Easy Apple Crisp Recipe with Oats

This apple crisp recipe with oats has sweet tender apples and a crisp and crunchy topping made with flour, oats, brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Jump to the Apple Crisp Recipe. Or watch this quick, straight-forward recipe video showing you how to make it.

Adam likes his apple crisp with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and I love an even bigger scoop of whipped cream. Either way, it’s delicious. I should also mention that this is phenomenal cold — sounds a little strange, I know. After a night in the fridge, all the flavors meld and mingle, giving it lots of extra flavor the next day.

Easy Baked Apples RecipeYOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Baked Cinnamon Apples are easy enough for tonight, but doubles as the perfect dessert for friends and family (or the holidays). These just might beat apple pie!

Recipe Update: We loved our old recipe, but have found a better way. We couldn’t keep that from you, could we?  The filling is very similar to our old recipe, but calls for orange instead of lemon. The topping has changed a little. We explain the changes below.

How to Make an Apple Crisp with Oat Topping

Like most baked apple recipes, you’ll want to use flavorful and firm apples — Granny Smith are our go-to. It’s also nice to combine two varieties. In our photos, we used two baking-friendly apples– Granny Smith and Braeburn.

Easy Apple Crisp Recipe with Oats

We also found that by leaving the apples unpeeled, the texture and flavor is better — especially after such a long bake time. Plus, no time needed for peeling!

Adding the apples to the baking dish

For the topping, we use melted butter. Spend a few minutes searching “apple crisp recipes” on the internet and you’ll notice most recipes call for cold or room temperature butter. This is exactly what we used to do. Using our fingers or a fork, we’d work the butter into flour and oats until crumbly. This method works well, but we think we’ve found a better way.

Making the topping

We were looking for a tender topping with a little crunch — something to balance the softened apples. When we used the old method with un-melted butter, we noticed that during baking, the topping would melt down over the apples and into the filling below. It tasted great (how could it not, right?), but it wasn’t exactly what we were looking for.

Ready to bake!

In our updated recipe, by starting with melted butter, the topping stays put and crisps on top of the apples.

Since you’re here, you may also enjoy one or more of these simple recipes. Our Apple Pie Cupcakes have spiced apples in the middle and a cinnamon roll base (so good!), take a look at how we make homemade granola, or check out our easy recipe for carrot cake.

Easy Apple Crisp Recipe with Oats

Recipe updated, originally posted December 2012. Since posting this in 2012, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne

Easy Apple Crisp Recipe with Oats

  • PREP
  • COOK

This is a very simple apple crisp. Like most baked apple recipes, you’ll want to use flavorful and firm apples — Granny Smith are our go-to. It’s also nice to combine two varieties. In our photos, we used two baking-friendly apples– Granny Smith and Braeburn. You could even add a handful of blackberries, raisins or cranberries. We also found that by leaving the apples unpeeled, the texture and flavor is better — especially after such a long bake time.

Serve warm or serve our favorite way, which is cold — sounds a little strange, we know. After a night in the fridge, all the flavors meld and mingle, giving it lots of extra flavor the next day.

Makes 8 servings

You Will Need


6 medium baking apples, such as Granny Smith (2 1/2 to 3 pounds)

1 orange, zested and juiced

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

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg


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

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

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

1/2 cup (115 g) butter, melted (1 stick)

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Make Filling
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch square (or 2-quart) baking dish.

    Core apples then cut into 3/4-inch pieces. Add apples to a large bowl with orange zest, orange juice, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir then add to baking dish.

    • Make Topping
    • Combine flour, oats, sugar and the salt in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter then stir until all the flour has been moistened by the butter and topping is crumbly. Sprinkle over 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.)

      • Bake Crisp
      • Bake 1 hour to 1 hour and 30 minutes or until juices are thickened, the apples are tender and the topping has turned light golden brown. If the topping starts to become too brown, cover with aluminum foil and continue to bake until the apples are done.

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.
  • Nutrition Facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values. We assumed 1/4 cup of sugar for the apple filling.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

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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141 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Joy November 30, 2013, 10:46 pm

    Just made this for family the day after Thanksgiving and everyone raved at how delicious it was.
    I love the simplicity of this recipe. I also added a handful for chopped pecans to topping, the nutty flavor really added even more depth but a fantastic recipe all around!

  • agnieszka d November 28, 2013, 7:08 pm

    it’s baking now. i like the use of melted butter, because i’m lazy and hate pastry-cutting.
    but you ought to be aware that ¾ inch is in fat just under 2cm, not 7cm. a whole small apple would be 7cm.

    • Joanne December 3, 2013, 12:33 pm

      Thanks for that — we did make a mistake with the cm. The recipe has been corrected 🙂

  • Amanda November 26, 2013, 11:15 am

    Hi, this recipe looks delicious, but I’m trying to make a somewhat healthier version of this for Thanksgiving. I plan on substituting the flour with almond flour, and the butter with coconut oil. I have no idea what to do about the sugar, though. I’d like to leave it out altogether, since apples have their own sweetness, but I’m worried about how that will affect the recipe. Any suggestions?

    • Joanne November 29, 2013, 11:23 am

      We have not tired these substitutions, but we don’t see why they should not work out well for you. If you give it a try, we’d love to hear how it went 🙂

    • Stacie February 17, 2016, 6:04 am

      I used coconut sugar but I’m sure you could use honey or maple syrup..a lil vanilla with extra cinnamon could also make it sweeter.. how was it?

  • Shannon November 26, 2013, 10:15 am

    Am traveling this thanksgiving but would like to bring this for dessert. Cannot prep there, so I was wondering if I could make it, freeze it, then pop in over to cook there? Thoughts? Cooking time adjustments??

    • Joanne November 29, 2013, 11:24 am

      Yes. Or, make it then refrigerate and warm up in the oven before serving.

  • Emily November 14, 2013, 2:03 am

    I decided to double the topping recipe because I like a thicker topping on my crisp. During this process I accidentally doubled the sugar in the topping, reading the 1/4 cup to mean a 1/2 cup of each type of sugar so I ended up putting in 2 cups of sugar! The topping caramelized nicely and the extra sugar wasn’t overbearing. It looks like I’ll just be enjoying smaller portions tomorrow 😉 thanks for a quick and easy apple crisp recipe! I promise I’ll read the instructions right next time..

  • Patty November 13, 2013, 2:51 pm

    Just made this and couldn’t believe how easy and quick it was! Looking forward to sharing it at our CPTA meeting this evening. Empty dish to bring home???

  • Jane November 12, 2013, 3:18 pm

    Best recipe ever, the topping was perfect!

  • Kathy19 November 3, 2013, 3:29 pm

    Haven’t tasted the baked crisp, but I sampled the raw topping and I was hoping for some more flavor. Perhaps a sprinkle of cinnamon in the flour? I’ll try it. Kinda bland, maybe the apples have enough spice for all!

    • Joanne November 3, 2013, 3:34 pm

      Extra cinnamon in the topping is an excellent idea. The apples are nicely spiced. Hope you enjoy the crisp once baked.

      • Kathy19 November 9, 2013, 5:29 pm

        yes it was great!! Everyone loved it. I’m making it again this weekend ( addicted?) and adding cinnamon to topping. When I make pie crust for apple or pumpkin pies, I use a dash of cinnamon to the flour for the crust. Yummy.

        • Joanne November 11, 2013, 11:07 am

          Great idea!

  • Amy October 27, 2013, 8:16 pm

    I made two of these today and it was the most amazing recipe I have ever tasted! Leavin the skins on the apples was a nice touch and really have it a nice flavor and the rolled oats added such a great crunch to the top. Excellent recipe! And easy to make. The pie went in about 2 minutes!! Thank you!

  • Michael October 26, 2013, 9:43 am

    Excellent! I love the idea of NOT peeling the apples. I used Granny Smith apples and I doubled the topping, just because we like it that way, but the flavor is excellent.

    We’ll use this recipe!


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