Better-than-Mom’s Peach Crumble

updated Sep 6, 2022
summer
Peach Crumble Recipe

Juicy summer peaches bubble under buttery ginger and vanilla-flavored crumbles.

Serves6

Prep10 minutes to 15 minutes

Cook28 minutes to 30 minutes

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Credit: Kristina Vanni

Peach crumble is the crown jewel of summer sweets. Whether you’re looking for a centerpiece for a slow summer breakfast, a decadent afternoon snack, or something to finish off a backyard BBQ, a peach crumble is the perfect treat to serve any time of day. Juicy, in-season peaches make the best bed for the simple ginger- and vanilla-flavored crumble topping. But, of course, frozen is fine if summer has already sped by.

Peach crumble is my mom’s signature dessert. She took inspiration from an old Joy of Cooking recipe for cherry crunch, swapping the starch and omitting the oats when she was out. While my sisters and I couldn’t get enough of the sweet, crunchy topping and bubbling fruit, it was also a way for mom to use up those squishy peaches (or mealy apples, depending on the season) before they went to waste. I’ve continued to tweak our family recipe just as my mom did, and I’ve landed on a recipe that dare I say is even better than hers. (Sorry, Mom!)

Do You Need to Peel Peaches for Peach Crumble?

When I tested and tasted my way to the perfect peach cobbler, I realized that whether or not you should peel peaches is simply a matter of personal preference. My preference is strongly for the latter. Keeping the tender fuzzy peach peel intact lends a lovely hue to the crumble’s filling without tasting tough or stringy. Plus, if I can avoid boiling and blanching juicy peaches during a mid-summer heatwave, I will.

If You’re Going To Make This Crumble, a Few Tips

  • Make a double batch of the crumble topping. Make a double batch of the brown sugar crumble while all of the ingredients are at hand so you can bake another fruit crumble at a moment’s notice. Stir the melted butter into the brown sugar mixture until thick and crumbly, then spread onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze. Once the crumbles are frozen, you can transfer them to a freezer zip-top bag for longer storage.
  • Personalize with oats and nuts. I’m sure my mom would approve of adding a handful of chopped nuts or oats. While doing so technically makes this a crisp, I won’t direct the food police to your door.
  • Under- or over-ripe fruit both work. A hot oven and sweet topping work their magic on not-quite-perfect fruit. Under-ripe fruit may need an extra tablespoon of sugar in the filling and a few more minutes in the oven. Simply cover the crumble with foil if it browns before the peaches are tender.

Peach Crumble Recipe

Juicy summer peaches bubble under buttery ginger and vanilla-flavored crumbles.

Prep time 10 minutes to 15 minutes

Cook time 28 minutes to 30 minutes

Serves 6

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

For the crumble topping:

  • 8 tablespoons

    (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for the baking dish

  • 1 cup

    all-purpose flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour blend

  • 1/2 cup

    packed light brown sugar

  • 2 teaspoons

    vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon

    baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon

    ground ginger

For the peach filling:

  • 2 pounds

    ripe medium peaches (about 5) or frozen peach slices (do not thaw)

  • 1/4 cup

    packed light brown sugar

  • 2 tablespoons

    cornstarch

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon

    vanilla extract

  • 1/2

    medium lemon

  • Vanilla ice cream, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Coat a 2-quart or 11x7-inch baking dish with butter.

  2. Make the crumble topping: Cut 1 stick unsalted butter into 8 pieces and place in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave until mostly melted, 40 to 50 seconds. (Alternatively, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat and pour into a medium bowl.)

  3. Add 1 cup all-purpose flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour blend, 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon ground ginger, and stir to combine. The mixture will be thick and crumbly. Refrigerate for at least 5 minutes or until ready to use.

  4. Make the filling: Halve and pit 2 pounds peaches (no need to peel). Cut into 1/2-inch thick slices. Place the peaches, 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a large bowl.

  5. Finely grate the zest from 1/2 medium lemon into the bowl. Juice the lemon half until you have 1 tablespoon juice, then add to the bowl. Stir to combine.

  6. Transfer the peach filling to the baking dish and spread into an even layer. Break the crumble topping into large clumps with your hands and scatter over the filling in an even layer.

  7. Bake until the crumble topping is golden-brown and the filling is bubbling, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving with vanilla ice cream if desired.

Recipe Notes

Make ahead: The crumble topping can be made and frozen up to 3 months in advance, no need to thaw before using.

Storage: Cover and refrigerate leftover crumble for up to 3 days. Serve cold or reheat in a 300°F oven for 20 minutes before serving.