Recipes

Flourless fig crumble (with oats and almond flour)

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This delicious gluten-free fig crumble recipe is best served cold and eaten with breakfast or as an after dinner dessert. 


Some of my earliest childhood memories are roaming the neighborhood at our family lake house at Lake Santee, South Carolina, in search of summertime figs.

For reasons I still don’t understand as an adult, several of our neighbors grew giant fig trees, but never actually ate their figs. Perhaps they just enjoyed feeding area birds. Whatever their reasons, this lapse in judgment meant more figs for me and my brother. 

After a morning of swimming and fishing, we’d grab an empty bag or bucket and set out for a fig forage. We’d come back home with our bellies distended and an extra bowl of figs to offer our parents. 

To this day, the smell of fig leaves (which can also be made into edible delights) and the taste of fig fruit (which are technically flowers) brings me back to that time and place as a child.

Growing figs in a garden

Needless to say, when The Tyrant and I got our own garden and set out to grow fruit year round, one of the first perennial trees we planted was figs.

What are the best cold-hardy fig varieties? 

Figs are from the Mediterranean region, so they do best in warm/hot climates and are also drought-tolerant once established. That means if you live in Agricultural Zones 8 or higher, there are tons of varieties of figs available to you that will grow well. 

We live in Ag Zone 7b, so we have to grow more cold-hardy fig varieties. The most common cold-hardy fig variety in our area is ‘Brown Turkey,’ and we have a large one in our yard that produces loads of fruit each August (the tree we planted when we started our garden). ‘Chicago,’ ‘Violette de Bordeaux,’ and ‘Celeste’ are other good cold-hardy fig varieties.

We were also gifted a purple-fruited fig variety that we think is a ‘Violette de Bordeaux’ (the tag was lost) that produces an extraordinarily delicious purple fig. However, that tree isn’t nearly as prolific or as cold-hardy as our Brown Turkey. It freezes back to the ground every year and most of its fruit doesn’t ripen before we get our first frost.

Figs in the kitchen

The older your perennial fruit trees get, the more food they provide. It’s a wonderful problem to go from fighting your birds over the five total figs on your tree to harvesting bowls full of figs that you can’t possibly eat before they go bad. 

What to do? Sure, we use our Excalibur dehydrator to dry lots of figs for later use. We also make fig preserves. 

But since berry season is pretty much at an end, we wanted something to replace our summer breakfast bread at the breakfast table. With bowls full of figs at the ready, we decided to go with a versatile recipe that we could use at breakfast or as a post-dinner dessert… 

Enter our flourless fig crumble recipe made with oats and almond flour! The taste is somewhat similar to a classic fig newton, but better. Plus, it packs on extra protein and good fats (from the almond flour). If you’re gluten-sensitive or gluten-intolerant, you’ll also love the fact that this recipe has no wheat flour (only oats and almond flour). 

Fig crumble with a side of homemade grassmilk kefir.

Fig crumble topped with chopped roasted pecans and served with a side of homemade grassmilk kefir.

Note: we think these fig crumbles are best NOT eaten hot out of the oven. Rather, refrigerate them, let them fully set and come together, then serve them cold. 

At breakfast, we’ve been eating squares of flourless fig crumble with added chopped pecans on top plus a side of homemade grassmilk kefir. So good!   

Below, you’ll find our recipe, plus some additional cooking/process photos to help you when you’re making this recipe for the first time. 

A perfect use of fresh figs! Flourless fig crumble with almond flour and oats. Good with breakfast or as a dessert.

A perfect use of fresh figs! Flourless fig crumble with almond flour and oats. Good with breakfast or as a dessert.

flourless fig crumble with oats and almond flour, gluten-free
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Flourless fig breakfast crumble (with oats and almond flour)

Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Keyword: breakfast, fig bars, figs, fresh figs, gluten free
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 10
Author: Aaron von Frank

A delicious gluten-free fruit crumble recipe using fresh figs, oats, and almond flour. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!  

Ingredients

Fig filling

  • 3.5 cups fresh figs (1 pound)
  • 1/4 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 1/8 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • zest of 1 lemon

Crumble

  • 1.5 cups organic old fashioned oats
  • 2/3 cups organic almond flour
  • 1/8 cup organic flax meal (optional, but adds more fiber and nutrition)
  • 1/3 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp pink sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons melted grass butter

Instructions

  1. Start by making your fig filling, since it will need to cool down so its only warm to the touch before you use it. Chop figs and add them to sauce pan with sugar and lemon juice. Cook them on medium low heat (3.5 on our stove) for about 20 minutes, stirring often to prevent sticking. We used Brown Turkey figs, which have a lot of moisture in them. If using a dryer fig, you may have to add a bit of water to prevent sticking/burning. Right before removing from stovetop, add vanilla and lemon zest, then remove from heat to allow to cool.         

  2. Once the fig filling has cooled to the point you can touch it, preheat your oven to 350°F. Butter an 8x8 baking dish (if you'd like a thicker crumble) OR an 8x10 pan for a thinner crumble.     

  3. Put all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir until blended. Then pour melted grass butter over top of dry ingredients and stir together + mash together with the bottom of your spoon. The mix will still be crumbly, not congealed like a dough. Altogether, you'll have about 2 cups of packed down "crumble."  

  4. Layering time! Place half of your crumble (about 1 cup) in the bottom of your buttered baking dish and spread evenly over surface. Next pour in your fig mix and spread over the surface using a spatula or the bottom of a large spoon. Then evenly sprinkle the remaining crumble over the top of the fig mixture. 

  5. Bake for 25 minutes until slightly browned on the edges. Let cool completely then refrigerate. The taste and texture of this recipe are improved by refrigerating BEFORE serving rather than warm or at room temperature.

  6.  Perfect with breakfast or as a healthy dessert. If you're feeling extra nutty, consider adding chopped walnuts or pecans on top. 

Process/cooking photos for flourless fig crumble

The fig center ingredients cooking on the stovetop. Notice the fig pieces are still large at this point.

The fig center ingredients cooking on the stovetop. Notice the fig pieces are still large at this point. 

We used our immersion blender to blend the fig mixture into an even consistency while cooking. If you don't have an immersion blender, you can just use a food processor once the figs have cooled.

We used our immersion blender to blend the fig mixture into an even consistency while cooking. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can just use a food processor once your fig mixture has cooled.

The crumble ingredients prepped and ready to go. Half go on the bottom of the baking pan and half go on top of the fig mixture.

The crumble ingredients prepped and ready to go. Half go on the bottom of the baking pan and half go on top of the fig mixture.

Final prep, step-by-step. 1. Place half the crumble (about 1 cup) evenly in the bottom of your buttered baking pan. 2. Put fig mixture over top of crumble, then spread evenly with a spatula. 3. Put remaining crumble evenly over top, and lightly tamp down with spoon or spatula

Final prep, step-by-step. 1. Place half the crumble (about 1 cup) evenly in the bottom of your buttered baking pan. 2. Put fig mixture over top of crumble, then spread evenly with a spatula. 3. Put remaining crumble evenly over top, and lightly tamp down with spoon or spatula

We hope you love this fig recipe and are able to put your fresh summer figs to good use! 

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KIGI,

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