Summer is the perfect time to celebrate the abundance of fruit. While fruit pies are sublime, honestly, who has time to mess with rolling, chilling, and crimping a pie crust when there are pools to splash in and bubbles to blow? Not me. Enter the humble cobbler.
What’s Cooking America lists crisps, crumbles, buckles, and other such desserts as part of the cobbler family. We’ve also explored the differences between crumbles, cobblers, and crisps.
Whatever variety you prefer, it’s time to get cooking because somebody has to make dessert and you’re burning daylight.
A classic cobbler is a mixture of big chunks of fruit, thickened with a little flour, sweetened with sugar, and topped with a biscuit-type topping. Cobblers got their name because the baked crust was bumpy and uneven like cobblestones in the streets of Great Britain, where the dish was invented.
Crème de la Crumb’s vivid Strawberry Cobbler recipe comes together quickly with the help of a food processor. Tiffany suggests adding fresh basil, thyme, rosemary, or mint to the biscuit mixture for even more summer goodness.
A crisp topping is a combination of oatmeal, sugar, butter, and usually cinnamon. This mixture comes together to create a crunchy, oatmeal cookie-like texture that stays crisp even if you are generous with ice cream or whipped cream, which I recommend.
Southern Cast Iron created an exciting twist on a crisp by adding gingersnaps to the typical oatmeal-based topping. This Strawberry Plum Crisp recipe is baked in a cast iron skillet, my personal favorite cooking vessel for these desserts. (Just see this Blueberry Peach Skillet Cobbler recipe for proof!)
Megan from Olives and Thyme created an unusual twist on the old fashioned strawberry rhubarb by using tahini instead of butter or another fat in the crumble, resulting in a dairy-free option. She also recommends using a splash of rosewater in the filling, which adds a fragrant element to this upgraded classic recipe. Get the Strawberry Rhubarb Tahini Crisp recipe.
A buckle is where coffee cake meets fruit crisp: A muffin-type filling is topped with a streusel mixture for a crunchy texture on top of a tender, sweet cake. Arguably the best form of this category to eat for breakfast, in my opinion. The name comes from the way the cakey topping will crack and ‘buckle’ while baking.
I share that opinion with The Reluctant Entertainer, who also suggests keeping frozen blueberries on hand to make this taste of summer possible all year long. High-five to you, Sandy! Get the Blueberry Buckle recipe.
A crumble is another name for a crisp, and this vegan Cherry Berry Crumble recipe from Tamsin at Cupfulofkale.com combines both cherries and mixed berries for an explosion of summer flavors. She thickens the mixture with arrowroot and tops it with a coconut sugar and oat mixture for a classic crumble topping with a vegan twist.
Gastro-licious created an ‘easier than pie’ Cherry Cobbler recipe using frozen cherries (but you could use fresh) and tops them with a gluten-free pancake mix and vanilla granola combo for a quick, crunchy dessert.
For a real taste of summer, Laura at Joyfoodsunshine.com presents a golden and luscious Peach Cobbler recipe. Fresh peaches are preferred, but she offers frozen and canned peach options, which keeps this recipe coming to the table all year long.
We’ve come to the pandowdy, which is so fun to say! Unlike its cousins, the pandowdy uses scraps of pie dough in a rustic way, which would be a great project for young chefs at home. 12 Tomatoes presents this lightly spiced pear version topped with a sugared pie dough for a flaky, crunchy dessert that doesn’t get soggy like the bottom pie crust. Get the Spiced Pear Pandowdy recipe.