Baked Apples

Craving a dessert where fresh apples shine? These juicy baked apples highlight fall’s favorite fruit. Core your apples, fill with a buttery brown sugar cinnamon crumble, then bake until slightly soft. Enjoy warm from the oven and for a little extra pizazz, serve with salted caramel or vanilla ice cream. This is a relatively quick dessert that kids AND adults both love.

baked apple with brown sugar oat filling

Whenever I take my first bite of a freshly baked apple, I always ask myself why I don’t make them more often. It’s a classic and comforting treat that tastes unbelievable right out of the oven, especially on chilly nights. No-fuss and quick, baked apples are the solution when you need a guaranteed delicious dessert without putting in a ton of effort.

Hold onto this recipe. I promise it will come in handy!

What Are Baked Apples?

The term baked apples can refer to sliced, chopped, or whole apples that are baked until slightly softened and juicy. Baked apples usually include sugar, butter, and/or cinnamon. This recipe is for whole baked apples, cored and stuffed with buttery brown sugar and cinnamon-spiced oats, and baked until warm and juicy. We’re doing it big today.


You’ll Love These Baked Apples Because They’re:

  • Great for a small family and you easily can halve or double the recipe as needed
  • Like individually portioned apple crisp
  • Made with only 6 simple ingredients
  • Free from common allergens– no eggs, no gluten, no nuts (nuts are optional)
  • The perfect way to use freshly picked apples

baked apples

baked apple with brown sugar oat filling

Baked Apples Video Tutorial


Overview: How to Make Baked Apples

  1. Mix all of the filling ingredients together. You need soft butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and oats. Craving a little flavor? Add some raisins, dried cranberries, or chopped pecans. You could also add the zest from 1 orange or a pinch of ground ginger, too.
  2. Core the apples. This step is the trickiest part of the recipe, but if you use a little arm muscle and have patience, you’ll be fine. I recommend using a sharp paring knife and a spoon. (Or an apple corer.) I find cookie scoops can easily break or crack the apples. Once the core is out, use a spoon to dig out any more seeds.
  3. Place the apples into your baking dish. I recommend an 8 or 9-inch round or square pan. Once the apples are in the dish, fill them with the brown sugar oat mixture.
  4. Add warm liquid. To keep the apples moistened and to prevent them from burning, fill the pan with a little warm water. Like when we bake flourless chocolate cake, we want a steamy and humid oven for baked apples. For something different, use warm apple cider instead! (You can even spike the water or apple cider with a couple Tablespoons of bourbon or whiskey. Cheers.)
  5. Bake. The baked apples take about 40-45 minutes to become pleasantly soft and tender. Bake longer for softer, mushier baked apples.
  6. Serve. Remove the baked apples from the oven and let them sit for about 5 minutes before serving. If you crave a little extra juiciness, spoon some of the hot liquid from the pan onto each. Serve with whipped cream, salted caramel, and/or vanilla ice cream.

coring out apples before baking

brown sugar oat crumble in apples

What About a Version with Pie Crust?

While these baked apples are like individual apple crisps, my apple pie baked apples are like individual apple pies. (Another fun fall baking project adults & kids will both enjoy!) If you’re more of a pie crust aficionado, try that version instead. Plus, it’s hard to ignore how adorable that little lattice topping is!


Are They Soft & Mushy?

Yes, they’re slightly soft but no, they aren’t mushy. The best part of this recipe, besides all the flavors, is that you have total control over the texture. Bake for only about 40-45 minutes for slightly soft apples that hold their shape but can still be eaten with a spoon. Add a few more minutes if you like them extra soft or mushy.


Best Apples to Use

The best apples to use for whole baked apples are firm and perfectly round. I usually use Granny Smith, Fuji, Pink Lady, or Honeycrisp. Select apples that stand up straight because you don’t want them to topple over in the oven. If you favor pears, you’ll love my maple vanilla baked pears instead.

My advice: The larger the apple, the more brown sugar crumble you can stuff inside!

spoon drizzling caramel on baked apples

Looking for more at-home baking activities? Here are 36+ fun home baking projects. 🙂

More Ways to Use Your Apples

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baked apples

Baked Apples

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This recipe is for whole baked apples stuffed with buttery brown sugar oat crumble. For extra flavor, feel free to swap the water with warm apple cider.


Ingredients

  • 3 Tablespoons (43g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature (extra soft, so it’s easy to mash)
  • 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup (20g) old-fashioned whole rolled oats
  • 4 large apples (see note), rinsed and patted dry
  • optional: 2 Tablespoons raisins, dried cranberries, or chopped nuts

For Baking

  • 3/4 cup (180ml) warm water

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C).
  2. Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, or simply using a fork or spoon, beat/mash the butter, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together until combined. Stir in the oats, then the raisins/dried cranberries/nuts, if using. Set aside.
  3. Core the apples: This can be tricky, but I recommend using a sharp paring knife and a spoon. (Or an apple corer.) I find cookie scoops can easily break or crack the apples. Using a sharp paring knife, cut around the core, about halfway or 3/4 down into the apple. Use a spoon to carefully dig out the core. Takes a bit of patience and arm muscle. Once the core is out, use a spoon to dig out any more seeds.
  4. Place cored apples in an 8-inch or 9-inch baking pan, cake pan, or pie dish. Spoon filling into each apple, filling all the way to the top. Pour warm water into the pan around the apples. The water helps prevent the apples from drying out and burning.
  5. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until apples appear slightly soft. Bake longer for softer, mushier baked apples. The time depends on how firm your apples were and how soft you want them to be.
  6. Remove apples from the oven and, if desired, baste the outside of the apples with juices from the pan. This adds a little moisture to the skin, but it’s completely optional.
  7. Serve warm with salted caramel, whipped cream, or ice cream. Cover and store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: I don’t recommend preparing the baked apples ahead of time to serve later. They brown and become mushy, fast. Instead, prepare the filling in advance, cover, and refrigerate for up to 3 days before spooning into the apples and baking. I don’t recommend freezing these baked apples because they’re overly mushy when thawed.
  2. Best Apples to Use: Choose perfectly round apples that are on the firmer side. I usually use Granny Smith, Fuji, Pink Lady, or Honeycrisp. Make sure they stand up straight on their bottom, so they don’t tip over in the oven.
  3. Sugar: Brown sugar adds moisture, as well as the best flavor. Feel free to use regular granulated sugar or even coconut sugar if needed. I don’t recommend any liquid sweeteners or sugar replacements.
  4. Oats: Oats add wonderful texture. You can use the same amount of quick oats instead. I don’t recommend leaving out the oats but if you need to, you can try replacing with finely chopped nuts. I don’t recommend replacing with oat flour or any flour.

Keywords: apples, baked apples

baked apple with brown sugar oat filling

227 Comments

  1. Ashley Nowak says:

    This easy-to-follow recipe is a great family activity for those with littles! My two sons, three and one, were super eager to make these after apple picking. We enjoyed them with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce! We will definitely be making these again in the near feature as they are super easy for a last minute dessert!

    1. What a fun way to spend time together, Ashley! I’m happy to hear they were enjoyed by the entire family – thank you for participating!

  2. This was probably the hardest looking recipe I’ve ever tried! It turned out to be SO easy though!! I doubled the recipe because I have 10 siblings, I’m not kidding. We all ate 1 half and had some leftovers, they were delicious!! This recipe is a keeper, everyone loved it so much, I just might make it every week!!! It’s that good.

    1. How fun, Selah! I’m so glad the baked apples were a hit for you and your siblings. And I love to hear that they will be on repeat in your house!

  3. I would never have thought to try something like this without the baking challenge! I’d never cored an apple before, so that was a fun challenge inside the challenge. The crumble filling was so delicious that I wish there was more of it! But I can fix that next time. 🙂 One of my favorite things about this recipe is that it’s so easy to make exactly as many servings as you need. Thanks for another great recipe!

  4. These delicious baked apples made for a cozy Sunday night dessert! They were so easy to make and tasted incredible! (Not to mention the amazing aroma of cinnamon in my kicthen ). I added chopped walnuts to mine and served the apples warm with vanilla ice cream and salted caramel sauce. It was the perfect Fall treat ❤. Thank you for another amazing recipe, Sally. I will definitely make this again!

    1. I’m thrilled to hear this was the perfect fall dessert for you, Callyn! Thank you so much for participating in this baking challenge.

  5. When I pulled my apples out and I let them cool I went to try one they didn’t cut really good but I think I didn’t let them cool long enough. But it taste delicious!!!!

  6. I like any recipe that allows me to use your fabulous caramel sauce. I’ve never made these with the oats but I loved what it added to the over all pleasure. I used pecans as my nut of choice. Simply wonderful!

    1. Thank you so much for participating, Dusty – I’m glad the oats were a delicious surprise for you. Especially with those pecans and salted caramel sauce, too!

  7. I scaled it down for just one apple, and I must say this recipe was amazing. It tasted like an apple pie, minus the extra calories from the crust and extra sugar. I will make this frequently — delicious! And so easy! Doesn’t get better than that 🙂

  8. Sue Montanaro says:

    So easy and so much fun! My family enjoyed them !!!

  9. Love love love this recipe! It is nutritious, easy to make, and it tastes amazing. When I first made it, I thought we would have leftovers. As soon as we tasted the warm, juicy apples I knew we would be finishing all 4 of them that day. I highly recommend this recipe and will likely be making it again soon!

  10. Ate it up yum! Very simple to make yet delectable.

  11. Judy Schwartz says:

    So fun to make and just simply delicious. Another winner, Sally!!

  12. Brittany Block says:

    I was skeptical of this month’s challenge because I am not too fond of warm apples but this recipe may have just changed my mind! The apples themselves were so easy and the filling was the perfect fall dessert that made our apartment smell heavenly! We made the caramel sauce that was linked in this recipe and I can’t believe I waited so long to make my own caramel! Won’t be buying it again from the store!

    1. Yes! I’m so excited you discovered how delicious baked apples can be 🙂 and the caramel sauce, too! Thanks so much for participating, Brittany.

  13. Nunca había comido manzanas asadas, deliciosas, voy a volver a repetir

  14. This recipe was super easy! My husband really enjoyed these baked apples, especially cold. I also made your homemade salted caramel sauce (also super easy) and will always make my own from now on. This was a quick and fun bake for sure. Thank you!

  15. Made these with Pink Lady apples, pecans and a mix of brown sugar, maple sugar and coconut sugar. Loved them!

    1. Yum! Sounds like an amazing combination of flavors, Ines – thank you for participating!

  16. Delicious! I did not keep an eye on them while they baked and the 40 minutes was too long (my oven isn’t calibrated correctly for temperature I’m guessing) and they were super mushy and the ugliest things you can imagine. But they tasted really yummy! My kids (ages 4 and 2) had a wonderful time helping–it was a great recipe to do with them because it’s so simple.

  17. I was looking for a way to use my leftover oats- this was a beautiful, fall way to do it! Thank you as always for a successful and easy to follow recipe my family loves!

  18. These were easier to make than I anticipated, and my husband and kids loved them! I made the salted carmel sauce too, which I think was my favorite part!

  19. Loved every bit of the recipe. Very easy to make and delicious.

  20. This was such an easy recipe to follow and so overall healthy! We have apples upon apples piling up in the Northeast and this is a fantastic way to keep eating apples in new and exciting ways. The apple was tender but not mushy. Instead of oats and nuts, I used a pre-made local Fig Hazelnut Granola (that has been taking up space in my cabinet)- it actually tasted fantastic.

    I added a little bit of whiskey to the water to keep the apple moist which gave it a nice twang. Also- apple corer all the way. Buy one and you won’t regret it. Baked apples, apple chips, you name it. Worth it.

    1. That granola filling sounds amazing, Rio! And what a perfect way to use up your abundance of apples. Thank you for participating!

  21. Such a delicious and easy recipe! I could see making this multiple times this fall. I got a bit carried away with emptying out the core, but eventually got the hang of it. Thanks for the recipe!

  22. Great healthyish fall dessert! This was really easy and fast to make. I used Fuji apples and coconut sugar. I also added cranberries and pecans to the filling. Yum!

  23. Letitia Maynard says:

    These were a nice breakfast this morning. They were easy to make and had so much flavor. I loved the warm apple still had some firmness to it. I used some apples fresh off the tree from my work. The fuji apple was a nice one to use for this recipe. My daughter asked for her own after taking a bit of mine. I made some of the caramel sauce to put over the apples. It was all so delicious. Definitely make these again in the future.

  24. Laurie Chaplen says:

    Unfortunately my family didn’t want me to make these so I made the pumpkin oatmeal muffins you have on your site and they were a huge hit with my family and neighbors.

  25. These made a lovely dessert for Canadian Thanksgiving paired with some vanilla ice cream! I was having some trouble coring the apples, even with a corer, but had an ‘aha’ moment and used a melon baller to empty the seeds out – made it much more efficient! Would definitely make these again.

  26. Yummy! This was perfect after our pumpkin patch/apple orchard outing (I also made your Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal Cups for breakfasts this week!). This recipe is easy to follow and quick to put together. I decided to make the salted caramel sauce for it too, which paired perfectly. My husband ended up adding extra caramel 🙂 Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Thrilled to hear that both the Baked Apples and Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal Cups were a hit, Lillie – thank you so much for giving these recipes a try!

  27. Tanaka Y Chinembiri says:

    Very quick and easy recipe.

    I would recommend more little more sugar(1tsbp) when using granny Smith apples. This is because I nothing to serve with and I got a sweet tooth.

  28. These were really simple and as long as you have apples, we are lucky enough to have trees 🙂 Everything else is a pantry staple! Easy to throw together in a pinch and delicious with caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream. I think next time I might try to cut the apples in half so that I can get the core out better, and a bit more crispy filling. The skins got a little tough, any suggestions on that? Or maybe it was just the kind of apples?
    Thanks Sally!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Ann, Did you use a water bath? The humidity from the water should keep the skins nice and soft!

  29. October baking challenge done!! I I added some honey bourbon to the water at the bottom of the dish and ice cream on top to finish. These were so tasty!! I love how they weren’t overwhelming sweet. It made me feel like we were eating a healthy dessert.

  30. Cut the recipe in half as I only had two apples. The skin peeled off the apples in the oven, so the finished product wasn’t very attractive, but definitely tasted delicious!

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