Apple Granola Crisp

You probably know by now that I’m not a picky eater. I will eat pretty much anything Andrew Zimmern would dare bring to his lips, at least once. But I can get particular about certain things. One of them is granola.

I confess that I am very, very, and I mean very, particular with my granola.  I do love my granola — it’s one of my favorite breakfast and snack foods. And when I find a granola blend that I like, I stick to it. It can be hard to convince me that there might be better granolas out there. I find that time and again, I eagerly try new varieties, only to determine, “Meh. That was okay. My favorite brand is better.” For that reason, I won’t even attempt to make my own.

So, when the kind folks at 18 Rabbits offered to send me samples of their granola and bars, I was both excited and worried. Excited because I am a granola junkie. Worried because I was already feeling the pressure of my critical granola palate.

As I learned more about the San Francisco-based company, I liked what I read. 18 Rabbits is committed to producing a pure, delicious, organic product, without excessive sugars or saturated fats. They maintain relationships with their farmers for locally sourced ingredients. As I strive to eat more responsibly, these are all things I love to hear when trying a new product.

Did the granola live up to its philosophy?

I am happy to say, yes.

The granola bars were wholesome, filling, and tasted, for lack of a better descriptive, clean. None of this sugary, sticky stuff; the granola bars were delicious without feeling like candy. My favorite flavor of the five varieties was the Belle Bananas Foster, made with organic bananas and dates.

Even better, I was remarkably pleased with the granola. I especially loved their Gracious Granola, which has Pecan, Almond and Maple and is made with organic oats, coconut, and pumpkin seeds. What I did not expect was for my husband to fall in love with the Gracious Granola. He’s a strict oatmeal-for-weekday-breakfast kind of guy, but once he tasted this granola, he actually requested that we keep it stocked in the pantry at all times.

But here’s what I loved best:

The 18 Rabbits Gracious Granola worked fantastically in an Apple Granola Crisp. The maple and coconut flavors added dimension to the topping, and I loved the extra crunch from the pecans, almonds and pumpkin seeds. Served a la mode with a rich vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce, I can’t imagine making apple crisp any other way.

Disclaimer/Disclosure: 18 Rabbits kindly shared samples of their granola and granola bars, however, I am under no obligation to review or write about their products. I share my opinions because I sincerely loved what I tasted and believe you will, too.

Apple Granola Crisp

Serves 4-6.


  • 4 cups apples, peeled and diced (Granny Smith & Fuji work well)
  • 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon flour


  • ¾ cup flour
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup granola (I recommend 18 Rabbits Gracious Granola)
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the apples, brown sugar, cinnamon and flour, and toss to mix. Put in a buttered shallow baking dish (pie pan or 8×8 brownie pan). To make topping, combine flour, sugar and butter and mix until it looks like course crumbs, using a pastry cutter or food processor. Add granola and cinnamon and mix a little more. Spread topping evenly over fruit and pat down gently with your fingertips. Bake until the top is light brown and crisp, about 35-40 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce.

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by Liren Baker on January 20, 2011

41 Responses to “Particular”

  1. Jessica January 20, 2011 @ 11:25 pm (#

    I was just wishing for something sweet, cold, and tasty… and then I stumbled upon your delicious looking apple granola crisp!

    I wonder if I can find 18 Rabbits in LA? Can’t wait to try them out one day!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:43 pm

      Hi Jessica! I’m not sure where you are in LA but check their store locator. They are at many Whole Foods across the country. Good luck finding it!

  2. fooddreamer January 21, 2011 @ 3:37 am (#

    I am a granola aficionado too. It has to be just right…not overly sweet, not overly dry, with just the right amount of big clusters. This brand sounds delicious, and using it in a crisp was inspired!

  3. Liz January 21, 2011 @ 4:27 am (#

    Apple crisp is one of my favorite desserts…love the granola topping (and that lovely drizzle of caramel!).

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:26 pm

      Hi Liz! The drizzle of caramel is certainly not necessary for apple crisp, but I just can’t help it – it brings it to the next level!

  4. Angela@RecipesFromMyMom January 21, 2011 @ 4:36 am (#

    Apple crisps are so good all year round and I could even imagine eating this for breakfast. Bet your husband has already thought of that!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:26 pm

      Ha ha! You must know my husband, Angela! This apple crisp definitely would be good for breakfast, too :)

  5. Becky January 21, 2011 @ 5:17 am (#

    I make apple crisp all of the time, but never thought of using it to make apple crisp. Now, I have to get some healthy granola. Thanks for sharing!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:27 pm

      Hi Becky! Yes, the granola is great in the crisp topping – extra crunch with not too much effort!

  6. Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet } January 21, 2011 @ 6:33 am (#

    Your apple crisp looks simply divine! Great to see a SF based food company highlighted. I know it is early in the morning as I write this comment, but boy I wish I had a bowl of this right now. Gorgeous photos!!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:29 pm

      Hi Lisa! Yes, you know how I feel about supporting our local economy. I am happy to share local food companies that produce an excellent product, and it makes me so proud of all the wonderful foods SF has to offer!

  7. norma January 21, 2011 @ 7:43 am (#

    I can handle that apple crisp. I love the name of the granola.

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:29 pm

      Norma, I love the name, too!

  8. Brian @ A Thought For Food January 21, 2011 @ 8:25 am (#

    There are few things more comforting than a crisp. And it’s perfect for breakfast or dessert! ;-)

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:29 pm

      So, so, true – breakfast, dessert, or even for a snack, it’s perfect!

  9. Cubicle January 21, 2011 @ 8:37 am (#

    I love apple crisp! Your post gave me the inspiration to try it this weekend! And I’ll have to search out that granola. Yum!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:30 pm

      So happy to hear – do let me know if you tried it this weekend. I would love to know how you liked it.

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  11. Steph@stephsbitebybite January 21, 2011 @ 3:56 pm (#

    This looks like it’s the best of both worlds, hot apple crisp, and cold ice cream, make for a melty bite of goodness!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:30 pm

      Thanks Steph! Ice cream makes everything better :)

  12. lynne January 21, 2011 @ 10:17 pm (#

    Oh! I love granola! It sounds delicious :)

  13. Amy Bakes Everything January 22, 2011 @ 6:15 am (#

    Oh this is brilliant. My uncle absolutely LOVED my apple crisp, changing out the oats to granola is freaking genius! Great job, I’m trying this today!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:31 pm

      Hi Amy – thanks!! Hope you did try it – I’m sure your uncle would approve!

  14. wgfoodie January 22, 2011 @ 6:26 am (#

    I am a granloa junkie as well and can’t wait to try this out. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Tiffany January 22, 2011 @ 7:54 am (#

    Cool!!! I love discovering new brands. Thanks for the heads up on this product :)

  16. briarrose January 22, 2011 @ 12:06 pm (#

    Oooo…..granola in apple crisp…..I must try this out…in the name of science of course. ;) It has nothing to do with my unnatural love of both of those foods.

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:31 pm

      Oh, in the name of science, of course!! I completely understand :)

  17. Sara @CaffeIna January 22, 2011 @ 4:49 pm (#

    I’m glad you found a great brand of granola that is close to us! I love supporting local firms so I will totally give this a try!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:36 pm

      Hi Sara, me too! I love supporting our local companies :) Hope you find some and try it soon!

  18. Mateja January 22, 2011 @ 6:28 pm (#

    Crisps are so good, especially when topped with ice-cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce- beautiful presentation, thank you for sharing :)

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:36 pm

      Thank you, Mateja!

  19. Monet January 22, 2011 @ 10:19 pm (#

    What a beautiful crisp you shared with me. I am seriously drooling! Anything with baked apples and crunchy granola has me sold. Thank you for sharing you review and this inviting recipe with me. Have a Sunday full of laughter, love and plates of good food!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:41 pm

      Hi Monet! Oh, I wish you have a wonderful Sunday, too! I know you always have something yummy up your sleeve, I can’t wait to see what you’ve baked this weekend.

  20. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen January 23, 2011 @ 4:09 am (#

    I’ve seen that granola before, but never tried it. I like the fact that it’s all natural and organic, that’s always a bonus! I like your idea of making it into a crisp, I bet it would be pretty good mixed into ice cream too. I love that last shot with the caramel dripping on the ice cream and the crisp!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:40 pm

      Thank you, Sylvie! Eating this granola is close to eating homemade. And I did have some mixed in with ice cream the other day and it was fabulous!

  21. Priscilla - She's Cookin' January 23, 2011 @ 11:49 am (#

    I’ll have to look for 18 Rabbits down here – maybe Whole Foods? Thanks for introducing us to them, I’m glad that they lived up to their philosophy and I firmly believe that how we spend our food dollars is the way to food reform. Simple and delicious looking apple crisp, too!

    • Liren replied: — January 23rd, 2011 @ 5:39 pm

      Hi Priscilla! Yes, they carry 18 Rabbits in many Whole Foods locations. You can also purchase online. And I couldn’t agree more with you about spending our food dollars wisely.

  22. Joy February 18, 2011 @ 7:41 am (#

    This looks lovely. I adore apple crisp.

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