My favourite, easiest, rustic apple crumble (picture by Tasha Seccombe)

There are few dishes as homely as a freshly baked apple pie, served warm with thick cream. It smells buttery, yet fragrant with cinnamon,  the fruitiness of fresh apples filling the air.

I’ve always struggled to find an easy recipe for a hearty apple crumble, untill I once saw “The Hairy Bikers” on BBC Lifestyle cooking up a really rustic version of this classic pie. I wasn’t taking notes, but the recipe below was definitely inspired by them. The apples are not pre-cooked, but goes into the dish raw and diced, then they’re covered with a knob of butter, a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar and a few drops of lemon juice (no separate sauce necessary). On top goes a rough mixture of flour, butter and sugar (rubbed in with your fingers). Bake it in a medium hot oven, and serve warm with cream or ice cream. It simply cannot be any easier than this. And with Winter creeping closer, this will definitely be a firm favourite on rainy evenings in my house.


  • 4 green apples, preferable Granny Smith (skinned, cored and diced)
  • 4 T cinnamon sugar (the same mixture you would use for pancakes)
  • 4 t butter
  • 4 t lemon juice
  • 1 cup flour
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) butter, cut into small cubes
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) sugar


  1. Using 4 individual oven-proof serving bowls, arrange diced apple pieces in each dish (or use 1 large pie dish). The pieces should not be in a single layer, but rather in a rustic “heap”. Top each bowl with 1 T of cinnamon sugar, then top each with 1 t of butter and sprinkle each with 1 t lemon juice.
  2. To make the crumble, add the flour, cubed butter and sugar to a mixing bowl. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour and sugar until it resembles breadcrumbs. Distribute the crumble mixture evenly over the apples, covering all 4 bowls (the mixture will look quite floury, but don’t worry – the floury bits will fall inbetween the apple pieces, creating a lovely thick sauce, while the thicker crumble pieces will crisp up on top).
  3. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 C for 30 minutes, then turn up the heat to 200 C for 15 minutes until golden and bubbly.
  4. Remove from oven and serve warm with cream.


This post was especially written for The Pretty Blog by Ilse van der Merwe from The Food Fox.

Food: Ilse van der Merwe from The Food Fox.

Pictures: Tasha Seccombe.

Styling: Nicola Pretorius, Tasha Seccombe & Ilse van der Merwe.

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  1. absolutely stunning photography and styling! this looks like something i can easily put together for the kids!! perfect with ice cream – hehe!

    1. Thanks so much Jennifer! Yes, very easy to put together, and it will go very nicely with cream or ice cream. Hope you enjoy!

  2. Gorgeous! Perfect for this pre-winter chilly Capetonian weather. Mmm, comfort eating.

    1. I agree! Nothing like a steamy cinnamon-flavoured pie to make you feel all warm and cozy. 🙂

  3. This looks divine! I think I’ll even give it a try tonight!! You have an awesome blog!

    1. Thanks so much! Great to hear that you love it! Makes me very happy. x

  4. Hello – I made it two nights ago and it was very good! I felt like Santa Claus handing it out to a few friends & family!

    1. So glad to hear that! I’m actually going to make it for my family tonight! It’s COLD in Stellenbosch, and we need some steamy apple pie… 🙂

  5. I saw this on the prettyblog and made one for our family. Since then my son often begs me for apple crumble. It’s so easy. I add less lemon juice and substitute apple juice because my husband complains that the lemon juice curdles the cream!

    1. Hi Ingrid, so happy to hear that your family enjoys this! It is really the easiest apple crumble recipe around, with maximum satisfaction guaranteed. 🙂 Thanks for the tip about the apple juice, I’m sure a lot of people would prefer that!

  6. Ilse, ek wil graag hierdie apple crumble vir my verjaarsdag maak. Dink jy ek kan dit ‘n dag voor die tyd klaarmaak tot voor die bakstadium en dit dan rou in die yskas hou en dan vars bak as die gaste arriveer? Wil nog red velvet cupcakes, sop en brood maak en gaan nie by alles op een dag uitkom nie…

    1. Hi Mardre, ek het dit nog nie probeer doen nie, maar ek is seker dit behoort te werk! Veral as jou yskas baie koud is. Jy is mos ‘n bobaas-bakster! So ek is seker jou verjaarsdag snacks gaan awesome wees! Geniet dit. xx

  7. Hi Ilse,

    Ek wil net gou hoor vir hoeveel mense is die tert? Ek wil dit graag vir braaidag maak, maar wil net weet of ek dit moet aanpas vir die hoeveelheid mense of nie.

    Jy het ‘n baie goeie blog en ek love jou resepte!!

    Lekker daggie

    1. Hi Sonja! Ek werk gewoonlik op so 1 appel per persoon, so daai tert is genoeg vir 4 groot porsies. Verdubbel dit gerus indien jy ‘n groot crowd het! Geniet Braaidag!

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