The Store-Bought Ingredient That Adds Instant Flavor To Your Fruit Crisps

Simpler and lighter than both pies and cobblers, fruit crisps are an easy and delicious way to transform seasonal fruit into a baked dessert. The addition of oats is what distinguishes crisps from the floury, buttery crusts of pies and streusel toppings of crumbles. Traditional crisps blend whole oats, flour, baking spices, and butter to create a fruit crisp's namesake topping texture. However, instant oats are the store-bought ingredient that will add texture and flavor to your fruit crisps without additional seasonings.

Instant oatmeal isn't just convenient for quick breakfasts, it also comes spiced, sweetened, and often elaborated with dehydrated fruit. Plus, instant oats have thin flakes and a partially ground consistency that mimics the blend of old fashioned oats and flour normally used in a traditional crisp topping. Consequently, instant oats serve as an all-in-one topping for fruit crisps, saving you the hassle and expense of adding sugar, flour, and baking spices separately.

A standard nine-by-eleven baking dish will require one and a third cups of instant oatmeal for the crisp topping, so you'll need at least a few packets for the topping. Simply combine your favorite flavor of instant oatmeal with cold butter until it forms chunky crumbles. Sprinkle them in an even layer over your desired fruit filling and bake for around 20 minutes. You can use canned pie fillings or frozen fruit for convenience, but there's nothing quite like a fresh fruit filling using the bounty of whichever season you find yourself in.

Fruit crisp and instant oatmeal pairings

Instant oatmeal flavors abound, providing plenty of wonderful pairings for your fruit crisp fillings. Tasting Table has a review of 13 quaker oats flavors that you can mix and match with fruits to season and complement them.

For instance, you could use maple and brown sugar instant oats to bring richness to a fall-inspired ginger pear crisp. Raisins and spice would bring a sweet and spicy complement to a classic apple crisp while providing pops of chewiness from the raisins. You can also enhance the flavor of an apple crisp with apple and cinnamon flavored instant oats. Top an apple and cranberry crisp with apple and cranberry oats for a double dose of flavor.

Quaker Oats has various nut and dried fruit flavors for even more texture and flavor. Almond and cranberry oats would taste delicious with raspberry or strawberry rhubarb filling. You can also make a combo of various oat flavors. For example, you could top a blueberry and peach crisp with a packet of banana nut, a packet of honey and almonds, and a packet of cinnamon and spices.