Vegan Sugar-Free Apple Crumble

by Alena
Nov 28, 2020
healthy vegan apple crumble in a baking dish next to apple slices, ginger and a towel

This easy vegan crumble is our favorite healthy baked breakfast! Naturally gluten-free and made without any oil, this beginner-friendly recipe gets you a healthy apple crisp in way under an hour.

No matter if you’d like to enjoy your vegan crumble for breakfast or as a dessert with a good scoop of vegan ice cream, this recipe works for so many occasions (hello, healthy holiday treat)!

You can even have it as a quick snack straight from the fridge (and heated in a microwave) where it keeps well for up to 5 days — no worries, our sugar-free apple crumble is low in calories and won’t hinder any weight loss goals.

During fall, this is our favorite baked apple dessert. Sometimes, we make it with pears, too! The rest of the year, our fruit crumble features delicious seasonal produce such as all the different types of berries, peaches or rhubarb.

The best part is that this recipe is made with really budget-friendly staple ingredients, easily customizable and you don’t have to compromise on having dessert while following a healthy plant-based diet.

The Best Vegan Sugar-Free Apple Crumble

Usually loaded with butter and sugar, our vegan crumble contains no added sugar and is instead sweetened with whole fruit only which makes it really high in essential nutrients!

It features a thick oat crumble topping made from five basic and healthy ingredients as well as a sweet, gooey apple and banana filling — loaded with all the cozy spices.

table with a jar of oats, fresh apple, apple slices, banana, ginger, dates and cinnamon

Ingredients You Need for This Recipe

  • Apples — the main ingredient if you’re looking to make a sugar-free apple crumble but you can swap them for berries or peaches!
  • Banana — the unexpected add-in for some natural sweetening and lovely texture.
  • Dates — our favorite whole food sugar replacement!
  • Spices — from cinnamon to nutmeg, vanilla and a spritz of lemon juice, everything’s possible.
  • Rolled Oats — feel free to blend some of them into flour for an even crumblier crumble topping!
  • Applesauce — a sneaky low fat and low calorie butter or oil replacement for your crumble topping.
  • Walnuts — essential fats, lovely taste & added crunch!
two hands mixing apple slices in a bowl and coating them with cinnamon

How to Make Vegan Apple Crumble

Start by preheating your oven and get a small to medium-sized baking dish. Wash and chop your apples, then add them with the sliced banana and chopped dates to a bowl.

Grab all of the cozy spices and top your fruity filling, mix everything with a spoon and transfer it into your prepared baking dish. Bake for around 10 minutes, just until the apples have turned soft and begun to bubble a bit.

In the meantime, create your simple oat crumble topping by combining rolled oats, sugar-free applesauce, vanilla extract and a pinch of salt in the same bowl you’ve just used for your apple filling.

You can add some oat flour for a slightly different texture if you like or 1-2 tablespoons of maple syrup for extra sweetness.

Once the apple and banana mixture becomes soft and fragrant, take it out of the oven and top it evenly with the oat crumble topping. Back into the oven for another 15-20 minutes until your crumble has become slightly golden and crispy!

Make sure to let your homemade vegan crumble sit for around 5-10 minutes before serving warm on its own or with some vegan ice cream.

blue baking dish containing sugar-free apple crumble on a counter top and a hand taking some of it out with a spoon

Tips for the Best Vegan Crumble

Let’s go over some suggestions for this plant-based goodness. First of all, if you need to make sure that this recipe is 100% gluten-free, no traces whatsoever, look for certified gluten-free oats.

We’ve added shredded coconut to the oat crumble topping in the past and were pleasantly surprised, so you might want to try that, too.

If you’re looking for a more hands-off version of this sugar-free apple crumble, you can just add the oat topping to the unbaked apple filling and bake it for around 30-40 minutes total.

Suggested Substitutions

Apples are not in season right now? Use about 2.5 cups of the following fruit instead.

  • Blueberry
  • Blackberry
  • Cherries
  • Red currant
  • Strawberry
  • Rhubarb
  • Plum
  • Pear
  • Peach

Adding one sliced banana to the mixture is our little trick for healthy and natural sweetening, but it’s not a must. The combination of just the baked cinnamon apple together with chopped dates tastes lovely, too!

You can omit the walnuts in the topping or replace them with any chopped nuts of your choice. For a higher fat and higher calorie vegan crumble, you can add some nut butter to the oat topping!

grey table with a towel, apple slices, cinnamon, ginger and a baking dish with baked vegan crumble

How to Serve Vegan Crumble

You can enjoy this vegan crumble on its own or with a simple custard, some store-bought or homemade vegan ice cream, coconut whipped cream, date caramel sauce or almond yogurt.

We personally also love it with some hot cocoa or almond milk latte!

Some of these add-ons are more health-promoting than others but hey, not every vegan recipe needs to be super nutrient-dense!

Storage & Prep Tips

You can make this sugar-free apple crumble ahead of time and pop it in the oven (perhaps while enjoying the main course) once you’re planning on serving it.

Once baked, you can let it cool off and cover with some foil to store in the fridge for up to 5 days — it’ll be good in the freezer for 3 months or even longer.

You can just let it thaw and reheat in the oven or microwave on low heat for a warm and fragrant vegan crumble!

woman standing by a baking dish with sugar-free vegan apple crumble and serving it with a spoon

More Healthy Vegan Baking Recipes

We love making healthy versions of common sweet baked goods! Check out the following recipes to see how you can easily replace dairy, oil, eggs and sugar.

Did you follow this recipe and like it? Let us know in the comments below, and don’t forget to rate it. You can also Pin the vegan crumble here and tag us on Instagram if you made it — we’d love to see your creations.

grey table with a towel, apple slices, cinnamon, ginger and a baking dish with baked vegan crumble

Vegan Sugar-Free Apple Crumble Recipe

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Delicious and healthy vegan crumble with apples, banana and a sugar-free oat crumble topping! Highly customizable and easy to make in 40 minutes total, this lower calorie gluten-free treat is perfect during fall and can even be frozen. Nutrient-rich, fragrant and crowd-pleasing!

Ingredients

  • 1 large banana, thinly sliced
  • 2 large apples, chopped
  • 2 dates, chopped
  • 2 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • ½ tsp nutmeg, ground
  • ½ tsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 tsp lemon juice

Oat Crumble Topping

  • 1 cup rolled oats (90 g)
  • 1 oz walnuts, crushed (28 g)
  • ½ cup applesauce, unsweetened (120 ml)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions

Make the Filling

  1. Preheat your oven to 375° F (190° C) and get a small baking dish.
  2. Prepare the fruity filling by placing the sliced banana, apples and dates into a medium-sized bowl. Add the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and lemon juice, then toss until everything is nicely coated with the spices.
  3. Transfer into your prepared baking dish and bake for 8-10 minutes, just until the fruit starts to bubble.

Make the Oat Topping

  1. While the first layer is baking, combine the rolled oats with the applesauce, crushed walnuts, vanilla extract and salt using the same bowl as before if you like. Mix well with a spoon.
  2. If you want your crumble topping to be really sweet, just add 2 tbsp of maple syrup or brown sugar at this stage.

Assemble the Apple Crumble

  1. Once the apple and banana mixture becomes soft and fragrant, take it out of the oven and top evenly with the oat crumble topping. 
  2. Return the dish to the oven and bake for another 15-20 minutes, until the oats are slightly golden and crisp.
  3. Let your apple crumble cool for 5-10 minutes before serving warm on its own or topped with vegan ice cream.
  4. Any leftovers can be cooled and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Simply warm in the oven or microwave before serving.

Notes

  • You can add 1-2 tbsp of nut butter to your crumble topping for more calories, fat and flavor if you like.
  • This vegan crumble can be made with berries, peaches or other fruit instead of apples.
  • If you need this recipe to be 100% gluten-free, no traces whatsoever, be sure to go for certified gluten-free oats.
  • This sugar-free apple crumble can be frozen for up to 3 months and then reheated at your convenience!
  • Feel free to replace some of the rolled oats with any flour of your choice for a slightly different texture.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 243Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 150mgCarbohydrates: 45gFiber: 7gSugar: 21gProtein: 5g

Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated automatically, their accuracy is not guaranteed. Just focus on whole plant-based foods and eat until satiety!

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Alena enjoying a bowl of fresh plant-based food and coffe in a restaurant
Alena Schowalter is a Certified Vegan Nutritionist who has been a vegetarian since childhood and vegan since 2012. Together with her husband, she founded nutriciously in 2015 and has been guiding thousands of people through different transition stages towards a healthy plant-based diet. She’s received training in the fields of nutrition, music therapy and social work. Alena enjoys discussions around vegan ethics, walks through nature and creating new recipes.

7 thoughts on “Vegan Sugar-Free Apple Crumble”

  1. Easy to put together – rather than bake the filling then adding topping, I just baked it all at once, for 30 minutes. Perfect. It smelled delicious baking, like Christmas in the oven – then paced the kitchen because we had to let it cool a tad to have a bowlful. I know my eyes got big, and my husband just stood like a deer in the headlights at the first bite. We stared at each other. WOW. Then dug in, savoring every warm, crunchy, apple-y, spicy, happy bite. Got a second bowlful. Repeat. This will now be my number 1 Apple Crumble go-to, forEVER!! Spicy, but not overmuch. Sweet, but not overmuch. Warm and comforting. Like a hug from Grandma!!! LOVE THIS RECIPE!! Thanks so much for sharing, I’m passing it on to friends and family ;-) And will definitely be having more for BREAKFAST! (If I don’t sleepwalk and raid the pan…)

    Reply
    • wow, thank you so much for this stellar feedback! you’re right, I might as well change the instructions to “bake the whole crumble at once” instead of the filling first. Really happy to know that you like it that much, thanks for making my day ♡

      Reply
  2. This is the easiest, tastiest apple crumble and we had it again for Christmas morning breakfast. This is my “go to” recipe for apple crumble! So nice to have! Would be perfect for guests when I want something special. Love your website!

    Reply
      • I ended up using two small/medium apples, a medium carrot (grated), a large handful of frozen blackberries and a small handful of raisins instead of apples and banana. A really tasty and easy way to get in some different fruit and vegetables at breakfast. Thanks for the recipe, will be using again.

        Reply

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