This is my favorite apple crumble recipe – sweet and tender apples topped with crispy, crumbly, streusel. It’s so easy to make! I bake this recipe every year around the holidays and of course, top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. It’s perfect!
Ok, so seriously – what are the holidays without apple crumble?! To me, this is one of the quintessential desserts of the holiday season and is an excellent Thanksgiving dessert idea, along with pumpkin pie, apple pie bars, and pecan pie. And I must add, it is one of the easiest holiday recipes to make.
I love how delicious and tender the apples become after they’re baked with sugar and spices. And the texture from the crunchy, cinnamon streusel is perfect addition. Serve warm and top with a scoop of no-churn vanilla ice cream and you’ve got yourself an award-winning dessert!
How to make perfect apple crumble
- Peel and chop your apples. I like to chop them into 1/2-inch cubes.
- Combine with sugar and spices. In a bowl, toss the apples with lemon juice and the rest of the ingredients.
- Prepare baking pan. Pour your apples in a 9-inch round baking dish.
Prepare the streusel
- Get out the food processor. Pulse together cold butter, flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt until the mixture appears clumpy. Then, add the walnuts and oats and pulse 2-3 more times.
- Prepare and bake. Spread the streusel on top of the apples in an even layer. Bake in a 350°F/185°C oven for 30-40 minutes until the streusel is golden brown and the apples are bubbling.
*Tip: If you don’t have a food processor available, you can cut the butter and dry ingredients together using a pastry cutter, two forks, or even do it by hand.
What kind of apples should I use?
I like using a combination of tart apples, like Granny Smith, and sweet apples, like Honey Crisp. But feel free to use whatever apples you have on hand – they’ll work!
Tips for making perfect apple crumble
- Don’t cut the apples too small. I like to keep my apples around 1/2-inch thick. That way when they bake, they still have some texture and don’t become mushy.
- Use cold butter to make the streusel. This allows you to cut it into small pieces and helps the streusel bake into crunchy pieces. If the streusel gets too warm before baking, I recommend laying it flat on a sheet pan and sticking it in the fridge for 10 minutes before topping your apples.
- The cornstarch is important – don’t leave it out. The cornstarch thickens the juices from the apples as they bake and turns them into a sauce-like consistency instead of being overly runny.
- Serve warm. You can serve apple crumble at room temperature or even straight from the fridge, but I highly recommend heating it up a bit before serving for the best flavors. Then, top it with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream to really indulge :).
More of my favorite apple recipes:
- Caramel Apple Pie: Caramelized juicy apples make this pie unlike no other.
- Easy Puff Pastry Apple Tart: This 3-ingredient rustic apple tart is so simple to make and tastes amazing.
- Caramel Apple Rolls: The perfect fall breakfast or midday treat!
- Apple Scones: Flaky, buttery scones made with tender apples and gooey caramel sauce.
- Apple Upside Down Cake: This showstoppingly gorgeous dessert is made with moist vanilla cake and topped with caramelized apples.
Juicy, tender apples topped with crunchy, cinnamon streusel make the perfect holiday dessert!
- 2.2 lbs (5-6 cups) apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup (70g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- Pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ground nutmeg or cloves , optional
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (70g) all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup (70g) light brown sugar (or granulated sugar, or a combination)
- 5 tablespoons (70g) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1/3 cup (30g) old-fashioned oats
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Lightly grease a 9-inch round or an 8-inch square baking dish. Set aside.
Make the apple filling:
In a medium bowl, toss apples with lemon juice. Add all other ingredients and toss evenly to coat. Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish and spread evenly. Set aside.
- Make the topping: Place all ingredients except for oats and nuts in a food processor and pulse until mixture clumps together into crumbly balls. Sprinkle oats and nuts over mixture and pulse 2-3 times to combine. Alternately, you can crumble the ingredients in a bowl using a pastry cutter or a fork. Sprinkle crumble evenly on top of the filling.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes, until topping is golden brown and juices are bubbling. The apples should be tender when a toothpick is inserted, but not mushy. If the top is browning too fast, cover loosely with aluminum foil. Allow to cool for a few minutes on a wire rack until warm. Serve warm and, if you like, add ice cream or whipped cream.
- Crumble will keep, covered, in the fridge for up to 3 days, but will taste best and be crispier on the first day it’s made. After that, it will slowly become soggier.