if you give these modifications a try!

  16. Anna Rose says

    This is one of the best vegan desserts I have made yet ! All my family (non vegans) loved it and even said they wanted it for Christmas and thanksgiving ! Thank you so much for your work and for continuing to share plant based recipes.

  17. Channing says

    So easy and delish! Whole family ???? Another home run, Dana!

    Q – I want to make it for a bake sale that needs it to be nut-free. What can you sub the almond flour with?

  18. Brittany says

    Hi!
    Getting ready to make this and had a quick question: would it work ok to substitute the coconut oil for avocado oil or another oil? I’m trying to avoid the saturated fat in the coconut oil.
    With gratitude,
    Brittany

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Oh totally – avocado or olive should work well here. Just not extra virgin (olive) as its flavor can be quite strong.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks, Leonor! Next time would you mind adding a rating to your review? It’s so helpful for us and other readers. Thanks!

  19. Sophia says

    OMG This recipe is so good (plus so simple).
    Try it out you won’t regret it it’s delish!
    Thank you DANA you outdid yourself one this one as per usual. You are truly a god send xx

  20. Laura says

    You’ve created another winner, Dana! This will be on repeat throughout the fall and winter. I made a few small modifications. I doubled the recipe, then added an extra apple, didn’t peel them (out of sheer laziness), added 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and a dash of nutmeg, and used 1/2 coconut oil and 1/2 grapeseed oil (only because I ran out of coconut oil). Thank you for providing a delicious recipe I feel good eating!

  21. Allyne says

    I made this the other night. It is easy, fast (even for me) and very tasty!! Thanks, Dana! I always know I can trust your recipes to turn out.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks, Allyne! So glad you enjoyed it. Next time would you mind adding a rating? It’s super helpful for us and other readers! xo

  22. Meagan says

    I made this yesterday from apples that I picked and it was delightful. I used 4 medium apples and added a little bit more of everything in order to make it in a 9×9. I did not need much sugar (I just used Camino brown sugar rather than coconut sugar) and found the addition of almond meal and pecans to be a wonderful texture.

    I would easily triple this recipe to make in a 9×13 for breakfast for a crowd!

  23. Jessica says

    Made this recipe with one honeycrisp and one granny smith apple and it was yummy! Super simple and good-for-you ingredients. I was a little worried the lemon juice + water would be too much liquid, but it all cooked up and wasn’t runny (ew terrible word, I’m already sorry I used it.) Topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and it was a perfect Sunday night treat! I think next time I make it I’ll add one more apple so it has a little more volume.

  24. Sasha says

    My husband and I made this yesterday for dessert. It was so delicious! We used one Granny Smith and one Gala apple. Shhhhh…. don’t tell anyone, but I’m actually eating some cold right now with yogurt for breakfast. Thank you so much for this quick, easy, and delicious recipe.

  25. Natalie G says

    I made this tonight for dessert, and we loved it! Next time I’ll add another apple because we’d prefer more apple slices with the topping (or maybe our apples were just small), but we really enjoyed this healthier apple crisp!

  26. Pauline Schirmer says

    I just made something super similar, but not just with apple but also pear and plums and we had soy yogurt with it *-* so delicious and a healthy dessert option :)

    Xx Pauline <3

  27. allison reznik says

    I made this as is and I have to say I was surprised how delicious it was! I enjoyed the texture and flavor of the topping. I did substitute chopped walnuts, since that’s what I had at home. So, I’m going to make it to bring to Rosh Hashanah dinner at my cousin’s for those of us who are gluten free. Another great recipe, Dana. Thanks.

  28. Pat says

    I just made this today. It’s really good. This is the first time I used coconut sugar. I love how it’s mildly sweet and let’s the apple flavor shine through. Yum!

  29. Victoria says

    I made this today – soooo delicious! I used slivered almonds because I had no pecans, and it was yummy. I really liked the granulated texture of the coconut sugar :)

  30. Lynda says

    Dear Dana,
    You so did it again! We absolutely loved that dish for our dinner tonight! I did an oops that turned out great! Just before I put it in the oven I realized I forgot the coconut oil. So I measured out the oil which was white and I melted it slightly to make it pourable spreadable. So it covered a lot but not all. So then I put it in the oven for 55 min. And it turned out perfectly yummy for me and my husband! Then you went and made me wish I had some coconut yogurt to go with it. I never knew there was such a thing and now I need to find itswearabouts! Dana you’re amazing!

    My prayer for you is that God would richly Bless you two!

    Lynda?

  31. Miki says

    I made the older apple crisp recipe and found it way too sweet so I will try this one! The other thing was the coconut sugar in the topping didn’t really dissolve so you could feel the granulated texture, so I will probably replace that with maple syrup.