Apple Brown Betty is one of my favorite fall dessert recipes.
My version consists of thinly sliced fresh apples with a no oat sweet and buttery topping. Just a few ingredients come together to make this cinnamon spice sweet fruit dessert.
APPLE BROWN BETTY
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As fall arrives, so do the apples and apple recipes! One of my favorites is the historical Apple Brown Betty dessert. This is what I make for those times that I buy too many apples and we’re just tired of eating them as-is.
What is an Apple Brown Betty?
Also known simply as Brown Betty, this is a dessert made with fruit and sweetened crumbs. Apples are the star of the show, but if you want to mix things up, there are known cases where berries have also been thrown in.
An irresistible addition to the Brown Betty dessert is a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, while it’s still warm, allowing for the ice cream to soften and melt slightly into the gooey goodness below.
Most of us commonly relate an Apple Brown Betty to an apple crisp, but there is a difference.
What is a Brown Betty vs. an apple crisp?
Both of these desserts are very similar. For example, each uses a buttery crumb topping. For me, the Apple Brown Betty Dessert topping is mostly the flour, brown sugar and butter that makes it crispy.
I do love the simplicity of cooked down apples with a buttery, sugary, downright delicious crisp topping! The difference of an apple crisp is typically there are oats in it’s topping. I am not a fan of apple recipes with oats on the topping, and that is why I prefer my Apple Brown Betty recipe.
My specific version consists of thinly sliced fresh apples with a no oat sweet and buttery crumble. So, if you are not a fan of oats, like me, you are welcome to join my club and give it try! Or if you simply haven’t tried without oats, you should also give it a try – you may be pleasantly surprised.
A bit of history for the Apple Brown Betty recipe:
Historically, the apple brown Betty dessert can be traced all the way back to early American kitchens. This makes sense when others lovingly refer to the dessert as Grandma’s Apple Brown Betty.
Believe it or not, the Apple Brown Betty has made such an impact, it has been given its own special day! There actually is such a thing as “National Betty Day”, observed on Oct. 5th each year – naturally during the Fall season.
Apple Brown Betty
- 4-6 large apples peeled, core removed, thinly sliced (I used honeycrisp)
- 1 lemon
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup cold butter 1 cube
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Add apple slices to a 9x9 baking dish. Cut lemon in half and squeeze juice over apples. Toss apples to evenly coat.
- In medium sized bowl, combine flour, sugars, and spices. Add cold butter and use a pastry blender to work the butter into the dry ingredients, cutting it into small pieces. You want the mixture to be crumbly with little to no dry ingredients left that haven't touched the butter. Sprinkle all of the topping over the apples evenly.
- Cover with aluminum foil and cook in preheated oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil and allow to continue cooking until the topping is crisp, about 10-20 additional minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
This post was originally created in September 2015 and was updated in September 2018 with more fun facts and tidbits for your reading pleasure.