Vegan, Gluten Free Apple & Pear Crumble
Nina Herndon
December 28, 2022
August 16, 2023

Last week, I sat down to find a gluten free, vegan dessert. As much as I love our Healthier Texas Sheet Cake, I know that a gluten free and vegan version isn’t as simple as a few swaps. And while I used to rave about Black Bean Brownies, you can probably guess why I didn’t go with that swap. 

In my mind a warm apple crumble was the perfect solution, but I was naive to believe it would be simple to find a recipe. If it was gluten free, it wasn’t vegan. If it was vegan, it wasn’t gluten free. And if it was both, it called for complicated ingredients!

After browsing a few recipes and a strike of curious inspiration from leftover pumpkin puree in my fridge, I present to you a delightful creation that can be enjoyed for dessert or breakfast. 


Spiced Apple and Pear Filling

  • 5 apples, diced 
  • 5 pears, diced
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • ½ cup golden raisins or dried cranberries
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt

Oat Topping

  • 1.5 cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup pumpkin puree or applesauce
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted 
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
  • Pinch of salt


  • In a large sautee pan over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. 
  • Add diced apples and pears, stirring to coat with the oil.
  • Stir in ½ cup golden raisins, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, and a pinch of salt. Reduce heat to medium-low.
  • Continue cooking fruit mixture on low-medium-low for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • While your fruit is cooking, preheat oven to 350°F and begin preparing oat topping.
  • In a medium bowl, combine 1.5 cups rolled oats, ½ cup pumpkin puree or applesauce, ¼ cup maple syrup, ½ cup melted coconut oil, ½ cup chopped nuts, and a pinch of salt. After a couple of stirs, use your hands to bring the crumbles together. The texture should be wet but crumbly.
  • In a 8x8 glass baking dish, spread an even layer of the cooked fruit.
  • Using your hands, drop crumbles of oat topping evenly onto the cooked fruit mixture. Don't spread or pack the topping using a spatula.
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes until the top is golden brown.
  • Let sit 10 minutes before serving. 

Tips to Reduce Food Waste

Since all of our menu items are designed to eliminate food waste, I started this recipe by preparing an item from Saturday breakfast. 

I know I can get tired of eating the same thing every morning, so next time you make our Stewed Apples & Pears with Warming Spices use the extras for this recipe, or make yourself a personal crumble!

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Nina Herndon

Nina believes women have an incredible ability to help one another, and is driven to cultivate safe spaces for them to do so. Over the years she has helped her mom to grow Retreat in the Pines to reach as many women as possible.

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