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Contest-Winning Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe
Contest-Winning Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Contest-Winning Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe

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4.5 44
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When my children and I make this scrumptious layered dessert at home, we use a variety of apples to give it a nice combination of flavors. —Michelle Brooks, Clarkston, Michigan
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 45 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 45 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 3 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup cold butter, cubed
  • 8 cups thinly sliced peeled tart apples
  • 1 package (14 ounces) caramels, halved
  • 1 cup apple cider, divided


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, mix oats, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon; cut in butter until crumbly. Press half of the mixture into a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. Layer half of each of the following: apples, caramels and remaining oat mixture. Repeat layers. Drizzle 1/2 cup cider over top.
  2. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes. Drizzle with remaining cider; bake 15-20 minutes longer or until apples are tender. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Caramel Apple Crisp in Taste of Home August/September 2006, p29

Reviews for Contest-Winning Caramel Apple Crisp

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Reviewed Oct. 4, 2015

"Thought the recipe was great, though a tad too sweet. I also made a few additions along the way, so my rating doesn't exactly reflect on the word-for-word recipe.. It was a bit of work, but most of my favorite apple pie/dowdy/crumble recipes are, so I thought it was worth it.

I read the "8 cups" as 8 apples, so I used about 9 semi-tart apples (8 didn't seem like enough, I wonder why!), and threw a bag of cranberries & orange zest in there too, for a nice fall combo. I also chopped and toasted 1 cup of walnuts and added it to the crumble mixture. I think the layering is a nice idea. The juices from the apples & cranberries soaked into the bottom layer, which made it very soft and tasty.
I didn't like how the caramels melted either, so next time (and there WILL be a next time), I'll probably just make a thick sauce to drizzle on top of the apples. I would also add a couple different spices into the mix as well, perhaps some cloves and allspice.
I didn't have a problem with dryness (maybe that was because of the cranberries?). The final product was sweet-yet-tart, gooey, and delicious, though I very much made this recipe my own."

Reviewed Sep. 30, 2015

"If this won, I would hate to see what lost. Very dry and tasteless. I would never make this again. Waste of allot of ingredients. It was a bunch of dry mush."

Reviewed Sep. 27, 2015

"This has a really good flavor, but I was afraid it would be dry, so after I baked it the last 15-20 mins., following the recipe, I added another 1/2 cup or so of apple cider and baked 10 more minutes. I now understand why the recipe says to eat when warm, as the caramel doesn't melt very well. Next time I will melt the caramels in a double boiler with 2/3 cup evaporated milk, and drizzle 1/2 on each layer."

Reviewed Aug. 13, 2015

"I am not much of a baker so maybe I did something wrong with this recipe. I do however, make lots of baked oatmeal recipes both for breakfast and for dessert because of the lack of sodium they have. This just tasted like a baked oatmeal for breakfast to me and to my husband. Couldn't get enough whip cream on it to make it not seem dry. Once again, I didn't skip anything in the recipe but maybe I did something wrong."

Reviewed Oct. 26, 2014

"It was good, but I honestly expected better since it was contest winning. Not sure I would go thru the effort to make again."

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