The Best Cranberry Apple Crisp

This is the best cranberry apple crisp out there! It’s sweet, slightly tart, and has a hint of orange zest. Best served straight from the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Absolutely perfect for fall! 

Servings of the best cranberry apple crisp in wood bowls with a towel.

Apple crisp is one of my favorite fall desserts. Add cranberries and it’s THE perfect holiday dessert! 

This recipe is one I’ve been making for a few years now and we just can’t get enough of it. The filling is thick, sweet, slightly tart and has a subtle hint of orange. The topping is crisp, crunchy and buttery. I like to add a small amount of leavening to it to give to make it puffier instead of dense. It works every time! ✨

A baking dish of the best cranberry apple crisp, a serving has been removed.

What I love about apple crisp is that it is so simple. I can prep it in under 20 minutes. It’s also pretty cheap compared to some of the fancier desserts you see floating around during this time of year. Plus if you are planning on serving it to a crowd (holiday dinners and potlucks) you can easily double it in a 9×13-inch pan.

A bowl full of apples and cranberries tossed in sugar, orange zest, and spices for the best cranberry apple crisp.

To make the filling you’ll add brown sugar, flour, melted butter, milk, orange juice, orange zest, cinnamon and vanilla.

Each of these ingredients plays a huge role in the overall flavor and consistency of the apple crisp. The brown sugar adds a caramel flavor which I love, and the orange juice and zest compliment the tartness of the cranberries. 

A dish of the best cranberry apple crisp baked to perfection.

Pour the filling into the pan and prepare the topping.

Any type of mixing bowl will do, just make sure it’s big to cut the butter in without everything spilling over the sides.

Add the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Then, with a pastry blender cut the butter into the dry ingredients. We’re looking for pea-size clumps.

NOTE: Chopped nuts make a great addition to the topping!. About 1/3 cup is perfect!

A close up of a bowl of the best cranberry apple crisp.

Sprinkle the topping over the filling and bake for about 40 minutes or until the apples are tender and the topping is golden brown. If the topping is getting too dark you may want to take a piece of aluminum foil and rest it on top. This will help the filling to continue to cook without burning everything else.

A serving of the best cranberry apple crisp with a scoop of melty vanilla ice cream.

Let the crisp rest for at least 10 minutes to allow the filling to cool and set. This will help prevent it from running everywhere.

Serve it with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy!

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The Best Cranberry Apple Crisp

Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
This is the best cranberry apple crisp out there! It's sweet, slightly tart, and has a hint of orange zest. Best served straight from the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Absolutely perfect for fall! 

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 5 c. apples, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 12 oz. (1 bag) cranberries
  • 2/3 c. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp. milk
  • 2 tbsp. fresh orange juice
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. 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

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set aside an 9×9-inch baking dish.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the apples, cranberries, brown sugar, flour, butter, milk, orange juice, orange zest, cinnamon, and vanilla. Toss until evenly coated. Pour into baking dish.
  3. 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.
  4. Place in the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the apples are tender and topping is golden brown (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 10 minutes.
  5. Serve warm with a big scoop of ice cream!

Did you make this recipe? Share it on Instagram and tag it #LMSbakes. I love to see your creations!