Instant Pot Apple Crisp is packed full of sweet, juicy apples with a crunchy oat crumble topping for an easy homemade pressure cooker dessert that’s the epitome of fall.
I know the saying is “as American as apple pie,” but hear me out—crisps whip up faster, have a streusel topping, and no risk of a soggy bottom crust. I can’t think of any recipe that’s more all-American and perfect for autumn than homemade apple crisp?
A piping-hot serving of apples, brown sugar-cinnamon crunchy topping, and a scoop of ice cream is one of my favorite ways to celebrate with my family.
And making apple crisp with oatmeal topping just got even easier. With this Instant Pot / pressure cooker recipe, you can make this fall favorite in a fraction of the time. (Plus, this recipe leaves plenty of oven space for while you make the rest of your Thanksgiving menu.)
How to Make Apple Crisp
I adapted this recipe from one of my family’s favorite Barbara Bakes recipes. It’s easy, packed with flavor, and translates quite well to the pressure cooker.
The crisp filling is made with sliced apples, a bit of lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, and cornstarch. (The cornstarch helps keep the pie filling thick and sticky, rather than watery.)
You can cook the crisp all the way through in a regular pressure cooker OR for a crisper topping, finish with an air fryer lid or in the oven.
Choosing a Pan for Your Apple Crisp
If you want to make a big batch of apple crisp, you can cook it directly in the cooking pot with a much, much shorter cook time. However, I wanted it to be grab-and-go easy to crisp up, so I wanted to cook it right in the serving pan.
Make your crisp in a round cake pan with high sides. We prefer a thick Fat Daddio’s 7-inch cake pan that fits on a trivet inside our Instant Pot. If you use a thinner springform pan (like we did for the pictures), you may need to take a minute or two off the cook time.
Fill the pot with 1 1/2 cups of water. Then simply use an aluminum foil sling to carefully lower the filled cake pan onto the trivet.
Best Apples for Apple Crisp
I recommend making Instant Pot Apple Crisp with a combination of sweet and tart baking apples. In testing, we had the best results with Golden Delicious and Honeycrisp apples. (I don’t recommend Granny Smiths, as they stay tougher and harder than the other apples after cooking.)
You can certainly experiment with other apple varieties, but for best results, choose baking apples. Otherwise, your crisp filing can end up too watery.
Slice the apples no larger than ¼-inch thick for tender, juicy apples that don’t fall apart as they bake.
Apple Crisp Topping
This easy apple crisp topping recipe is packed with oats, brown sugar, and sliced almonds. It’s crumbly, nutty, and just sweet enough to pair with naturally sweet apples.
Making the topping is like making a crumbly streusel. Combine light brown sugar, flour, old-fashioned oats, slivered almonds, and a dash of cinnamon with melted butter. The texture should be soft and similar to wet sand.
As it cooks, the crumbled oat topping will crisp up so this dessert truly lives up to its name! For even crisper apple crisp, brown the topping briefly with an air fryer lid.
(No air fryer lid? No problem! You can easily pop the crisp under the oven broiler for two minutes. Just watch it closely, as all broilers differ and burning can happen quickly.)
The result will be cooked through and sweet on the inside with a crunchy, nutty topping. All that’s missing is a generous scoop of whipped cream or ice cream (or both!).
Full Disclosure: I like my apple crisp to have a bit of bite in the apples. If you like your apple crisp very tender, add a minute or two to the cook time. (But be careful—there’s a very fine line between super tender apples and applesauce.)
More Tasty Ways to Cook with Apples
If you’re hooked on this seasonal fruit, try these other favorite apple baking recipes next:
- Cinnamon Apple Steel Cut Oats is the most comforting, fall-spiced way to start your day, fresh out of the Instant Pot.
- Instant Pot Applesauce is an easy, healthier recipe that will still satisfy your sweet tooth.
- Pressure Cooker Spiced Pumpkin Apple Butter unites everyone’s two favorite fall flavors into one creamy, spreadable condiment.
- Apple Cinnamon Sugar Donut Muffins from Barbara Bakes are bursting with apples. Not to mention cute, sweet, and easy to take on the go.
- Dutch Caramel Apple Pie Bites are adorable bite-sized apple pies with a sticky caramel drizzle on top.
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- 3 cups apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced (3-4 apples, sliced about ¼-inch thick)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- Spray a 7x3-inch round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a Ziploc bag or large bowl, toss the apples and lemon juice to coat.
- In a small bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and salt. Add to the apples and toss until the apples are evenly coated. Transfer the apples to the prepared pan.
- In a mixing bowl, prepare the crumble topping. Combine the brown sugar, flour, oats, almonds, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and salt. Add the butter and mix with a fork until the mixture resembles crumbly, wet sand. Sprinkle the oat topping evenly over the apples.
- Pour 1 1/2 cups of water into the bottom of the pressure cooking pot and place a trivet in the pot. Use an aluminum foil sling to carefully lower the cake pan into the pot. Lock the lid in place. Select High Pressure and a 16 minute cook time.
- When the cook time ends, use a quick pressure release. When the valve drops, carefully remove the lid. Remove the cake pan from the cooking pot.
- Optional: brown up the topping with an air fryer lid: Discard the cooking water and wipe out the cooking pot. Place the trivet back into the cooking pot. Lower the cake pan onto the trivet with your sling. Set the air fryer lid in place. Cook at 375°F for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the almonds start to brown. (You can also place the pan in the oven and broil for about two minutes.)
- Allow the crisp to cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm, topped with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if desired.
*Be sure to let the crisp rest so that the sauce can thicken into a classic apple crisp sauce.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 202Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 79mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 3gSugar: 22gProtein: 2g
Nutrition information is calculated by Nutritionix and may not always be accurate.
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