This recipe is for those of you that don’t love making homemade pie crust. The dietitian chefs at To Taste count ourselves among that crowd which is why we developed this alternative holiday dessert recipe. This frozen berry crisp recipe is made with frozen berries, making holiday meal prep that much easier for you! Fruit crisp also happens to be a naturally healthier (but just as delicious) alternative to pie! Give it a try and be sure to let us know how it turns out for you!
Frozen Berry Crisp Nutrition Info
Although this is a dessert recipe, we still found a few ways to ensure you get some good nutrition in every bite. Mixed berries, old-fashioned oats, slivered almonds, and less sugar than most desserts makes this a perfect recipe for those looking for a lighter dessert!
Berries are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Together, these nutrients promote heart health and may reduce inflammation (1).
Oats of any variety are a good source of fiber and complex carbohydrates. Fiber is important for digestion, satiety, stable blood sugar, good cholesterol, and healthy gut bacteria. Complex carbohydrates are important for steady energy and focus (2, 3).
Nuts are a great source of plant-based protein and healthy fat. Almonds in particular are high in monounsaturated fats which are good for heart health.
Less Sugar than Most Desserts
Although we expect to find sugar in most desserts, many recipes and pre-made desserts contain way more than necessary. In this triple berry crisp, we use lemon juice and cinnamon to enhance the natural sweetness of the berries and almonds, then add some brown sugar to balance the flavors out. Each serving of berry crisp contains ~14 grams (~1 Tablespoon) of added sugar – far less than you would find in any store bought dessert! Even homemade fruit crisp recipes have almost twice the amount of sugar than is in this recipe!
This recipe doesn’t require any fancy equipment, just a few kitchen staples:
If you choose to serve this berry crisp recipe with homemade whipped cream, you may also want an electric hand mixer or stand mixer. Whisking by hand is always an option too, but get ready for a good arm workout!
Culinary Tips for Making the Best Mixed Berry Crisp
When measuring brown sugar, be sure to pack it in the cup. Watch this culinary technique video to learn how to measure brown sugar properly!
Use ~1 teaspoon of lemon zest in place of or in addition to the lemon juice to enhance the lemon flavor.
Frozen berries can be tart depending on the variety, so you might need to add 1-2 tablespoons more sugar to the fruit. Note that the crisp topping is sweet on its own, so it will also help balance any tartness.
- Frozen Mixed Berries: use any variety of fresh or frozen mixed berries. You can also just use one variety such as blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, dark cherries, or blackberries.
- Brown Sugar: can substitute white cane sugar, but the flavor won’t be as complex. Honey can also work, but if using, drizzle it over the berries after coating the berries in cornstarch.
- Cornstarch: substitute ¼ cup all purpose flour.
- Lemon Juice: substitute orange juice. You can also add or substitute 1 teaspoon lemon zest.
- Old Fashioned Oats: substitute quick oats. Do not substitute steel cut oats.
- All Purpose Flour: can use whole wheat pastry flour for added nutrition, but the crust will be denser.
- Slivered Almonds: substitute sliced almonds, chopped pecans, or chopped walnuts.
- Cinnamon: substitute pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice or simply leave it out. You can also add ½ teaspoon ginger, ½ teaspoon cardamom, or ¼ teaspoon nutmeg.
- Butter: you can try substituting avocado or canola oil, but we weren’t impressed with the results. We did not test coconut oil, but it would probably work better than other oils.
Adapt this recipe to your taste!
Add a teaspoon of vanilla to the crisp mixture to make a delicious berry vanilla crisp recipe.
Serve frozen berry crisp straight from the oven with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of homemade whipped cream,
You can also make this recipe a day or two in advance. Allow to cool completely, then cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to eat. To reheat, preheat the oven to 350ºF and cook for 20 minutes, or until berries are bubbling and mixture is heated through. You can also serve berry crisp chilled on its own or topped with whipped cream. Good luck keeping sneaky hands from sampling a taste if you leave it in the fridge for too long before serving!
Cool completely, cover, and place in the refrigerator. The berry crisp will keep its quality in the refrigerator for up to 1 week (but we doubt it will last that long!). The crispy topping may begin to get soggy, but we promise it will still taste good!
Want more healthy holiday recipes?
Add these simple and delicious recipes to your holiday buffet!
This frozen berry crisp recipe is made with frozen berries, making holiday meal prep that much easier for you! Fruit crisp also happens to be a naturally healthier (but just as delicious) alternative to pie!
- 6 cups frozen mixed berries
- ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons brown sugar, packed, divided
- 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 cup old fashioned oats
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup butter (1 stick)
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Place berries in an 8×8 baking dish. Add 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice. Mix to combine.
In a medium bowl, whisk together oats, flour, almonds, remaining brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.
Cut butter into ½ inch cubes. Using your hands or a pastry cutter, work the butter into the dry ingredients until it makes a coarse crumbly mixture. Do not overmix. Sprinkle oat mixture on top of berries in an even layer.
Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the topping is golden brown and the berry mixture is bubbling around the edges of the pan. Cool slightly before serving. Enjoy!
If using more tart berries, sweeten fruit with an additional 1-2 Tablespoons brown sugar.