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Gingerbread Apple Crisp

gingerbread apple crisp recipe gluten-free

Gingerbread Apple Crisp recipe made with juicy baked apples, crunchy almond flour-pecan topping and warming spices.

Looking for delicious and healthy dessert ideas to tide you over during the holiday season? What about apple crisp –one of the easiest desserts to make; perfect for both beginner and advanced chefs.

home for the holidays gluten-free style I developed this gluten free Gingerbread Apple Crisp recipe for Shirley Braden’s blogging event, Home for the Holidays Gluten-Free Style. Every day, from Monday, November 28 through Friday, December 23, a different blogger will share a gluten-free recipe that means both home and the holidays to them. Here’s more from Shirley:

Our Home for the Holidays Gluten-Free Style blogging event offers the comfort, joy, excitement, and fun of the holidays with wonderful recipes from your favorite bloggers.

A special thanks to Shirley for including me in the event. If you are in the Fredericksburg, VA area, be sure to check out the gluten intolerance/celiac support group that she runs where they discuss topics such as celiac disease, the gluten free diet and how to survive the holidays.

This time of year can be challenging and filled with dietary dilemmas. How do we stay connected to, and feel a part of, the festivities yet remain true to what our bodies need when our visual and olfactory senses are inundated by foods that might not be part of our regular program?

If you are on a special diet, this gluten free, grain free Paleo friendly dessert recipe will likely work for you. Further, I like this Gingerbread Apple Crisp because it’s festive enough to bring to a party (or serve to guests in your own home) and also healthy enough for those needing to stay away from certain foods (sugar, gluten and dairy come to mind).

Gingerbread Apple Crisp


  1. Place sliced apples in a 2 quart baking dish
  2. Set apples aside
  3. In a large bowl, combine almond flour, flax, salt, spices
  4. Mix in shortening, honey and vanilla
  5. Work mixture with your hands until it forms a dough
  6. Gently work in chopped pecans with your hands
  7. Sprinkle dough over chopped apples
  8. Bake covered at 350° for 60-75 minutes
  9. Remove from oven, and allow to cool uncovered
  10. Serve

For extra holiday flare, serve this apple crisp with the Vegan Coconut Whip recipe in my latest book, Gluten-Free Cupcakes: 50 Irresistible Recipes Made with Almond and Coconut Flour.

Stay tuned. At noon today, the numerous giveaways for Home for the Holidays will begin in a brand new post here at Elana’s Pantry, including details on how you can win!

posted on December 9, 2011, 66 comments

  1. Starbright

    Thank you for sharing this recipe for apple crisp. Crisps have become a staple for our family but I am now trying to go grain free and had not come up with a recipe yet. Thanks again!

  2. Kelly

    My sweet Grandma Weez used to make us apple crisp every Thanksgiving. With a huge scoop of cool whip on top when I was little. It always reminds me of her since she isnt with us for the holidays anymore. Love my Weez. And thanks for sharing a nostalgic recipe for me!

  3. Shirley @ gfe @ glutenfreeeasily.com

    Simple, beautiful, and delicious as always, Elana! Baked apples are pure comfort food and the gingerbread almond/pecan topping gives this recipe that extra special tasty holiday touch. ;-) Thanks so much for participating in our Home for the Holidays … Gluten-Free Style event, dear! Can’t wait for the giveaway part here in a few hours, and I know our event readers can’t either. ;-)


  4. Mari

    Totally off topic here, but I just wanted to give a shout out to your cookbooks. I have had the first one since it came out, and I just bought the cupcake book recently. I have made two of the recipes already, and my husband and I are just loving them. I don’t know how you do it, but don’t ever stop! Your recipes are just wonderful, and I am working my way through Gluten Free Cupcakes. Someone borrowed my almond flour cookbook so I have to buy another copy of that. It’s funny how good things always seem to disappear. I just ordered my second copy at Amazon, and I am not letting either book out of my sight again. Unlike other recipes, yours taste and look like real food and are delicious. Thanks again for everything you do; it is very much appreciated.

  5. This looks great. Love the idea of the gingerbread. Think I’ll have to try it with my gluten free, sugar free version of Apple Pie Walnut Crumble


  6. Kristine

    Sounds unique, looks fab! So creative, you are!

  7. Love the idea of gingerbread spices in apple crisp. We’ve been making lots of apple crisp this year and will have to give this one a try. Happy Holidays!

  8. Liliane

    My husband and daughter will be tickled pink when I make this. Thank you so much!

  9. Cillah

    Thanks for posting, sounds yummy!

  10. SherriS.

    I can just imagine how good this smells while it’s baking. Yum yum!

  11. Lily

    Yay — Now I know what to do with the apples I have sitting around. This looks simple and delicious. Can’t wait to try it.

  12. Pam Crow

    this sounds heavenly-will try it real soon

  13. Laurel

    Anything Gingerbread gets my immediate attention. I’ll be making this one just as soon as we finish the Gingerbread Pear Upside Down cake. Thanks for the wonderful idea.

  14. Paula B

    I was just looking for an almond flour crumb topping for some frozen peaches I need to use! This will work perfectly.

  15. Sharon

    I sent your paleo bread recipes to my daughter who is following the pale diet. Thanks

  16. Sharon

    With apples being so abundant this time of year, it is always nice getting another recipe for something to do with them. Looking really forward to trying this one out!

  17. Michelle @ Gluten Free Vegan Journey @ glutenfreeveganjourney.blogspot.com

    This looks so delicious!

  18. Jan

    I love gingerbread with applesauce – never thought to put ginger and apples together as a crisp. Can’t wait to try it!

  19. I’m so excited to try this recipe. Apple crisp is a huge family favorite and I’ve been resigned to not eating the crust anymore. Thanks for sharing it.

  20. Christine

    This crisp looks delicious. Can’t wait to try it!!


  21. Lucy

    About how many servings does this make? I’d like to make enough for 4 people – how many cups of apple should I use? I can do the math from there. Thanks!

  22. Michelle Crooker

    Looks and sounds yummy!

  23. Laurie

    Looks yummy! Thanks for sharing your knowledge with others.
    I’ve been GF for 5 months; DF for 25 years…and am looking with interest into the Paleo diet. Would love to win the Paleo book. Cooking for Isaiah is the first cookbook a friend passed along when my son was diagnosed with Celiac this summer.
    Merry Christmas!

  24. michelle

    This would be lovely to wake up to Xmas morning.

  25. Michelle S

    Sounds like a perfect treat. I look forward to trying it!

  26. Lois

    Elana, I was wheat free for 7 years before I started making wheat free bread. The first gf cookbook had awful recipes so I gave up for another year. Then I found the Gluten Free Gourmet. Those recipes worked but there were so many ingredients, it felt like a science experiment.
    Then I stumbled across your website and it was a perfect fit for me. The only sweetener I can use is Agave. I love the protein from the Almond Flour in my breads and crackers and desserts. Your recipes are all delicious and simple to make. Thank you for all the great recipes and for the links to other great GF sites. The gingerbread apple crisp sounds delicious. I will definitely be making it for the holidays! Happy, Happy Holidays to you! Sincerely, Lois

  27. Velda Lay

    Thank you for having such great information and recipes available online! This is still a new way of eating for us and it really helps to have someone who is experienced with this type of baking and eating.

  28. this looks wonderful and simple – perfect for a stress-free, allergy-free holiday!

  29. shannon Lewis

    Looks so yummy! I love apples and gingerbread crisp to boot! This is a HAVE to try! Thanks for sharing!

  30. Catherine

    looks so good! Which to make first? This or the ginger cookies? Life is so full of hard decisions!!!

  31. Sue Friend

    Am in the 80’s club. We never had the gluten problem in our day. Seems everything was edible and in some cases during the depression were lucky to have food. Of Course we all had our own gardens then. I stumbled on to your site and have actually tried some of the recipes. Will be using the gluten free pie crust for a black bottom pie this weekend. My neighbors were extatic over some squares I shared with them from your site. Keep up the wonderful work as I have always liked trying new recipes. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Sue

  32. AJ

    This looks SO good! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  33. dee m.

    ooooooh my this looks so yummy… my husband just asked a couple hours ago, when he finishes off his birthday cake, can I make him an apple crisp.. this Gingerbread Apple Crisp will knock his socks off!! :) thank you so much.. I just made some homemade vanilla extract.. that will make it extra special…

  34. Sue

    I don’t think I can simplify. Gluten and dairy free is new to me and my family don’t feel they should have to change. Going to be an interesting experience. I need to make things that will open their eyes to healthy eating.

  35. Joy

    This looks delicious, and it’s paleo-friendly! Thanks for bringing this comfort food back to our home in a new way.

  36. Sarah L

    I love apples and this looks fabulous! This would be great in the fall, too, when I’m getting my apples straight from the orchard. Can’t wait to try this!

  37. Carol

    That looks yummy thanks!!

  38. Shirley @ gfe @ glutenfreeeasily.com

    Such a lovely recipe, Elana. I always look to you for these simple, satisfying recipes and you don’t disappoint, dear. This one definitely says “home” and “holidays” to me and is a perfect addition to our Home for the Holidays … Gluten-Free Style event. :-) Thanks so much for both joining in and for being such a generous sponsor!


  39. abi

    Hey, this sounds great! How many people do you think this would serve? Thanks

  40. Larisa

    Looking forward to trying this soon – looks delicious!

  41. sandra g

    I love your recipes.. Wholesome ingredients & taste great too!.

  42. Jeanine PIerce

    Thanks, It looks wonderful!

  43. Jessica @ hungrygems.com

    No Vegan Coconut Whip pictured?…I must now make this crispy-topped apple delight myself to see how this story ends…Whip inclduded this time. Looks delightful!

  44. Laura

    Looks fantastic!! I’ll be giving this a try soon :-)

  45. Andi

    This is just what I’ve been looking for! I can’t wait to try it!

  46. Ann

    Hi Elana

    I’ve been following your site for awhile and have enjoyed making your recipes. You have really opened my mind and renewed my interest in baking again. Thank you so much :)

    I have been following gluten, sugar, dairy free for a year or so.

    I made the gingerbread apple crisp yesterday. It was a hit!! I didn’t quite have enough apples so added some fresh cranberries (it is the season, after all) which made a nice addition. Also used walnuts instead of pecans as that’s what was on hand.

    Thanks again!!

  47. Oh That Paula

    I love love love apple crisp! It tastes like home wrapped in love!

  48. AustinGirl

    I made this last night and love it! Thank you! I added a tablespoon of molasses to the topping mix, and when I served it, used a bit of coconut milk “whipped cream” to top. YUM!

  49. Sharon Baridon

    Elana, the crisp looks absolutely yummy, and light! I need to make something for my sister’s birthday. She and her husband are dieting. This looks like it will make them happy…very tasty, a treat, but won’t make them feel quilty. Thanks!

  50. Sarah M

    I love apple crisp and cannot wait to try this recipe. Thank you for sharing!

  51. Angie Halten @ blog.glutenfreeclub.com

    Looks great, can’t wait to try it!

  52. Micki

    Your cookbooks are on my wishlist for this year!

  53. Shaina

    This looks great! Your blog was one of the first I started following when I first started gluten free. I can’t wait to add your cookbooks to my collection!

  54. Lee Kirby

    My favorite dessert when I was little was my mother’s gingerbread cake topped with applesauce and a dollop of whipped cream. So this recipe brought back memories. Made some changes the second time, tho. Put the apple slices in a Ziploc and added a lot of cinnamon ~ maybe 2T ~ and shook it up to cover the apples well. And that was only half a recipe! Used the full recipe for the topping but made one change: substituted butter for the palm oil and it added crispness. It’s now perfect for me – but I love cinnamon.

  55. I think there was something wrong with my pecans when I made this so I’m going to try slivered almonds next time. What do you think?

  56. Ashley

    Can this be made without Honey?

  57. Britney

    Thanks Elana, would coconut oil work in place of the vegan shortening?

  58. Molli Pruitt

    I love your site! Im new to this but love the concept.do you provide nutrition info for your recipes?

  59. Beebs

    I made this for breakfast. Delish!

  60. Christina

    Any suggestions for substitutes for almond flour for those of us who are allergic to almonds?

  61. Shelley

    Elana-thank you! I’ve made this recipe honestly at least 10 times now & keep having to buy more ginger so I can make it again! The only change I’ve made is subbing coconut oil for the vegan shortening since I didn’t have any on hand. It always turns out fabulous!

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Comments are greatly appreciated! Unfortunately Elana is not able to answer substitution questions, as the only way to know if something works is to test it, and she does not provide this service. If you have a substitution question, please don't hesitate to leave a comment here, and another reader may jump in to answer. ↑ back to top