This Easy Apple Crisp is filled with the flavors of fall. Fragrant cinnamon, brown sugar and caramel combine with buttery oats for an old-fashioned Apple Crisp your family will love! 

It’s so easy, in fact, that it’s made on your stovetop! You can broil it for an extra delicious step, but you can also eat it without using your oven at all.

Apple crisp topped with ice cream in a small white ramekin, apples in the background
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Easy Apple Crisp

There’s a few things that I really love about September. Generally we get milder weather here in the Midwest, and what’s not to love about that? With those (hopefully) more moderate temps, we love to go apple-picking. It’s a classic tradition that I hope my girls have fond memories of as they grow. 

Even if you can’t go apple picking any time soon, you can bring the flavors of the season home with you with this easy apple crisp. It’s full of all that fall goodness we can’t get enough of!

Apples and cinnamon are a match made in heaven. Paired with my secret ingredient – caramel, along with butter, brown sugar and oats the flavor is out of this world! Even better, it’s EASY! 

I’m a fan of cozy fall baking and all the flavors that come along with it. Don’t miss my incredible round up of the 35 BEST Quick Bread Recipes and my complete Apple Recipe Guide!

Use the drop down Table of Contents menu to navigate this post. Don’t forget to pin it and save for later, too!

Apple crisp topped with ice cream in a small white ramekin, apples in the background

Why You’ll Love this Easy Apple Crisp

  • Fall Flavor Perfection
  • Great with Ice Cream
  • Serves a Crowd
  • Secret Ingredient is a Crowd Pleaser!

Chances are have many of these ingredients already in your pantry and fridge! You can whip up this amazing dessert on a whim!

Apple crisp topped with ice cream in a small white ramekin, apples and the whole pan of crisp in the background

Apple Crisp Ingredients

  • Pink Lady Apples – this just happened to be the apples that we had on hand when I made this recipe. You can use any kind of apples that you like, but I would suggest an apple that has some crispness so that it holds up while baking.
  • Apple Cider – this will help add a deeper flavor to your apple crisp. The cider enhances the apple mixture perfectly! 
  • Brown Sugar – the brown sugar has a higher moisture content and the molasses helps give the mixture a deeper caramelized flavor.
  • Cinnamon – the ultimate fragrant spice to compliment apple flavors. I threw in a whole cinnamon stick while the apple simmered, but you can also use your regular bottle of cinnamon.
  • Caramel Sauce – this is going to take the flavor of your apple crisp over the top! 
  • Water – because your apple crisp filling will get a touch thick, the water helps keep the mixture from becoming too goopy. Water also helps the apples from losing moisture as they cook down.
  • Corn Starch – corn starch creates the thick, rich consistency of the apple filling.

Topping Ingredients

  • Brown Sugar – you can use dark brown or light brown. It’s the molasses that helps create the deep flavor in this recipe.
  • Butter – yes, the full stick of butter. Trust me on this one- it’s delicious. I always use salted because it’s what I have on hand.
  • Flour – I use unbleached flour. 
  • Oats –  Because I generally keep quick oats on hand, that’s what I used here.
  • Cinnamon – throw a little more in the topping! 
  • Salt – a touch of salt balances out the sweetness in this recipe. Regular table salt works perfectly- no large granules here.
Apple crisp filling in a white oval baking dish with apples in the background

Variations

  • Use pears instead of apples for another amazing fall spin.
  • Use your favorite jarred caramel sauce, or make your own salted caramel sauce!
  • Replace the cinnamon in this recipe with Apple Pie Spice.

How to Make Apple Crisp

  1. Core apples and dice. diced apples
  2. Place apples in a sauce pan over medium heat. Apple crisp filling in a pan on a stove top.
  3. Add brown sugar, cinnamon stick, apple cider and water. brown sugar and cinnamon stick added to apples
  4. Cook for 5 minutes or until apples are soft. apples on stove top
  5. Stir in caramel. Apple crisp topping cooking in a pan on a stovetop
  6. Dissolve the corn starch and stir until it begins to thicken. Apple crisp topping cooking in a pan on a stovetop apples in caramel sauce
  7. Combine topping ingredients. Brown sugar and other ingredients in a white bowl Oatmeal topping mixed up in a white bowl
  8. Pour apple mixture into casserole dish and cover with topping. OPTIONAL: Broil to brown topping.  apple crisp in oven

apple dessert with ice cream

Tips

  • I don’t peel my apples, but you certainly can if you prefer! You can dice them for this recipe, or it’s pretty with sliced apples as well.
  • Don’t overcook your apples on the stove top. You want that tart flavor and texture to come through in the finished product.
  • Although you’ll want to eat it right when it comes out of the oven, allowing it to rest for 10 minutes is ideal. It allows the sauce to thicken before serving!

Scaling up, down or substituting? You’ll love this printable Measurement Conversion Chart!

Apple crisp topped with ice cream in a small white ramekin, apples in the background

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between apple crisp and apple crumble?

Apple crisps and apple crumbs are similar in that they are baked fruit desserts, topped with a layer of something delicious! While a crisp often includes crunchier touches like oats or nuts, crumbles do not.
A crumble often features a streusel topping without oats or nuts, and it is often more crumbly, hence the name.

What are the best apples for apple crisp?

We like crisp, tart apples for baking. Pink Lady apples work beautifully, and so do Granny Smith or Honeycrisp.

Serving Suggestions

Serve this apple crisp on its own, or top it with something to make it even more decadent! Your call.

Make Ahead

You can even make this Easy Apple Crisp in advance!  Just bring it to room temperature and place a paper towel on top to absorb any condensation.

Cover with plastic wrap or if you do not live in a humid environment, cover with plastic wrap and poke a few holes in it.

Apple crisp filling in a white oval baking dish

How to Store Apple Crisp

  • Room Temperature – Leave out at room temperature for up to two hours.
  • Refrigerator – Store this apple crisp for up to a week in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
  • Freezer – Cover tightly and freeze apple crisp for up to three months. To serve, thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then warm in the oven for up to 30 minutes.

Nutritional Considerations

  • Gluten Free – to make this recipe gluten free, simply eliminate the flour in the topping, or use a gluten free 1:1 flour.
  • Vegetarian
  • Nut Free

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More Fall Inspiration

5 from 2 votes

Apple Crisp

This Easy Apple Crisp is filled with the flavors of fall. Fragrant cinnamon, brown sugar and caramel combine with buttery oats for an old-fashioned Apple Crisp your family will love! 
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 10
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Ingredients  

  • 6 pink lady apple cored and diced
  • ½ cup apple cider
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon or cinnamon stick
  • cup caramel sauce
  • 2 tablespoon corn starch

Topping:

Instructions 

  • Place apples in a sauce pan over medium heat.
  • Add brown sugar, cinnamon/stick, apple cider and water.
  • Cook 5 minutes of until tender.
  • Stir in caramel.
  • Add cornstarch and stir until sauce begins to thicken.

Topping:

  • Combine ingredients and pour over apples in a baking / serving dish.
  • Optional: Broil 1-2 minutes until golden brown.

Julie’s Tips

  • I don’t peel my apples, but you certainly can if you prefer! You can dice them for this recipe, or it’s pretty with sliced apples as well.
  • Don’t overcook your apples on the stove top. You want that tart flavor and texture to come through in the finished product.
  • Although you’ll want to eat it right when it comes out of the oven, allowing it to rest for 10 minutes is ideal. It allows the sauce to thicken before serving!
Calories: 407kcal | Carbohydrates: 81g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 140mg | Potassium: 230mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 55g | Vitamin A: 354IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 1mg

Estimated nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is not guaranteed.

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11 Comments

  1. Apple crisp is my family’s favorite fall recipe. I’m excited to try your recipe! Thanks for joining us Julie!