Apple Crisp

I originally published this gluten-free apple crisp recipe almost three years ago. I wanted to bring it back today because it’s a great fall apple dessert and while most apple crisp recipes use oats, this one does not. While I know there are gluten-free oats available, I also know that many people cannot tolerate even those.

Gluten-Free Apple Crisp (oat free) at The Gluten-Free Homemaker

The photo above shows the apple crisp made with granulated sugar. The photo below shows it made with half sugar and half coconut palm sugar.

Original post from November 2011:

This apple crisp recipe is gluten free and it does not use oats. When I made it over the weekend, I decided to replace half the sugar with coconut palm sugar.  Not only does it make the recipe healthier, it adds its own flavor to the recipe, which we enjoyed.  The palm sugar is dark and gives the topping a darker color than it will have if you use only white sugar.

This was my first time making apple crisp this fall.  Part of the reason I hadn’t made it sooner is that my oldest son (the one who is gluten free) usually isn’t too fond of cooked fruit desserts.  I didn’t expect him to be thrilled with this one (he never was in the past), but I was pleasantly surprised when he said he enjoyed it.  Maybe it was the healthier coconut oil and coconut palm sugar I used. Smile

I have always used butter or a dairy free margarine in this recipe, but I decided to try coconut oil this time.  I had just received my order of Tropical Traditions Expeller Pressed Coconut Oil which Heidi of Adventures of a Gluten-Free Mom recommended.

I’ve been using coconut oil for some time, but the brands I have tried all have some coconut flavor to them.  I don’t really mind the flavor, but my picky eater is very picky about it.  It’s not that he totally dislikes coconut, but he doesn’t like it in everything and definitely not where it doesn’t belong such as sautéed zucchini!  Because I’ve been buying BJ’s brand shampoo for them which is coconut scented, it makes him feel like he’s eating shampoo!

That’s why I was thrilled when I read Heidi’s recommendation for this coconut oil which does not have any coconut flavor.  It worked great in this recipe, but butter or a substitute will work too.

Gluten-Free Apple Crisp (oat free) at The Gluten-Free Homemaker

Apple Crisp
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
  • 6 cups peeled and sliced Granny Smith apples
  • 1 cup sorghum flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup solid coconut oil, butter, or margarine
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Place the apple slices in a greased 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  3. Mix the remaining ingredients together in a mixing bowl using a dough blender.
  4. Sprinkle on top of the apples and bake for 35 – 45 minutes until the apples are soft.

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  1. says

    I’m seeing sorghum flour used in a lot of recipes on gluten free blogs. Can you tell me what it tastes like? I’m curious how it compares to quinoa flour, or coconut flour, or rice flour.

    • says

      Sorghum does not have a strong or distinct flavor. I think quinoa flour is much stronger tasting. Sorghum is lighter than rice flour, and I like using the two in combination. Coconut flour I have not used very much and requires a greater amount of liquid in recipes than sorghum or rice flour do.

  2. JillW says

    Linda, this recipe looks perfect for TODAY at our house. I just purchased some palm sugar and was looking for something quick but yummy to try it out in. And I’m going to have to look into that coconut oil. Thanks!!!

  3. JillW says

    Linda, my crisp didn’t “crisp.” I’m wondering why. Maybe the brand of coconut oil? Or what form was your palm sugar in. Mine came in a solidified form. Appreciate your advice. The family LOVED the apple dessert anyway–and so easy! Thanks, Jill

    • says

      Jill, I think it can depend on a number of factors. If the apples have a lot of water in them, that can keep the topping too moist to really crisp. The palm sugar I used is granulated. I’ve never seen it another way, and I’m not sure what you mean by yours being solidified. Or were you referring to the coconut oil? My oil was solidified. You could try using less oil. I’m glad you all enjoyed it.

      • JillW says

        Oh, OK! I think the palm sugar must explain it, then. The store where I volunteer just got some in a couple weeks ago, and it was the first I’d seen. It’s in a solid form we call a “dollop,” sort of the consistency of candy corn (for lack of a better comparison at the moment-lol!). I’ve not seen it in granulated form yet but am glad to know it comes in that form. Tks!

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