The juicy caramel apple filling is complemented perfectly by the satisfying crunch of the crisp topping. This vegan apple crisp pie tastes and smells heavenly. For an extra treat, consider adding a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream or a drizzle of caramel sauce to enhance the overall indulgence.
Do you like crisps and crumbles? We have plenty of delicious vegan dessert recipes like vegan caramel apple crumble, vegan strawberry rhubarb crisp, vegan blueberry crisp, vegan plum crumble, and vegan lemon blueberry crumble pie.
What to expect?
There are several names for apple pies with a classic bottom crust and a crispy, crumble topping, such as Dutch caramel apple pie, apple crumble pie, apple crunch pie, or apple streusel pie.
Despite their fancy names, they are all quite similar in reality. Whether you refer to it as a crisp, crumble, or streusel, the main difference lies in the level of crunchiness. A crisp is extra crunchy with oats and nuts, a crumble is somewhat less crunchy without oats and nuts, and streusel is simply the German term for crumble.
Our vegan apple crisp pie has an easy crisp that requires only four ingredients—oats, nuts, sweetener, and butter. It creates a crispy, breadcrumb-like topping that pairs wonderfully with the filling.
The caramel apple pie filling offers a delightful combination of flavors and textures. Expect tender, sweet apple slices coated in a luscious caramel sauce that adds a rich and indulgent touch to the pie. As the pie bakes, the caramel melds with the apples, creating a gooey and decadent filling that perfectly balances the tartness of the fruit.
- Rolled oats
- Walnut or pecan meal
- Cane sugar or coconut sugar
- Dairy-free butter
Caramel apple filling
- Apples – The best ones are always the ones you already have. I love apple pies, no matter what apple is in there. I usually go with Granny Smith, Jonagold, or Jonathan. Here is a handy guide on Sprouts’ website called comparing apples to apples.
- Cinnamon – No apple recipe is complete without cinnamon.
- Molasses – I used just a dollop to deepen the caramel flavor.
- Coconut sugar – You can use white sugar, brown sugar, or cane sugar, but coconut sugar adds a dark caramel flavor.
- Lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
- Cornstarch + water
🛒 You can find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Add the sliced apples, water, coconut sugar, cinnamon, molasses, and vanilla extract to a large saucepan. Stir until combined, and cover it with a lid. Bring it to a boil, then take it back to medium and simmer until the apples are cooked but not mushy.
- Mix the cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add this so-called slurry to the cooked apples and mix vigorously. Try to pull the apple slices to the side, so the slurry hits the liquid part immediately. It will thicken within a minute!
Making a crisp topping
- Add all ingredients to a food processor: rolled oats, minced walnut or pecans, cane or coconut sugar, and dairy-free butter. If you have whole walnuts, chop them finely with a food processor before adding the other ingredients.
- Pulse a couple of times until combined. Set aside until you make the apple pie filling.
Baking vegan apple crisp pie
- Roll your pie crust and arrange it inside your 9-inch pie form. Use a knife to cut off the excess dough around the dish.
- Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit (ca. 177 °C).
- Use a round-shaped parchment paper or cut one for yourself and place it inside the pie dish on top of the pie crust. Use rice, beans, or pie weights to ensure that the sides and the bottom keep their place.
- Blind bake it for 15 minutes.
- Take the blind-baked pie crust and add the pre-cooked apple pie filling. Try to arrange the apple slices so that they cover the whole crust evenly.
- Sprinkle the top with the crisp topping you just made.
- Bake this apple crisp pie in a preheated oven of 350 Fahrenheit (ca. 177 °C) for 15 minutes. Wait for it to cool down completely before slicing! Serve it with a scoop of vegan vanilla ice cream, coconut whipped cream, or a drizzle of caramel sauce.
- How to thicken the apple filling? – Avoid adding starch directly to the apple filling to prevent lumps. Instead, create a slurry by mixing the starch with a small amount of water and then add it to the caramel sauce.
- Don’t overbake it – To ensure a crunchy topping, be careful not to overbake it.
- Do you need to blind bake? – Most pie crust must be blind-baked to avoid a soggy bottom.
- Sliced apple or chopped apple? – The choice between sliced or chopped apples depends on personal preference. We made the caramel apple filling with chopped apples in our vegan apple crumble recipe.
- Crumble vs crisp topping: If you prefer a lighter, fluffier topping, we recommend trying the crumble recipe from our vegan apple crumble. It is a simple, grated dough with the perfect texture after baking.
- Oil-free: You can use nut butter or seed butter to make the crispy topping.
- Nut-free: You can use shredded coconut or finely chopped sunflower seeds instead of walnuts/pecans. Or even add more rolled oats instead of the supposed amount of nuts.
- Stone fruits: You will love apples with pears, peaches, or plums. They make a delicious combination.
- Berries: For a delightful twist, add a handful of fresh or frozen berries like raspberries, blueberries, or blackberries to your diced apples. You can also enhance the taste by including raisins and dried cranberries.
Make sure to let this vegan apple crisp pie cool completely. Cover it with plastic wrap before placing it in the fridge. It will stay fresh and delicious for up to four days in the refrigerator, but the topping will lose its crispiness.
If you want to keep it even longer, you can freeze it for up to three months. To make things easier, use airtight containers for individual servings.
When you’re ready to savor it again, just thaw it in the refrigerator overnight. I don’t usually reheat it. Just serve it at room temperature.
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Caramel Apple Crisp Pie
- 1 9-inch Pie Crust (homemade or store-bought) or use this gingerbread pie crust recipe
Preparing the pie crust
- Roll your pie crust and arrange it inside your 9-inch pie form. Place it in the fridge until you get the apple pie filling and the crisp topping ready.
- Blind-bake it for 15 minutes. (If you choose our gingerbread pie crust, you don’t need to blind-bake it.)
Making crisp topping
- Take a food processor and pulse all ingredients and pulse a couple of times. If you have whole nuts, finely chop them first before adding the other ingredients.
Making apple pie filling
- Take a large saucepan and add the sliced apples, water, coconut sugar, cinnamon, molasses, and vanilla extract. Stir until combined and cover it with a lid.
- Bring it to a boil and then take it back to medium and simmer until apples are cooked but not mushy yet.
- Mix the cornstarch with water in a small bowl and add that so-called slurry to the apples. It will thicken within a minute!
- Take the blind-baked pie crust and add the apple pie filling. Spread them around evenly.
- Sprinkle the top with the crisp topping and bake it in a preheated oven (350 Fahrenheit (ca. 177 °C) or 180 degrees Celsius) for 15-20 minutes until the top is crispy and there is bubbling around the edges.
- Wait for it to cool down completely before slicing!
UPDATED: This recipe was originally posted in Oct 2019, but it was re-developed, re-tested, and republished as an even more delicious apple crisp pie in May 2023.