Apple Crisp Without Oatmeal

Midwestern HomeLife
by Midwestern HomeLife
12 servings
1 hr 40 min

This recipe for Apple Crisp without Oatmeal is a classic fall dessert. The tender apple filling with cinnamon and brown sugar and crispy, crumbly topping have all the nostalgic flavors you remember in this timeless old fashioned dessert.

serving of apple crisp without oatmeal with ice cream on a white plate

It makes sense why homemade apple crisp is everyone's favorite fall dessert.

I mean, what better comfort food to dive into on a cool autumn day than warm apple crisp with vanilla ice cream melting into the gooey cinnamony apple filling?

This delicious apple crisp recipe is made with a pecan brown sugar streusel instead of an oat topping -- so you could call it an apple crumble. But this recipe was inspired by an old fashioned apple crisp recipe that's been in the family for generations, so it will always be apple crisp to us.

It really is the perfect fall dessert -- right up there with a warm slice of Pumpkin Bread or a gooey Chai Spice White Chocolate Chip Cookie.

It is extremely delicious any time of year and really easy to make with basic pantry staples.


You’re Going to Love This


Easy Recipe


  • I’ll show you a super easy way to core and cut up apples.
  • Grating cold butter for the pecan streusel topping instead of cutting it in with a pastry cutter is a game changer.


Delicious Apple Dessert


  • The combination of Fuji and Granny Smith apples adds the right amount of sweetness and tang.
  • I used only brown sugar in the apple filling and the streusel topping for richer flavor than other apple crisp recipes that call for white sugar.


Ingredients


This simple recipe comes together with basic ingredients. See the recipe card for the full list of ingredients.

recipe for apple crisp without oatmeal ingredients

Apples. I use 8 cups of Granny Smith and Fuji apples to add contrasting sweet and tart flavors. You’ll need about 7-8 apples, depending on how big the apples are.

Brown sugar. I prefer dark brown sugar in this apple crisp recipe without oats because it has a rich molasses flavor. Light brown sugar works, too.

Warm spices. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger add cozy fall flavor to the apples and the topping. You can also use apple pie spice or other warm spices you love like mace, cardamom, allspice.

Pecans. Nuts add more texture, crunch, and rich nutty flavor to the streusel. You can use any kind of nuts or skip them.

Butter. Keep the butter in the refrigerator right up until it’s time to use it so it's really cold when you grate it.


How to Make Apple Pecan Crisp without Oats


Step 1

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x9 or similar size baking dish (mine is 8x10) with cooking spray.

Step 2

Peel the apples and cut them into small, thin slices. Mine are about 2 inches long by ¼ inch thick.

Step 3

In a very large bowl, toss the sliced apples with flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.

Place the apple slices in the prepared baking dish.

apple slices in a white casserole dish

Step 4

Remove the stick of butter from the refrigerator and grate it with a cheese grater.

Step 5

Make the streusel topping without oats in the same large bowl you used for the apples. Combine flour, brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, and salt.

Step 6

Add the grated butter and toss it with the flour mixture — I use my hands since I’ll be using them for the next couple of steps anyway.

Instead of grating the butter, you can cut the cold butter into very small cubes and cut it into the flour mixture with a pastry blender or two knives. But if you have a cheese grater, I encourage you to try this method -- it's so easy!

Using your fingers, pinch the butter and flour mixture together until it clumps together and resembles wet sand.

Step 7

Evenly sprinkle the apple crisp topping over the apple mixture.

unbaked apple crisp without oatmeal in a white casserole dish

Step 8

Bake for 60-80 minutes or until the top is deep golden brown, the apples are soft, and thick juices are bubbling up around the edges (if the juice isn’t thick, it’s not done). An instant read thermometer should read 195.

baked apple crisp without oatmeal in a white casserole dish

Check the apple pecan crisp after about 50-60 minutes to get a gauge of how much longer you need to go. You may need to add a layer of foil at this point so the topping doesn’t get too brown or the nuts burn.

Check the apples for doneness by poking a paring knife into the center of the crisp. If you feel resistance, the apples aren’t done yet.

Step 9

Let the crisp rest on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before digging in. It may be quite soft while it’s still warm and will thicken up a bit as it cools.

Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and maybe even a drizzle of caramel sauce.

serving of apple crisp without oatmeal with ice cream on a white plate
Apple Crisp Storage


Store apple crisp covered in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

You can also freeze baked apple crisp in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. Defrost it in the refrigerator.


How to Reheat Apple Crisp


Everyone knows apple crisp is best served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The good news is apple crisp reheats really well so you can enjoy this comforting treat for days.

The two easiest ways to warm up apple crisp is in the microwave or the oven.


Microwave


Reheating apple crisp in the microwave is the fastest and easiest way. However, the crumble topping won’t be as crispy. Life’s all about trade-offs. To reheat apple crisp in the microwave, place 1-2 servings in a microwave safe dish and heat in 15 to 30-second increments until warmed through.


Oven


Using the oven to reheat apple crisp is my favorite way to reclaim that crispiness in the crunchy topping.

Preheat the oven to 350. Place the apple crisp in an oven safe dish and cover it with foil. Heat for 15-20 minutes or until heated through. If desired, remove foil toward the end to crisp up the topping.


Expert Tips


Cut the apples into thin slices so they become soft and tender.

Keep the butter in the refrigerator until you’re ready to grate it.

Check for doneness at 50-60 minutes to see how much longer you need:


  • Golden brown topping
  • Thick, bubbling juices
  • Soft apples in the center


Cover with foil during the last 10-20 minutes if necessary to keep the topping from becoming too brown and the nuts from burning.


How to Cut Apples


Here’s an easy way to cut and core apples.

Place the peeled apple stem-side up on a cutting board. Make a vertical slice about ½ inch to the right or left of the core, being careful not to cut through the core.

knife making a vertical cut to the right of a peeled apple core

Turn the apple ¼ turn and repeat this process all the way around the apple until you’re left with 4 sections of apple and the core.

knife making a vertical cut through an apple
knife making a vertical cut through an apple
knife making a vertical cut through an apple

Place each section of the apple flat-side down on the cutting board. Slice it in half horizontally, then slice it vertically into ¼ inch slices.

knife slicing an apple into thin slices
Best Apples for Apple Crisp


When selecting apples for apple crisp, choose a combination of sweet and tart, firm apple varieties to give your fruit filling the best flavor and texture. Here are some ideas:


Sweet Apples


  • Honeycrisp
  • Jonathans and Jonagolds
  • Golden Delicious
  • Gala
  • Fuji


Tart Apples


  • Braeburn
  • Granny Smith
  • Melrose
  • Winesap
  • Cortland


FAQs


How long does apple crisp last?

In our house? Not long! But seriously, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to one week or in the freezer for up to three months.

Does apple crisp need to be refrigerated?

Apple crisp can be stored at room temperature for up to two days, but if it’s hot and humid where you are, I’d recommend storing it in the refrigerator. You can store apple crisp in the refrigerator for about 5 days.

Can you freeze apple crisp?

Yes. Freeze apple crisp in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator and warm in the microwave or oven.


Recipe Essentials


This grate r is awesome because it comes apart so it stores flat in a drawer.

I love this glass food storage set. I use them in the fridge, freezer, and microwave, they’re dishwasher safe, and they stack well in my cupboard.


More Favorite Dessert Recipes

Peach Cobbler with Cake Mix

Pumpkin Pie in a Cup Recipe

Pumpkin Angel Food Cake with Cinnamon Drizzle

No-Bake Cheesecake with Cool Whip



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Apple Crisp Without Oatmeal
Recipe details
  • 12  servings
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 80 Minutes Total time: 1 hr 40 min
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Ingredients
Apple Filling
  • ▢ 8 cups sliced apples (7-8 apples) Fuji and Granny Smith or a combination of other sweet and tart apples
  • ▢ 2 tablespoons flour
  • ▢ 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ▢ 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ▢ 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ▢ 1/4 teaspoon salt
Streusel Topping without Oatmeal
  • ▢ 1 cup flour
  • ▢ 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • ▢ 1/2 cup chopped pecans. optional
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ▢ 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • ▢ 1/2 cup cold butter
Instructions

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x9 or similar size baking dish (mine is 8x10) with cooking spray.
Peel the apples and cut them into short, thin slices, about 2 inches long by ¼ inch thick.
In a very large bowl, toss the sliced apples with flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. Place the apple slices in the prepared baking dish.
Remove the stick of butter from the refrigerator and grate it with a cheese grater. Alternatively, you can cut the cold butter into very small cubes and cut it into the flour mixture with a pastry blender.
In the same large bowl you used for the apples, make the streusel topping without oats. Combine flour, brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, and salt.
Add the grated butter and toss it with the flour mixture — I use my hands since I’ll be using them for the next couple of steps anyway.Using your fingers, pinch the butter and flour mixture together until it clumps together and resembles wet sand.
Evenly sprinkle the apple crisp topping over the apple mixture.
Bake for 60-80 minutes or until the top is deep golden brown, the apples are soft, and thick juices are bubbling up around the edges (if the juice isn’t thick, it’s not done). An instant read thermometer should read 195.
Check the apple pecan crisp after about 50-60 minutes to get a gauge of how much longer you need to go. You may need to add a layer of foil at this point so the topping doesn’t get too brown or the nuts burn.
Check the apples for doneness with a paring knife. Poke the paring knife into the center of the crisp. If you feel resistance, the apples aren’t soft yet.
Let the crisp rest on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before digging in. It may be quite soft while it’s still warm and will thicken up a bit as it cools.
Storage
Store apple crisp covered in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can also freeze baked apple crisp in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. Defrost it in the refrigerator.
Tips
  • Cut the apples into thin slices so they become soft and tender.
  • Keep the butter in the refrigerator until you’re ready to grate it.
  • Check for doneness at 50 minutes:
  • Golden brown topping
  • Thick, bubbling juices
  • Soft apples in the center
  • Cover with foil during the last 10-20 minutes if necessary to keep the topping from becoming too brown and the nuts from burning.
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