Ashley Melillo of Blissful Basil knows that crisp is in season year round. That’s why she shares both warm and cool weather versions in her vegan cookbook Blissful Basil. In summer, we posted her Dairy-Free Blackberry Crisp Recipe. And now that fall is in full swing, we’re updating her recipe for butterless, gluten-free, dairy-free Almond Apple Crisp.
Almond Apple Crisp that’s Naturally Sweetened and Plant Based
In both of her crisp recipes, Ashley shuns butter alternatives and uses wholesome ingredients. Which means there is quite a bit of flexibility in her formula. I’ve included some tips and substitution notes to get your started.
Can I use Pears instead of Apples?
Yes, pears work great in this dairy-free almond apple crisp recipe. Use 2 pounds of pears, and look for good baking varieties, like Anjou, Bartlett, or Bosc.
Do I have to Use Granny Smith or Honey Crisp Apples?
Ashley chooses these types of apples for their tartness and firmness. They tend to add contrast to the sweet crisp topping and stand up well in baking. That said, there are many good baking apples. Braeburn and Golden Delicious are popular apples that also hold their own in this almond apple crisp recipe. If your filling becomes too soft, too watery, is mushy, or grainy, then it’s the apples that you used, not the recipe.
Is their a Substitute for Arrowroot Starch?
Ashley chooses arrowroot as her primary starch of choice in Blissful Basil. But you can use non-GMO cornstarch or tapioca starch as an equivalent substitute for the arrowroot starch.
Will Other Spices Work in this Almond Apple Crisp?
Definitely! You can add a little nutmeg or allspice, aobut 1/4 teaspoon to the filling. Or you can use Apple Pie Spice in place of the cinnamon.
I only have Quick Oats on hand, will Those Work?
Quick oats work just in this dairy-free almond apple crisp. The topping won’t be as “chunky” but will still be quite crisp-like.
What Can I Substitute if I don’t want to use Nuts or Seeds?
You can just omit the seeds and use more oats – 2 cups total. If using just oats, pulse 1 cup of the oats, and then stir in the remaining 1 cup oats.
What Size is a Medium 1.5 Quart Baking Dish?
An 8×8-inch baking dish will work well, or a little smaller if your want a thicker crisp topping. You can double the recipe and bake it in a 9×13-inch baking dish. The baking time will be similar.
Do I have to use Coconut Oil?
No, you can make this recipe coconut-free! Simply substitute your favorite baking oil in an equal amount for the coconut oil. If you’re craving a buttery flavor, you can substitute dairy-free butter alternative for the oil.
Special Diet Notes: Almond Apple Crisp
By ingredients, these recipes are dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, optionally nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.
- 4 large (2 pounds) Granny Smith or Honeycrisp apples, peeled, cored, and diced
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons arrowroot starch
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup + 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, divided (certified gluten free, if needed)
- ½ cup raw almonds (see Nut-Free Option below)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease a medium round, oval, or rectangular 1½-quart baking dish.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the diced apples, maple syrup, lemon juice, arrowroot, and cinnamon. Toss to evenly coat the apples.
- Transfer the apple mixture to your prepared baking dish.
- Add ½ cup of the rolled oats and the raw almonds to a food processor and process for 15 seconds, or until a coarse meal forms.
- Transfer the almond-oat mixture to a large mixing bowl and whisk in the remaining 1 cup rolled oats, cinnamon, and sea salt. Add the maple syrup and melted coconut oil and stir to combine.
- Sprinkle the topping evenly over the apple filling.
- Bake the apple crisp, uncovered, for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the topping is deep golden brown and you can hear the liquid bubbling within the filling.
- Let the crisp cool slightly before serving.
- Let cool slightly before serving.
- Refrigerate leftovers, covered, for up to 4 days.