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Cranberry, Apple and Spiced Oat Crumble

Cook Time:
15 mins
Prep Time:
15 mins

Chef notes

A Thanksgiving prep list can feel endless. Between defrosting the turkey, preparing  all the veggies for roasted and mashed side dishes and planning out the oven schedule, dessert can easily fall to the back burner. While pie is a Thanksgiving classic, all of that dough rolling and crust crimping gets tedious, especially when there’s so much else to do.

A crumble is a classic dish that’s far easier to bring together, yet still offers a wow-factor at the holiday table. This recipe not only celebrates the bounty of fall, but it freezes beautifully so you can make it far in advance on a free day, then reheat it in the oven before serving. A crumble is my go-to recipe when I’m in a pinch, but I still want to impress my guests!

The baked dessert features a sweet fruit filling and crumbly streusel topping. Here, seasonal apples and cranberries are zipped up with citrus zest and juice and get a warming fall aroma from ground cinnamon and nutmeg. There’s no need to cook the filling ahead of time — it’ll thicken and bubble away in the oven as the crumble bakes. There is a bit of advanced planning needed for this recipe — the crumble requires around 45 minutes to cook, then another 30 minutes to set so make sure you allot enough time for both.

Once cooled, serve with scoops of ice cream. Vanilla works beautifully, but you can also opt for salted caramel to take things up a notch.

Technique Tip: If the top of the crumble starts browning too quickly, tent the top with foil as the rest cooks.

Swap Option: Use pears instead of apples. For extra zing, add ground ginger or fresh minced ginger to the filling.


  • 3 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • cup packed brown sugar, divided
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg, divided
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
  • sticks unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more to grease the pan
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • vanilla ice cream, for serving
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Preheat the oven to 375 F.


Grease a 9-inch cast iron skillet or baking dish with butter. Set aside.


In a large bowl, combine apples, cranberries, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 3 teaspoons vanilla, cornstarch and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Toss together with clean hands or a large spoon and set aside.


In a separate bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, flour and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Pour in the melted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla and toss together with clean hands to combine, pressing together with your fingertips to create crumbs.


Pour the fruit filling into the prepared cast-iron skillet and top with the crumb mixture. Bake in the oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the top is golden-brown and the fruit is bubbling. Remove from the oven and wait at least 30 minutes before serving.


To serve, distribute amongst the bowls and top with vanilla ice cream. Alternatively, bake the crumble, cool completely, wrap in plastic and then aluminum foil and freeze. When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 350 F, open the crumble and drizzle top with melted butter, cover with foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes to warm through. Remove the foil top and bake for 5 mins more to brown the topping. Serve with ice cream and enjoy!