Graham Cracker Apple Crisp

If I had to pick one and only one fall dessert that I’d eat forever, it would be Apple Crisp, hands-down.  It’s the quintessential autumnal comfort food with its warm spiced apples and crisp buttery topping.  It’s my go-to dessert when having friends over, or needing a quick family dessert.  Several years ago when I rounded up everything to make my favorite Apple Crisp Recipe one Sunday afternoon, I realized I was out of oats, which I usually include in my topping.  But sitting there on my pantry shelf was a box of graham crackers, which made me immediately think about how much I love a good graham cracker pie crust and I wondered if I should go that route instead.  One thing led to another, and I ended up mixing crushed graham cracker crumbs into the buttery, crumbly topping, and what resulted was the perfect marriage of two things I adored.

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

The topping is simple, and includes graham cracker crumbs, a little flour, brown sugar, and butter.

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

If you’re a long-time follower of this blog, you know one of my go-to kitchen hacks is using a wide-holed cheese grater to grate cold butter into crumb toppings.  It makes it super easy to cut in!

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

And you’ll also know how much I love my apple peeler/corer/slicer 

apple slicer peeler corer

Did these all in about 3 minutes so it’s pretty much the best thing ever.  Now you can use any apples you like in apple crisp.  I often use a mix as you can see here.  I like to throw in at least a few Granny Smith (and you can certainly use ALL green apples) to balance out all the sweetness.  If I’m using all of a sweet variety of apples, then I just decrease the sugar in the apple mix (not the topping) by a bit.  And if I’m using ALL green apples, I usually increase it.  My recipe is written assuming you’ll be using a mix.

apple slicer peeler corer

The apples get tossed with the aforementioned brown sugar, a little flour to thicken the juices, and spices of course.  Guys you can totally adjust and improvise here, apple crisp is one of those things you can’t really mess up!

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

As it bakes, the apples become tender and that topping becomes crisp and crumbly on the outside and kind of soft and buttery on the side by the apples. I like to take it out when the apples still have a little bit of bite to them, so not completely turned to mush, but that’s personal preference.

Graham Cracker apple crisp

However one thing that is 100% required is vanilla ice cream.  Never eat apple crisp without vanilla ice cream.  Ever.

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

I hope you guys love this one!  You know what else I think you’ll love? Our beautifully and practically designed meal plans.  If you haven’t checked them out yet, the results are in and the reviews are stellar.  We designed this program to make your family life easier and help gather the people you care about around the table for meals.  It’s doing just that and more.  Check it all out, here!

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp Recipe

Graham Cracker Apple Crisp

5 from 6 votes
Warm spiced apples are topped with a buttery, graham cracker topping and baked to perfection.  The quintessential fall dessert!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings8 -10

Ingredients

  • For the Topping :2 full sleeves Graham Crackers 2.5-2.75 cups crumbs
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup 2 sticks cold butter, diced or grated
  • For the Apples:8-10 apples I use half green and half red
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • For Serving:Vanilla Ice Cream

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  
  • For the topping: Combine graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl and whisk together.  Either cut butter into chunks or use a large-hole cheese grater to grate it into the dry mixture.  Use hands or pastry cutter to combine until crumbly.  Set aside.For apples, core, peel, and slice or dice apples.  Toss them with flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, and spread out in a 9x13 baking dish.  Sprinkle topping evenly on top. Bake for about 35 minutes, until apples are tender and crumbly is golden brown.  Cool down a little and then serve warm over vanilla ice cream.

Notes

If using all tart, green apples, increase brown sugar in filling by 4 tablespoons.  
Author: Sara Wells
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Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

    1. Unless otherwise specified, you can always assume salted butter in baking recipes 🙂

  1. 5 stars
    I only had a box of graham cracker crumbs . It was so delicious! Definitely need vanilla ice cream with apple crisp!

  2. looks delicious! If I am giving this to a neighbor as a gift, should I bake it first? Cover in foil? Thank you

    1. Up to you! I love taking things unbaked with baking time on the top because then they can bake it hot and fresh whenever they want. But baked is also fantastic! It’s just personal preference.

  3. 5 stars
    I’m not a cobbler gal, I’m a crisp gal through & through… and this is the best crisp I’ve ever had. The graham cracker flavor takes it over the top and the ratio of crumbs to apples is perfect (heavy on the crumbs!). Yummm, I’ll make this forever!

  4. Can I use3 cans of apple pie filling to make this .I have not had a decent made at home crisp in years.THANKS

  5. I made this tonight and it was absolutely delicious. I’m home visiting my family in Maine and this was the perfect fall dessert to have before I head back to my house in the surface of the sun/Georgia tomorrow!

  6. 5 stars
    DELICIOUS! I have made this almost weekly all fall! I love it with the graham crackers!

  7. You had me at Apple ? crisp… but than you sold me on all the tricks ❤️ I’ll be signing up for the emails ?

  8. I couldn’t stop thinking about this after I saw it posted, so I finally made it last week when I was home visiting my parents. It was devoured and loved. And then I just kept on daydreaming about it, so I made it again today (four days later). I liked the suggestions of half graham crackers and half oats in the comments above – best of both worlds. I also halved the sugar in the apple mixture and it was so fantastic.

  9. Delicious. Tried grating the butter what a wonderful idea. Will be making this often

  10. Oh YUM. Why didn’t I think of this before ?? Brilliant idea! And yes like you, apple crisp is my favorite Fall dessert, too. What’s better then apples in sugary/cinnamony goodness? I don’t think there is anything better! Lol Thanks for the recipe. Can’t wait to try it! 🙂

  11. The whole family loved this recipe, even my husband who hates any dessert with cooked fruit! I didn’t have enough graham crackers on hand, so I did half graham cracker, half oats and it turned out great. I also drizzled a little boiled cider on it to bring out the apple flavor. If you haven’t tried boiled cider, it is basically apple cider that’s been reduced to a syrup, yum! Thanks Sara, this is my new apple crisp recipe!!

  12. This look so good! My husband doesn’t like cooked apples (what is wrong with him???) so I never take the time to make apple pie. But I might make this for Thanksgiving since I know I can handle the difficulty level of sprinkling something on top of the apples. I have traumatic experiences with pie crusts and have sworn them off. But I think this graham cracker topping looks even better than a pie crust.

  13. I am so excited to try this! I have home canned apple slices that will work perfectly for this recipe! I am going to make small pans to deliver to Home / Visiting teaching families! Thank you Sara!!!

  14. I’m going to say about 12 things here – most of them don’t matter…I’d like to try this with maybe 50/50 graham crackers and oats – best of both worlds. I’ll let you know how that turns out. Also, when I make apple crisp, I always just sort of eyeball the sugar – toss it together and give an apple a taste. That’s how I judge if the sugar is correct. Third thing – I’ll stop short of 12 – I made the cinnamon chip bar things from your website last night, and the middle ones were just a little too warm still when I cut and transferred them and the bottoms fell apart. Never fear! I crumbled that butter/graham cracker mixture on top of some vanilla ice cream! Delicious! I was thinking “I should just make the butter graham cracker part and bake it to crumble on ice cream” – this is even better though because the apples make it healthy!

    1. Let me know what you end up using for measurements because I thought the same thing. 50/50 Graham cracker and oats. Let me know if it works out if you try it!