Our Best Apple Recipes
Fall's apple abundance is a great blessing to the cook. We match varieties to recipes that highlight their unique character.
As the weather gets crisp and the crispness of apples signals the sweet, fleeting passage of fall, it's time to get cooking. You may find eight varieties of apples for sale in a good grocery store these days, and a dozen or more in a big farmers' market. There are more than 2,500 kinds of apples grown in the United States alone, with rare, old heirloom varieties on a welcome rebound. All this means you have a bumper crop of fruit to cook with—and apples are a great cooking fruit. We matched some favorite varieties to recipes designed to unlock the unique charm of each fruit.
Originally appearing in an issue from 1997, this Cinnamon-Apple Cake is one of our most loved recipes and can be served as dessert or a breakfast coffee cake. The cream cheese in the batter gives the cake lots of moisture. We recommend using mild-tasting Rome apples.
A mixture of apple varieties, rather than just one type, will produce apple butter with rich, complex flavor in this slow cooker recipe. Good choices include Esopus Spitzenburg, Granny Smith, Jonathan, Northern Spy, Rome, Stayman, Winesap, and York.
Enjoy the apple butter over toast or English muffins, or serve it with pork chops or chicken.
Ashmead's Kernel, a very old English apple, is smallish and lumpy with a russet exterior that blankets the green skin. We like its crisp flavor here, though any apple would work.
Mild Rome apples are great for baking this scrumptious upside-down cake however you can also use Pink Lady, Honeycrisp, or Jonagold apples. Dollop the cake with a bit of whipped cream, if desired.
The flavors of fall meet in this sandwich. Tangy Havarti cheese provides a pleasing contrast to the sweet Pink Lady apples and spicy arugula. Substitute nutty fontina or mild Muenster for the Havarti, if you prefer.
Sweet Pink Lady apples hold up well to being sautéed for the compote. Liberty, Fuji, or Jonagold apples would also work. Substitute Hawaiian bread if challah isn't available.
With crust above and below, this classic apple pie offers ample flaky crispness as a counterpoint to the soft, moist, tart-sweet filling made of Granny Smith apples.
This sweet-tart condiment features crisp, slightly acidic Spartan apples, though Fuji, Jonagold, and Liberty apples would also work nicely. Serve with pork or roast chicken.
Pink Lady apples are wonderful for applesauce, and so work very well in this pureed appetizer soup. Sweet Fuji or all-purpose Spartan apples would also lend themselves nicely to the dish.
Jonagold apples bring some tartness to the lightly sweet squash-based filling. You can also use other good baking apples like Honeycrisp or Rome. Serve as a side dish or appetizer.
Warm, cinnamon apples combine with a creamy custard for a fun twist on apple pie. Tip: The key to both a flaky piecrust and crisp streusel topping is to keep them as cold as possible before putting them into the oven.
Top tender apple cupcakes with a sweet and crunchy topping of brown sugar and almonds, then drizzle with a powdered sugar glaze. The amaretto adds an even more distinct almond flavor to the cupcakes, but if you don't have it, you can use almond extract instead.
Chicken Soup with Cabbage and Apple is the definition of hearty in a bowl. Earthy green cabbage mingles with moist shredded chicken, chicken sausage, and broth-soaked potatoes. Tart, crunchy apple slices add a fruity counterpoint to this German-inspired soup.
This coffee cake is best served warm. To prepare ahead, cool completely, wrap (still in the pan) in foil, and leave out at room temperature for up to one day, or freeze for up to three months. To reheat thawed cake, unwrap and bake at 250° for 15 to 20 minutes.
"This slaw is a healthier version of an original family recipe. It is creamy and delicious, and takes about five minutes to make." -Kelly McWherter, Houston, TX
The dramatic presentation of this German pancake—it puffs up gloriously—as well as the recipe's rich, custardlike texture make it a morning delight. Use any type of firm, tart apple such as Granny Smith, pippin, Northern Spy, or Sierra Beauty.
Warm flavors like sage and cinnamon play up the contrast between the juicy pork chops and caramelized apples. Tart Granny Smiths and slightly sweeter Braeburn apples both work well for this dish.
Tart Granny Smith slices take the bite out of the sweet heat from the shrimp. This is easy for a weeknight meal but also unique for weekend entertaining.