I really don’t want to tell you what to do, but you need to make this delicious apple recipe if you have some apples around the house. Don’t let them just rot on the counter, make these healthy apple crumble bars! These apple bars are super easy to make and use wholesome, simple ingredients like apples, maple syrup and almond flour.
This is the perfect apple dessert recipe with some ice cream or, as I found out today, – a great apple breakfast if you have the crumble bars on their own in the morning. This will be such a great fall recipe too!
It’s the third day in a row I’m eating these and I’m just…really sad, because I only have one piece left, I’m kinda freaking out. What is my life going to be after?…Seriously, I’ve got 99 (privileged) problems and this is one of them.
So let’s get into it. Let’s ask the obvious question:
What ARE THESE?
Well, this is like an apple crumble that you can hold in your hands and eat while walking or just standing there without a plate in your hand or a sink to eat over. The bottom is a crumble – very much like shortbread, the top is a crumble, the middle is apples with cinnamon and coconut oil. It’s a delicious homemade dessert, but healthier. These aren’t overly sweet, so you can have them for breakfast too!
Healthy Apple Crumble Bars Ingredients
- Almond flour. Use blanched almond flour to make the crust and and the crumbly top.
- Coconut oil. I used extra virgin coconut oil to help keep the crust together.
- Apples. Choose sweet medium-sized apples.
- Cinnamon and maple syrup. To add spice and sweetness.
- Nuts. Usually, I’d go for pecans or walnuts, but I didn’t have any at home, so I used almonds to add on top, whole or roughly chopped nuts add a really nice crunch to the whole thing.
How To Make These Healthy Apple Crumble Bars
Start by preheating your oven to 180C/350F. This is how you beat procrastination, right? Start small.
Then wash, core and chop the apples. I’m not very strict about how I chop my apples, I just do them in cubes or whatever shape I can. So you can do slices, to me it all tastes the same and that’s the most important thing. So, do you here.
Take the cut apples and add them to a nonstick pan with coconut oil and cinnamon. Stir at medium-high for a minute or until the apples are coated. Then add a little bit of water, cover with the lid, reduce the heat and let the apples cook to soften for about 3 minutes.
Use that time to make the base by mixing the almond flour, coconut oil and maple syrup together. Spread 3/4 of the mixture in a small baking pan, lined with parchment paper (makes getting the bars out really easy!). Make sure to really press the “dough” to the bottom – I used a spoon for this and to even it out, but clean fingers will work as well.
Now, it’s time to prepare the crumble for the top by adding some roughly chopped almonds, cinnamon, a pinch of salt and maple syrup to the leftover crumble. Mix very well.
Spread the apples over the base, then form the crumbles between your fingers and spread them over the apple layer. Bake for about 15 minutes, keeping an eye on your oven after about 10 minutes – you don’t want to get these too brown. It depends on your oven, so make sure to keep an eye on the bars.
Take out, let cool off, slice and enjoy!
How Are These Apple Crumble Bars Healthier
So, I made these healthier apple bars, because I was really craving an apple dessert that doesn’t have such a high glycemic index and won’t send my blood sugar on a roller coaster. That’s why I also chose almond flour and not oats this time because I’m really trying to just limit the overall glycemic load of my daily diet.
Other than almond flour the recipe is loaded with other healthier foods like coconut oil, maple syrup (even though it’s still sugar, we’re using it sparingly), cinnamon and apples.
With ingredients like these, this recipe is more nutrient-dense, it’s richer in fiber, healthy fats and essential vitamins and minerals and it won’t cause huge blood sugar spikes as the regular recipe that is made with sugar and white flour.
Also, if you have a sensitivity to gluten, dairy, eggs or don’t eat animal products, this recipe is vegan and paleo, so it could be a good choice for you.
Now, I’m not going to claim you can eat these healthier apple pie bars and stop eating salad or fresh vegetables…mkay? Healthier doesn’t mean you eat an unlimited amount of something and you don’t gain weight or don’t have other health consequences from this action. It just means that in the long run, it’s better for you to have a dessert or breakfast like this instead of candy or doughnuts for example.
How To Store These Apple Crumble Bars
Speaking of, if you make these and don’t share with more than one person, you’ll probably have some leftovers for the next 1-2 days. Place those leftovers in an airtight container and transport them to a cooler place. Like the fridge. Keep them there until you decide it’s time to eat.
Make Ahead For More Than One Hungry Person
The recipe doesn’t make a lot, especially if you have a bigger household, so be sure to adjust it to your needs – however many people, however many days you’d like these apple crumble bars to last. Then put them in the fridge and you’re done.
Options & Substitutions
Don’t get me wrong, this recipe is perfect like me and you. But you can still play around and change things you don’t have, like or can’t have. For example, if you can’t have almonds, use oats for the base – you can find my favorite way to make apple crumble with oats here. The recipe is pretty similar, you can just make it into bars, if you’d like.
Another change you can make is using other fruit. I’m gonna be honest, I will probably use this same recipe and make similar bars with peaches next. So look forward to that recipe. You can also use berries, plums (I also have an oatmeal plum crumble pie here), cherries or pears – whatever you desire.
What else? Maple syrup – you can switch that one too, if you don’t have it. I can’t tell you how expensive and hard it is to find maple syrup over here. You can use honey (not vegan), coconut sugar or coconut blossom nectar if you want.
As I mentioned, I’d like to try this recipe with walnuts or pecans next, so that would count as a change. Other things you can do is add some vanilla or nutmeg.
How To Serve These Healthy Apple Crumble Bars
You can serve them like revenge, cold, but if you do have time and maybe some ice cream – warm these up in the oven, top with a scoop of ice cream and enjoy. You can also drizzle some almond butter or whatever you enjoy – if you have any other ideas, let me know. I tried really hard to come up with something, but almond butter was the only thing, okay, don’t point and laugh. Now, let’s write down the recipe.
For The Apples:
- 3 medium-sized apples
- 3 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 ½ cup almond flour
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
Additionally for top
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 8 almonds, chopped
- pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.
- Wash, then core and chop the apples. Saute the apple slices with the cinnamon and coconut oil until they're coated evenly with the cinnamon, then add a little bit of water, reduce heat and cover to cook for about 3 minutes.
- Mix the ingredients for the crumble, reserve 1/2 tsp of maple syrip for the top. Spread 3/4 of the mixture in a small baking pan and flatten with a spoon like you would for a cheesecake.
- Add the layer of apples on top.
- Mix the leftover crumble with the roughly chopped almonds, cinnamon, the other 1/2 tbsp of maple syrup and a pinch of salt. Squish this mixture between your fingers and spread all over the apples.
- Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Serve immediately!
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 25mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 5gSugar: 11gProtein: 5g
I hope you enjoy these, and if you’re looking for some other healthier apple desserts, check out the recipes below – they use oats and apples and some of them aren’t egg- or dairy-free.