Nothing says fall in New England more than warm apple crisp topped with a scoop of melty vanilla bean ice cream. This recipe for Mama’s Best Apple Crisp is my favorite apple crisp recipe.
The apples are tender and delicious, cinnamon-spiced, and the topping is crunchy and buttery. I like my apple crisp with crunchy topping. It’s a great contrast with the apples and vanilla bean ice cream.
Last Columbus Day it was a school holiday around here. We headed for the orchard at Lavoie Farm, stopping to pick up a few cousins along the way to go apple picking. We also took their dad (my brother) along. You may remember he had had a serious accident and had undergone numerous surgeries.
He was still in a wheelchair and would be for a while yet, and we were all rooting for his recovery as he worked so hard with physical therapists to get back on his feet. I knew he was glad to get out of the house and go apple picking and we were so glad he could manage it. We plunked his chair under an apple tree and picked around him. It was a gorgeous, warm fall day in New Hampshire and lots of fun.
We thoroughly enjoyed those Macintosh apples and I made this Mama’s Best Apple Crisp that night because it’s one of my brother’s favorite desserts. Mine too!
Update: just a few days ago, a year and a half after his big accident, my brother called me from the ski slope. Uh huh. Yep. This is the guy that shattered a wrist, an ankle and a knee. He called to say he was on the slopes SKIING. Yes! I’ve seen him recovering bit by bit all along the way, but I could’ve never guessed that less than two years later he’d be on the slopes again. His healing is a real miracle and an answer to many prayers.
This recipe is extra special because crumbs and topping are throughout the crisp, not just on top. Oatmeal, butter, brown sugar too. A mixture of vanilla and orange juice is poured directly over the apples before the topping is sprinkled on, creating a wonderfully flavored apple filling that tastes sweet, but not citrusy like you might think.
You’ll want to use tart, firm apples for this recipe. I used Macintosh apples because that’s what we picked. Cortland and Granny Smith also work well. Or your favorite cooking apple. Make this recipe in a pie plate or skillet and it serves six. Or double and make in a 9 X 13″ pan to serve more. Either way, Mama’s Best Apple Crisp is hands down the best apple crisp I’ve ever tasted. Hope you love it too!
Mama's Best Apple Crisp
- 3/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 3/4 cups white wheat flour or all purpose
- 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup butter cut into pieces
- 6 medium/large apples cored, peeled and sliced
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- Optional: 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- Butter or grease 8 X 8 X 2 baking dish or a 10" pie plate.
- Combine brown sugar, flour, both sugars, oats and cinnamon in a large bowl.
- Cut in butter 'til there are only small pea-size pieces.
- Place apples in a large bowl.
- Toss apples with 1/2 of butter/crumb mixture (about 1 3/4 cups).
- Place coated apples in prepared pan.
- Separately, mix orange juice and vanilla together.
- Pour over apples.
- Add chopped pecans to remaining crumb mixture and sprinkle over apples in pan.
- Bake at 325° 'til juices are bubbly and topping is dry, about 40 minutes.
- Serve warm with ice cream.
You may also like: Roasted Peach Cobbler
Megan Marlowe says
Oh Ally, you’ve done it again. Your family has some seriously delicious recipes! I love the addition of orange juice and will most definitely try this!
Sarah Sonnamaker says
This is mouthwatering, I’ll have to try it!
Michelle | A Dish of Daily Life says
There is nothing like apple crisp with fall apples, especially New England apples! They taste so good right off the tree. The addition of orange juice in your recipe is intriguing…I’m going to have to try this!
Mmm… This recipe looks so good. I definitely like a crunchy topping on apple crisp –
It creates such a yummy contrast with the softness of the apples. I am glad that your brother was was able to join you guys under the shade of an apple tree on a warm, sunshiny day. I bet that did a lot for his spirit. It sounds like a lovely time. Xo
Kristen @ A Mind Full Mom says
Nothing beats a recipe that has been passed down. This look just perfect!
My all time favorite! Love anything with apples, and coming from mama’s kitchen, well, you know, that it was made with lots of love.
I can’t wait to try it. Thanks Allie.
Robin @ Simply Southern Baking says
Mmmmmm….I’m smacking my lips looking at this! Perfect fall treat.
Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction says
Apple crisp is such a great way to showcase fall apples! This would disappear in a hurry at our house!
Mandy @Mandy's Recipe Box says
Apple Crisp is the best! This looks great and now I’m craving some 🙂
oooooo….. Does that ever look good!! We love apple crisp! I have a good recipe but this looks even better. Can’t wait to try it! Thanks Mama!!!
Aunt Pinkie says
Looks incredible! Love apple crisp! And what fun that Johnny could go, too! Thanks for what I know will be another winner!
Barbara Child says
One of favorites! And I love the addition of orange juice! Will try that next time! Thanks so much, Allie!
Susie Mandel says
I just love apples and cinnamon…can’t wait to try this.
Karen @ On the Banks of Salt Creek says
Apple crisp is my favorite dessert. So easy to make and so dang good. Love it.
Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary says
Oh, YAY!!! I am so glad your brother is on the road to recovery and actually getting out of the house! That is fantastic news, Allie!!! Apple picking is such a fun family activity, sounds like ya’ll had a blast! I can’t think of any better way to use all those apples than this Crisp! It looks seriously delicious!!! I LOVE that the crisp topping is actually throughout the whole thing! And the orange and vanilla flavors along with it sound just lovely! This crisp looks looks and sounds just perfect! I can totally see why this is “Mama’s BEST”! Pinned! Cheers, my dear! XO
Looking forward to trying.
Joanie @ Zagleft says
Allie, I’m so glad your brother is doing better. I’m sure getting out in the sunshine with you all was so good for him. This apple crisp looks so good, I bet the orange juice added such a great flavor. I can’t wait to give this recipe a try.
You were reading my mind Allie! I was waiting for you to come up with an apple crisp recipe. Nothing smells better than apples and cinnamon. We have a very similar dish in France. Looks more like a clafoutis (it has eggs, cream and one day old bread) and my mom used to make it for dinner when the fridge was empty. It was like having desert for dinner. What a treat. Will definitely try your recipe. Thanks again, XO
Mind reading is my specialty, Daniella. Ha. I sure would love to try that clafoutis, especially for dinner! Your mom had a good thing going. Great to hear from you, miss you much. XOXO
Dear Allie, Apple Crisp happens to be one of my favorites. I love desserts with fruit in them. Great idea to have the crumbs throughout the crisp…that was always my favorite part! Keeping your brother and family in my prayers. Enjoy the beautiful autumn weather my dear. xo. Catherine
What a fun day of apple picking! So glad your brother was able to join you. This apple crisp looks absolutely delicious, Allie!!
Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says
I love that you have the oatmeal throughout the whole dish! Such a fun idea!
Aimee @ ShugarySweets says
I just love this apple crisp!! Fall baking is the best season of all 🙂
Anu-My Ginger Garlic Kitchen says
Loved reading this, Allie. And your mama’s recipe ROCK. Love how tender and delicious they are. And they cinnamon-spiced too. Thanks for your Mom’s recipe! Have a happy day! 🙂
Shashi at RunninSrilankan says
Allie, I must say, the thought of an apple crisp with “crumbs and topping …throughout the crisp, not just on top” is pretty much a dream – and something my tastebuds would enjoy year round! This sounds delightfully delicious!
I hope your brother heals quickly and is up and about sooner than expected.
Mmmm des pommes fondantes, le petit crumble crunchy….ce dessert est une merveille ! Dégusté dans un jour de pluie comme aujourd’hui ça doit être tout un plaisir! xoxo
Many thanks Eva, how did you know? Apple Crisp is perfect on a cold, rainy day….:)
This recipe looks so delicious! Hi, I’m Anita visiting from Foodie Fridiy.
Hi Anita, thanks so much for dropping by, a treat to have you here. Hope you get to try this apple crisp, it’s perfect for fall! Have a wonderful weekend!
Tony Molica says
Love it! Yum.
Susie Mandel says
Um, you have got to be kidding me–Johnny is skiing?!!! I’d be scared to ride my bike after an accident like that. He is living on the edge and not afraid–go, Johnny!! (Still praying he does it safely.)
I KNOW Susie….I couldn’t even believe it when he told me where he was. C-R-A-Z-Y.
Aunt Pinkie7 says
The Apple crisp looks soooo good And am thrilled that Johnny is skiing-amazing!
This recipe is just what I’ve been looking for! And it definitely will require doubling when my grandchildren come over for Sunday dinner—I can’t wait to make it and dive in!
Thanks Sue, I hope you all love it, and don’t forget the vanilla ice cream! XO
I look forward to trying this recipe! So glad to read about your brother’s recovery, and his story. Praise the Lord!
Ce doit être terriblement bon Allie ! J’adore le crumble et les tartes ,belle journée
I adore apple crisp and need to try your mama’s recipe. How wonderful that your brother made such a nice recovery—what a scary time for your family!