This crumble topping is made from plain flour, butter and demerara sugar.
When you’re craving a comforting pudding that requires minimal ingredients a fruit crumble is perfect. You can adjust the filling depending on what’s in season but apple, rhubarb and peach are all popular options. The topping takes just 10 minutes to prepare and requires only two steps.
This crumble topping would go perfectly with Hairy Bikers apple and blackberry crumble and Mary Berry's plum crumble fillings. The sweetness of both fillings pairs perfectly together with the buttery crumble texture. And don't forget the homemade custard.
- 150g plain flour
- 100g butter
- 85g demerara sugar
- Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan, Gas 4). Cut the butter into cubes and place in a mixing bowl with the flour. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs, then stir in the sugar.
- Sprinkle the crumble topping over your prepared fruit filling and bake for 35 - 40 minutes until the filling is piping hot and the crumble topping is crisp and golden. Approximately 500g of fruit such as sliced apples, plums or rhubarb, sweetened with a little sugar is a good guide for a filling.
Watch how to make crumble topping
Top tips for making a crumble topping
This crumble topping has lots of uses and can be customised depending on your preferred flavours. To give some extra texture to your crumble topping, you can add a tablespoon or two of porridge oats or substitute 50g of the plain flour for oats instead. This makes your crumble topping thicker and dense. Opt for rolled oats or porridge oats or if you want a chunkier looking topping, jumbo oats work just as well. We have plenty more tips and tricks for making crumble topping below.
What can I add to this crumble topping?
Try adding chopped nuts such as almonds or hazelnuts to your topping to give it an extra crunch. A pinch of cinnamon or mixed spiced is also delicious and pairs very well if you have an apple filling. If you're nut-free, you can also add mixed seeds for extra bite, pumpkin and sunflower are great options.
Can I make crumble topping ahead of time?
Yes, just follow step one and then store the crumble topping in an airtight bag or container for up to one day in the fridge.
If you're pressed for time, you can make a deconstructed crumble and then assemble it in minutes when you have family over using our stewed apples recipe.
What to do with leftover crumble topping?
You can freeze leftover crumble topping in an airtight bag or container for up to three months. It’s easiest to defrost before scattering over a fresh crumble filling. Alternatively, you can freeze a whole prepared crumble and cook from frozen but you’ll need to increase the cooking time.
Another option is to scatter the leftover crumble topping on a baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes until crisp and golden. Scatter over yogurt and fruit for an indulgent breakfast, you can add a little to your morning porridge for some added crunch or simply serve with a scoop of ice cream for a quick dessert.
We also like scattering the crumble topping over the buttercream of iced cupcakes to add some crunch. This is especially good with our apple cupcakes.
Should butter be cold from crumble topping?
Yes, your butter should be cold but cut into small cubes, approximately 1 - 2cm big. This will make it easier to rub the butter into the flour and create a breadcrumb or ground almond texture. It’s important that the butter is cold so that it doesn’t melt and become greasy.
The technique of making crumble is similar to how to make breadcrumbs, as you use your fingertips to lightly crumb the ingredients for that perfectly crunchy topping.
Is plain or SF flour better for crumble topping?
Self-raising flour is just plain flour with a chemical raising agent added. For a crumble topping you are not looking for any rise and you are not incorporating air, therefore plain flour is perfect. However, the recipe will still work with self-raising flour. You can also use spelt flour if you’d like a nutty flavour. Spelt is a really versatile ingredient and you can make spelt pancakes as a healthier alternative to classic pancakes.
Although this crumble topping is easy to make by hand, you could also pulse the ingredients together in a food processor for a speedier method. Parent tester Grace Holliday’s Ninja 3-in-1 food processor review is worth a read if you’re considering buying a new one.
Ninja 3-in-1 Food Processor - View at Amazon
This food processor is available in two designs, black and silver or copper and black. It is easy to use and comes with lots of dishwasher-safe parts for easy cleaning. You can pulse ingredients or blend on a slow, medium, or high speed.