This super easy crock pot apple cobbler with only a few ingredients is a great fall treat. Just follow these simple step by step photo instructions.
Fall is almost here and apple season along with it. Apples will be plentiful. So let's do something special but easy. I'm getting lazier all the time.
This is a cut-down version of the common recipes out there. They all use a full box of cake mix. But I don't want that 8 servings.
Some of these recipes are very simple. A can of processed pie filling, top with a box of cake mix and melt and drizzle one stick of butter then cook on high for 2 ½ to 3 hours.
The things I wanted and what makes this recipe special:
- Use fresh apples.
- Four large servings is enough.
- Topping of some sugar and cinnamon. And a few nuts on top would be great.
- Ultra simple. A recipe so easy that you don't even think about the work. Just the great results.
I'm going with a lower 5 just because it is the type of food I love. You might be more of a high 4.
Let's talk about the cake mix first. My wife loved it but after gobbling hers down, she said "I was surprised you used a cake mix."
Her point is that I like to use straight individual ingredients and not mixes. I do have a few exceptions on the blog, but they are few. But to use individual ingredients, I would need to add 6-8 more ingredients
That would make this not worth the work. My new "cooking for two" Cook's Illustrated cookbook is an example. I looked at two recipes in detail, and both had 15 ingredients for 2-4 servings. Not in my life.
The next thing about the cake mix was the size. I could have used a smaller "Jiffy" type mix. I think I'm a snob. I picked one of my favorite brands for a full-size cake mix. I like extra moist mix like the one pictured.
While the box was 15.2 oz. I divided the fluffy mix by weight and came out with 1 ½ cup (by volume) being ½ of the mix. I suspect most brands will be about the same so for your convenience, I'm stating 1 ½ cups.
Cobblers, Crumbles, and Crisps
Cobblers are easy; they have a biscuit or cake top. Crumbles and crisps are frequently used interchangeably. But some feel that the differentiating factor is crisps have oats in the topping and crumble do not. This seems to be not widely accepted.
A lot seems to be made of what apple to use for this or that. I believe it is more a matter of individual taste. I suggest Cortland, Granny Smith, Ida Red, or Honey Crisp. But probably the apples you have is fine other than Red Delicious or Macintosh. Here is a handy-dandy chart that is very well done.
If you are buying apples just for this recipe, then some good choices are Cortland, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, and Ida Red. I happened to have honey crisps, so that is what is in the pictures.
A medium peeled apple will be about 1 cup. Here I need about 3 cups so three medium apples.
Most recipes had no topping. Some used some sugar or sugar and cinnamon and a few nuts. It is up to you.
I suggest increasing the sugar/cinnamon mixture for the apples and then reserving some for the topping. I also added some pecans that I thought the recipe cried out for.
Doubling this recipe
Yep, that is fine. Double everything but the cooking time will change some. I found with a smaller (3.5 qt.) crock pot and my cut down recipe, I was fully done at 2 hours.
But the bigger recipes use a standard crock pot (6-7 qt.) All suggested 2 ½ to 3 hours. I find that with crock pot recipes where you depend on some browning, time is somewhat variable. Also, every crock pot is different.
Check this recipe if you want an example Slow Cooker Apple Cobbler.
The nuts are optional and use the apples of your choice.
Mix ⅓ cup sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon. Reserve a heaping tablespoon for topping later. If not using a sugar topping then mix ¼ cup sugar with ⅜ teaspoon cinnamon.
Peel and chop 3 medium apples of your choice. Measure out half of a standard size yellow cake mix. It should be about 1 ½ cups. I suggest Cortland, Granny Smith, Ida Red, or Honey Crisp.
Give a smaller crock pot a good spray of PAM. I use a 3 ½ qt crock pot.
Add apple to the crock pot and spread over bottom. Sprinkle with the sugar/cinnamon mixture. Cover with the cake mix. Smooth top.
Melt 4 tablespoons butter in the microwave for about 20 seconds.
If using nuts, sprinkle ⅓ cup over the top. I used pecans. Sprinkle with the melted butter. Finish with topping with the reserved sugar/cinnamon mixture.
Cook on high for about 2 hours until the sides are bubbling and center is browning.
Great straight up but also with ice cream.
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Smaller Crock Pot Apple Cobbler
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- ½ box yellow cake mix - about 1 ½ cups
- 3 medium apples - I suggest Cortland, Granny Smith, Ida Red, or Honey Crisp.
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 4 tablespoons butter - ½ stick
- ⅓ cup nuts - optional
- Measure out half of a standard size yellow cake mix. It should be about 1 ½ cups.
- Mix ⅓ cup sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon. Reserve a heaping tablespoon for topping later. If not using a sugar topping then mix ¼ cup sugar with ⅜ teaspoon cinnamon.
- Peel and chop 3 medium apples of your choice. I suggest Cortland, Granny Smith, Ida Red, or Honey Crisp.
- Give a smaller crock pot a good spray of PAM. I use a 3 ½ qt crock pot.
- Add apple to the crock pot and spread over bottom. Sprinkle with the sugar/cinnamon mixture. Cover with the cake mix. Smooth top.
- If using nuts, sprinkle ⅓ cup over the top. I used pecans.
- Melt 4 tablespoons butter in the microwave for about 20 seconds the sprinkle over the top.
- Finish with topping with the reserved sugar/cinnamon mixture.
- Cook on high for about 2 hours until the sides are bubbling and center is browning.
To adjust the recipe size:
You may adjust the number of servings in this recipe card under servings. This does the math for the ingredients for you. BUT it does NOT adjust the text of the instructions. So you need to do that yourself.
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Originally Published September 9, 2018. Updated with expanded options, refreshed photos, and a table of contents to help navigation.