Autumn Apple Crisp with Pears and Walnuts

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Welcome autumn with an apple crisp recipe featuring walnuts and pears, served with vanilla ice cream and drizzled with caramel.

It’s amazing when served warm, a real welcome home. And so romantic when shared.

What is an apple crisp?

A crisp is baked in a pie dish, but doesn’t have a crust. (This crisp recipe suggests baking it in a skillet.) It is like a crumble with a streusel style topping, but baked until crisp. A cobbler is similar but has a biscuit dough topping that looks like a cobblestone road. This apple crisp is extra special, with walnuts in the streusel topping for extra flavor and crispness.

Do I have to use fresh fruit in a crisp?

Fresh fruit is best in a crisp, but you can use frozen. Kitchn recommends defrosting the fruit first and then cutting it into smaller bite-sized pieces which is great advice. They also say that apple pie filling is just too sweet to use in a crisp and can make it gummy.

When is a crisp done cooking?

You will know a crisp is done when it is bubbling around the edges (which it needs to do to thicken), and the topping is nicely browned. (Browned, not just golden. It needs to be crisp but not hard.)

How do I serve Apple crisp with pears and walnuts?

Scoop the crisp while still warm into individual bowls and top with vanilla ice cream. (Make your own homemade vanilla ice cream without an ice cream maker!)

Or try McCormick’s Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream: beat 1 cup heavy cream, 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, and 1 teaspoon McCormick® Vanilla Bean Paste in medium bowl with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Can I serve Apple Crisp cold?

You can serve crisp cold, but it’s at it heart warming best when served hot out of the oven served with a cold topping like ice cream for a beautiful contrast.

Want to make it extra special? Serve these beverages with it.

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apple crisp with pear and walnut

Apple Crisp with Pears and Walnuts

  • Author: California Walnuts
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


Heart warming welcome home autumn recipe. This apple crisp with pears and walnuts makes the heart happy.


Units Scale

Walnut Crisp Topping:

  • 1 1/2 c California walnuts, divided
  • 1/4 c flour
  • 1/3 c brown sugar
  • 1/2 c quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 c butter, chilled and sliced into 1-tablespoon pieces

Apple Pear Filling:

  • 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 D’Anjou pears, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • vanilla ice cream (optional)
  • caramel sauce (optional)


To Make Walnut Crisp Topping:

  1. In food processor, pulse 1 cup walnuts until finely ground.

  2. In small bowl, combine ground walnuts, flour, brown sugar, oats and cinnamon. Cut butter into mixture until coarse crumb forms.

  3. Coarsely chop remaining walnuts and stir into crumb mixture until incorporated. Set aside.

To Make Apple Pear Filling:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.

  2. In bowl, toss apples, pears, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, salt and lemon juice.

  3. Place fruit mixture in bottom of 10-inch cast-iron pan or baking dish.

  4. Sprinkle walnut crisp topping mixture over fruit.

  5. Bake 45 minutes, or until fruit mixture is hot and bubbly and topping is golden brown.

  6. Top with ice cream and drizzled with caramel sauce, if desired.


We provide nutritional information but these figures should be considered estimates as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Skillet
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 3/4 cup
  • Calories: 822

Recipe and photo courtesy  California Walnuts

How do I store leftover apple crisp?

To store leftover crisp, cover and refrigerate for 2-3 days. It’s best served warm right after cooking, because the topping will get a little soggy after sitting the fridge.

What is the best way to reheat apple crisp?

You can reheat crisps in the microwave, but the best way is in the oven because it stays warm longer. Let the dish come to room temperature while the oven preheats to 350°F. Bake for 20 minutes and it will be ready to eat. Keep an eye on it – you don’t want the topping to be too browned.

Can I freeze apple crisp?

You can freeze leftover crisp for up to 1 month. After it is completely cool, cover it and freeze. (If you freeze it in an oven proof dish, it’s easier to defrost and reheat.) Let it defrost overnight in the fridge and reheat in 350°F oven for about 20 minutes. If you’re concerned that the topping might brown too much, cover it with aluminum foil.

autumn crisp air falling leaves apple picking sign

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