Bubbly apples with warm spices and a chewy gluten-free topping make this easy gluten-free apple crisp the family-favorite dessert it's sure to be! Serve it best with a nice big scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Is there really anything better than warm apple crisp filled with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar? It's fall baking at its finest.
I even like to sometimes make baked cinnamon apples without the topping.
I've always been a fan of apple crumb pie, but I do believe this gluten-free apple dessert will become another addition to our fall baking traditions.
But don't let the gluten-free part trip you up. You can make this a gluten-free crisp or a gluten-filled crisp, and it will be delicious either way.
Making apple oatmeal crisp is really as easy as prepping the apples and crumbling on a sweet gluten-free apple crisp topping. While it takes a little bit to bake, it's actually really quick and simple to throw together.
Not quite in the mood for apple crisp? Try peach crisp instead.
What's the Difference Between Apple Crumble and Apple Crisp?
I grew up eating fruit cobblers. Cobbler in my mom's kitchen meant a fruit filling with a bottom crust and crumbled pie crust on top.
If you're like me and not sure the difference between a crisp and a crumble…
- Apple crumble is made with either a biscuit dough or a regular pie dough crumbled on top of the apple filling. And sometimes it'll have a bottom crust too.
- The topping for a fruit crisp, however, is made with oats, in this case, gluten-free oats. And I use Authentic Foods gluten-free all-purpose flour, which replaces regular all-purpose flour.
Ingredient and Substitution Notes
- Granny Smith apples – While you can make an easy apple crisp with canned apple pie filling, I really recommend fresh apples. I also recommend finding apples that are in season because you'll get a lot better flavor. And if you buy seconds at a local orchard, produce stand, or farmer's market, you'll get them cheaper too. Personally, I feel the best apples for apple crisp are Jonathan apples, Jonagold apples, or Granny Smith apples. Jonagolds are a cross between Jonathans and Golden Delicious, and they are so sweet, tart, and crisp. For this recipe, I used Granny Smith. I use a very handy Johnny apple peeler to make the job of prepping the apples quicker and easier.
- Salted butter – You can make this recipe vegan and dairy-free by using vegan butter.
- Sour cream – If you're trying to make this recipe dairy-free or vegan, you can either sub in a dairy-free sour cream, or you can make buttermilk with almond milk and about a tablespoon of vinegar as a good substitute.
- Gluten-free Rolled Oats – Make sure you're using a brand of oats that says certified gluten-free.
- Gluten-free flour – I almost always use Authentic Foods Classical Blend gluten-free flour. Time and time again, this flour blend has given me the best results and gluten-free baked goods that taste no different than the original. If you'd rather not make it a gluten-free fruit crisp, switch out the gluten-free flour for regular all-purpose flour instead. And use regular rolled oats instead of gluten-free oats.
- Ground Cinnamon and Ground Nutmeg – Again, be sure your spices say gluten-free. I prefer Badia spices and seasonings for this very reason.
- Nuts (Optional) – If desired, you can add pecans, walnuts or almonds, adding the chopped nuts into the topping.
- Icing (Optional) – When your crisp has somewhat cooled, if you want, you can pipe or zigzag a bit of powdered sugar icing on top.
Always remember to double check ingredient labels to make sure all of your ingredients are truly gluten-free. And remember, all of the ingredient amounts you’ll need are in the printable recipe card below.
How to Make Easy Gluten-Free Apple Crisp
Making a fresh apple crisp involves a couple different sets of steps. You have to both prep the apples and the crumble topping.
To Prep Your Apple Filling…
- Wash, core, peel, and slice apples into a large bowl.
- Add butter, sour cream, and lemon juice to the peeled and sliced apples.
- Then mix in the sugar, packed brown sugar, and salt.
- Finally, stir in the corn starch and cinnamon 'til everything is mixed well.
Then you'll just take that apple mixture and pour it into a smaller 8″x8″ pan or 7″ to 9″ baking dish and set it to the side.
To Get Your Apple Crisp Topping Ready…
- In a separate mixing bowl, mix together the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- Cut the butter into the oat mixture using a pastry blender.
- You can stop mixing when the mixture has turned into quite the crumbly mixture.
- Crumble the topping over the peaches in the baking dish.
Then just bake according to the instructions in the recipe card below. You'll bake it for about an hour, or until the topping is golden brown.
I love serving apple oatmeal crisp with vanilla ice cream. Oh.my.word. It's just the best gluten-free apple crisp every, especially with ice cream!
I can't wait for you to try this recipe.
Expert Tips and Recipe FAQ's
Did you bake it long enough? If not baked enough, it could be mushy. On the other hand, if baked too long, the apples can become extremely mushy and juicy, making for a soft, somewhat mushy topping. It's a fine balance between undercooked and overcooked.
If I were making this ahead of time, I would likely refrigerate and then possibly reheat before serving. I would refrigerate it, mainly because of the sour cream in the recipe. Just cover it with a sheet of wax paper and let it rest in the fridge.
Yes, you can. Just be sure to store it in an airtight container so it doesn't get freezer burn. And allow plenty of time to thaw in the fridge before re-heating.
More Apple Recipes for You to Enjoy:
If you love this easy gluten-free apple crisp recipe as much as we do, you'll enjoy these recipes too…
- Slow cooker baked apples
- CrockPot Apple Cobbler with Cake Mix
- Another one of our favorite fall treats is this caramel cream cheese apple dip. It's so yummy, and my kids just love it!
- I love a good dump and go recipe, and caramel apple dump cake with pecans is just that. It's so easy to make!
- And it just wouldn't be fall without my favorite pressure cooker apple butter, made in the Instant Pot.
If you try this recipe, why not leave a star rating in the recipe card right below and/or a review in the comment section further down the page? I always appreciate your feedback. You can also follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. And subscribe to my email list too!
Easy Gluten-Free Apple Crisp
- 8 Granny Smith apples
- 1 tablespoon salted butter melted
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/2 cup cane sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Apple Crisp Topping:
- 3/4 cup gluten-free oats
- 1/2 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup salted butter thinly sliced
- Pre-heat the oven to 375° F.
- Wash, core, peel, and slice the apples into a large bowl.
- Add butter, sour cream, and lemon juice to the apples.
- Then mix in the sugar, brown sugar, and salt.
- Stir in the corn starch and cinnamon 'til everything is mixed well.
- Pour the apple mixture into an 8"x8" or 7 to 9-inch baking dish and set aside.
- Mix together the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a separate mixing bowl.
- Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the oat mixture until you have a very crumbly mixture.
- Crumble the topping over the apples in the baking dish.
- Bake at 375°F for about an hour, or until the top is a deep golden brown.
- Remove the crisp from the oven and allow it to cool.
- Serve while slightly warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
18 thoughts on “Easy Gluten-Free Apple Crisp”
Corn starch gluten free?
Cheryl, it is normally, but not always, gluten free. Sometimes it can be cross-contaminated with wheat, but it’s rare.
Can I refrigerate this before baking
Maria, that would be fine, so long as it’s covered with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. I would not keep it in the refrigerator for more than 24 hours.
I followed the gluten free recipe and my Grandkids absolutely loved it! My grandson Jake, age 9, couldn’t stop shoveling it into his mouth. When told by his Mother to slow down, he replied that the dessert was so good he couldn’t help himself!!
Terry, I’m so glad that your family enjoyed the recipe. Thank you for giving it a try!
I made this last year and it was a huge hit! This year I am going to a house with a dairy allergy… I have a great butter replacement, but what can I use in place of sour cream if there is not a dairy free option at Whole Foods? Maybe dairy free creamer and some more lemon juice?
Marilyn, do they make a dairy free yogurt? That might work.
Can we use Coconut flour or Almond Flour?
Dolores, no, that will change the texture of the crisp.
Mother of god, I made this tonight and it was delicious. I used half GF flour and half almond flour. It turned out perfectly. Thank you for introducing me to this old fashioned gem!
Brandi, I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Thank you!
This turned out amazing! My MIL has a gluten intolerance, so I made it for her. I wasn’t sure about my oats (they are not certified GF) so I just added a little extra GF flour and omitted the oats. It was still so delicious! The whole family love it! Thank you!
Steph, I’m so glad y’all enjoyed it. Thank you! It’s one of my favorite gluten-free desserts.
Can I use apple pie filling instead of fresh apples.
Cathy, yes, you can. You likely won’t need the extra apple filling ingredients that I put with the apples, like the sugars, corn starch, etc. But yes, just use the pie filling and add the topping.
It was really delicious.
Do you have any good dessert or snack recipe which is gluten-free, dairy-free and sugar-free.
Richard, I do have a few gluten-free recipes here, but probably not sugar free. You may be able to sub an appropriate dairy or sugar substitute for certain ingredients, though.