From Strawberry Crisp, I am now moving on to another Summer favorite fruit, Blueberry. Today’s post is about Blueberry Crisp (the same sharing for 2), but not just a regular Blueberry Crisp, I added few twist, made it gluten free and vegan and also added an unusual ingredient that has been getting quite popular now for it’s amazing health benefits. But if you are not into gluten free and vegan baking, no need to worry because I also added ingredient substitution so that you can make this the traditional way. So do not run away from me, because I got you covered either way.
I cannot get over making fruit crisp during Summer and I hope you won’t get tired of seeing more crisp post in the weeks to come because there is sure more coming your way. This is one of my favorite Summer dessert for few reasons:
- They uses very few ingredients that are easy to find
- They are great way to make use of fresh Summer fruits
- They are super easy to make
- They do not require any mixer
- You don’t need to be an experience baker
- They taste absolutely delicious, specially with vanilla ice cream
When I made my Strawberry Crisp, I knew this one is coming soon. Actually, it actually came sooner than expected, about 1 week apart. That is the beauty of making small batch, I get the make it without the worry of any left over, plus I get to make different variations and try variety of fruit combinations almost every week. This has been recently my go to dessert and it was made even more easier by making the crisp topping ahead of time. I have a separate posts for that, so watch out for it because it will really make your fruit crisp preparation a LOT easier. Trust me, once you have a make-ahead crisp topping on hand, all that is left to do is to cut and mix the fruits. How easy is that?
Ingredients for Blueberry Crisp
- Blueberry – I used fresh Blueberry, frozen Blueberry will work too. No need to thaw.
- Chia Seed – This serves as a thickener for the sauce. If you do not have chia seed, use cornstarch instead.
- Honey – Adds sweetness. You have to taste the Blueberry you are using so that you can add more sugar if needed.
- Lemon Zest – I like adding lemon zest to balance the sweetness of the crisp and to give a nice fresh flavor. This is totally optional.
- Almond Flour – Combined with the rolled oats, this gives a nice base for crisp topping. You can also use Gluten free flour to make the recipe gluten free or just regular all-purpose flour to make it a regular crisp.
- Rolled Oats – Crisp topping is not complete without the rolled oats. This gives the nice crunch. This can be substituted with porridge oats, or any mixed oats but do not use the quick cooking oats as they are softer and will not give much crunch. I used gluten free, but you can use any regular rolled oats if you do not care about being gluten free.
- Chopped Pecans or sliced Almonds – Adds nice crunch and texture to the crisp topping. If you remove this, add 1 tbsp more of rolled oats.
- Coconut Oil – This serves as the binder to bring the crisp topping together. This can be substituted with melted butter if you do not care about vegan option
How to make Blueberry Crisp
This Blueberry Crisp is as easy as making a regular crisp. The only difference is we are using gluten free ingredients and substitution ingredients to make it vegan. If you do not care any of this, check the substitution notes below. Since the Blueberry was really naturally sweet, I only added 1 tbsp of honey, some other times I don’t even add any sweetener. Taste the Blueberry and adjust the sweetener as needed. You would notice that there is no butter in crisp topping. When I made my gluten free and vegan crumb bar, I used coconut oil and maple syrup to bind the ingredients. I adapted the same concept here, just a tablespoon of coconut oil to bind the dry ingredients together. Making crisp toppings is pretty flexible, you can remove the nuts of you don’t like it. You can easily make a large batch of crisp topping if you are making a bigger batch of crisp. I made my crisp topping ahead time and kept it in a sealed container and left it in the refrigerator. The entire process of making this fruit crisp was less than 1 hour, but you have to wait for it to cool down before serving it. Just like when making a pie, you have to let it cool to allow the sauce to thicken. Depending on how juicy theBlueberry, you can have more or less thick sauce.
Not so usual Ingredient
The unusual ingredient in this crisp, aside from this recipe being gluten free and vegan is the addition of chia seed. Chia seed when soaked in a liquid tends to form a jelly like texture, with this plus the natural pectin in the Blueberry and small amount of honey it made the sauce of the Blueberry Crisp thick. Not only that it acts as a sweetener, it also have plenty of amazing health benefits. If you do not have chia seed and do not want to buy one, you can substitute it with cornstarch.
How to serve Blueberry Crisp
Let it rest for at least 1 hour (or more if you have time) to allow the sauce to get thick. I like to make this few hours ahead of time and then just have it warm in the oven (170F) 30 minutes before serving it. This still keeps the sauce thick, but makes it warm enough to give the freshly bake feeling. You can serve it on it own, but really the best way to enjoy this is when served with vanilla ice cream. For me, that is always the way to go with any kind of fruit crisp, they are a match made in heaven and one will not be complete without the other.
What if I do not have ramekin?
You can definitely bake this in a pie dish, this serving portion will work with 5 -6 inch baking pan. I wouldn’t recommend a bigger size as it will be too thin. If you have a bigger pan size, (say 7 or 8-inch), then consider doing a double batch of this which basically serves 4 people. Simply double the recipe, its that simple and flexible.
Non Gluten Free and Non Vegan Option
I understand some people are turned off when the recipe says gluten free or vegan, but that should not stop you from making this. You can easily make this using traditional ingredients, I left substitution notes below. This is a super easy, delicious recipe so give it a try. Whether you like it traditional or you like it gluten free and vegan, you will be 100% satisfied with this dessert.
- 1 1/2 cups Blueberry – chopped
- 1 tbsp Chia Seed or (Can be substituted with Cornstarch)
- 3 tbsp Water
- 1 tbsp Honey (Can be substituted with sugar)
- Zest of 1/2 Lemon Zest – optional
- Vanilla Ice Cream (Vegan)
- 2 tbsp Almond Flour ( Can be substituted with all-purpose flour)
- 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 3 tbsp Gluten free Rolled Oats (Can be substituted with regular rolled oats)
- 1 tbsp Chopped Pecans or sliced Almonds
- 1 tbsp Coconut Oil (Can be substituted with melted butter)
- Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
- Soak the Chia Seed (if using): Mix the chia seed and water and leave while you prepare the crisp.
- Make the Crisp Topping: In a bowl, almond flour, rolled oats, brown sugar, coconut oil and chopped nuts. Mix to combine until it starts to clump together. If the mixture is too loose to clump, add about 1 tsp of coconut oil until it comes together. Store in the refrigerator while you prepare the Blueberry. You can also make it ahead of time (2-3 days), store it in air tight container and keep it in the refrigerator.
- Prepare the Blueberry: Wash the Blueberry, taste the if sweet enough so that you can adjust the sweetner. Transfer in a bowl then add honey, soaked chia seed or cornstarch and lemon zest (if using any). Mix to distribute the chia seed and honey. Adjust the sweetener depending on how sweet the Blueberry but do not add too much honey as you might end up with a jam which is really not pleasant to eat with the crisp.
- Divide: Divide the Blueberry mixture between two 2 x 4 inch ramekin. Top with crisp topping.
- Bake for 30 – 35 minutes or until bubbly. It is important to wait for the stage where the Blueberry mixture becomes bubbly because this is a sign that the sauce has start to reduce and the sugar and cornstarch fully dissolved which will result to a thick sauce. At 15 minutes time, cover the top with aluminum foil to avoid the topping from browning too much. Almond flour and coconut oil cooks faster than when using regular flour. If using all-purpose flour and butter, you may not need to cover it. But nonetheless, check if the topping is browning too soon and cover with aluminum foil as needed.
- Let Cool for about 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow the sauce to thicken.
- Serve: Dust with confectioners sugar (optional) and top with vanilla ice cream, a MUST ( at least for me)
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