The Best Apple Crisp
This is the best apple crisp and the only recipe you’ll ever need! It’s loaded with tender, spiced apples covered with a crisp, crumbly oat topping.
With Thanksgiving only weeks away, I thought it was about time to start sharing some of my favorite dishes to serve when hosting a big feast! Don’t worry, lots of side dishes are on their way, but today we’re starting with dessert… duh! While I absolutely love pie, I LOOOOVE fruit crisp. Apple crisp has always been a holiday staple in my family. It’s easy, delicious and can feed a crowd. This is one of my favorite recipes because it turns out amazing every time! The apples are soft and tender, the filling is perfectly spiced, and the topping is crisp and crumbly. 10/10 for sure!
To start you’ll want to grab about 5 large apples. When I make any apple dessert, I like to use at least two varieties. It gives the dish a more complex flavor. In today’s recipe I used Granny Smith and Envy apples. Feel free to use your favorites! After peeling them, slice them about 1/4-inch thick. They should all be the same thickness. Sometimes if I’m feeling extra lazy (or in a rush), I’ll grab my mandoline and use that.
Once the apples are prepped, toss them into a large mixing bowl. Add the brown sugar, flour, butter, milk, lemon juice, cinnamon, apple pie spice, and vanilla. Using a spatula toss everything together until the apples are evenly coated. Pour them into a 9×9-inch baking dish (if you like a thicker crisp) or a 9×13-inch dish if you prefer a thinner crisp (or if you want to bake this in less time).
Then, in a medium size mixing bowl whisk together the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Yes, you read that right, there are leaveners in the topping. They help produce a crisp, puffy topping instead of a dense, hard one. Using a pastry blender, cut the cold butter into the mixture until pea-size clumps form. Sprinkle the topping over the filling.
Place in the oven at 350 degrees and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the apples are tender and topping is golden brown (note, if you’re using a smaller pan, you may need to tent the top with foil and cook for the full 50 minutes).
Remove the crisp from the oven and allow it to cool for 20 minutes. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT!! Dishing it up right away doesn’t allow the juices to set/thicken. You’ll end up with a soupy mess instead of a thick filling. Be patient, I promise it’s worth it!
Serve warm with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream (homemade version here) or a drizzle of salted caramel sauce (homemade version here)- it’ll disappear in seconds. If you love crisp and/or dislike making pie, this one is for you. It really is the best apple crisp I’ve ever had!
The Best Apple Crisp
For the filling:
- 5 cups apples*, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
- 1/4 c. brown sugar
- 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tbsp. milk
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. apple pie spice
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
For the topping:
- 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1/2 c. old fashioned oats
- 1/2 c. brown sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. kosher sea salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 7 tbsp. unsalted butter, cold
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set aside an 9x9-inch or 9x13-inch baking dish.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the apples, brown sugar, flour, butter, milk, lemon juice, cinnamon, apple pie spice, and vanilla. Toss until evenly coated.
- In a medium size mixing bowl whisk together the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the mixture until pea-size clumps form. Sprinkle the mixture over the filling.
- Place in the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the apples are tender and topping is golden brown (note, if you're using a smaller pan, you may need to tent the top with foil and cook for the full 50 minutes). Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes.
- Serve warm with a big scoop of ice cream or a drizzle of caramel sauce!