No-Bake Apple Crisp with Caramel Sauce (Vegan and Gluten Free)

Are you overwhelmed by pie crust?  I certainly am.  I think pie crust can smell your fear.  I just avoid making it if I don't have to, and apple crisps are a super easy way to avoid it all together.
The topping is made out of dates, spices, nuts, and a little coconut oil.  The apples are sliced thin, and microwaved until soft, so this whole dessert comes together in minutes and without taking up valuable oven space with a certain holiday coming up.  If you tripled this recipe, and just sprinkled the nut mixture on top, it would be a fantastic apple crisp pie!
Apples get marinated in some lemon juice, maple syrup, and cinnamon, then microwaved to soften.  A food processor makes quick work of the nuts, spices, dates, and coconut oil.
Divide the nut mixture into 4 equal parts.
Put 1/4 into a ramekin or other small bowl, and press into the bottom to form the crust.
Layer the apples over top, followed by the other 1/4 of the nut mixture.
You could dig in right now!  This is kind of a deconstructed baked apple, in a lot less time.

But I think a little maple caramel sauce would be very welcome here, don't you think?
Drizzle the sauce over each apple crisp, and marvel at the fact that you may have just made a Thanksgiving dessert that everyone in your family can eat!  No dairy, no meat, no gluten!  Well, unless there's a nut allergy.  In which case, I apologize, this is not for them.
What is it about apple crisp that I just love so much?
No-Bake Apple Crisp with Caramel Sauce (Adapted slightly from Fork and Beans)

Ingredients:
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup pecans
3 dates, pit removed
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 
1 apple, sliced thinly
Juice of 1 lemon, about 2-3 tablespoons
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Caramel Sauce, to top

In a microwavable bowl, add the apple slices, lemon juice, maple syrup, and cinnamon.  Mix around, then set aside.

In a food processor, add the dates, water, coconut oil, cinnamon, and vanilla extract.  Pulse until the dates are minced.  Add the almonds and pecans, and pulse until there are no large pieces remaining, but don't mix too much, otherwise we're going to have nut butter.

Microwave the apples for 1:00 intervals, stirring around as needed until all of the apples are soft.

In two ramekins, or small bowls, add 1/4 of the nut mixture into each and press to form a bottom crust. Layer 1/2 of the apples into each ramekin, and top with the other 1/4 of the nut mixtures.  Drizzle with caramel sauce, and serve immediately.
Enjoy!

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