Look no further for the perfect gluten free apple crisp recipe! This apple crisp is healthy, easy, and made from simple, real food ingredients. Warm apples, cinnamon, and a crisp oat topping…the ultimate fall food combo.
When the seasons change and apple orchard time is here, one of my favorite things to make is healthy apple crisp. Warm apples with a sweet crisp oat topping… delish! And to make this more mouthwatering, I like to top it off with some dairy-free vanilla ice cream or coconut whipped cream.
This healthy apple crisp recipe is clean with no refined sugar, is gluten free, and vegan. This is a pretty light dessert packed with good-for-you, real food ingredients.
Apples for Apple Crisp
The combo of tart and sweet apples is a must when making an apple crisp. I prefer granny smith and honey crisp, but you could really use any combination of tart and sweet.
I only peel about half of each apple. I actually like having a little bit of the skin left on when baked… it creates a more hearty and wholesome dessert. Plus, so many of the nutrients in apples are found in the skin, so this just makes it that much better for you.
Tips for Keeping the Ingredients Clean
These are specific things I look for when buying the ingredients for this gluten-free apple crisp recipe. Ingredients not listed don’t have any specifications when it comes to keeping/purchasing them clean. If you don’t purchase items with my recommendations below, know the recipe will still turn out great.
APPLES – apples are on the EWG’s dirty dozen list (meaning they contain the highest amounts of pesticides), so I recommend organic.
CINNAMON– the FDA does not require spice manufacturers to label spices with added ingredients like sugar, salt, colors, or preservatives… so you can’t really be sure what you’re getting with conventional spices. Certified organic spices have more standards. They don’t have anything added, so what you see is what you get. With organic, you can also be sure no chemicals were used in the growing process of the spices.
OATS AND OAT FLOUR – like with most grains, oats are sprayed with glyphosate (an herbicide that’s been linked to increase cancer risk) prior to being harvested. Because of this, organic is best to ensure this herbicide does not make its way into your oats.
Oats are naturally gluten free, however, during processing they can become contaminated with gluten. If you are gluten free (like me), look for certified gluten-free oats. My favorite oats are One Degree and GF Harvest oats.
COCONUT OIL – coconut oil can be a very clean oil. You’ll notice though that you can buy refined or unrefined. I typically opt for unrefined (think less processing), however, there are some refined that are clean/good for you too! I have an entire post about coconut oil HERE is you’re curios to learn more. I love Nutiva Virgin Coconut Oil.
NOT GLUTEN FREE? – you can use regular oats and instead of oat flour you can use regular flour (I recommend white whole wheat flour as it’s a whole grain/keeps it a real food)
VEGAN NOT YOUR THING? You can use regular butter in place for the coconut oil; and with most things, I recommend organic butter.
APPLES –as mentioned, I like granny smith and honey crisp. I would keep with the granny smith for the tart apples, but you could use pink lady, gala, or Fuji in place of the honey crisp.
STARCH – I use arrowroot starch in this recipe, but tapioca starch or corn starch could be used in it’s place.
Why I Love This Recipe
So many things to love about this gluten free apple crisp recipe!
NO REFINED GRAINS/FLOURS – only grains used are oats and oats are considered a whole grain.
NO REFINED SUGARS– not only is this lower in sugar than most apple crisp recipes, but it also only uses coconut sugar, which is considered a natural/unrefined sweetener.
EASY – only a few simple steps with simple ingredients for this warm, addicting healthy apple crisp recipe.
CROWD PLEASER – not sure if I’ve ever met someone that doesn’t like apple crisp! This recipe is sure to be enjoyed by all.
What to Serve With This Apple Crisp?
If you are looking to keep this dairy free, and even if you aren’t, make sure to check out my coconut whipped cream! Would be amazing with this! I also love a good dairy free vanilla ice cream. Nada Moo is one of my favorites (not 100% clean, but it’s not bad either… and you need to have balance!).
And Don’t Forget to Check These Out!
If you make this healthy apple crisp recipe, please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below and/or share a photo on Instagram and mention @CleanPlateMama!
Healthy Apple Crisp (gluten free + dairy free)
Ingredients for Apple Filling
- 5 granny smith apples, partially peeled and cut into 1/4" slices (4 if they are on the large side)
- 3 honey crisp apples, partially peeled cut into 1/4" slices (2 if they are on the large side)
- 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 tbsp. arrowroot starch
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar (also called coconut palm sugar)
Ingredients for Crumb Topping
- 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 2/3 cup gluten-free oat flour
- 1/3 cup coconut sugar (also called coconut palm sugar)
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl, mix the apples, lemon juice, cinnamon, starch, and coconut sugar. Pour apple mixture into a large cast-iron skillet or prepared baking dish. Pour apples into a large cast iron skillet or large baking dish.
- In a separate bowl, combine the oats, oat flour, coconut sugar, and cinnamon. Add coconut oil in 1 tsp. sized scoops. Using the back of a spool (or pastry cutter), push the coconut oil pieces into the oat mixture until you have a slightly coarse/crumbly mixture. Evenly sprinkle the crumb mix over the apples.
- Bake uncovered for 45 minutes to 1 hour. You want the topping to start to brown slightly. (Adjust baking time pending how cooked you like your apples. If you like them really soft, add a few more minutes.)
- Serve warm. Tastes great with coconut whipped cream and/or vanilla ice cream (non-dairy if needed).
- I like using honey crisp apples for the sweet apples, but you could use gala, Fuji, pink lady, or any other sweet apple.
- I like to peel about half of each of the apples – you can choose to peel the skin off of the entire apple, or just some of it. I like a little bit of the skin for texture and heartiness (plus there are more nutrients in the skin, so it’s a win-win).
- Use rolled oats, not quick cooking oats.
- Not gluten free? You can use regular oats and instead of oat flour you can use regular flour (I recommend white whole wheat flour as it’s a whole grain/keeps it a real food).
- Not dairy free? You can use butter in place of the coconut oil.
- I use arrowroot starch in this recipe, but tapioca starch or corn starch could be used in it’s place.
- I use a 12″ cast iron skillet when making this. You could also use a 9×9 or 9×13 baking dish.