Apple season is in full swing, and we couldn’t be happier. Apples are delicious and nutritious, which is why we’re putting them in everything from breakfast bowls to savory dinners. Here are several reasons why you should, too, along with ways to include them in your meals this fall.
Nutrition Benefits of Apples
We’ve all heard the saying an apple a day keeps the doctor away. There’s a good bit of truth to this expression, as apples are packed with good-for-you nutrients. One medium apple counts as 1 cup, or two servings of fruit. It’s a low calorie option that packs 4 grams of soluble fiber to keep you full longer. Apples are a great source of immune-boosting vitamin C, which is important as we head into flu season. They also contain antioxidants and a type of fiber called pectin, which may help lower the risk for heart disease by keeping LDL (bad) cholesterol and inflammation levels down.
Which apples are tastiest in salads? Which ones hold up when baked? Which ones are best to eat in their natural state? With such a variety of apples being sold at stores these days, it can be difficult to know which ones to choose. Here’s a quick breakdown of some of our favorites.
- Best for Eating Fresh: Gala, Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, McIntosh and Granny Smith
- Best for Baking: McIntosh, Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Gravenstein and Jazz
- Best for Sauces: Braeburn, Cortland, Jonagold, Jonathan and McIntosh
How to Enjoy Apples at Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Apples are a great addition to many breakfasts. Add them to your oatmeal or Greek yogurt in the morning. Chop one up and blend it in a smoothie with other fruits, vegetables and nut butters. Slice one up and add it to a piece of whole grain toast with nut butter. Or, try one of these three recipes from our collection:
- Oatmeal with Raspberries and Apples Recipe >
- Greek Yogurt with Apple and Walnuts Recipe >
- Apple-Cheddar Quinoa Muffins Recipe >
Interested in a lunchtime apple fix? Mix some slices with spinach, dried cranberries and roasted nuts for a healthy salad. Add them to a grain bowl with other fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. They’re also a great way to round out an otherwise fruitless lunch.
Apples also make for wonderful fall-flavored dinners. They pair very well with chicken and pork chops, and come together nicely for a sweet and savory soup or applesauce.
- Chicken & Spiced Apples Recipe >
- Pork Chops with Apples and Onions Recipe >
- Roasted Pumpkin-Apple Soup Recipe >
Last but not least, apples are one of nature’s best snacks. Eat one with a tablespoon of almond butter, or simply grab a whole apple when you’re on the run.
Do you have a favorite apple recipe? Let us know in the comments below.
This post was originally published on September 24, 2015. It was last updated September 13, 2017.