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Sugar-Free Apple Crisp

Sugar-Free Apple Crisp -sweet and spiced baked apples topped with a perfectly crisped oat and flour crisp topping, just as delicious as the original. This healthy apple crisp is the best variation of a classic fall favorite! It’s also gluten-free!

three parfait dishes with sugar free apple crisp with a scoop of ice cream on top of one serving

There’s nothing quite like a slice of fresh-baked apple pie after a comforting dinner on a crisp fall day -except for a scoop of warm and gooey baked apple crisp of course. This homemade apple crisp achieves apple pie flavors with much less mess and in much less time. This dessert is one of my favorite recipes to make during apple season and the perfect way to satisfy a sweet tooth.

The original indulgent apple crumble recipe was given to me by my mom years ago and it quickly became a family favorite, especially during the fall when markets are booming with apples. However, Mom’s apple crisp isn’t sugar-free or gluten-free, so I modified it a bit without compromising taste.

The results are just as delicious, if not better. By using a tasty sugar alternative, certified gluten-free oats, and a gluten-free flour blend (like King Arthur’s all-purpose gluten-free flour), this apple crisp is just as delicious and comforting as my mom’s original recipe.

a bowl of sugar free apple crisp in a clear dessert dish

 Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • This healthy sugar-free apple crisp is the perfect recipe for seasonally sweet apples.
  • This apple crisp is the best sugar-free alternative to apple pie in a cinch!
  • This easy recipe makes about 10 servings and is easy to adapt to make more for parties, potlucks, and gatherings.
  • Apple crisps are a great recipe to prep now and bake later.

Ingredients You’ll Need

sugar free apple crisp recipe ingredients on a counter

For the gluten-free streusel topping:

  • Whole Oats – for the best texture, use rolled oats or old-fashioned oats. For gluten-free, make sure that they are certified gluten-free. Once baked, whole oats become soft and tender.
  • Purecane brown sweetener – this sugar alternative is my new favorite zero-calorie all-natural sweetener made from sugarcane. It tastes and bakes like brown sugar making it a perfect addition to this crisp.
  • Gluten-free All-Purpose Flour – Most brands of 1:1 gluten-free flour work great, but I always use and recommend King Arthur measure for measure gluten-free flour for best results. It’s my favorite gluten-free baking blend. To make a whole grain topping (although NOT gluten-free), you can use whole wheat flour (I love white wheat flour) or spelt flour.
  • Salt – enhances flavors.
  • Walnuts (finely chopped) – add density and texture to the topping.
  • Coconut Oil & Butter (both softened) – Instead of using pure butter, a blend of coconut oil and butter is used to make this crisp.
  • Cinnamon – adds a warming flavor to the topping.

For the apples:

  • Baking Apples (large) – peeled and sliced into small wedges (see heading below).
  • Cinnamon – sprinkle the apples with cinnamon to your liking. I love cinnamon, so I give a generous sprinkle.
  • Purecane granulated sweetener – tastes and bakes like regular sugar. I use this to sprinkle over the apples for added sweetness.

Recommended Equipment:

  • Standing Mixer (or mixing bowl/electric mixer)
  • 8″ x 11 ” Baking Dish

Which Apples Are Best For Apple Crisp?

Before gathering the remaining ingredients, it’s important to select apples that are good for baking and won’t turn to mush when cooked. Once baked, the apple pieces should be firm with soft, tender centers. Listed are my favorite apple varieties to use in apple crisps:

  • Jonagold – tart and mildly sweet with honey notes.
  • Autumn Glory Apples – sweet and crisp with caramel notes.
  • Honeycrisp Apples – very sweet and crisp (these are a personal favorite for snacking and baking).
  • Braeburn Apples – slightly sweeter than a Granny Smith, this apple variety is crisp and juicy but holds up well when cooked.
  • Pink Lady Apples – this variety is a good balance of tart and sweet.
  • Granny Smith – the crisp texture and tartness of this apple makes it a favorite for apple pie without being overly sweet.
  • Winesap Apples – our local apple farm grows Stayman Winesap, a delicious southern heirloom variety, that is a good balance of sweet and tart. This variety is great for eating, baking, and making cider.

How To Make Sugar-Free Apple Crisp

Step 1 Preheat oven and prepare apples:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Peel, core, and slice the apples into thin wedges. Set aside.

sliced apples on a cutting board

Step 2 Mix streusel topping:

In the bowl of a standing mixer (or in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer), add all streusel topping ingredients and mix over low speed until the mixture is well-combined, soft, and crumbly.

Step 3 Assemble apple crisp in a baking dish:

Arrange the sliced apples in the bottom of an 8″ x 11″ baking dish.

Sprinkle with as much or as little cinnamon as you prefer and the granulated Purecane on top of the apples.

Spoon the crumble topping on top of the fruit and gently spread it to cover the apples completely with the topping.

collage photo of making crisp topping and assembling the apple crisp in a baking dish

Step 4 Bake and serve:

Transfer the baking dish to a preheated 350-degree oven and bake for 45 minutes or until the apples are soft and cooked through and the topping is crisp and golden brown. Let cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm with Greek yogurt or sugar-free vanilla ice cream. Enjoy.

pan of sugar free apple crisp fresh from the oven

Recipe Tips

  • If gluten is of no concern, you can swap out the gluten-free flour for all-purpose white flour or spelt flour.
  • Another refined sugar swap for Purecane is a stevia-based sweetener. I also really like Whole Earth sweeteners and Truvia brown sugar blend. However, Purecane is my current top choice as a substitute for regular sugar in baking. It has the best flavor and texture without a weird aftertaste.
  • When coating the apples in cinnamon, I recommend starting with 1 to 2 teaspoons but when I make this recipe, I sprinkle the cinnamon with a very heavy hand -the more the better!
  • To cut back on the added granulated Purecane in the recipe you can use an apple variety with more natural sweetness, like Fuji apples.
  • Add a little fresh orange zest to enhance the flavors.
big spoonful of gluten-free apple crisp

Variations & Substitutions

  • Not a fan of coconut? Instead of coconut oil, you can use a butter/olive oil blend, walnut oil or grapeseed oil. However, the coconut flavor is very subtle and it adds an incredible richness to this dessert.
  • To make this apple crisp dairy-free, simply omit the small amount of butter used in the topping mixture and replace it with your favorite plant-based buttery spread.
  • With these instructions, you can also make a delicious gluten-free crisp with fresh pears. Or use a delicious combination of both and make an apple-pear crisp.
  • There’s nothing better than an ooey-gooey scoop of warm apple crisp combined with something sweet, cold and creamy. That said, apple crisp is great served with cottage cheese, vanilla ice cream, frozen yogurt, and Greek yogurt.
wooden tray with parfait dishes of apple crisp and an apple in the background

Storing & Freezing

Storing: To store leftover apple crisp, let it cool completely and refrigerate in a covered container for 5 to 7 days.

Freezing: To freeze, be sure to let the apple crisp cool completely and then transfer it to a freezer-safe container. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge before reheating.

Reheating: Reheat in a baking dish at 350 degrees until the apples are warmed through and the oat topping is re-crisped.

gluten-free apple crisp in a parfait dish

Recipe FAQ

Why is my apple crisp topping not crispy?

The key to achieving a perfect apple crisp topping is to moisten the oats and flour with the right amount of oil/butter. Too little and your topping will be dry and unpleasant. Too much and the topping becomes wet and soggy. Start with less and add more until the consistency is just right.

Should I peel apples for apple crisp?

Peeling the apples for crisps, crumbles, and pies is mostly a matter of preference. Peeled apples become delicate and soft when baked. Unpeeled apples add color, texture, and added nutritional value.

What apples should not be used for baking?

The variety of apples you use must withstand high cooking temperatures. Red delicious and gala are too soft and mealy when raw and will turn to mush when baked.

If you love this healthy apple crisp recipe I would be so grateful if you could leave a 5-star 🌟rating in the recipe card below. I love reading your comments and feedback!

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apple crisp in dessert dishes with spoons and a napkin
a bowl of sugar free apple crisp in a clear dessert dish

Sugar-Free Apple Crisp

Sugar-Free Apple Crisp -sweet and spiced baked apples topped with a perfectly crisped oat and flour crisp topping, just as delicious as the original.
4.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 216kcal
Author: Amee



  • 1 cup whole oats make sure that they are certified GF
  • 1/2 cup Purecane brown Purecane brown is a zero calorie substitute for regular brown sugar that tastes and bakes like brown sugar.
  • 1/3 cup unbleached gluten-free all-purpose flour *see notes for non-GF variation
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup walnuts finely diced
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil slightly melted and cooled
  • 3 tbsp softened butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Apple mixture:

  • 6-7 large baking apples peeled and sliced into small wedges
  • 1-2 tsp cinnamon for sprinkling I like a lot of cinnamon, so I do a generous sprinkle
  • 1/4 cup Purecane granulated sugar substitute for sprinkling on apples


  • Combine all topping ingredients into a mixer
  • While mixing, preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  • When combined your topping should be crumbly
  • Peel and slice your apples and arrange in a medium-size baking dish (I use an 8 1/2 x 11)
  • Sprinkle generously with cinnamon (1-2 tsp or more to taste)
  • Then top with about 1/4 cup Purecane sugar substitute
  • Sprinkle your topping mixture over apples, then bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes
  • Let cool for about 15 minutes before serving


  • If gluten is of no concern, you can swap out the gluten-free flour for all-purpose white flour or spelt flour.
  • When coating the apples in cinnamon, I recommend starting with 1 to 2 teaspoons but when I make this recipe, I sprinkle the cinnamon with a very heavy hand -the more the better!


Calories: 216kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 145mg | Potassium: 175mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 166IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @ameecooks or tag #ameecooks!

Amee Livingston
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4.67 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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