Easy Apple Crisp

This easy apple crisp recipe makes me so happy! We top perfectly spiced apples with the most delicious oat crumb topping made with melted butter, flour, and oats. This is absolutely one of my favorite easy desserts!

Our Best Apple Crisp Recipe Video

We shared this apple crisp with oats years ago, and it is still one of my favorite apple recipes on Inspired Taste. The apples are incredibly delicious with the warm spices and hint of orange, and the oat topping is my absolute favorite.

For more easy desserts like this, see our apple cobbler, cinnamon baked apples, or this easy blueberry crumble.

Easy Apple Crisp with Oat Topping

Key Ingredients

  • Apples: I always go for fresh apples when making apple crisp, and I prefer using a mix of two varieties for a more complex flavor (just like I do with apple pie). However, if you have canned apples that you absolutely love, they can be a good substitute for the fresh apple filling.
  • Orange: We’ll use orange juice and zest instead of lemon juice for a bright, citrus twist. Trust me, it’s a delicious pairing with the apples and spices!
  • Sugar: This simple recipe works perfectly with either granulated or brown sugar. Use whichever one you have on hand or prefer.
  • Cinnamon and Nutmeg: Apples and cinnamon are a match made in heaven, so we’ll be using a generous amount. A touch of nutmeg also adds warmth and flavor to the filling.
  • Oats: I recommend rolled oats for the best texture in this crisp, but you can also use instant oats if that’s what you have. Avoid using steel-cut oats, as they won’t soften properly during baking.
  • Flour and Salt: To create our crisp topping, we’ll combine all-purpose flour with oats and melted butter. You can use an all-purpose gluten-free flour blend if you need a gluten-free option.
  • Butter: I usually bake with unsalted butter, but salted butter is fine, too. If you use salted butter, just remember to omit the extra salt from the topping.

How to Make Apple Crisp

To make the filling for this apple crisp, I toss chopped apples with orange juice, orange zest, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. I usually leave the apples unpeeled to save time, and I love the extra texture and flavor, especially after a long bake. However, if you prefer softer apples, feel free to peel them.

How to Make Apple Crisp - Adding the spiced apples to the baking dish

We use melted butter for the oat topping, which might surprise you if you’ve seen other apple crisp recipes. Most call for cold or room-temperature butter, but we’ve found that using melted butter creates a more tender topping with a bit of crunch that perfectly complements the soft apples.

Making the apple crisp topping with oats and melted butter

I’m generous with the amount of oat topping I add to my apple crisp, but I love a high ratio of crisp to apples! I also like to press the topping into clumps before adding it to the apples before baking. After an hour or so in the oven, the crisp is ready. I give it a few minutes to cool on the counter before digging in.

Adding the apple crisp oat topping to the apples

And there you have it—our best apple crisp recipe! If you love this recipe, we use the same oat topping for our baked cinnamon apples and this easy blueberry crumble!

Best Apple Crisp with Oats

Easy Apple Crisp

  • PREP
  • COOK
  • TOTAL

We love this easy apple crisp recipe. Like most baked apple recipes, you’ll want to use flavorful and firm apples. It’s also nice to combine two varieties. We used two baking-friendly apples in our photos (Granny Smith and Braeburn). You could even add a handful of blackberries, raisins, or cranberries. We also found that leaving the apples unpeeled improves the texture and flavor (especially after such a long baking time).

Serve warm or at room temperature. It’s delicious plain, with homemade whipped cream or with ice cream.

Makes 8 servings

Watch Us Make the Recipe

You Will Need

6 medium baking apples, such as Granny Smith (2 ½ to 3 pounds)

1 orange, zested and juiced

1/4 cup to 1/2 cup (50g to 100g) sugar, depending on tartness of apples

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Oat Topping

3/4 cup (65g) old-fashioned rolled oats

3/4 cup (100g) all-purpose flour

1/2 cup (100g) sugar, option: combine 1/4 cup brown sugar + 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup (115g) butter, melted

1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions

    1Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch square (or 2-quart) baking dish and set aside.

    2Core apples and cut them into 3/4-inch pieces.

    3Add the apples to a large bowl with orange zest, orange juice, 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Stir, then taste. (If your apples are more tart, add more sugar.) Add the apples to the prepared baking dish.

    4Make the oat topping. Combine flour, oats, 1/2 cup (100g) sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter and stir until the flour is moistened by the butter and the topping is crumbly.

    5Sprinkle the topping over the apple filling. (We like to use our hands to do this. As we sprinkle, we press the crumbles together to create larger clumps of topping.)

    6Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 30 minutes or until the juices are thickened, the apples are tender, and the topping has turned light golden brown. (Cover with aluminum foil if the topping becomes too brown, and continue to bake until the apples are tender.)

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Gluten-free apple crisp: Use you favorite store-bought gluten-free flour blend instead of the all-purpose flour called for above. We are partial to Bob’s Red Mill.
  • Use whole wheat flour: Replace the all-purpose flour with an equal amount of whole wheat flour or use white whole wheat flour.
  • Reduce the sugar: The sugar needed depends on how tart your apples are. We love the crisp to be slightly tart, so reducing the sugar with the apples and in the topping is an option.
  • Storing: You can store leftover apple crisp in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: You can assemble it completely and store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before baking. Or, you can freeze the unbaked crisp for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator and bake as directed.
  • The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We assumed 1/4 cup of sugar for the apple filling.
Nutrition Per Serving Calories 304 / Protein 3 g / Carbohydrate 48 g / Dietary Fiber 4 g / Total Sugars 30 g / Total Fat 12 g / Saturated Fat 7 g / Cholesterol 30 mg
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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184 comments… Leave a Review
  • Marilyn June 10, 2024, 10:30 pm

    I’ve got it in the oven now, and it’s looking great. I used 5 large apples, green pippins, and it was too much for 8×9 inch pan so I’m baking it in large oval glass cake pan. First time trying it with the orange zest n juice.I did peel apples but cut small so will check on one hour. Thanks!

    Reply
  • Amanda R. January 5, 2024, 1:22 pm

    I have been making your recipe for years. It’s so so good. I usually fiddle and tweak recipes, but not this one, it’s perfect as is. Making one today, refreshing on how to cut the apples from your video, so I thought I’d say thanks again!

    Reply
  • Rita October 29, 2023, 3:57 pm

    Loved the apple crisp. The crisp topping stayed really crispy. We enjoyed the orange taste with the apples too. Sorry couldn’t enclose a photo as there just wasn’t enough left I’m happ to say as it was just too delicious!!!!!!

    Reply
  • Pat Rominger December 24, 2022, 12:39 pm

    I made the blue berry muffins today and absolutely delicious do you have other muffin recipes thanks

    Reply
  • Carolyn April 16, 2022, 2:35 pm

    Total YUM! This is the best apple crisp recipe EVER. I love the fact that I don’t have to peel the apples!!!

    Reply
    • Adam October 18, 2023, 4:30 pm

      Yay! We like not having to peel the apples either 🙂

      Reply
  • Kathleen Agcaoili October 3, 2021, 9:59 am

    My go to for the past 3 years now! It’s easy to make and so good. Definitely gotta make this!

    Reply
    • Adam October 18, 2023, 4:30 pm

      So glad you enjoy it!

      Reply
  • Char May 12, 2021, 9:28 pm

    Hands down this is the best Apple Crisp Recipe that I have ever tasted. The orange zest and orange juice with that zip of Kosher Salt sets this recipe apart from any other I have tried in my humble opinion. I will definitely be sticking to this recipe. I made a mistake and used 1/4 C Granulated Sugar & 1/4 C Brown Sugar mixed in with the apples and it still tasted delicious (sorry for messing it up). Next time I will be sure to read the recipe correctly lol. Thank you for sharing🙂

    Reply
  • Kelly Estep November 25, 2020, 7:06 pm

    Can I substitute quick oats for rolled oats?

    Reply
    • Joanne January 2, 2021, 1:28 pm

      Yes

      Reply
  • Rachel November 7, 2020, 3:19 pm

    I followed the recipe to a T but found the topping to be too wet. Had to add another 4th cup of flour and oats. Still turned out great!

    Reply
  • Tom October 17, 2020, 12:28 am

    I have developed a recipe of my own which turns out to be very similar to this one. Delicious. I include chopped walnuts in my topping, equivalent to about 1/2 cup for this recipe.

    Reply
  • Sharon October 8, 2020, 1:02 pm

    Made the apple crisp with the orange zest and juice. So delicious and I am not a cooked apple fan. Thank you

    Reply
  • S.whitford October 8, 2020, 1:00 pm

    Made the apple crisp with the orange zest and juice. So delicious and I am not a cooked apple fan.Thank you

    Reply

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