These apple crumble bars are gluten-free, vegan and naturally-sweetened with maple syrup. They’re perfect for a quick breakfast, snack, or healthy dessert.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8 square baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
Add two cups of rolled oats to an upright blender, or food processor fitted with a metal “s” blade, pulse the oats until ground down into a flour. Transfer to a large bowl, add the remaining 1/2 cup rolled oats and the rest of the crumble ingredients. Using a spatula or your hand combine the ingredients until the dough begins to stick together.
Measure a heaping 1/2 cup of the dough for the topping and set aside. Spread the remaining dough evenly into the prepared pan. Press firmly and flatten into the bottom, sides, and corners. It may help to slightly oil or wet your fingers or spatula.
Wipe out the food processor and add the apples. Pulse until the apples are broken down into small pieces. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add the arrowroot powder, lemon juice and cinnamon.
Spread the filling evenly over the crumble crust. Take the remaining crumble dough and use your fingers to break it up evenly over the fruit filling. Gently push the crumble dough into the filling to set. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and filling is bubbling. Let the bars cool completely before slicing.
These crumble bars are naturally sweetened with just a touch of maple syrup. If your berries aren’t super sweet, you can add 3-4 tablespoons of maple syrup to the filling. If you plan on serving these as a dessert with ice cream, having the bars a little less sweet makes for a nice balance.
It’s best to cut these bars after they’ve cooled completely. This ensures that the filling firms and you can pick them up with ease. If you just can’t wait, know you’ll need a fork.