Olive Magazine
Apple Crumble

Classic apple crumble

Published: August 3, 2021 at 4:40 pm
  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Total time
  • Easy
  • Serves 6

Check out this really easy old-school apple crumble. This classic dessert is a firm family favourite and you won't go wrong with this foolproof recipe


Apple crumble is one of our most loved puddings and is incredibly simple to make. Try this classic apple crumble recipe or check out our boozy apple crumble, vegan apple crumble, apple crumble cake and healthy apple crumble.

For more crumble recipes check out our nectarine crumble and rhubarb crumble, best served with a jug of our homemade custard

For more indulgent puddings, check out our bread pudding, hot cross bun bread and butter pudding and chocolate bread and butter pudding

What is the origin of apple crumble?

Crumble was thought to originate during the 1940s in Britain as a quick and easy pudding. It uses the same ingredients as sweet pastry (flour, butter and sugar) and the method of rubbing the butter into the flour is the same but instead of bringing it together to a dough with liquid it’s just scattered over the filling and baked, keeping its short, crumbly texture.

Which apples should you use in a crumble?

Apple crumble traditionally uses Bramley cooking apples which bring a nice tartness to contrast to the sweet topping. Bramleys also cook to a lovely softness – if you want more texture in your crumble you could use a mix of cooking and eating apples as eating apples will keep their shape after cooking. The apples don’t need pre-cooking before you assemble the crumble, just peel and cut into chunks or wedges then scatter the topping and bake.

How to make a crumble topping

The basic topping mix can be adapted in lots of different ways. Try adding rolled oats or chopped walnuts, almonds or hazelnuts. Swap in demerara sugar for traditional caster for an caramelly crunchy topping or try mixing in dark chocolate chips for extra indulgence.

When making the crumble mix try to keep everything as cool as possible as you would making pastry. Use chilled diced butter straight from the fridge and if rubbing it in with your fingers, stop when you have a mix of small and large rubbly pieces – this will give your crumble extra texture. You can also tip the ingredients into a food processer then just use the pulse button until you reach the right texture.

Which spices are used in an apple crumble?

Spices are often used in both the filling and topping. The most traditional is cinnamon which goes beautifully with apple but other warming spices such as nutmeg, ground allspice, mixed spice and even ground cardamom can work really well. Start with a couple of pinches if you are experimenting then increase to your liking.

Easy apple crumble recipe


  • 1kg bramley apples, peeled
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • custard or ice cream, to serve


  • 350g plain flour
  • 175g salted butter, chilled and diced
  • 100g golden caster sugar


  • STEP 1

    To make the crumble, put the flour and butter in a food processor and pulse to rough breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and a big pinch of salt.

  • STEP 2

    Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Cut the apples into quarters and remove the cores. Thickly slice and toss with the lemon juice, 150g of the sugar and the cinnamon. Put the apples in an ovenproof dish and scatter over the crumble mix, spreading it evenly. Sprinkle over the rest of the sugar.

  • STEP 3

    Bake for 40 minutes or until golden on top and bubbling around the edges. Serve with custard or ice cream.

Treat yourself to more of our comforting crumble recipes

gooseberry and cinnamon crumble

Comments, questions and tips

Rate this recipe

What is your star rating out of 5?

Choose the type of message you'd like to post

Choose the type of message you'd like to post

Overall rating


Sponsored content