Gluten Free Apple Crisp

This gluten free apple crisp combines warm maple and cinnamon infused apples and a crumbly oat topping. Instead of using all-purpose flour, use a combination of almond meal and oats. Almond meal adds a lovely texture and delicious nutty flavor. To keep the recipe gluten free, make sure you’re using certified GF oats.

gluten free apple crisp serving on a white plate

I don’t have a gluten sensitivity, but I know many are intolerant or are choosing to live a gluten free lifestyle. I created this gluten free apple crisp recipe because I wanted to deliver something that we can all enjoy this holiday season. (By the way, I actually have a growing section on my website dedicated to gluten free recipes!)

This dessert will test all of your self control. It’s blissfully good. And not just “really good for a gluten free recipe.” It’s just plain REALLY GOOD. I did not expect it to be this tasty! The good news is that there’s no strange or costly ingredients required.

gluten free apple crisp with pomegranate arils on top

apple crisp filling in a glass bowl with a pink spatula

Filling

You need 4 medium/large apples. Peel and chop them into bite-size pieces. Mix the apples with a little cornstarch, cinnamon, sugar, maple syrup for flavor, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Lemon juice sounds like an odd ingredient here, but a little goes a long way. It brightens up all the flavors. You might regret skipping it!

Gluten Free Apple Crisp Topping

6 ingredients come together to make a delicious gluten free apple crisp topping. Instead of traditional flour, use almond meal. For anyone unfamiliar with almond meal, don’t get nervous– it’s a pretty standard ingredient these days. Almond meal is simply ground almonds before reaching the stage of almond butter. If you use blanched almonds and grind them up a little more fine, you’ll get almond flour. Almond meal has a little more texture and I prefer in an apple crisp topping.

You can buy almond meal from the store, but it’s really easy to make at home. Pulse sliced or slivered almonds in a food processor until the almonds are pulverized. To avoid the almonds grinding into an oily almond butter due to the processor’s heat, pulse them with with 2 Tablespoons oats. I note that in the recipe below.

The almond meal will be a little gritty and that’s ok for this apple crisp recipe! Adds texture.

2 images of almond slivers in a food processor and ground almonds in a food processor

Layer the apples into a round baking dish, top with the gluten free crisp topping and bake until browned. What I love most about fruit crisps is that you can serve them warm. Apple pie is a forever favorite dessert, but waiting for it to cool is a real test to our self control. With gluten free apple crisp, we can dig right in!

No apple dessert is complete without vanilla ice cream. And for a pop of color, sprinkle fresh pomegranate arils on top. Talk about texture heaven!

spoonful of gluten free apple crisp

Print
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gluten free apple crisp with pomegranate arils on top

Gluten Free Apple Crisp

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: serves 6
  • Category: Pies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Here’s a recipe for warm, gooey, brown sugar oat topped flourless apple crisp. This gluten free dessert exceeded my expectations; it’s AMAZING. And simple.


Ingredients

Filling

  • 4 large apples, peeled, cored, and chopped*
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) pure maple syrup*
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Topping

  • 1/3 cup (65g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup (65g) old-fashioned rolled oats (certified GF)
  • 1/2 cup (50g) almond meal*
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup (5 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
  • optional: 2 Tablespoons sliced or slivered almonds, vanilla ice cream (GF), pomegranate arils

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Filling: Stir all of the filling ingredients together in a large bowl. Make sure the apples are evenly coated. Spoon into a 9-inch pie dish, cake pan, or square baking pan. Set aside.
  3. Topping: Whisk the brown sugar, oats, and almond meal together. Make sure there aren’t any huge chunks of brown sugar. Whisk in the cinnamon and salt. Once combined, stir in the melted butter. Sprinkle topping over the apples and finish with a few slivered or sliced almonds– these extra almonds on top are optional.
  4. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the filing is bubbly, the apples are a little soft, and the topping is browned. If it looks like the topping is browning too quickly, cover the top loosely with aluminum foil. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Top with pomegranate arils and serve with vanilla ice cream. Cover leftovers and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Follow steps 2 and 3 in the recipe then cover the crisp and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator then bake as directed.
  2. Apples: You want about 5-6 cups chopped apple pieces. Use different varieties, such as 2 tart Granny Smiths and 2 apples of a sweeter variety like Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Braeburn, Fuji etc. I like to chop them in varying sizes. Some thin, some thicker. It helps the filling have a little more texture.
  3. Maple Syrup: Gives so much flavor. And makes the apple filling extra juicy and gooey. Don’t leave it out!
  4. Almond Meal: You can use store-bought almond meal or almond flour, or you can make your own. Start with 1/2 cup of slivered or sliced almonds. Pulse them, along with 2 Tablespoons of the 3/4 cup oats called for in this recipe, in a food processor until a crumbly meal has formed. Do not run the food processor continuously; you may end up with almond butter. Little pulses are best. You will end up with around 1/2 cup almond meal.

Keywords: gluten free apple crisp, easy apple crisp

115 Comments

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  1. I can’t wait to try this out!!!!!! 🙂 I love your recipes!!!!!

  2. Chineka @ Savor The Baking says:

    This looks delicious and is the definition of Fall in dessert form!

  3. Averie @ Averie Cooks says:

    The pom arils add such a pretty pop of color and I love that you made it GF, even though you didnt have to. And I love oats. And apple crisps! I’ll pin it once I see a collage coming…I know you’ll make a beauty. This recipe deserves it!

  4. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar says:

    I just love the pretty pomegranate seeds on there AND the almond flour! Great recipe!

  5. Claudia @Breakfast Drama Queen says:

    Wow, this has my name all over it!

  6. I love the addition of pomegranate! Beautiful AND delicious! Crisps are some of my favorite desserts, right up there with cheesecake, and this recipe looks wonderful! Speaking of wonderful, I made your cranberry orange muffins for work on Tuesday (I work with a fair number of veterans), and everyone loved them! Even my boss, who never has a nice word for anyone, said they were “very good”, which is high praise from him 🙂

    1. I know you love crisps as much as I do Caley! And I am honored for the praise on my muffins. Awesome. Have a great weekend!

  7. Man, we all have our vices. I can stop at a few sips of wine or a few fries or chips, or even just one. But I cannot stop at one cookie. That’s a lot harder!
    Love this recipe. I bake GF crisps for my husband and I love using the certified GF oat flour to replace flour. It works really well! Bob’s Red Mill makes a good one.
    And I love the idea of using almond meal, too!

  8. Apple crisp and vanilla ice cream go hand-in-hand! Using almond meal instead of flour is brilliant! (and delicious!)

  9. Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness says:

    I am SO like you! Great dessert self control, but I could my weight in sweet potato fries in a cinch. I could also eat double my weight of this crisp! LOVE that you used almond meal, that must be so tasty with apples! Pinned!

  10. You are so cute – love that you confess you couldn’t stop eating this. 🙂 Whenever I read your posts, I can’t imagine the amount of self control you must have to patiently photograph these sweet treats and not fall face first into them! But, that is my personality…I would full on binge!

    I’ve been looking for something fun for Thanksgiving…will just be me, my husband and my mom…I might get some ramekins and whip this up for dessert – I think it would be so perfect!

    In the meantime, you know what tomorrow is….zucchini bread day! ha ha ha! You also mentioned guacamole which is on my menu for tonight…and I just thought I haven’t made your mango version in a few months. I think I will change that tonight! Have a great weekend, Sally!

    1. let me know if you try this, Christine! speaking of zucchini bread… and self control… I have 0 when it comes to that zucchini bread recipe. enjoy the mango guac tonight!

  11. Kerry @ Kerry Cooks says:

    I LOVE this post Sally! I figured you must have great control around desserts as you’re so slender! I need to work on having one and giving the rest away 🙂 But of course every now and again there’s something so amazing that you can’t just have more!

    I also love your honestly about this post – gluten-free doesn’t automatically mean healthy! 🙂

  12. Love all your recipes, Sally!! This looks awesome. Can’t wait to meet you tomorrow!!!

    1. can’t wait Morgan, thank you!

  13. Sally, I will be at Fante’s tomorrow morning! So excited you’ll be there! I actually attend JNA Institute of Culinary Arts and understand you recently met one of my instructors – Chef Lou. Anyhow, I hope to be able to talk with you a little bit. Absolutely LOVE your blog!!!!

    1. I can’t wait to meet you, Sharon! Thanks!

  14. This looks so delicious Sally! Thanks for sharing. I wish I had your self control when it came to cookies – you are a stronger soul than me my friend 😉
    Anisa – The Macadames. xx

  15. Melanie @ Carmel Moments says:

    I’ll actually be in Philly tomorrow but unfortunately can’t get there to meet you in time. What a bummer. Maybe next time!
    Love apple crisp and haven’t had it all year. Now that’s just a crying shame!

    Pinned.
    Enjoy your weekend!

    1. thanks for trying to make it Melanie! enjoy your weekend too!

  16. You’re right, you do have so much self control to only eat one cookie! I wish I could be like that… I’m the opposite actually lol, I intend to make something to take to friends or coworkers and then end up eating too much and need to make more lol. This apple crisp is perfect fall food… and I love that it’s GF! I love that you provide links to your equipment 🙂 Let’s talk about that plate though… adorable! Any idea where you got it?

  17. I totally want to make this over the weekend! I love apple crisp and haven’t had any yet this fall!

  18. Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday says:

    I’m the same way with desserts, but I attribute mine more to “dessert ADD” – I want to make something delicious, have one, and then make a million more delicious things and have one of each!
    This looks AMAZING, though, and so easy! Definitely on my to-make list. I love apple desserts!

    1. yup. i have a serious form of dessert ADD too.

  19. Sally, I just wanted to share this TIP. Pomegrantes are on sale here in NY for around $1.00-$1.50 each. I saw this tip on food network. Cut POM in half. get a good wood bowl and a wooden spoon. This is going to sound crazy but, make a few slits in the skin and pull the rind away t from the sides. Then take the spoonand whack the rind of POM many times as you hear all the little red seeds fly out. No mess, No waste, its like a POM miracle. You can also watch the process on YOUTUBE. I watched it and instructed my husband and it came out awesome! Thanks for all your great recipes & love your blog <3 Happy Friday

    1. THANK YOU!

  20. Wow, this looks delicious!!! 😀 Thanks!

  21. This is perfect, I’m supposed to bring dessert to a dinner and one friend is GF so I’m excited to make this! (I’m also about to bake your pumpkin pie, can’t wait to try it!)

  22. I tried almond meal for the first time in a cookie recipe and it surprised me, for sure! I like the gritty texture… Probably because I am a texture FREAK when it comes to food. I just made your recipe for apple bread in your cookbook!!! It was SO good! It tastes kinda, sorta like jewish apple cake? I don’t know if you’ve ever had it but it’s just… UGH, so damn good!

    Have a great time in Philly tomorrow!

    1. Yes it’s exactly like jewish apple cake Laur. You are spot on. I’m so glad you made it!! We need to hang out and bake all day soon or just go out and eat dessert.

  23. Eve @ Baking the Day says:

    This is my number 1 favourite dessert! I love how it is gluten free; my friends is gluten intolerant so I will definitely make this for her!

  24. just made this with all Gala apples because I have an abundance of them. It turned out great (although I did leave out the maple syrup in the filling, did not replace it with anything it was sweet enough as is). I used whole almonds ground for the almond meal and I love it, the slight almond taste is incredible with the apples and cinnamon. Thanks for another winning recipe, Sally!

    1. perfect! that was quick, so glad you enjoy it!

  25. Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel says:

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Using the almond meal is simply genius, Sal!

  26. Liz @ Tip Top Shape says:

    This looks SO GOOD!!! I love the addition of pomegranate seeds – such a nice pop of color!

  27. Sally, this sounds perfect for Thanksgiving as we have multiple celiacs in my family. However, we have almond allergies as well. Any other gf options that won’t kill my husband? 🙂

    1. Instead of almond meal, how about 1/3 cup of gluten free flour? Or even oat flour. You’ll need a little less than the called for almond meal.

  28. Christina @ The Beautiful Balance says:

    I absolutely adore using almond flour/meal in recipes like this. I wish I had the willpower you and your mom have. I swear all of my teeth are sweet and it’s just not fair haha

  29. I’m usually pretty good around desserts. And then I just have a sweet tooth day and half a batch of cookies is gone. I’m a little jealous of you and your mom 🙂 Tortilla chips always get me though.
    I love crisps like this! The crumble is just so good. I have been on a pomegranate kick and combining it with apples is so smart. What a cozy winter treat! Pinning!

  30. It’s in the oven as I type! Smells wonderful!

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