Apple and almond crumble has a deliciously crisp topping, with a sweet layer of apples hidden beneath. It contains very little added sugar, and is packed with the goodness of oats, almonds, and of course apples. This recipe is also gluten free. It's delicious served hot, cold or any temperature in between. Try serving it with easy homemade custard.
What are the best apples for apple crumble?
It's best to use cooking apples such as Bramleys, if you can get them, for your apple and almond crumble. Cooking apples break down to a better texture and have a little more tartness that works very well in dessert recipes. If you do use eating apples, you'll need to precook them first (see below).
How to prepare the apples for your crumble
To peel or not to peel...
I often leave the skins on apples when I cook with them. Many of the vitamins in fruit and veg are just under the skin, and leaving them unpeeled increases the vitamin content. The skin also contains valuable fibre. (This post contains lots of other ways to add more fibre to your diet.) Once the apples are cooked, the skins will have softened and you'll barely notice them. But, go ahead and peel them if you prefer!
Cutting up apples
Quarter each apple, and trim off the core. Then slice each piece into approximately 3-4 mm slices
Do I need to precook the apples for this recipe?
If you are using eating apples, it's best to precook them. Place in a pan over a low heat, and simmer with a little water for 10 minutes or so until they are starting to soften. Otherwise you'll risk them being too hard which will spoil the contrast between the crisp topping and the soft apple. Cooking apples soften more quickly, so you won't need to precook them. If you decide to use a different fruit such as plums or summer fruit, there is no need to precook them either. They'll cook through easily whilst the crumble is in the oven.
Do I need to add sugar to the apples?
Adding some cinnamon and a handful of sultanas to the apples should provide plenty of natural sweetness. But apple varieties can vary so try them when you have precooked them. If they are too sharp, add a spoonful of sugar or honey to taste. You could also omit the sultanas, and include another fruit such as blackberries for a delicious blackberry, apple and almond crumble.
How to make oat and almond crumble topping
- Use soft room temperature butter to make the topping. That way you won't have to overblend the mixture and lose all of the lovely oaty crumbly texture
- If you don't have a food processor, just rub the oats, almonds and sugar into the butter by hand
- You'll need rolled (or porridge) oats for this recipe, not instant oats. If you want to ensure the recipe is gluten free, be sure to buy oats that are labelled gluten free. They'll have been processed separately to ensure that they haven't become cross contaminated with gluten from other grains
- If you want extra nuttiness, stir a handful of flaked almonds into the mixture once it is blended
- Either brown or white sugar is fine
Making a crumble with ground almonds adds extra crunch and richness of flavour. Almonds also add extra protein and are a great source of vitamin E, folate and minerals including zinc, magnesium, calcium and selenium. (See here for more information about the health benefits of almonds.) Oats also add a good amount of fibre and a number of vitamins and minerals.
This easy homemade custard recipe is the perfect accompaniment to your crumble. You might also like to try summer berry crumble, gluten free apple and blackberry crumble or healthy rhubarb crumble. These recipes use an oaty crumble topping without almonds, and of course you can mix and match between the recipes.
Apple and Almond Crumble
- 1 kg apples see notes above
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 tablespoon water
- handful sultanas optional
- 125 g whole porridge oats certified GF if necessary
- 75 g ground almonds
- 75 g butter (room temperature)
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- Quarter the apples, remove the core, and slice. Place in a pan with the spices, sultanas if using and water, and bring to a gentle simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to an ovenproof dish. approx 10 x 8 inches. If you are using cooking apples, there's no need to simmer them first as they'll soften in the oven whilst cooking the crumble. Simple place the sliced raw cooking apples into the baking dish.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (160 fan) Place the oats, ground almonds, sugar and butter in a food processor. Pulse very gently until mixed. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit mixture and bake for 30 minutes until golden.
Please note nutritional information is for guidance only