Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com
Dairy Free, Dessert & Treats, Food, Gluten Free, Life, Summer, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wellness


Happy Monday, everyone! How was your weekend? If you’ve been following along with my Insta Stories lately you likely caught a glimpse of what my weekend looked like, including my very first saskatoon picking adventure! An old friend of mine invited us to forage their family farm near Carseland, Alberta where the saskatoons are flourishing — it’s the best crop they’ve ever had. I spent Saturday evening strolling through saskatoon tree lined paths with my Mom and little sister — bucket in one berry stained hand and camera in the other (now that’s my kind of girls night!). It was a gorgeous evening and we came away with overflowing buckets, happy hearts and about 8 pounds of berries!

Enjoy the bounty of our beautiful Canadian prairies with my Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble — a simple, 9 ingredient recipe with a wholesome, plant based spin. It’s free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar — and bursting with decadent berry flavour! Freshly picked saskatoons are bathed in bright lemon juice then naturally sweetened with rich, caramel laden coconut sugar and sprinkled with a hearty topping including quick oats, homemade oat flour, more coconut sugar, Himalayan pink salt, cinnamon, chopped almonds and coconut oil. This vibrant, crowd pleasing dessert that accommodates food allergies and sensitivities without compromising those classic crumble characteristics we all know and love (I promise, no one will know it’s a ‘free from’ dessert!). It’s a no fuss summer dessert that’s ideal for entertaining and can be on your table in 45 minutes!


Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

You may have a hard time believing this — but until Saturday I’d never even tasted a saskatoon! If who’ve followed along with my FOOD section for any length of time, you’ll know how passionate I am about local, plant based food and honestly I have no idea why I’ve never gone saskatoon picking until this summer. The instant I popped a saskatoon straight from the branch into my mouth, I knew I wanted to try them in a crumble! I’ve had an old crumble recipe kicking around for years, but it’s not something I’ve revisited since going dairy and gluten free. So this weekend I tested my old crumble recipe with new, clean, wholesome ingredients and was shocked at how well it came out! I spent the weekend at my childhood home in rural Alberta with my family (a.k.a. the best recipe testers ever) and they were all in agreement that the recipe didn’t need any tweaking. Yesterday I made another batch of Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble to photograph (that I may or may not be eating for breakfast right now) — and here we are!

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

If you’ve never tried a saskatoon berry, you’re probably wondering what they taste like. Although they resemble blueberries, they actually taste a quite different. Saskatoons have a deeper, richer, nuttier flavour that’s somehow wilder — but in the best way possible! It’s very distinct and difficult to describe, but if you live in Alberta or Saskachewan, I highly recommend getting out to sample saskatoons for yourself this season while the crops are at their peak. With the intense heat we’ve been experiencing this summer, this year’s crop will likely fade before weeks end — there’s no time like the present! Since saskatoon season is so short, I was eager to publish this recipe for those looking for a great ‘free from’ crumble.

Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

Upon doing a bit of research, I discovered that saskatoons are actually related to the apple family. They’re also little nutritional powerhouses packed full of  fiber, protein, antioxidants, manganese, magnesium, iron, calcium, potassium, copper and carotene. Saskatoons are high in natural sugar but also rich in vitamin C — making them ideal for baking. They hold their shape when baked but continue to ripen after they’re picked — so you’ll want to enjoy them fresh for up to about 4 days, then freeze the rest of your harvest. You can make my Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble with fresh or frozen saskatoons to enjoy these summer treats year round!

Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

I haven’t tried actually freezing the crumble (although don’t foresee it being an issue), but I can confirm it’s delicious cold, straight from the container for breakfast! This recipe serves 6 – 8 and is best enjoyed warm with a scoop of vanilla bean coconut ice cream. It also pairs well with dry, berry driven rosé! If you don’t have access to saskatoons, feel free to substitute them for any berries you have on hand — however, you may have to tweak the amount of coconut sugar to accommodate.

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com


Serves 6 – 8


• 4 cups saskatoon berries
• 2 tbsp lemon juice
• 1/2 cup coconut sugar
• 2 tsp corn starch

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com


• 3/4 cup quick oats
• 1/2 cup oat flour (make your own by following the directions below!)
• 1/2 cup coconut sugar
• 1/4 cup almonds
• 1/2 tsp cinnamon
• 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
• 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Process your saskatoon berries by sorting and washing them.

Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

3. Start preparing the filling by adding 4 cups of saskatoon berries to a 9″ square baking dish along with 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice. Stir to combine.

4. Combine coconut sugar with cornstarch and stir into the saskatoon berries. Spread evenly to form a uniform layer.

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

5. Make your own oat flour by adding some quick oats to a high powered blender and processing until they form a flour.

6. Chop almonds roughly.

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

7. Prepare the topping by combining all ingredients in a mixing bowl.

8. Melt coconut oil in a microwave safe dish. Drizzle into the Topping mixture, stiring to combine. 

9. Sprinkle topping onto the saskatoon berries, forming an even layer.

Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

10. Pop the Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble into the oven the bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown and bubbling.

11. Remove from the over to cool slightly for 15 minutes before serving.

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

[yumprint-recipe id=’40’]

Saskatoon picking in rural Alberta, Canada // JustineCelina.com

Have you ever tried saskatoons? I have a feeling I’ll be picking them every summer from now on! I love that they’re so readily available — and practically in my backyard! As always, if you try my Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble I’d love your feedback.

Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble | Dairy, Gluten & Refined Sugar Free // JustineCelina.com

Leave me a comment, or tag me on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. You can use the hashtag #justinecelinarecipes in your recreations so I can find them — it’s always so much fun seeing what you guys make! I also have a Pinterest board for my recipes if you’re looking for more plant based culinary inspiration. I hope you enjoyed coming along on the first of many saskatoon berry adventures here at JustineCelina!

Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored, and contains my genuine thoughts, ideas and recommendations. Thank you to the Zaleschuck family for letting us come forage the farm! JustineCelina uses affiliate and referral links, which allow me to receive a small commission when you make a purchase through one of my links. Thank you for supporting the brands and businesses that support JustineCelina!

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  • Reply Dana | The Grey Bell July 26, 2017 at 12:06 pm

    This looks like an absolutely dreamy excursion! I just love cooking with anything foraged, makes you feel so more connected to it if you harvest it yourself!

    • Reply Justine July 26, 2017 at 12:15 pm

      Thank you so much, Dana! We were so fortunate to be able to visit the farm to pick saskatoons this year. I completely agree about the experience of harvesting your own food — it’s something I plan to do whenever the opportunity presents itself. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

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  • Reply Nicoletta sugarlovespices July 28, 2017 at 11:07 am

    Hi, Justine! I’m commenting to your beautiful post from sunny Rome! We arrived last Saturday, but just a few days before Loreto and I we were picking Saskatoons with Margaret Kitchen Frau and her husband. It was an amazing experience and now we have 15 bags in the freezer. Your crumble looks fantastic! Wholesome and delicious (I am a huge fan of coconut sugar, been using it for a long time 🙂 ). One of the bags will be destined to making your crumble :-).

    • Reply Justine July 30, 2017 at 5:01 pm

      Ciao, Nicoletta! I hope you guys are enjoying your trip — thank you so much for taking time to swing by and comment! Aren’t the saskatoons amazing this year? I can’t wait to see what you whip up with them — and please, if you do try my crumble let me know how it goes! Buonanotte!

  • Reply Yang July 28, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    This looks so delicious and your photos are stunning! I never had Saskatoon berries before, but you have intrigued me to try this one day. I wonder if they exist in Ontario, else I will have to take a trip for these little gems.

    • Reply Justine July 30, 2017 at 5:04 pm

      Hi Yang! Thank you so much for your sweet comment. 🙂 It was so much fun capturing these photos — I recently upgraded my photography set up and this was the perfect place to play around with it! As far as I know, saskatoons typically grow in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Northern Manitoba — where abouts are you located? I’m sure you could find some in your area, but you’ll have to hurry! Enjoy your Sunday.

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  • Reply Sean July 29, 2017 at 9:30 am

    You’re right Justine – I do have a hard time believing you’ve never tried a saskatoon berry! Lol. Well I’m glad you’ve remedied that, and in such and incredible way to boot. It’s funny that you mention saskatoons being in the rose family – I feel like I knew that once, but forgot about it. I was mistakenly thinking that they were more closely related to blueberries (the family Ericaceae). It’s fascinating how two unrelated fruits can look so similar! As you say though, they have flavour and character all their own. I may have access to some pretty amazing produce here on the BC coast, but I miss my prairie specialties! I’ll have to figure out a way to get my hands on some next summer so that I can make jam, pie, and of course, this gorgeous and perfectly crafted crumble!!

    • Reply Justine July 30, 2017 at 5:06 pm

      Haha — crazy, right?! I thought you especially would appreciate the mini history lesson, Sean. I do find it strange that they’re related to apples, although the bottom of both fruits look almost identical. If you’re around Calgary next summer during saskatoon season let me know — I can hook you up with all the saskatoons you could possibly want! 😉

  • Reply Dana August 1, 2017 at 10:46 am

    I’ve been dying to see what you were up to with these gorgeous blueberries! I love this. Crumbles are such a perfect and simple dessert. I don’t know if it’s because I’m not a cake girl, or baked goods girl, but crumbles really stand out to me as being one of the best kind of desserts and when you can incorporate freshly picked fruit, even better.

    Also, could your blueberry-pickin’ clothes be any cuter? <3

    • Reply Dana August 2, 2017 at 12:28 pm

      And by blueberries, my scattered brain meant saskatoons! 😉

      • Reply Justine August 2, 2017 at 12:42 pm

        I’m totally partial to crumbles because I’m in the ‘not much of a baker’ club. Although, the few baking recipes do have here at JustineCelina are really delish and tend to work out on the first or second try — maybe I should rethink that. I like that crumbles are still moderately healthy with a few easy, whole food substitutions. Thanks for the comment, friend!

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