Paleo Apple Crisp
A healthy and gluten free twist on a traditional and well loved apple crisp will be your favorite fall dessert as the seasons change. Beautiful sweet tart apples baked with aromatic cinnamon topped with a buttery cinnamon topping with lots of nutty pecans. Served warm with some coconut whipped cream and you have absolute apple perfection!
There is an orchard on the Minnesota and Wisconsin border that our family loves to go to every fall. We each grab a bag and fill them up with fresh, crisp, and sweet apples. My favorite part of all that hard work is coming home and baking up all our favorite apple dishes, and this one is at the top of my list. I know you’ll love this simple whole food apple crisp.
Why Apples are So Good For You!
Who doesn’t love a crisp, sweet apple? Aside from how tasty and delicious they are, they are super nutritious and should be part of a whole food diet. Apples originated from Kazakhstan in central Asia and finally made their way to America in the late 1600’s by French Jesuits .
Thank goodness we have apple for our applesauce, apple pies, apple crisp, apple cider, apple muffins, and so much more! Apples are full of nutrients that keep you healthy and nourished, let’s take a look!
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine): A water soluble vitamin that is essential in glucose metabolism and supports health heart and nervous system function.
- Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): There are many benefits from a diet rich in vitamin B6. It plays a role in our immune health, metabolism, and brain health. Vitamin B6 is essential in creating neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, which play a role in emotional health and sleep .
- Vitamin C (ascorbic acid/antioxidant): A powerful antioxidant that reduces oxidative stress, improves the absorption of non-heme iron, supports the immune system, and healthy bones .
- Vitamin E: (antioxidant): Supports immune function and works to regulate free radicals that cause cellular damage and supports the immune system, vision and healthy skin.
- Vitamin K: Fat soluble vitamin that supports the body’s ability to form blood clots and is converted to vitamin K2 in the gut and supports healthy bones .
- Copper: Essential mineral in the formation of red blood cells and in supporting cardiovascular health and immune function .
- Potassium: An essential electrolyte necessary in nervous system function, metabolism, hydration, and in regulating your heartbeat .
Apples are full or insoluble and soluble fiber that supports the digestive system as well as overall health.
- Insoluble fiber: bulking fiber that keeps things moving along through the digestive system promoting healthy detoxification and waste removal.
- Soluble fiber: absorbs water and gels in the digestive tract slowing the absorption of carbohydrates therefor supporting blood sugar regulation and feeds the beneficial bacteria in the microbiome.
Phytochemicals (Antioxidants): Apples are loaded with phytochemicals, which are organic compounds found in produce and are beneficial for health. The richer the color of the fruit or vegetable, the more phytonutrients it contains. Here are a few of the ones found in apples:
- Quercetin: A flavonoid that neutralizes free radicals, reduces inflammation, fights cancer, and supports vessel and heart health.
- Catechin: Also abundant in green tea, catechins reduce oxidative stress and prevent cellular damage and have strong anti-inflammatory properties.
- Gallic acid: Powerful antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and antimicrobial properties .
- Coumaric acid: Powerful phytonutient that has antimicrobial, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties to support health.
So grab some lovely, crisp apples and let’s get cooking!
Paleo Apple Crisp Ingredients
For the Apples:
5 cups Apple slices, sliced to 1/2” thickness
1/4 cup Fresh Lemon Juice
2 Tbsp Arrowroot Starch or Tapioca Starch
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 cup Pure Maple Syrup (opt)
1 Tbsp Ghee or Coconut Oil, melted
Pinch of Fine Sea Salt or Pink Salt
For the Crisp:
1.5 cups Almond Flour
¼ cup + 2 Tbsp Arrowroot Starch or Tapioca Starch
¼ cup + 2Tbsp Coconut Sugar
½ tsp Fine Sea Salt or Pink Salt
1 tsp Baking Soda
½ tsp Ground Cinnamon
½ cup Pecans, chopped
¼ cup + 2Tbsp Brown Butter Ghee, plain Ghee, or Coconut Oil, melted
How to Make Paleo Apple Crisp
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
2. Grease an 8×8 or 7×11 baking dish with 1/2 tsp ghee or coconut oil.
3. Make the crisp
- In a medium bowl add the almond flour, starch, salt, sugar, cinnamon and pecans, stir with a fork to combine.
- Add the ghee or coconut oil and mix well with a fork until the mixture is well combined, set aside.
4. Peel and slice all the apples and add them to a large bowl.
5. To the apples, add the lemon juice, cinnamon, maple syrup and ghee, stirring to coat all the apples and let it sit for 10-minutes.
6. Transfer the apples to your baking dish and top with the crisp.
7. Bake for 40-45 minutes until the crisp and lightly browned.
Serve immediately with Paleo Coconut Whipped Cream!
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Q: How to I keep my apple crisp from becoming too watery?
A: You can add a bit more starch to the apples to help thicken the juices more.
Q: Should I cover my apple crisp while it’s baking?
A: No, you want to leave it uncovered to let the moisture evaporate and make the topping nice and crisp.
Q: What are the best apples to make an apple crisp?
A: I love to use a more firm and tart apple and will often do a combination of Granny Smith and Honeycrisp apples.
If you like this recipe, check these out!
Paleo Chocolate Cheesecake: Decadent, rich, silky melt in your mouth dark chocolate, a salted buttery cookie crust, and creamy fluffy coconut whipped cream…do I have your attention?
The Best Homemade Applesauce: This is a family recipe that was taught to me by my husband’s grandmother and it is the best heavenly chunky applesauce ever!
I hope you enjoy this as much as my family does. – Amy
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I am a holistic nutritionist with an auto-immune disorder, a love of cooking, and a passion for holistic health.
Sharing what I make and eat with all of you…in hopes that you find inspiration here to fuel your body and feel your best with nutrient dense whole foods and clean eating.