Take a warm dessert, like apple crisp, to the next level with this easy apple crisp topping. It's a buttery and sugary addition that makes a world of difference on a classic fall dessert.
Apple Crisp Topping Recipe
Apple season has a special place in my heart. Simply walking the produce aisle at the grocery store during the fall, you can smell the sweet aroma of fresh apples. Their flavor is so much better and they're just absolutely perfect for baking!
Making a warm apple dessert is the best way to welcome fall. A classic apple crisp with a buttery oat topping is always on the list of apple recipes to make during the season.
Some may say a pumpkin muffin is the best way, so maybe they're tied for first place! But hey, this crisp topping is not limited to its use with a sweet apple filling. Place it on top of muffins like pumpkin snickerdoodle muffins.
Why You'll Love this Recipe
The very best apple crumble topping is just so simple to make. My apple crisp recipe is really easy and has served us well for many years, so give it a shot!
You'll love this recipe, for a few reasons:
- This great recipe has a variety of different uses. You can get as adventurous as you want and add this tasty topping to all the fruit crisps and any warm dessert your heart desires.
- A crumb topping like this one elevates baked goods to bakery quality. Save some money and skip those super expensive muffins, pies and crisps at the bakery. Make them in your own kitchen instead!
- You only need four staple ingredients to make this topping for an easy apple crisp recipe. No need to run to the grocery store, you likely have everything you need for crisp topping in your fridge and pantry!
Grab your favorite types of apples and all of the ingredients you need to make this yummy topping. Then let's get to baking!
Make the most amazing topping for your apple desserts with just a few simple ingredients. Here's a list of everything you need to make the perfect apple crisp topping:
- unsalted butter, melted
- all-purpose flour
- brown sugar
- rolled oats
Substitutions and Variations
You can use a gluten-free 1:1 flour substitute, such as King Arthur Measure for Measure Flour, to make this recipe without gluten. Almond flour is also a good swap for this crisp topping recipe!
If all you have is salted butter, that is perfectly fine to use. Keep in mind that it may change the flavor of your apple crisp a touch, but it will still be extremely tasty!
Want to swap out the refined sugar? You can use coconut sugar in this recipe instead of brown sugar.
Make this apple crisp topping dairy-free by replacing the melted butter with melted coconut oil. If you find the topping is still a bit too dry, then add a splash of maple syrup.
Add some more texture and flavor to this recipe with some chopped pecans, chopped walnuts, or even sliced almonds. You can also add dried fruit, like dried cranberries, to a crisp topping!
For more depth of flavor, add some pure vanilla extract to this apple crisp topping recipe.
How to Make Apple Crisp Topping
Here's how to make this easy apple crisp topping recipe:
In a medium bowl, mix together the brown sugar, old-fashioned oats and flour.
Then melt ½ cup butter in a saucepan, or in the microwave with a glass measuring cup.
Pour the melted butter into the flour mixture and combine with a fork.
Be sure to break up the larger chunks of flour and sugar, and make small crumbly topping.
Pour the mixture over the top of the apples, then bake!
One thing you need to know: I have the best and most easy apple crisp recipe ever. To make the apple mixture, just mix tart apples, sugar, flour, spices and salt together in a large bowl. Then pour the mixture into a glass baking dish. Add the crumble topping and then bake at 375°F (190°C) for 35 minutes until golden brown!
Uses for Apple Crisp Topping
Not only is this easy recipe just perfect on top of apple crisp, but it can be used for so many different things!
I'd use this yummy topping on any of my muffin recipes too. Lemon blueberry muffins, mixed berry muffins, and healthy banana chocolate chip muffins would all be next level delicious with a brown sugar oat topping!
Any quick bread would benefit from a crumbly sugar topping too. You'll elevate it to bakery quality in just seconds!
How to Store Apple Crisp Topping
Want to get a head start on your homemade apple crisp? You can make this delicious crumbly topping ahead of time and store until needed. Or maybe you overshot your measurements and made too much. Don't throw it out!
Store leftover crisp topping in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. If it solidifies, just allow the crisp topping to come to room temperature before using it.
Tips for Success
Here are some tips and tricks for making this recipe:
- You truly don't need any fancy tools to mix these ingredients together. Just use a fork and make sure you get all of the large chunks out. It is important to break up the big chunks so that the topping can bake evenly.
- Elevate this classic dessert by adding a drizzle of caramel sauce over the apple crisp topping. Turn a cozy apple dessert into something that is reminiscent of a caramel apple!
- Spread this topping in an even layer over the baking dish so that the cinnamon apples are all covered in buttery sugar. This will also help ensure that the topping bakes evenly.
It is really all about preference when it comes to what variety of apples to use in an apple crisp. Many of these syrupy sweet desserts use a tart apple to help cut the sweetness. However, sweet apples are just as good. Use granny smith apples, pink lady apples, red delicious, honeycrisp, and any other juicy apples that you want! Any apple will do and you can use leftovers to make all the apple treats you want.
The rolled oats and all-purpose flour are what make an apple crisp topping have a bit of crunchy. The dark brown sugar can also caramelize a bit and give some crunch too. It is very important to measure out the exact amounts of ingredients needed so that you don't make the crisp topping to wet to where it will not crisp up when baked.
If your apple crisp topping is not a good crumbly texture, it may be too dry. This can especially happen if you are using a gluten free flour substitute. Just add a bit more butter, one tablespoon at a time, until it resembles the texture of wet sand. Make sure you don't add too much butter though!
More Dessert Topping Recipes
- The Best Streusel Topping
- Homemade Whipped Cream
- Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
- Whipped Cream Frosting
More Apple Recipes
- Cast Iron Apple Spice Skillet Cake
- Easy Apple Pie
- Mini Apple Spice Rum Cakes
- Caramel Apple Crumble Muffins
- Spiced Apple Cider
If you make and love this recipe, please leave a ★★★★★ review below! It means so much to me when you try my recipes, and I'd love to know how it goes. Please leave a comment below if you have any questions.
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup plus 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons rolled oats
- Add flour, brown sugar and oats to a medium bowl and stir to combine.
- Melt ½ cup butter.
- Pour butter over flour, brown sugar and oats and stir with a fork until thoroughly combined.
- Pour the crisp topping over apples and bake!