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Quick And Easy Healthy Dessert Recipes: How To Make A Great Apple Crisp

Updated on April 10, 2011

Healthy Recipe: Apple Crisp Recipe

Now before you start saying 'How is apple crisp a healthy recipe?' let's examine the facts. In actuality, apple crisp can be a healthy recipe. That is, if you cut the fat and the sugar, which is what I did with this traditional old favorite.

I'm trying to revamp many recipes that I've made for years.  Even though they were on the 'lighter' side already, there is still room for improvement in cutting out unnecessary fat and sugar if at all possible and hopefully still retaining the flavor.

What I want in my apple crisp is something that is mostly good for us and still tastes great. I think I accomplished this with my recipe. Try it and let me know if you think I succeeded!

I actually started out making apple crisp but since I had pears, in creating this recipe, I decided to go half and half.  It really could be an apple and pear crisp but for simplicity sake, we will just call it apple crisp. 

By the way, the apple and pear crisp combo was fabulous!


Healthy Recipe for Apple Crisp

Makes 1 small flat casserole dish - about 4-6 servings


  • 4-6 medium sized apples of good flavor (I used 3 fuji apples and 3 pears) - peeled and sliced or chunked
  • Couple tablespoons of water mixed with teaspoon of lemon juice if desired (up to 1/4 cup if you want lots of liquid)
  • Nutmeg to taste
  • Cinnamon to taste
  • 3-4 tablespoons of butter or margarine slightly thawed
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons unbleached flour
  • 1/2-3/4 cup of Bob's 5-grain cereal (or substitute oatmeal)
  • 1/4 cup or less of brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup or so of chopped walnuts
  • Dash of salt if desired
  • Vegetable spray


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Spray flat casserole dish or large pie plate with cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. Peel and slice apples or pears and arrange in chunked or heaped slice fashion in casserole.
  4. Sprinkle with salt if desired, a bit of nutmeg and cinnamon to your tastes.
  5. Using a measuring cup, pour water and lemon juice into bottom of casserole over apples or along sides. (This will act as a steaming agent during cooking). Set aside.
  6. Combine butter or margarine with flour, oat cereal and brown sugar with a pastry blender. Keep working until you have it mixed into a crumbly topping density.
  7. Stir in walnuts.
  8. Carefully arrange topping over the top of apples.
  9. If desired, spray the topping with a bit of cooking spray to encourage browning.
  10. Bake at 375 degrees until golden brown and apples are bubbling. If topping is browning too quickly and apples need more time to bake, cover loosely with foil and bake until apples are desired softness.
  11. Let cool for 10 minutes if you can before digging in.

NOTE: A small dollop of real whipped cream or nonfat yogurt ice cream goes well with this dish.

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public domain photopublic domain photoall other photos by Audrey KirchnerBob's 5-grain cerealapples and pearsflour, sugar and cerealworking topping ingredientsfinished toppingafter putting on toppingfinished product!
public domain photo
public domain photo
public domain photo
public domain photo
all other photos by Audrey Kirchner
all other photos by Audrey Kirchner
Bob's 5-grain cereal
Bob's 5-grain cereal
apples and pears
apples and pears
flour, sugar and cereal
flour, sugar and cereal
working topping ingredients
working topping ingredients
finished topping
finished topping
after putting on topping
after putting on topping
finished product!
finished product!

Healthy Recipe for Apple Crisp

You can double this recipe and have leftover crisp for several days.

I love to make crisps for other people and find that it's a welcome dessert when you need something of a comfort food nature to give to someone.

I've brought crisps to people who just had surgery or just got home with a new baby and they've always been well received. They're also a welcome treat to give just because!

I make a lot of crisps for desserts because they keep well and are easy to make ahead or on the spot. 

I tend to use the fruits or berries that are in season or if I have frozen blueberries for instance, they're always available.

I prefer crisps to many desserts because most of the sugar in the dessert comes from the fruit itself.

I will even have a bit of crisp for breakfast if I'm rushed for time - add a tiny bit of milk poured over it and delicious!

No matter how you prepare it, you can't go wrong with a crisp.

Experiment with different cereals and see what you come up with. I decided to try the Bob's 5-grain cereal because I had such a little bit left and it looked very similar to oatmeal.  However, it had all kinds of good things in it as well such as flaxseed. As it turns out, it turned out even better than my 'traditional' crisp and I used much less butter and brown sugar.

Hope you enjoy this healthy recipe for apple crisp!

Great Recipe for Ginger Snap Apple Crisp

Another Recipe for Apple Crisp


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    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      9 years ago from Washington

      Thanks for stopping in, Quilt - blueberry and apple is also a great combo.

    • quilt827 profile image


      9 years ago from Tampa Bay, Florida

      Love the idea of apple and pear! Also vareing the topping ingredients sounds interesting ! Thanks

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks Katrinasui - Hope you like it!

    • katrinasui profile image


      10 years ago

      It looks delicious. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. it's a must try.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks KKG - it really was great and I love that it was healthier!

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Hazelton 

      10 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Your apple crisp looks and sounds delicious. The best part is how healthy it seems to be. It's a must try.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks, Dolores....yes, convincing Bob of the 5 portion rule or less is the tricky part!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      10 years ago from East Coast, United States

      Deserts are generally not very healthy but cutting back on the sugar and fat is an improvement. The main thing about keeping weight down is not to overdo. My suggestion for any dessert is not to eat 5 servings of it, haha. The apple crisp sounds delicious.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks Micky - but this is healthy so you could eat this and have less pizza!

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 

      10 years ago

      I think I've gained some weight just coveting this masterpiece! Thank you Dear akirchner! God bless!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Katie - Pumpkin waffles and I wasn't invited? Yummmmm - that sounds so good. Have your shoot me that recipe! Gosh that sounds delish. Hope she likes this one and what a gift - my daughter always cooked too and I loved it.

      Crewman6 - You may have a great idea there....I do love to cook as well as do so many other things. If only I had time to organize my stuff into books. I need to get my Griffin trained on the computer - or Bob - or somebody!!

    • Crewman6 profile image


      10 years ago

      I love how you redesign so many tasty foods into something healthy, and still tasty! Is there a book in your future? "The Best HubRecipes of akirchner." I bet it'd be on the bestseller list for at least 6 months straight!

    • katiem2 profile image

      Katie McMurray 

      10 years ago from Ohio

      I'm going to send this recipe to my 12 year old daughters inbox, she loves to cook, just made pumpkin waffles this morning before school. She made the pumpkin puree last night. She'll love your healthy recipe for apple crisp and I can kick back and enjoy. Thanks :)

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Me, too - thanks for stopping by Steph. Hope ya'll enjoy it.

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Marshall 

      10 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      My mom is making apple crisp tonight and I'm going to have to shoot her this recipe first! In fact, I'm going to make some this weekend too. Love fall baking!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks for stopping by, NCB - it's all about getting to eat what we want within reason, isn't it? That's my goal anyhow!!

      Jaye - Glad to know this can swap out as a vegan recipe, too - that makes it all the better! Hope you enjoy it. I really liked the added delight of the cereal rather than 'just plain old' oatmeal - but is there anything plain old about oatmeal? I really love it no matter what else is combined with it!

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 

      10 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Hi, A...Thanks for the apple crisp recipe, which I will ensure is vegan by using vegan margarine (not butter). I love it when I find a good recipe that I can tweak just a bit (or not, if it isn't necessary) to fit my vegan lifestyle and thrill my taste buds! JAYE

    • NCBIer profile image


      10 years ago

      I will definitely be making this come Thanksgiving. I so appreciate your efforts to make healthy recipes and I'm sure my family will appreciate this one in particular. Your black bean enchiladas and salmon loaf are also on my list to try as soon as possible. Thank you for the hub!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Darski - Glad to help the old sweet tooth. Bob has a powerful one and he is famous for eating large slices of chocolate cake. The older we get, the 'better' we are supposed to be so this is my effort at curbing his sweet tooth and giving him what he craves at the same time...sugar!

      Prasetio - I hope your mom makes it for you, too! It is one of my favorite desserts in the cold weather...after a nice day outside in the snow with the malamutes...yum. The apple sounds delish - I wonder if we have that over here!

    • prasetio30 profile image


      10 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I love apple very much. My town also produced delicious apple. It called "Apple Malang". I believe Apple Crisp Recipe is the healthy recipe. Again...I'll share this recipe to my Mom. I hope she want to make this for our family. Rating up


    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 

      10 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      Now this is right for me, sweets is my weakness and I am always looking for ways to eat my sweets in a healthy way. This is an excellent hub my friend, I have added so many of your talented recipes to my favorites. Thank you for this awesome hub. Your friend & fan darski

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Laurel - Thanks for stopping by and hope you like it!

      Lela - That is too hilarious....I guess you could substitute vegetables for the fruits? We'll have to give it a try! Squash might work well???

      HH - Thanks for the read and hope you like it, too!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      10 years ago from London, UK

      Sounds great and a must try. Thanks.

    • Austinstar profile image


      10 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      I really don't like apples or any other fruit actually (It's a long story), but I have to learn to like them, so I will try this recipe.

      Hint: I wrote a hub about my banana phobia. It kind of extended itself to other fruits.

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      10 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      I'm off to bookmark this Hub for Thanksgiving or Christmas-can't quite decide yet.

      Audrey, this is terrific!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      BJ - I think many people beat me to it! But glad you liked it and you know you can always get some at my house!

      FloBe - any apple with good sweet and sour will do - one of my favorites is the granny smith though you might have to add a bit more sugar!

      MT - The caramel sounds it on here? I will have to look and see if I can find it and link it too!

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 

      10 years ago from Minnesota

      Hi akirchner-I recently did a recipe on caramel apple crisp which is definitely less healthy but still quite similiar in all other ingredients. I've tried many differen't recipes for apple crisp and I like using brown sugar way more than white and I actually love oatmeal in it now as I think it gives it better taste and texture. Thx for the tips.

    • FloBe profile image

      Flo Belanger 

      10 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This recipe sounds yummy. I love apple crisp and right now my favorite apples are Jonagolds--crisp with the perfect sweet/sour taste. I'm going to have to give it a try!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      10 years ago from south Florida

      Apple and pear crisp? Apple crisp with pears? By George, I think you've discovered something wonderful, Audrey. Patent it . . . quickly.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Alekhouse - One of the reasons I love fall so much I guess is the 'excuse' to make apple anything or crisps or soups or breads or......I just really don't need an excuse but I love fall! I'll be thinking of you on Friday and wishing I was there. I can almost smell it baking....yum!

    • alekhouse profile image

      Nancy Hinchliff 

      10 years ago from Essex Junction, Vermont

      Wow! This is great. We're making Apple Crisp at our Inn this Friday, as we do all through the fall and winter months. Bought a bunch of Granny Smith Apples today...that's what we always use. I think I'll try cutting down on the butter and sugar as you suggest. Thanks, Audrey.


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