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Healthy Recipe Doctor

with Elaine Magee, MPH, RD

Elaine Magee's blog has now been retired. We appreciate all the wisdom and support she has brought to the WebMD community throughout the years.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Recipe Makeover: Apple Blueberry Crisp

Fall is around the corner and my apple tree in the backyard is almost ready to raid, so I thought it was time to do a makeover on a popular American dessert—apple crisp.

The first thing I did was add some berries, which add color and flavor along with an arsenal of phytochemicals. The second change I made was to not peel the apples because the majority of the helpful phytochemicals are located in the apple peel. I used half whole wheat flour in the crumb mixture and kept the walnuts in there too (they add plant omega-3s, fiber, powerful phytochemicals, etc) but decreased the sugar and melted butter. I did substitute some maple syrup for some of the lost liquid from the melted margarine, but it was still lower in sugar from the original recipe.

Apple Blueberry Crisp

Apple Blueberry Crisp

Crisp Topping:

1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts (toast walnuts by spreading them on a nonstick frying pan and heating over medium heat until fragrant and light brown then chop the nuts)

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup unbleached wheat flour

3 tablespoons dark brown sugar, packed

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 tablespoons melted butter or margarine of choice

3 tablespoons maple syrup or light pancake syrup


4 cups sliced apples, cored but not peeled

1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons flour

Garnish: Light vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt (optional)


1.  Preheat oven to 375-degrees. To make topping, combine flours, brown sugar, and cinnamon in the bowl of an electric mixer. Drizzle the melted butter and maple syrup over the top and blend on low speed until crumbly. Add the chopped nuts and mix well.

2.  For the filling, put the apples and blueberries in a large bowl. Add sugar and flour over the fruit and mix gently. Spoon the mixture into a 2-quart baking dish. Spoon the topping over the fruit, pressing down lightly.

3.  Place the dish on a baking sheet to catch any overflow. Bake on the center rack of oven until the topping is golden brown and the juices have thickened slightly (about 35 to 45 minutes).

Serve warm with light vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt if desired.

Yield: Makes 6 servings

PER SERVING             BEFORE                  AFTER

Calories                           442 mg                    323 mg

Carbohydrates                   61 g                        52 g

Fat                                      22 g                        12.5 g

Saturated Fat                     10 g                          4.2 g

Cholesterol                         41 mg                     15 mg

Fiber                                     1 g                           5 g

Sodium                             162 mg                     62 mg

Posted by: Elaine Magee, RD at 9:05 pm

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