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Vegan Plum Crumble with Oats

Scottish Vegan Plum Crumble with Oats.  A comforting pudding served with vanilla ice cream or custard.

Vegan Plum Crumble

Vegan Plum Crumble with Oats

Crumble is such a comforting pudding and it always brings a smile.

Plum crumble is not the crumble you might think of first, but it is utterly delicious and so fruity!

This vegan plum crumble with oats is one of my favourites and super easy to make.

What is the difference between a plum crumble and plum crisp?

A crumble and a crisp is basically the same thing.

The word crisp is more commonly used in the USA, whereas here in the UK we call it a crumble.

Scottish crumbles include oats in the crumble topping, which are also often included in an American fruit crisp too. 

Let's face it, we include oats in so many dishes here in Scotland. They are a real staple here.

Fruity puddings similar to a crumble or crisp

Many popular fruit puddings start with stewed fruit with a topping and not just a crumble or crisp. Here are a few:

rhubarb and custard pudding

  1. Fruit cobbler - stewed fruit topped with dollops of batter, a scone-like mixture, which is called a biscuit in the USA, in a bumpy layer.
  2. Betties - fruit is topped with a sweet breadcrumb topping
  3. Grunts and slumps - similar to a cobbler but the topping is in dollops, not a fully covered topping, sometimes cooked on the cooker top and not in the oven.
  4. Fruit buckle - fruit baked with a sponge cake, which we sometimes call fruit pudding. Try these - rhubarb & custard sponge pudding apple sponge pudding or microwave golden syrup sponge pudding.


Ready to eat or ripen at home plums?

Now that is a question to be considered.

If you want to save money plump for ripen-at-home plums.

Don't have the patience to wait for them to ripen? Buy ripe and ready plums. They are a bit more expensive, but you can eat or bake with them right away.

Top tip for plums

Help unripe plums ripen quicker by either placing them in a paper bag or sitting them by bananas.

Bananas give off a gas called ethene (ethylene) which causes other fruit to ripen as it breaks down the cells.

It's generally a good idea to keep bananas away from other fruit in your fruit bowl so your fruit lasts longer, however, it can be used to your advantage if you want fruit to ripen quicker.

sliced plums in a baking dish

Do plums need to be pre-cooked before making a crumble?

If your plums are ripe, you can add them straight away with no pre-cooking. They will soften further as the crumble bakes.

Soft fruit and berries can also be added to crumble with no pre-cooking.

crumble (crisp) topping

Why should you add oats to a crumble topping?

Adding oats to a crumble topping is a very Scottish thing to do.

You may think we lob them into any dish we can, and we do certainly add them to many dishes but there is a reason for it.

The oats give texture to the crumble and also crisp up rather nicely, giving you less of a cakey texture to your fruit crumble topping.

bag of flaked almonds

How to make a crumble topping extra crunchy

A good way of adding interest and a bit of crunch to a pudding topping is to add nuts.

Plums pair beautifully with almonds, so why not add a handful of flaked almonds to the crumble mixture or scatter them over the top of the crumble topping?

So, so good.

Sadly, I forgot to add them on the day I took photos of this scrummy pudding, but they do work well.

What do you need to make plum crumble?

Here are the simple ingredients you need to make a delicious plum crumble.

  • Ripe plums
  • Cornflour - also known as corn starch
  • Icing sugar - to sweeten the plums, although you could use caster sugar or brown sugar instead
  • Flour - plain flour, also known as all-purpose flour
  • Demerara sugar - or brown sugar
  • Salt - just a pinch
  • Oats - porridge oats, also known as rolled oats
  • Vegan butter - or dairy-free spread
  • Flaked almonds - optional

demerara sugar in a bowl

Why do you add brown sugar to a crumble topping?

Demerara sugar or brown sugar is an essential element in a good crumble topping in my opinion.

They give a caramel-like flavour and little pieces of the crumble turn almost to a toffee-like consistency when baked.

Mmmmm, so good!

Why do you add cornflour to the fruit when making a fruit pie, fruit crisp or fruit crumble?

Cornflour, also known as corn starch is added to the fruit when making a pie or pudding.

The cornflour mixes with the fruit juice and thickens it into a thicker sauce like consistency.

You don't need much, but it does make a difference.

Scottish plum crumble served with custard

How to serve plum crumble

Everyone has their own favourite way of serving a crumble. Here are a few serving suggestions for you to try. They are all available in vegan, plant-based options.

  1. Vanilla ice cream
  2. Custard
  3. Whipped cream
  4. Pouring cream
  5. Creme fraiche
  6. Plain or Greek yoghurt

Variations to plum crumble

Here are a few tweaks you can make to a plum crumble or crisp.

  • Skip the oats - in the crumble topping if you like
  • Add some spice - ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg or mixed spice would all work well
  • Vanilla scented plums - add some vanilla, either extract or scrape the seeds from a vanilla pod and mix through the plums
  • Dried fruit - add some raisins, sultanas, dried cranberries or chopped dried apricots to the crumble topping for a chewy finish
  • Berries - blueberries or raspberries work particularly well when paired with plums

Why are crumbles or crisps such a good pudding?

  • Perfect for using up fruit
  • You can use fresh or frozen fruit to make a crumble
  • An inexpensive dessert
  • Easy to make
  • Can be made with many different fruits
  • So many options for serving them
  • They taste amazing
  • Comfort food at it's best

Vegan plum crisp in a bowl with custard

Can you make plum crumble ahead?

A fruit crumble can be made ahead and stored in the fridge uncooked for a couple of days.

Some of the crumble topping will soak up juice from the fruit, so do expect that.

How long can you store plum crumble once its made?

Leftover crumble can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for a couple of days.

Let it cool before popping it in the fridge.

Remember it will cool quicker when removed from the dish it is cooked in.

Can you freeze plum crumble?

Fruit crumble freezes really well.

For best results freeze the crumble uncooked.

Just cover the freshly made crumble well with freezer friendly foil or pop it in a large freezer bag.

Either bake from frozen on a slightly lower temperature or defrost in the fridge overnight, then bake the next day.

More vegan crumbles to try

Here are a few more easy vegan crumbles for you to try.

Scottish Blackberry & Pear Crumble

  1. Microwave Blackberry Crumble
  2. Scottish Blackberry & Pear Crumble (photo above)
  3. Scottish Rhubarb & Berry Crumble
  4. Vegan Blueberry Crumble
  5. Vegan Microwave Apple Crumble for One


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Scottish Vegan Plum Crumble with Oats.  A comforting pudding served with vanilla ice cream or custard.

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How to Make Easy Plum Crumble with Oats

Scroll down for step-by-step photos followed by a full printable recipe. If you don't have a printer, hit print then save as a PDF

Vegan Plum Crumble - step 1

Step 1

  • Preheat your oven and grease a large baking dish.
  • Remove the stones from your plum and cut into wedges.
  • Toss the plum wedges in cornflour (corn starch), then add icing sugar to sweeten.
  • Spread out in an even layer in a large baking dish.

Vegan Plum Crumble - step 2

Step 2

  • Now make the crumble topping. Add the flour to a mixing bowl with a pinch of salt and mix.
  • Now add oats, brown sugar and some vegan butter or spread.
  • Rub the butter into the flour mixture with your finger tips until you have a mixture similar to breadcrumbs.

Vegan Plum Crumble - step 3

Step 3

  • Pile the crumble topping onto the fruit. It might seem like a lot but it does reduce when cooked.
  • Bake until golden and crisp, then serve hot with ice cream or custard.
  • Enjoy!


  1. My daughter spotted this first and said I have to make it. I can now see why! Jill

    1. Ach well there's no getting out of it now! Enjoy the crumble!

  2. So so comforting! The flavors of this crumble sound amazing and I love the texture paired with custard. Yum!

  3. You had me at Scottish dessert. I love the Scottish desserts we don't have here in the US. Tiffin is one of my favorite discoveries, but I"m such a suck for fruit crisps and crumbles that this recipe might quickly replace it!!

    1. Tiffin is rather a treat too. Enjoy the crumble if you make it!

  4. I love a good crumble and this was fabulous!

  5. This is such a lovely recipe, and perfect for weekend dinners with my family. My Mum and Dad are now big fans of this, especially with added icecream!

  6. I love plum crumble and I love that you've managed to create a vegan version that's so delicious!

    1. It's super easy to tweak a crumble to male it vegan. You'd never notice the difference.

  7. I had a fruit bowl full of plums so made this tonight. A big thumbs up from me and my husband.

    1. Yay! What good timing! I'm so glad you both enjoyed it

  8. I got your email tonight and have added the ingredients to my shopping list to make this weekend for my family get together. Thanks for the recipe (Mavis)

    1. You are so welcome Mavis. I hope you all enjoy it.

  9. I love plums, they have such a sweet/tart flavor. This recipe is just the kind of dessert I love. I add the almonds and they added a delicious crunch.

    1. They are rather gorgeous and Team so well with almonds.

  10. I love plums and I am always on the look out for good recipe to use them in. I really like this crumble. On the list to try.

  11. This Vegan Plum Crumble came out super delicious! I was surprised how easy it is to make and even my hubby (picky eater) loved it. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Yes super easy. Thanks for letting me know how much you enjoyed it.

  12. I am so glad I found your blog and this recipe looks amazing.

  13. This plum crumble was so good! I am always looking for ways to use the plums from our tree and this is definitely my new favorite!

    1. Oh well this is definitely the recipe for you Emily.

  14. My family is going to love this! TheJust tried this recipe and my family loved it.

  15. I have never tried a plum crisp but this looks so easy. Thank you.

  16. This looks and sounds marvelous! Love that this is made with plums.


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