Review: Vegan Apple Crumble with Tiger Nut Granola and Plant-Based Vanilla Custard

Confession: prior to this review I’d never made apple crumble before. I know, such a staple (and simple) dessert, but for years I’ve stuck to my comfort zone of savoury dishes. However, with more time on my hands during this last year of lockdowns, I’ve finally made an effort to try new things including vegan treats and vegan baking, and actually quite enjoyed it – albeit with varying degrees of success!

So here’s a vegan apple crumble dish I made using Erbology Tiger Nut and Sea Buckthorn Granola topping and served with The Coconut Collaborative Vanilla Custard, which were both kindly sent to me to sample. I adapted this vegan apple crumble recipe and didn’t mean to go off piste and create my own version but pleased to say it turned out pretty well.

Vegan Apple Crumble with Granola Topping and Vegan Custard

I found this recipe on the The Coconut Collaborative website (tip: lots of great recipes on there if you’re looking for inspiration on how to use their yogurt and dessert products) and as I got to the crumble I remembered that Erbology Tiger Nut Granola with Sea Buckthorn was in my cupboard and that it would complement it perfectly. I’d been slowly nibbling away at this luxe granola (that’s more like a decadent snack) but luckily there was enough left to break up and use as a crumble-like topping.

Ingredients (serves four)

For the filling

  • 3 medium apples, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar (I used soft brown sugar instead of coconut sugar throughout)

For the crumble

  • 175g plain flour
  • 110g coconut sugar
  • 110g coconut oil

For the topping


  • Heat the oven to 190C.
  • Toss the sliced apples with 2 tbsp sugar and put in a baking dish at least 5cm deep. Flatten down with your hand to prevent too much crumble falling through. 
  • Put 175g plain flour and 110g sugar in a bowl with a pinch of salt
  • Add coconut oil and rub it in with your fingers until mixture looks like moist breadcrumbs.
  • Pour the crumb mix over the apples to form a pile in the centre.
  • Gently press the surface with the back of the fork so the crumble holds together and goes crisp, then drag the fork over the top for a decorative finish
  • Sprinkle 1 tbsp rolled oats an 1 tbsp coconut sugar evenly
  • Set on a baking tray and put in the preheated oven for 30-40min, until golden and apples feel soft when you insert a knife.
  • My addition: half way through, break up Erbology Tiger Nut with Sea Buckthorn Granola and layer on top. Return to over for remaining time.
  • Leave to cool for 10 minutes before serving and add Coconut Collaborative Custard to serve. 

My verdict

Pat on the back for my first attempt vegan apple crumble. Soft, squidgy and comforting on the inside, with different textured crumble on the outside – a success in my eyes! The only thing I’d change would be to add some cinnamon and spice to the apple filling, especially as I love those flavours anyway and they’re a perfect match for apple-based dessert.

What did I think of the vegan custard? Before this recipe, I’d only ever tried the Alpro option so I was keen to try another (especially as the Alpro custard packaging is so annoying too). This Coconut Collaborative one is coconut-based but tastes just like custard without any hint of coconut. I did get a few textured bits inside so it’s not as smooth as the Alpro one but it felt more natural and the ingredients reflect that. It’s also soya-free in case that’s something you look for.

Ingredients: Water, Sugar, Coconut Oil, Chicory Root Fibre, Stabilisers (Modified Corn Starch, Modified Tapioca Starch), Peruvian Carob, Fava Bean Protein, Salt, Natural, Vanilla Flavouring, Colour: Beta-carotene

Would I buy it? Maybe. I was actually very fond of the Vanilla Coconut Yogurt and paired it with my apple dessert the next day. I’m not fussy about having desserts warm so the yogurt was a delicious combo. If you like to serve warm custard, I’d recommend the Vanilla Custard for sure, but for a cold / room temperature dessert, definitely give the vanilla coconut yogurt a try too.

What about the granola? If you’ve read previous posts you’ll know I’m a big granola lover but have to limit how much I buy it as it disappears pretty quickly! As expected, this Erbology Tiger Nut with Sea Buckthorn Granola didn’t last long but long enough to add to this recipe, luckily. It’s super luxe with a list of ingredients that sounds like a fancy health food shop.

Ingredients: 24% tigernuts*, apples*, dates*, 10% sea buckthorn powder*, sprouted buckwheat*, pumpkin seeds*, raisins*, 3% aronia powder*, linseeds*, sunflower seeds*, sea salt. *Certified organic. All the seeds are activated. 

Rather than traditional crunchy granola, the texture of this tiger nut granola is a bit softer and more chewy. The pieces are also broken up in rectangular pieces rather than round clusters so they’re easy to pick up and snack on. It’s also a little lower in fat than traditional high street granolas (8g per 100g compared to around 15g-30g per 100g).

If you’re not familiar with tiger nut, it’s not a nut and nothing to do with tigers :) It’s actually an ancient crop that produces small edible tubes that are a bit chewy (once soaked) with a subtly sweet, nutty taste. They can be made into a milk drink, oil or just snacked on.

This Erbology granola feels more like a luxury treat than something I’d eat daily in a breakfast bowl and would go well as a topping to a yogurt and fruit bowl – or apple crumble!

Let me know if you make this delicious vegan dessert recipe or try these products – would love to hear what you think. You can catch me on Instagram sharing more vegan food inspiration on my stories @yanarfitness.


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