How does such an easy dessert taste so good?! This apple and blackberry crumble is beyond delicious. Bubbling, sweet fruit, topped with a maple syrup-infused oat topping. It’s a fruit lover’s dream!
This apple and blackberry crumble with oats is everything a fruit dessert should be! The apples and berries are lightly sweetened with maple syrup, allowing their natural flavors to shine.
And the topping…oh, the topping! Crispy and chunky. Sweet and richly flavored. But healthy and lower in calories compared to your average crumble topping, thanks to the maple syrup and a drizzle of coconut oil in place of the usual half-cup of butter.
My mum didn’t make many desserts when I was growing up. But when she did, she usually turned to fruit desserts, such as a good fruit crisp, strawberry oat bars or grilled pineapple with rum sauce.
I have a feeling this crumble recipe will get an enthusiastic thumbs-up from her.
💙 What’s to love about this Apple Blackberry Crisp:
▪️ FLAVOR! I can’t stress enough how delicious this blackberry crumble is! From the natural sweet-tart flavor of the fruit to the texture of the sweet crumble topping, it’s a bit of heaven in every bite.
▪️ LIGHTENED-UP: Most fruit crisps are packed with fat and sugar. While this one is still sweetened with maple syrup, it’s not overly sweet. And the fat content is a fraction of crisps made with butter.
▪️ EASY AND FOOL-PROOF: It’s hard to mess this up – I promise! Make the fruit mixture, make the topping and bake it. That’s it!
Serve this apple berry crisp with vanilla ice cream (regular or non-dairy – your choice) or frozen yogurt. Or on its own! I won’t lie…I’ve even had a scoop of this for breakfast, with a dollop of Greek yogurt on top. A great way to start or end the day!
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INGREDIENTS FOR BLACKBERRY AND APPLE CRUMBLE RECIPE:
- APPLES: I use Honeycrisp apples. Read the Substitutions section below for alternatives. Whichever apple you use, aim for 4 ½ cups chopped apple (peeled and cored).
- BLACKBERRIES: Either fresh or frozen blackberries work. If using frozen, there’s no need to defrost them first.
- LEMON JUICE: Use fresh lemon juice.
- ARROWROOT POWDER: Arrowroot powder works as a thickener. It can be found in the spice section of most grocery stores. Read Substitutions below for alternatives.
- SPICES: Ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg. If you prefer freshly ground nutmeg (fantastic aroma and taste!), buy whole nutmeg and grate with a zester.
- MAPLE SYRUP: Use pure maple syrup, not the corn syrup-based syrup.
- OATS: Use old-fashioned oats, not quick cooking oats. If gluten-free is necessary, be sure to check the packaging to determine if the oats were processed in a gluten free-safe factory. I prefer these oats from Bob’s Red Mill.
- FLOUR: I used whole wheat pastry flour, but other flours, including gluten-free options, also work for the crumble topping. See Substitutions below for suggestions.
- PECANS: Look for raw pecans (unsalted and unroasted). Walnuts and almonds are a good alternative.
- COCONUT OIL: Melt the coconut oil in the microwave. Be careful – it will be hot!
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
APPLES: Other crisp and sweet apple varietals that work well in this recipe are Gala, Cortland, Pink Lady, Ambrosia, Jazz, Jonagold and Braeburn. Some of these apples are smaller than Honeycrisps, so you will need more apples. Aim for about 4 ½ cups peeled, cored and chopped apples.
BLACKBERRIES: Instead of blackberries, try blueberries, raspberries or huckleberries. I often make this crumble with the Kirkland Three Berry Blend found in the frozen section at Costco.
ARROWROOT: Good substitutes for arrowroot powder are cornstarch and tapioca starch.
FLOUR: For a gluten-free option, try almond flour. Other non-gluten-free options are all-purpose flour, white whole wheat flour or a combination of all-purpose and whole wheat flours.
COCONUT OIL: Melted unsalted butter can be substituted for the coconut oil. If your goal is to serve a vegan or plant-based dessert, stick with the coconut oil.
How to make Apple and Blackberry Crumble::
The basic instructions are simple – combine the fruit mixture, make the topping and bake. Let’s talk details…
OVEN & DISH: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a 10-inch pie dish with cooking spray. Since there’s a significant amount of fruit in this recipe (about 6 cups), it’s best to use a deep pie dish.
PREP THE APPLES: Peel and core the apples. Cut them into ½-inch pieces. Use a small sharp knife or a countertop apple peeler or KitchenAid attachment. If you have a KitchenAid mixer, the spiralizer attachment (it also peels and cores) is a worthwhile purchase. I use this to peel and core a boatload of apples in minutes for fruit crumbles or my family’s favorite applesauce (see crockpot applesauce or Instant Pot applesauce).
MIX THE FILLING: Dump the chopped apple and blackberries into a mixing bowl. Add the lemon juice, arrowroot, cinnamon, nutmeg and maple syrup. Give it a good stir to coat the fruit.
MAKE THE TOPPING: Stir the oats and flour together in a mixing bowl. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, melted coconut oil and maple syrup. Using a fork, stir the mixture until the oats and flour are moistened with the oil and syrup.
PUT IT TOGETHER: Arrange the fruit mixture in the pie dish. Spread it in an even layer. Crumble the topping over the fruit, covering the fruit as much as possible.
BAKE: Make sure to place the pie dish on a baking sheet! If the fruit bubbles over, you’ll save yourself a big cleaning headache. Cleaning baked-on fruit off the bottom of an oven is no fun. I speak from experience.
Bake the crumble until the fruit is bubbling, the apples are tender when pierced with a fork and the topping is starting to brown. Check the crisp partway through cooking. If the topping is browning too quickly, lay a piece of foil on top to stop it from burning.
SERVE: Let the blackberry crumble cool for at least 10 minutes. Scoop it into bowls and top with ice cream, if desired.
Can apple crumble be made ahead of time?
Yes! Bake the crumble, then let it cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Be sure to let the crumble cool completely before covering. If it’s covered with when still warm, steam will accumulate and make the topping soggy.
How to reheat apple blackberry crumble:
You can either reheat an entire apple blackberry crumble, or just a serving or two at a time.
Reheating the whole thing:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove any plastic wrap and cover the dessert with foil. Bake until the fruit is bubbling, about 10 to minutes. Remove the foil and bake for a few more minutes to crisp the topping.
Reheating a single serving:
Scoop a single serving into a microwave-safe bowl. Heat on HIGH in 30 second intervals until heated.
Is this blackberry crisp vegan and gluten-free?
This apple blackberry crumble recipe is vegan as written. It is not gluten-free, but can easily be made gluten-free by swapping the whole wheat pastry flour with almond flour. Also, double check that the oats you use are made in a gluten-free facility (that should be specified on the package).
Apple and Blackberry Crumble Recipe
- 3 large Honeycrisp apples peeled, cored and cut into ¾-inch pieces (about 4 ½ cups) (See Note 1 for alternatives.)
- 2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
- 5 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 2 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder (See Note 2 for substitutions.)
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
The oat topping:
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats (See Note 3)
- ⅔ cup whole wheat pastry flour (See Note 4 for alternatives)
- ⅓ cup chopped raw pecans
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a 10-inch pie dish with cooking spray. Set the oven rack in the center position.
- Place the chopped apple and blackberries in a large mixing bowl. Add the maple syrup, lemon juice, arrowroot, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir to combine.
- Transfer the apple mixture to the prepared pie dish.
- Evenly sprinkle the oat topping over the fruit.
- Place the pie dish on a baking sheet. Bake until the juices are bubbling and the apple is tender when pierced with a fork, 35 to 45 minutes.
- Check the topping partway through baking. If it is browning too much, loosely lay a piece of foil over the topping.
- Let the crisp cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Serve with ice cream or frozen yogurt, if desired.
The oat topping:
- In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the oats, flour, pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
- Add the melted coconut oil and maple syrup to the oat mixture. Stir until all of the oats and flour are moistened and form into clumps.
Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
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