There is perhaps no ingredient more representative of autumn than a crisp, sweet-tart apple. Ranging in flavor from tooth-achingly sweet to bright and acidic, they’re an extraordinarily versatile ingredient to use in dishes both sweet and savory. From stuffed turkey and pork to salads to apple pie, we’ve rounded up our favorite apple recipes.
Apples are a great way to add sweetness and crunch to salads. Try tossing cold red apple wedges and cider vinaigrette with hot, lightly grilled escarole for a simple but unusual salad. Apple matchsticks are added to our kohlrabi and watercress salad with sumac-yogurt dressing and our Waldorf-style Brussels sprout salad with crispy guanciale.
We love pairing apples with pork. Apples combine with dried apricots, prunes, and bourbons to make a decadent stuffing for pork loin. In Poland you’ll find bigos, a hearty stew of pork shoulder, bacon, kielbasa, sauerkraut, and apples.
Of course, one of the most classic things to do with apples is make pie. To take a traditional apple pie to the next level, we add caramel to the filling and top it with sea salt to bring out the sweetness. For a more elegant apple pie, try filling a sweet tart dough with homemade apple butter and almond cream. The result is a delicate, creamy, intensely spiced tart.
Find all these dishes and more in our collection of sweet and savory apple recipes.
Flaky Apple Tart
Crisp, paper-thin sheets of phyllo dough wrap and crown tender, brandied apples in this classic French tart.
Mulled Apple Cider Concentrate
Cider concentrate is great drizzled over pancakes, added to homemade vinaigrettes or used as a ham glaze. For a quick, warming drink, spoon three tablespoons into a large mug and fill with just-boiled water.
Polish Pork and Sauerkraut Stew (Bigos)
My mom, like many women in Poland, made bigos—a stew of pork shoulder, bacon, kielbasa, and sauerkraut—for every celebration. I came to the States when I was 20. During the day I cleaned people’s houses; at night, I went to school. I never had time to cook, much less make bigos. Though it’s easy to prepare, it takes hours for the flavors to develop. Nowadays I’m still too busy to make it, but Kazia, my sister, makes massive quantities, then freezes it. When people come to visit her, she heats it up and tells them, “Look, I made bigos just for you!” —Halina Pinas
While we highly recommend trying one out for yourself in the historic confines of Boston’s Durgin-Park restaurant, where squares of buttery crust are pressed into a simmering apple filling part-way through cooking to soak up the spiced sauce, you can make our interpretation of this New England classic right at home.
At the Brooklyn, New York restaurant Emily, Brussels sprouts are fried whole until crispy and then tossed in an umami-rich dressing of fish sauce and lemon juice spiked with chile oil. A shower of salty Pecorino cheese, sweet-tart Granny Smith apple, nutty sesame seeds and fresh minced chives tops off the addictive appetizer.
Herbes de Provence Grilled Turkey
Massachusetts-based home cook Eric Silvers, a senior astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, employs an innovative method for cooking his family’s Thanksgiving turkey each year: The bird is set atop a rack inside a disposable aluminum pan, which is nestled directly into the coals of a grill, and charred at a very high temperature. The result is a crisp-skinned, juicy, smoke-kissed turkey that’s finished in just a fraction of the time it would take to roast it.
Bouchon Apple Butter
This apple butter contains nothing more than slow-roasted apples and a splash of cider.
Bouchon’s Apple Pie
Classic apple pie gets an upgrade at Las Vegas’ Bouchon Bakery, where pastry chef Scott Wheatfill tops a flaky sweet crust with housemade apple butter and almond cream. The result is a delicate, refined tart with a creamy interior and a concentrated spicy flavor. Get the recipe for Bouchon’s Apple Pie »
Sautéed garlic and onion, plus a little bit of salt, add a savory note to this sweet-tart relish, which gets its body from the natural pectin in the poached, puréed cranberries. A twist on Thanksgiving’s traditional cranberry sauce, the recipe was given to us by Michael Sandoval, executive chef of Bouchon Bistro in Yountville, California. His staff prepares it as part of the restaurant’s annual Thanksgiving meal for veterans and their families. Get the recipe for Apple-Cranberry Relish »
Shredded Apple, Beet, and Carrot Salad
This stunning red salad gets its color from raw shredded beets, which mix with crunchy carrots and sweet-tart apples to make a crisp accompaniment for pork chops.
Kohlrabi and Watercress Salad
For a twist on the classic Waldorf salad, try tossing sweet apples with crisp watercress and nutty kohlrabi in a sumac-infused yogurt dressing.
A cinnamon-spiced sauce of butter and melted caramel candies poured over apples makes a wonderfully sweet, gooey filling.
A mix of baking apples, such as Cortland and Macintosh, and eating apples like Honeycrisp and Golden Delicious, provides a texture of plump, soft apple chunks suspended in a rich, satiny sauce. Try a mix of varieties such as Fuji, Gala, Jonagold, Braeburn or whatever you find.
Apple Brandy and Cinnamon Syrup
Reducing this brandy-rich syrup over low heat helps keep it unclouded—drizzle it over pancakes or waffles for an autumnal breakfast treat.
Crisp Apple-Roasted Turkey with Cider-Calvados Gravy
The turkey in this recipe, from Lynne Rossetto Kasper, is deeply infused with the aroma of apples. “I’m a great believer in repeating seasoning themes at different stages of cooking to build depth,” she says, “which is why I use several expressions of apple—the fruit itself, cider, and apple brandy—in this recipe.”