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Fried Apples

You can serve these perfectly sweet, tender southern Fried Apples for a quick and easy side dish or dessert. So simple and good!

EASY SOUTHERN FRIED APPLES RECIPE

Fried Apples are a classic Southern dish that combines the sweetness of apples with a warm, buttery flavor. Whether you’re looking for a delicious side dish or a comforting dessert, these apples are a total winner. If you’ve never made fried apples, you still might be familiar with them if you’ve ever been to Cracker Barrel. While these aren’t an exact copycat recipe of theirs, I can guarantee they’re even better!

Looking down on a small white bowl of Fired Apples.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ’S): 

What apples are best for fried apples?

Personally, I like using the Granny Smith Apples. Other apples that will work: Golden Delicious, Braeburn, Honeycrisp, and Fuji apples.

Can I leave the peels on the apples?

Absolutely. We prefer them without the peels, but I know some people like the peels. So do what you’d like. Cracker Barrel leaves their skin on the apples and I think you either love it or hate it.

Can I make these in the Instant Pot or Air Fryer?

You bet and it’s easy! Just check out my Instant Pot Fried Apples and my Air Fryer Fried Apples recipes.

Can these be preserved?

I’ll be honest here, I don’t know. I did some research on canning fried apples and there are now conflicting views on this because of the butter in the recipe. Years ago I would have said yes but now it is being suggested that it is not a safe practice. So I cannot give you proper advice here. I would Google it and see what you feel comfortable doing. I think it will be a personal decision on this one.

Can you freeze Fried Apples?

You sure can. Place leftovers in a freezer safe container or bag and remove any excess air then freeze for up to 3 months.

Can fried apples be made sugar free?

I am sure you could as long as you used the proper sugar free substitutes. I have not personally tested this with sugar free items but if you do, please let me know how it turns out for you!

What to do with leftover Fried Apples?

Keep leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 days in a container.

Fried Apples in a skillet with a wooden spoon scooping some out.

INGREDIENTS NEEDED: (SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW FOR THE FULL RECIPE)

  • salted butter – the little bit of salt in the butter will offset the some of the sweetness in the apples. You won’t taste salt though because there isn’t much in the little bit of butter we’re using. If you only have unsalted butter then you can use that.
  • light brown sugar– Use dark brown sugar for a more intense flavor. Or, you can use white sugar if that is all you have.
  • ground cinnamon – I always say this when I talk about spices, check your expiration dates. If you don’t bake very often, it’s easy to let a jar of cinnamon sit in your pantry for years. it’s important to go through your spice cabinet regularly.
  • nutmeg- optional yet really adds a nice touch. I know not everyone has nutmeg in their pantry so just use the cinnamon. It will still taste great.
  • Granny Smith Apples– peeled and cored in 1/2 inch slices
  • apple juice– this could be swapped out for apple cider, just NOT apple cider vinegar. Or water if necessary.
  • cornstarch – it needs to be cornstarch and not flour. Cornstarch has twice the thickening power of flour so less is needed. Plus with flour, it needs to be cooked in a roux first to remove that flour taste. Cornstarch doesn’t add any taste or flavor to the mixture so it’s perfect for something like this.
Granny Smith Apples, light brown sugar, apple juice, butter, cornstarch, ground cinnamon, and nutmeg.

HOW TO MAKE FRIED APPLES

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and stir constantly until the sugar is melted.

collage of two photos: butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a skillet; sliced green apples added to skillet.

Add the apples and coat in the sugar mixture. Cook, stirring occasionally until the apples are fork tender, 10-15 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk together the apple juice and cornstarch.

collage of two photos: cooking apples in a skillet; apple juice and water mixed together in a small bowl.

Pour the apple juice mixture while stirring constantly.

collage of two photos: pouring apple juice mixture into skillet with apples; a wooden spoon stirring thickened apples in the skillet.

Then serve. If you are serving this as a dessert, you can serve these with ice cream.

A curly bowl of Fried Apples.

CRAVING MORE RECIPES? 

Fried apples in a skillet with a wooden spoon.

Fried Apples

You can serve these perfectly sweet, tender southern Fried Apples for a quick and easy side dish or dessert. So simple and good!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 Tablespoons salted butter
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg (optional)
  • 2 ½ pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons cornstarch

Instructions

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 4 Tablespoons salted butter.
  • Add 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed, 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg and stir constantly until the sugar is melted.
    butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a skillet.
  • Add 2 1/2 pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored, cut into 1/2 inch slices and coat in the sugar mixture.
    slices of apples added to skillet.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally until the apples are fork tender, 10-15 minutes.
    A skillet with Fried Apples in it.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup apple juice and 1 1/2 Tablespoons cornstarch.
    A small bowl of apple juice and cornstarch.
  • Pour the apple juice mixture while stirring constantly.
    Cornstarch and apple juice being poured over the Fried Apples in a skillet.
  • Continue to cook for 1-2 minutes until thickened and serve. If you are serving these as a dessert, you can serve with ice cream.
    cooked apples in a skillet.

Notes

  • Please refer to my FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions) and ingredient list above for other substitutions or for the answers to the most common questions.
Course: Dessert, Side Dish
Cuisine: American

Nutrition

Calories: 253kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Sodium: 68mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 39g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“The Country Cook” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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