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apple crisp topped with ice cream in a bowl

Lightened up Maple-Pecan Apple Crisp

A lightened up version of your favorite apple crisp: healthier maple pecan apple crisp with a delicious crunchy pecan oat topping! This apple crisp recipe has less sugar and is easily made vegan. 

Course Crisp, Dessert
Keyword pecan apple crisp
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 9 servings
Calories 204 kcal
Author Monique Volz of Ambitious Kitchen


  • 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup cold butter or vegan butter stick, cut into small cubes
  • 5 medium Honeycrisp, Braeburn or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract or bourbon (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease an 8x8 baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. To make the topping: Combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon and pecans in a large bowl until well-combined. Add in the pieces of butter and use your hands to squeeze and combine until the mixture becomes crumbly and resembles wet sand. (Alternatively, you can cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, or place all of the topping ingredients in a food processor and pulse until just blended. My favorite method is to use my hands, as I believe you get the best crumbly topping that way.)
  3. Once finished, place topping in the fridge and begin making the apple filling.
  4. To make the filling: Place apples, maple syrup cinnamon and bourbon in a large bowl and toss to combine.
  5. Take a heaping 1/4 cup of the topping mixture and toss with the apple mixture. Place the apple mixture in prepared pan and sprinkle evenly with topping.
  6. Bake the crisp on a baking sheet (just in case the filling bubbles over!) for 45-55 minutes, or until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbling. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes on wire rack. Serve warm with low fat vanilla ice cream. Makes 9 servings.

Recipe Notes

Slightly adapted from Cooking Light

Feel free to use walnuts or almonds instead of pecans.

To make this gluten free, use GF oats and a regular all purpose flour. To make it vegan, sub a buttery vegan stick for the butter.

Nutrition Facts
Lightened up Maple-Pecan Apple Crisp
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 204 Calories from Fat 69
% Daily Value*
Fat 7.7g12%
Carbohydrates 34.7g12%
Fiber 4.2g18%
Sugar 23.2g26%
Protein 1.5g3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.