This classic, gluten-free fresh blueberry crisp has an easy cinnamon crumb topping (aka streusel), without oats, for the ultimate summer fruit dessert. A dairy-free, vegan option is included.
If you’re a fan of cinnamon crumb, be sure to check out my strawberry apple crisp, gluten-free banana muffins with cinnamon crumb and gluten-free strawberry bars. If you’re a blueberry lover, this peach blueberry galette is one of my favorite desserts.
This recipe works best with fresh blueberries. Since blueberries are not consistently sweet, you can adjust the amount of sugar up or down. Blueberries will definitely be sweetest and tastiest when they are in season. The off-season fruit, flown from the other hemisphere, just can’t compare to summer blueberries. So taste your blues before you mix up the filling and if they are not sweet enough, add an extra tablespoon of sugar. I have tried frozen blueberries in this recipe and they can be tasty, but tend to turn pretty mushy and need more thickener.
Cinnamon Crumb Topping
So technically, a fruit crumble, specifically has oats in it. A crisp does not. It’s all fruit crisp to me. But oats can be a tricky ingredient for people who are strictly gluten-free. Since I know that many gluten-free people avoid oats, the recipe is mostly just flour, cinnamon, brown sugar and butter – no oats.
Coconut palm sugar is an excellent, less processed substitute for brown sugar. I highly recommend trying it in the cinnamon crumb instead of brown sugar. It has a wonderful caramel flavor and does not taste at all like coconut.
I have used several different gluten-free flour blends for the crumb topping and they all worked well.
For a store bought flour blend, I recommend King Arthur Flour Measure for Measure flour. Pamela’s All Purpose Artisan blend is similar and works very well. Both of these are vegan. Cup4Cup flour will work to but it contains milk powder. All of these are certified gluten-free flours and contain xanthan gum or other binders. If you use a gluten-free flour that does not include xanthan gum, guar gum inulin add 1/4 tsp xanthan or guar gum to the crumb ingredients.
Here is my special DIY gluten-free flour blend that I love for this recipe and many more of my gluten-free recipes:
- 1 c sweet white sorghum flour
- 3/4 c millet flour
- 1/4 c brown rice flour
- 2/3 c potato starch
- 1/3 c tapioca starch
See the notes in the recipe for a super simple DIY gluten-free flour blend or my post on gluten-free flours and flour mixes.
I am always trying to bring more variety into my gluten-free diet. Since a gluten-free diet is pretty heavy on rice, I like to include different flours in my baking. If you’d like to give it a try, use this combination of flours in place of the flour blend in the recipe:
- 1/3 c teff flour
- 1/3 c sorghum flour and
- 1/4 c tapioca starch
For an excellent source of certified gluten-free flours, check out Vitacost.com. They have their own line of certified gluten-free flours at very reasonable prices, Their shipping is super fast too.
The only animal product in this crisp is butter. While I do prefer the flavor of butter, I believe in reducing my use of animal products. Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks (or other vegan butters) are a great alternative to butter. Earth Balance does make an unsalted version, but it can be hard to find. If your vegan butter contains salt, omit the salt called for in the crumb topping.
Gluten-Free Blueberry Crisp (without oats)
- 6 cups fresh blueberries
- 1/2 c sugar
- 5 tsps corn or tapioca starch
- zest of one lemon
- 2 tsp lemon juice
Cinnamon Crumb Topping
- 5 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 c brown sugar or coconut palm sugar
- 1 c gluten free flour blend*
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp xanthan gum
- ¼ tsp kosher salt or 2 pinches granulated salt
Mix the blueberry filling
- In a large mixing bowl, toss the blueberries with the sugar, corn starch, lemon zest and lemon juice and set aside.
Make the cinnamon crumb topping
- Melt the butter.
- Combine the remaining dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pour in the melted butter. Stir until all the dry ingredients are moistened.
- Pour the blueberry mixture into an 8″ square baking pan and sprinkle with the crumb topping.
- Bake about 40 minutes or until the fruit is bubbling.
- Cool for 20 minutes before serving.
2/3 c potato starch
1/3 cup tapioca starch