Microwave Apple Crisp — This microwave apple crisp comes together in just 5 minutes and generously serves one person. Top it with a scoop or ice cream or whipped cream!
Quick Microwave Apple Crisp
This microwave apple crisp is the best and easiest thing to make with all those apples you bought because they were on sale. You don’t need to turn on your oven and it’s ready in 5 minutes. And it’s single-serve, vegan, and gluten-free. So take that, traditional crisps.
I’m a big fan of crumbles, crisps, and anything with a crumbly or streusel topping. Those buttery, brown sugary nuggets with texture from oats get me every time. But while I like baking crumbles, usually I don’t need or want a whole pan. It’s the type of dessert that’s really best served warm, with a big dollop of whipped cream or ice cream on top, and after the first, warm juicy piece, the leftovers just don’t measure up.
This quick apple crisp serves one generously, or two more modestly if you feel like sharing.
When I posted the 5-minute Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Microwave Mugcake with Vanilla Glaze, I wondered what else I could make easily and successfully in the microwave. Cooking things in the microwave can be a finnicky proposition, but this came out beautifully and quickly.
The apple base layer, comprised of apples, tossed with (vegan) butter, cinnamon, sugar, nutmeg, and a pinch of cornstarch cooks in just a couple minutes after adding the topping mixture. The cinnamon, brown sugar, and oatmeal topping is tossed together in a minute.
The apples retain some slight texture, which is the way I like them. If they were pasta, they’d be al dente. I don’t like my fruit so soft that it turns mushy and these were just right.
I had cookie dough ice cream, but was out of vanilla, and didn’t have any whipping cream. I was getting ready to move and was trying to thin things down, but either would be wonderful on this warm, sweetly spiced, easy little number.
You get all the scent benefits that waft through the house as if you’d baked a traditional apple crisp, except you don’t have to heat up your house and it’s ready in 5 minutes.
Breakfast, snack, dessert, a midnight snack for one. So many ways to go with this microwave baked apples dessert.
What’s in This Microwave Apple Crisp?
To make this quick microwave dessert, you’ll need:
- Unsalted butter
- Light brown sugar
- Old-fashioned oats
- All-purpose flour
- Granulated sugar
How to Make Microwave Apple Crisp
First, make the apple crisp topping by stirring the ingredients together until they resemble the texture of fine sand. Then, lay the diced apple in a microwave-safe bowl and top with butter. Microwave 1 minute to soften the apples.
Remove the bowl from the microwave and stir in the remaining apple crisp ingredients. Sprinkle the apple crisp topping over the apple mixture. Return to the microwave for another 2 minutes and cook until done.
Done means juicy, bubbly, rich, and caramely. The brown sugar and butter caramelizes as it cooks, creating a thick sauce which coats the apples. It’s the best part. Well, that and the crumbly bits.
What Are the Best Apples for Apple Crisp?
You can use really any apple variety you’d like for this microwave apple crisp recipe. I used a Fuji apple, but Gala, Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, and Jonagold would all work too.
Can I Omit the Cornstarch?
No, this quick apple dessert won’t turn out right if you skip the cornstarch.
Can I Make This Gluten-Free?
Most likely, yes, although I’ve only ever made this recipe as written. You could try using a gluten-free baking blend in place of the all-purpose flour and see how it turns out.
Can I Use Quick Oats Instead of Rolled?
I’ve only made this recipe with old-fashioned rolled oats before, so I’m not sure if quick oats will work here. They’re not as chewy as rolled oats and might make the apple crisp topping too dry.
Can I Adjust the Amount of Sugar Used?
If desired, you can add slightly more or less sugar than what the recipe calls for, depending on how sweet your apple is. I don’t recommend skipping the sugar altogether though, otherwise I’m not sure this would be a real apple crisp.
Can I Use Other Fruits in This Microwave Dessert?
I’m not sure! I’ve only ever made this microwave apple crisp with fresh apples. You may be able to substitute fresh pears, but I can’t say for certain.
Tips for Making Microwave Apple Crisp
I used a fair amount of both cinnamon (2 teaspoons) and nutmeg (1 teaspoon) because I’m fond them, and like things more boldly spiced. If you don’t like as much pop from cinnamon or are more sensitive to nutmeg, dial down the spices, to taste.
You could also work in pinches of pumpkin pie spice, ginger, cloves, allspice, or other warming spices you enjoy.
Make sure to use a microwave-safe bowl or baking dish that’s got enough room for expansion. The apples release a fair amount of juice, the butter melts, and the whole thing puffs and rises as it cooks. Take that into account so you don’t have an overflow situation.
With fruit-based recipes, because of the varying amounts of water released, cooking times may vary. And because microwaves vary as well, you may need to adjust your cooking time. Cook until yours is done.
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- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (or vegan butter substitute)
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons old-fashioned whole rolled oats (use Certified Gluten Free Whole Rolled Oats if necessary)
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (or Certified All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Blend)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- pinch salt, optional and to taste
Apple Base Layer
- 1 medium apple, diced in about 1/4-inch cubes (I did not peel mine, peel if you wish; I used Fuji, use any variety you like)
- 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter (or vegan butter substitute)
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- optionally add pinches ground ginger, pumpkin pie spice, cloves, allspice based on taste preference
Make the Crumble Topping
- In a small bowl, combine all crumble topping ingredients and stir together with a fork until small pebbles and sandy crumbs form; set aside.
Make the Apple Base Layer
- In a small to medium-sized microwave-safe bowl or baking dish, add apples and top with butter. Don’t use an overly shallow dish because the apples will release juices, the butter melts, and it will rise and puff in the microwave, and it will overflow if bowl is too shallow.
- Cook for 1 minute on high power to soften apples.
- Remove bowl from micro and add the sugars, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, optional salt, optional other spices, and stir to combine and coat evenly.
- Evenly sprinkle with the crumble topping.
- Cook for about 2 minutes on high power, until juicy, bubbly, and topping is set. Due to variance in microwaves, climate, apples and their variable moisture content, cooking times could range from 1 1/2 minutes to slightly over 2 minutes. Start watching it carefully at 1 1/2 minutes and stop cooking when done; don’t overcook.
- Serve immediately. Optionally serve with whipped cream or ice cream.
Crumble is best warm and fresh, but leftover portion will keep airtight for up to 3 days.
Optionally serve with ice cream or whipped topping.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 894Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 19gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 76mgSodium: 163mgCarbohydrates: 135gFiber: 14gSugar: 78gProtein: 8g
Although the recipe title indicates that this is for one person, it would be a very hefty portion of dessert for one person and likely you will split it with someone or eat the other half another day; thereby halving all nutrition stats. I also think the nutrition stats are skewing artificially high in this computer-generated estimate and you're welcome to calculate them manually by hand to see what you come up with.
More Easy Apple Desserts:
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Crumble Bars — These caramel apple cheesecake bars feature a buttery crust that’s topped with cheesecake and spiced apples. After they’re done baking, the bars are drizzled with salted caramel sauce!
Apple Turnovers — These apple turnovers take just 15 minutes to prep and are filled with the most incredible cinnamon apple filling. These are the ultimate fall dessert!
Caramel Apple Crumble Foil Packs – EASY, zero cleanup, made on the grill (or oven) in record time, and tastes amazing!
Apple Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting — An EASY, one-bowl, no-mixer apple cake that’s to-die-for!! Loaded with juicy apples in every bite, perfectly spiced, and topped with tangy cream cheese frosting!
Cinnamon Roll Apple Crisp – A layer of cinnamon rolls topped with apples and a crunchy oatmeal crumble makes this the ULTIMATE apple crisp!
Carrot Apple Cream Cheese Tunnel Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting – If you like carrot cake, you’re going to LOVE this version that includes apples and a tunnel of cream cheese that runs through the center!
Sugar Cookie Apple Crumble Cheesecake Pie – A buttery sugar cookie crust, tangy cream cheese filling, tender juicy apples, and a crumble topping make this pie a total SHOWSTOPPER!! EASY and THE BEST apple pie!
Apple Fritter Bread — The bread tastes as decadent as the apple fritters of my childhood, no deep frying required and it’s more like cake disguised as bread.
Originally published September 12, 2013 and republished with updated text August 14, 2020.