Easy Old Fashioned Apple Crisp with Crunchy Oat Topping

Fall is my favorite dessert season and this Easy Old Fashioned Apple Crisp with Crunchy Oat Topping is one of the reasons for it.  Loads of sweet-tart apples sprinkled with the flavors of fall and topped with a crispy oat crumble make for the most delicious dessert.  This easy recipe is a classic dessert that you will want to make over and over again.  

A white bowl of apple crisp next to a blue towel.

When the leaves start to turn and the weather cools off, cinnamon and apple season has arrived.  That means it is time to pull out all of the delicious apple recipes, like my Apple CrostataApple Streusel Cake, and of course the best oatmeal apple crisp recipe ever!  

This is one of my favorite fall dessert recipes. In fact, my husband says this is one of his all-time favorite desserts no matter what time of year it is!  I must admit that I can’t resist hot Apple Crisp, especially if you serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!  

All the ingredients need to make apple crisp with labels over each one.


This recipe uses a simple combination of apples, lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, brown sugar, butter, and old-fashioned oats.  

What Are the Best Apples to Use for Apple Crisp?

Apple crisp is delicious with tart apples or sweet apples. The best apples to use are of course whatever varieties you like, but some will get soft or mushy when cooked, so you may want to consider that when making your selection.  A few varieties that will hold their shape when baked are:     

  • Tart – Granny Smith 
  • Sweet tart: Jonagold or Jonathan and Cortland 
  • Mildly sweet: Honey Crisp
  • Sweet: Braeburn, Golden Delicious, and Gala

I like tart apples but my husband prefers sweeter apples, so very often I will mix a couple of varieties.  This is a great way to get a nice combination of flavors and please everyone at the same time.  But, you really can’t go wrong with any of these delicious apples.

How to Make this Dessert

Sliced apples coated in cinnamon sugar in a glass dish.

1. Prepare the Apples

Slice the apples and toss them in a large mixing bowl with lemon juice.  Then add the cinnamon, nutmeg, and granulated sugar.  Toss the apples again to evenly coat them.

Cinnamon crumble topping in a glass bowl.

2. Make the Crumble Topping

  • Combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar in a bowl.  
  • Then add the butter and using a pastry cutter or a fork, press the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture forms pea-shaped crumbles.  
A baked apple crisp in a glass dish next to an apple and a blue towel.

3. Assemble and Bake

Pour the apple mixture into your prepared baking dish.  Sprinkle the oatmeal topping evenly over the top of the apples., covering them completely. 

Bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes.  Your apple crisp is done when the topping is golden brown and the apples are tender when pierced with a toothpick.

Baking Tips for the Best Apple Crisp:

  • I would also suggest that you peel the apples.  Some varieties have a tougher, thicker skin and it may not cook down enough by the time the apples are done.  
  • Try to cut the apples into similar-sized slices.  This way the apples cook evenly and you won’t end up with some bigger undercooked chunks.  
  • Start with butter that is softened to room temperature.  This will make it easy to cut into the other ingredients.  


This recipe works well with other fresh fruits and berries. Substitute pears or peaches, mix some in with your apples if you have some on hand. Berries are another delicious add in to apple crisp. So throw in some blueberries, strawberries or raspberries.

Sweet Raisins or dried cherries make a classic flavor combination when partnered with cinnamony apples.

Serving, Storing, and Reheating Leftover Apple Crisp

There is nothing as good as apple crisp that is served warm out of the oven.  Our favorite way to serve it is alongside a big scoop of ice cream.  But it is also delicious with whipped cream or drizzled with caramel sauce.  Or all of the above!

If you do have leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container or tightly covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for several days.   Apple crisp can be reheated for a minute or two in the microwave.  If you want to get that crispy texture in the topping, pop it in a 350-degree f oven for 10-15 minutes.  I have also made oatmeal apple crips ahead and then reheated it just before serving. 

A bowl of apple crisp with two scoops of vanilla ice cream next to an apple and two cinnamon sticks.


What is the difference between apple crisp and apple crumble?

Apple crisp and apple crumble are basically the same thing and the terms are often used interchangeably. Usually a crumble is made with a streusel topping of flour, sugar and butter but no oats. While a crisp topping has the same ingredients but includes oats which give it the crunchy texture.

Can you use quick oats instead of old fashioned oats?

Yes you certainly can use quick oats to make an apple crisp. You may find that the topping is not as crispy as it would be with old fashioned oats because the quick oats break down faster, but the flavor will not suffer.

Why is my apple crisp mushy?

Mushy apples means that you either overcooked the apples or the apples you selected get soft when cooked.
The topping may get mushy if it has been left out for a little while. You can easily fix this by reheating it in the oven for a few minutes.

Other Delicious Desserts You Will Love

I have some other classic dessert recipes that you might want to try. Who doesn’t love a simple super moist Carrot Cake with decadent cream cheese frosting. I love this recipe because the results are consistently delicious! Even my picky husband loves it!

Other traditional that my family loves include my Lemon Meringue Pie, Homemade Peach Cobbler, Peanut Butter Pie Brownies, and No Bake Pumpkin Pie.

I love to get your feedback so if you tried this No Bake Pumpkin Pie with Graham Cracker Curst & Pecan Topping  or any other recipes on this website, please leave me a comment below.  I hope you enjoy our recipes and look forward to hearing from you!

You can also follow me on FacebookInstagram and Pinterest for more recipes your family will love!

A bowl of apple crisp.

The Best Apple Crisp with Oats

Tons of apples sprinkled with cinnamon and nutmeg and then topped with a sweet, crunchy oat streusel for a mouth watering dessert. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for a decadent dessert perfect for any occasion.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 351 kcal



  • 4 Apples Large, baking apples such as Honeycrisp, Gala, Braeburn or Jonagold. Peeled, cored and sliced.
  • 1 Tsp. Lemon juice optional
  • 2 Tbsp. Sugar Granulated
  • ½ Tsp. Cinnamon
  • ¼ Tsp. Nutmeg


  • ½ Cup Flour All purpose
  • ½ Cup Oats Whole grain rolled oats
  • Cup Brown sugar Packed
  • 1 Tsp. Cinnamon
  • ½ Tsp. Nutmeg
  • 6 Tbsp. Butter Softened



  • Preheat the oven to 375°. Butter or spray a 9"x 9"x2" baking dish.
  • In a large bowl, toss the apple slices with the lemon juice. This step is optional as it is just to help the apples maintain their color.
  • Sprinkle the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg over the apples and toss or mix to evenly coat the them. Set side.


  • Combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter in a medium sized bowl.
  • Cut the butter into the other ingredients with a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture forms pea size crumbles.


  • Pour the apples into prepared baking dish.
  • Sprinkle the topping over the apples so that they are completely and evenly covered.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the apples are tender.
  • Remove from oven and cool slightly before serving with your favorite ice cream or whipped cream.
  • Can be made ahead and reheated in the oven before serving.


Serving: 1servingsCalories: 351kcalCarbohydrates: 60gProtein: 3gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 104mgPotassium: 210mgFiber: 5gSugar: 42gVitamin A: 439IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 50mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Best Apple Crisp, Apple Crisp, dessert, apple recipes, oats, easy dessert, best dessert, fall dessert
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