Apple Varieties and Uses

Apples are a source of both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber such as pectin actually helps to prevent cholesterol buildup in the lining of blood vessel walls, thus reducing the incident of arteriosclerosis and heart disease. The insoluble fiber in apples provides bulk in the intestinal tract, holding water to cleanse and move food quickly through the digestive system.

It is a good idea to eat apples with their skin. Almost half of the vitamin C content is just underneath the skin. Eating the skin also increases insoluble fiber content. Most of an apple's fragrance cells are also concentrated in the skin and as they ripen, the skin cells develop more aroma and flavor.

Apples keep well refrigerated.

Baldwin
A large, yellowish apple with red stripes. Named after Loammi Baldwin - discovered by him near Chestnut street in Wilmington, Massachusetts during one of his trips to survey the route of the canal. Sharp tasting, juicy, and highly regarded for its keeping quality.

Long prized for the making of hard cider.

Braeburn
Originated in New Zealand in the late 1940s and was introduced in the U.S. in the early 1980s. A wonderful blend of tart and sweet flavors. They are aromatic, crisp and juicy. High in both sugars and acidity. The flesh is yellow-green to creamy yellow and crisp in texture.

All-purpose. A good choice for baking. The skins take on a burnished look, the fruit maintains its shape extremely well, and the flesh has a pleasing apple aroma and taste. Doesn't brown quickly when cut, making it excellent for salads. Makes a great"sweet-tart" sauce with no added sweetening.

Cameo
A pleasantly sweet-tart flavor and firm texture - colored with a red stripe over a creamy background.

Excellent both cooked and fresh - a wonderful dessert apple.

Cortland
Slightly tart taste.

Excellent for eating, salads, sauces, pies, baking - good for freezing.

Crispin (Mutsu)
A typically large apple. Has a great crunch.

Its size makes it great for slices, garnishes for roasts, or just fresh eating. Try it in sauce and pies, too!

Criterion
Sometimes called the candy apple, they are very sweet, crisp, flavorful and juicy.

They are particularly good fresh, but they are also fine for baking. Add a little lemon juice to enhance their flavor.

Elstar
An intense sweet tangy flavor.

Distinctive apple for snacking, salads and fruit trays. They tend to retain their lively flavor and hold up well during cooking.

Empire
a cross between McIntosh and Red Delicious Red, sweet-tart apple. The skin turns an attractive pinkish-red, the flesh usually holds together. Sweet-tart taste.

Excellent for out-of-hand eating, salads - good to use in baking, pies, sauce - good for freezing. It's a sweet-tart combination that's great for everything. Excellent for eating, salads, sauce, baking, pies, and freezing.

Fuji
Sweet, mild, crisp and juicy. Don't be fooled by red skin color. A yellow to golden ground color is a much better indicator of best eating quality. Keeps well.

Excellent for fresh eating and salads - good for sauce. They are excellent when eaten fresh. They are also fine for cooking and they store well.

Gala
Sweet and aromatic with a rich full flavor. Typically, it has a red blush over a creamy yellow background. The sweet flesh is cream-colored, rather dense, and aromatic. Gala ripens in late summer, and is best enjoyed for fresh eating during its harvest season from late August through September.

Excellent for fresh eating and salads. They are best used fresh out of hand or in salads. They are just the right size to tuck into a pocket or handbag. CAUTION: Cooking destroys both its aroma and texture.

Ginger Gold
Sweet, tangy and juicy, Ginger Gold apples are an early apple, harvested in early August. It has a strikingly white, smooth flesh and is one of the highest quality summer apples grown today.

Fabulous for fresh eating, it also makes a sweet, summertime sauce with a very fine texture. It also makes a wonderful pie and is excellent for snacking and salads, too! Ginger Gold apples retain their crisp white flesh when sliced.

Golden Delicious
Not related to Red Delicious - sweet and juicy with an irregular oval shape, and is bright yellow, with darker specks and streaks. Market season is from October until Spring.

All purpose apple. Excellent for eating out of hand, salads, sauces. Good to use in pies and baking - good for freezing.

Granny Smith
Mrs. Maria Smith nurtured the first seedling in the mid 1800's. A richly flavored apple, the Granny Smith is the world's best known green variety. Tart, pleasant flavor and bouquet. Market season is year-round.

Good for all-purpose use. Granny Smith apples are crisp. They are excellent for salads and fresh eating. Good for baking. Their tangy flavor comes through when baked and sauteed.

Gravenstein
Reportedly originated in Germany in the gardens of the Duke Augustenberg, Castle Graefenstein, Schleswig-Holstein.

Good, all-purpose apple, but best suited for making applesauce and pies.

Grimes Golden
Sweet, delicate flavor.

Prized for eating, cider and jelly. Makes particularly fine apple butter.

Honey Crisp
Descended from Macoun, Golden Delicious and Haralson apples, this large, super-crisp and sweet-yet-tangy variety. The flesh has a faintly golden color and a memorable sweet-but-mellow flavor. Introduced in 1991 by the University of Minnesota, its heritage is believed to be a mix of Macoun and Honey Gold.

All purpose. Holds its shape fairly well when baked, and its reddish-yellow skin takes on an attractive tawny hue. Known for its "explosively" crisp texture, this apple is a fresh eating sensation blending a pleasing, sweet and slightly tart flavor with incredible juiciness. Market season is September through October.

Idared
Sweetly tart and juicy. Firm pale yellow-green flesh - sometimes tinted rosy pink.

Good for eating, cooking, baking, salads and freezing. Makes a beautiful pink applesauce when cooked with skins on.

Jonagold
Sweet with a hint of tartness. Crisp, juicy flesh.

Excellent for fresh eating, salads, sauces, baking. Good for use in pies and freezing. Great fresh or in salads.

Jonathan
Medium-size, very round apple, bright red and striped with yellow. Moderately tart with a rich distinctive flavor.They hold their shape and retain their full flavor when cooked. generally a medium-size apple that blends a moderately tart and sweet flavor. This apple can be full red color, but often shows a background yellow-green color as well. Market season is September to December.

Used either raw or cooked. Great for fresh eating and baking. Makes a terrific pie and can be blended with other apples for a robust sauce. Good for all purpose use.

King Luscious
Huge apple which is quite popular in western North Carolina where it was discovered as a seedling in 1935 near Hendersonville. The skin is greenish-yellow covered with deep red and overlaid with darker red striping. The flesh is yellowish-white and fine-grained. Sweet, crisp and juicy. Its flavor has been characterized as a cross between McIntosh and York Imperial.

Fine for eating and for light cooking.

Lady Apples
Very small - green and red.

Used for decorations.

Macoun
Very sweet taste.

Excellent for fresh eating. Good for sauces and salads.

McIntosh
First apple tree planted by John McIntosh about 1811. Two-toned red and green. Its several sub-varieties range from yellow to red and crimson. Market season is September to June.

All purpose apple. Sweet with a slightly tart taste. Excellent for eating out of hand and sauces. Good in salads and pies.

Newtown Pippin
Tart, tangy-sweet and firm.

They are superb for cooking and baking, because they keep their shape and rich flavor. They are also good when eaten out of hand.

Nittany
A cross between Golden Delicious and York.

Superb for fresh eating out of hand, all cooking and baking purposes, and makes a delicious, thick sauce.

Northern Spy
Greenish-yellow with a red blush.

All-purpose - salads, pies, baking and sauce.

Paula Red
Fall-type apple that matures in late summer. Its fruit is deep red, white to cream flesh, and is slightly tart. It is firm with a slightly tangy taste - a good keeping early apple.

All-purpose. Use for fresh eating, pies and sauce.

Pink Lady
Grown throughout Australia, and also in South Africa, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, New Zealand, California, Washington State, Italy and Provence in the south of France.

Use as a dessert apple with cheese, as a snack on its own, in salads or for pies.

Red Delicious
Large and long, with six small knobs at the end of the apple opposite the stem. Its color is usually dark red, with darker stripes, although some are yellow. Sweet and juicy, it is usually eaten raw. The market season is from October until Spring.

Best for snacking and in salads. They are poor for baking.

Red Rome (Rome Beauty)
Named for an apple-growing area in Ohio, not Italy. It is yellow or green, with red markings. Slightly tart. Market season is October to August.

One of the best apples for cooking, and is best for baking. Their flavor enhances with a touch of sugar or honey. They are a good choice for baked apples, as they tend to hold their shape well and taste rich when cooked. A favorite for baking and cooking, as well as for salads.

Rubinette
Not widely grown in the U.S. A cross between Golden Delicious and Cox's Orange Pippin, this medium-size apple has a robust flavor and aroma. Very high in sugar and acid content.

Blends with Golden Delicious, Nittany or York for a fabulous sauce.

Spartan
A cross between McIntosh and Newtown apples. Crisp, snowy-white flesh and an unusually small core. A distinctive, sweet flavor and cooks soft and smooth. Market season is October through July.

All-purpose.

Stayman/Stayman Winesap
Named in 1866 for its discoverer, Dr. Stayman. It has a somewhat course texture and a skin color that normally is a "striped red-green". A distinctive "tart-sweet" flavor with a snappy bite.

Good for all purpose use. This old time favorite is most popular for baking and pies, but is preferred by those who enjoy a tart apple and adds a snap to salads and sauce.

Summer Rambo
A transplant from France (first grown in 1535), this apple appeared in Colonial America in 1767. Fruit ripens in early August and has a distinctive greenish-yellow skin that often develops a blush.

First choice among those who make a traditional, tart apple sauce or apple pie. Many make Rambo pies in August and freeze them to enjoy year round!

Winesap
Granddaddy of American apples which has a wine-like flavor. Available November to July. brilliant red, rather flat apple.

It is best eaten raw, either whole or in salads. It keeps a long time after picking - a spicy flavor that is mildly tart and aromatic. They are good for cooking and fresh eating. Keep their lively flavor when baked and can be used to make thick juicy sauces. They are one of the best apple choices for cider.

Transparent
A popular early apple which ripens in late July or early August.

It is eaten both raw and cooked, and is especially food for applesauce.

Winter Banana
Originated in Cass County, Indiana in 1876 and gained its popularity due to its large size, firm flesh and sweet aroma. Develops a distinctive, bright yellow color at full maturity. It does not taste like a banana! Normally large, this apple is mostly a pale yellow color, frequently with a blush.

Excellent for cooking.

York
Holds its crisp texture over time, while becoming mellower and sweeter tasting. The York variety was discovered early last century, near York, Pennsylvania. Crisp and flavorful throughout the season. "Lop-sided" shape, deep red with green streaks.

Excellent cooking quality. Known for its high flesh quality, it stores extremely well and is an outstanding choice for cooking, stewing, pies, etc. When fully mature, this hard apple has fine eating quality as well. Holds it texture during cooking and freezing.