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Fall and apples go hand in hand—there’s no question about it.
Although you can certainly buy apples year-round in any grocery store, there’s something about fall that makes people bust out their apple recipes or head to the orchards for some way-too-expensive apple picking.
But we won’t be snacking on crisp slices of cold apples anymore (that’s strictly for the warmer months)—we’re going to be cooking up warmed apple recipes, like this single-serve apple crumble that’s healthier than most.
However, early fall always tends to come with some days that are still on the warm side—so don’t worry, we won’t be turning the oven on, opting for the stovetop instead with this easy apple crumble recipe (the scoop of vanilla ice cream is not included, but recommended!).
Tips for Making a Healthy Apple Crumble
This isn’t a traditional apple crumble recipe (which is often loaded with sugar, flour, and butter)—our single-serve apple crumble is lower in calories and sugar and is much easier to make.
Plus, we nixed the oven and are making our apple crumble stovetop—and in just 20 minutes total, including 10 minutes of rest time, you’ll be snacking on this tasty dessert (that could also double as a healthy breakfast).
To make a healthy apple crumble, we’re sorry to say that some of the butter, sugar, and flour have got to go.
Rather, we used KIND Healthy Grains Clusters, Cinnamon Oat Granola With Flax Seeds to get the perfect flavor combinations with a fraction of the calories and sugar.
All you have to do is mix this granola on the stove with butter, diced Honeycrisp apples, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg, cloves, and a bit of honey—it could not be easier!
Plus, cooked apples have some serious benefits.
Raw or not, apples of any type are definitely healthy foods. However, cooked apples have the added benefit of higher amounts of pectin—a prebiotic fiber that helps your good gut bacteria to survive and thrive.
While all apples have pectin, cooking apples helps the fibers break down further and release higher amounts of pectin, benefiting your gut health and reducing inflammation.
Single-Serve Apple Crumble Ingredient Spotlight:
- Honeycrisp Apples. These are the star of the show! While you can use any type of apple that you prefer, we love Honeycrisp apples for their crunchy texture, honey-sweet flavor, and slightly tart notes. Granny Smith apples and Pink Lady apples are also popular choices for apple crumbles.
- KIND Healthy Grains Clusters. Instead of making our own apple crumble topping (who’s got the time?!) we took a shortcut and used healthy cinnamon oat granola clusters from KIND. Each ⅓ cup serving has 120 calories, 3 grams of fat, 21 grams of carbs (with 4 grams of fiber), and 6 grams of sugar that comes from molasses. A traditional apple crumble recipe uses up to one cup of brown sugar per dessert, which is much more sugar than you’ll find in this easy apple crumble recipe.
- Butter. It wouldn’t be an apple crumble if there wasn’t butter! However, we’ve drastically cut down the amount to just ½ of a tablespoon, so this apple crumble recipe is still low in calories and fat compared to traditional apple crumbles.
- Apple Cider Vinegar. The acidity of ACV gives the crumble brightness and keeps the apples from discoloring (similar to the effects of lemon juice). It also helps to balance out the overall sweetness of the recipe, adding a tart flavor to the dish.
- Cinnamon. Apples and cinnamon are an ideal combination, as the subtly earthy and spiced notes of the cinnamon go perfectly with the sweetness of the apple.
- Vanilla Extract, Nutmeg, Cloves, and Honey. These remaining ingredients are used in small amounts—but they add loads of flavor. Nutmeg, ground cloves, and vanilla extract add subtle earthy spices and warmth, while a touch of honey rounds out the sweetness of the recipe with a fraction of the sugar.
Apple Crumble Recipe
- 1 Honeycrisp apple
- ⅓ cup KIND Healthy Grains Clusters, Cinnamon Oat Granola With Flax Seeds
- ½ tbsp Butter
- 3 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- ¾ cup of Water
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
- Sprinkle nutmeg
- Sprinkle of ground cloves
- Honey to taste
Add butter, granola, and ½ cup of water to a pot.
Cut the apple into slices or chunks.
Bring to a boil and add in apple chunks.
Add ¼ cup of water, apple cider vinegar, honey, and spices.
Cover and let sit for 10 minutes.
Once apples are softened, serve warm, pour into a bowl and enjoy!
Add an additional sprinkle of granola on top if desired.
Apple Crumble FAQs
What Is the Difference Between Apple Crisp and Apple Crumble?
Apple crisps and apple crumbles are both baked desserts with a layer of topping. The difference lies in the type of topping—apple crumble topping is typically similar to a streusel and is made with flour, sugar, and butter.
The topping of an apple crisp is also streusel-like, but almost always includes rolled oats or nuts, while an apple crumble topping will not. An apple crisp will also typically have a crisper and looser top layer than an apple crumble.
Is It Better to Use Cold Butter or Melted Butter in an Apple Crumble?
When making a traditional apple crumble, it’s best to use cold butter.
Using room temperature or melted butter will cause the apple crumble topping to spread while it bakes, which won’t cook evenly.
Rather, using cold pieces of butter helps the crumble ingredients bind to each other before baking begins, creating the perfect golden brown apple crumb topping.
What’s the Secret to the Perfect Apple Crumble Recipe?
Cold butter helps the apple crumble topping ingredients bind better before baking, making a crumble topping that is crispier and more evenly baked.
Brown sugar is the recommended sugar to use when making an apple crumble recipe, as it creates a golden brown topping and has a richer, caramel-like flavor.
It’s also helpful to peel the apples, which ensures you don’t have tough bits of apple peel in your apple crumble.
Another tip is adding a pinch of salt to the apple filling to bring out all of the flavors, and a touch of lemon juice to prevent the apples from browning.
Finally, In addition to the lemon juice trick, a perfect apple crumble that is reminiscent of apple pie desserts will have a small scoop of vanilla ice cream on top!