These air fryer baked apples are like individual crumbles and are perfect for breakfast or a healthy dessert. They can also be made in the oven. With whole wheat, gluten-free and vegan options.
Guess who got an air fryer for Christmas! I actually gave it to myself on January 2, but I’m going to call it a Christmas present.
The first recipe I made was these air fryer baked apples. They’re basically cored apples with a crumble filling inside. For another crumble-inspired recipe, try this delicious and healthy Raw Apple Pom Crumble!
I’ve made these baked apples in the oven several times before, and that’s actually how I was originally going to post the recipe but figured I’d share both methods today.
So if you don’t have an air fryer, don’t worry, as you can make them in an oven.
Depending on your air fryer, you may need to core and halve the apples so that they fit. It doesn’t make them any less delicious!
And it’s actually easier to halve the apple and remove the core, rather than to keep the apple whole and scoop out the core. You can, of course, also use this method in the oven!
What type of apple to use
I know that Granny Smith is a beloved baking apple, and that’s what you see in the photos, but I usually use a sweeter apple.
I prefer Jonagold, Gala or Golden Delicious apples in this recipe because of their thin skins. They’re also considered baking apples, so the taste and texture are great.
To make the best of these apples, you can also try one of these healthy apple recipes:
Add-ins and topping
I like raisins, but dried cranberries or dried cherries are also fantastic. You can also omit them. The pecans can also be omitted or replaced with another type of nut.
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, you might want to drizzle some maple syrup on top. Or plop on a scoop of ice cream or add some whipped cream (if serving these as a kinda healthy dessert ;))
To make this gluten, just use Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-free Baking Flour. It’s a direct sub and the result is delicious!
I haven’t tried other brands in this recipe, but as long as it’s a 1-to-1 sub for all-purpose flour, it could work. I just can’t say that the texture would be perfect with it. I find a lot of brands to be gritty or have a funky taste in a lot of recipes.
Also, make sure to use gluten-free oats! Read Are Oats Gluten-free? for more info!
Healthy whole wheat option
You can use regular all-purpose flour or for a healthy whole grain option, use white whole wheat flour.
I don’t recommend regular whole wheat as it’d taste a bit too healthy and whole wheaty.
White whole wheat tastes quite similar to all-purpose flour, so picky kids shouldn’t be able to even tell that it’s whole grain.
Just use coconut oil or vegan butter! Both work great. And make sure any topping you put on the apples is vegan, as well. This Vegan Custard would be amazing on top!
If you give these air fryer baked apples a try, I’d love to know what you think!
Air Fryer Baked Apples
- 2 medium apples (see notes)
- 1/2 cup (46 grams) rolled oats (if gluten-free, use GF oats)
- 2 tablespoons (15 grams) all-purpose flour, white whole wheat flour or for GF, use 2 tablespoons (18 grams) Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-free Baking Mix
- 2 tablespoons (25 grams) brown sugar or coconut sugar*
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted and cooled (coconut oil for vegan)
- 2 tablespoons (15 grams) pecans optional
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons raisins, dried cranberries or dried cherries optional
To make them in an air fryer:
- If your air fryer is large enough to handle whole apples, you can use the method of cutting and filling them used in the oven method below. If your air fryer isn't large enough for a whole apple: halve the apples (through the stem) and remove the stem and core. Make sure that they're the right size to fit in your air fryer and cut more away, if necessary. You don't want them touching the top element (if this is an issue with your model of air fryer).
- Some topping will bubble over so prepare your air fryer however needed. I used a piece of parchment paper in mine but that may not be safe for every type of air fryer.
- Preheat your air fryer to 325 °F (162 °C).
- In a small mixing bowl, mix together everything except the apples and raisins.
- Place 1/2 tablespoon of raisins in the center of each apple. You want the raisins between the crumble and the apples so that they don't burn.
- Divide the crumble between the 4 apple halves, pressing it down over the raisins, to compact the topping so that it doesn't blow around in the air fryer.
- Very gently place them in the air fryer, with the crumble topping side facing up.
- Cook for 13-18 minutes or until softened. The apples will have slightly softened, but not be mushy, and the crumble mixture will have started to brown. They'll soften a bit more as they sit.
To bake them in the oven:
- Preheat the oven to 350 °F (175 °C). Get out a small baking dish that's big enough for your apples. For the oven version, I made a double batch and used 4 apples.
- Cut about 1/2" off the top from each apple and scoop out the core. Place the apples in the baking dish.
- In a small mixing bowl, mix together the topping ingredients. Unlike the air fryer version, you can mix the raisins in with the rest of the mixture.
- Divide the mixture between the cored apples. It's okay if some mixture falls into the baking dish. If any raisins or nuts are sticking out, push them into the mixture so that they won't burn.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes. The apples will have slightly softened, but not be mushy, and the crumble mixture will have started to brown. They'll soften a bit more as they sit.
For either version:
- If desired, serve with yogurt, whipped cream, or ice cream just before serving.
* If you use coconut sugar, your crumble will be darker in color and the mixture will be more crumbly and not hold together as well. For the air fryer version, you'll need to carefully place the crumble mixture in the apple and gently pat it down with your hand so that it's more compact. You don't want it to blow around.