During all of my time at home, I’ve had time to answer some of the questions I’ve wondered since I was a child. Is apple crisp made in the oven actually better than apple crisp from the microwave? (yes) Can I play the recorder with my nostrils? (yes) Can I suspend myself upside down in a doorway without using my hands? (also yes) When I was growing up, we always made apple crisp in the microwave but I discovered that the two are quite different and in my opinion the oven baked version is far superior.


3-4 apples: about 4 cups chopped. (I’ve tried it with Fuji and Honeycrisp, definitely recommend honeycrisp)

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup oats 

½ cup butter or oil (topping will be more crisp with butter)

1 tsp of cinnamon

1 tbsp of lemon juice

Pinch of salt

Sidenote: I hate how recipes always say “mix your brown sugar” not “mix your 1/2 cup of brown sugar” because that’s assuming that I prepare all of my ingredients before I start cooking, which is unrealistic. But I digress.

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 (convection bake, not roast but if you cook a lot you know this)
  2. Chop and core your apples, and put them in an oven safe container: I used a pyrex because that’s all I had and I usually don’t grease it and it turns out fine
  3. Melt your 1/2 cup or so of butter in the microwave (or in the oven or in a double boiler or leave it outside or stick it under your armpit it really doesn’t matter how it is melted I just need you to make sure it is melted)
  4. Add your ½ cup of brown sugar, your ½ cup of oats, your 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1 tbsp of lemon juice and pinch of salt to the melted butter. If it is not the consistency of chili, add more butter or oats.
  5. Pour your crumble mixture over your apples
  6. Put her in the oven for 30-45 minutes

Thoughts after tasting: 

My 5 roommates (Heather, Abby, Sarah, Carson & Anu) and I found that the microwave one was more syrupy and the flavors were more cohesive, while the oven one had more of a crisp topping and crisper yet soft apples. The oven one also had two distinct components: soft apples and crunchy crisp toppings, while the microwave one was just one big mushy concoction. Because I ran out of butter and used part oil, the microwave one was very oily (no surprise there). 2 people said that the microwave one wasn’t worse- it was just different. However, the other 4 said that the oven one was far superior.

Note: This is not a perfect experiment, in fact, there are many things wrong with it- some of them being: 

  • I used different sized containers for oven/ microwave.
  • I also ran out of earth balance so I used coconut and grapeseed oil for the microwave version.
  • It is pretty hard to mess up. The first time I made this, I eyeballed the crumble and it turned out fine. I’ve tried this recipe multiple times with consistent results each time, so I’m sure you can do it too!

Best of luck, and let me know how yours turns out!