Fall Side Dishes

Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples: A Sweet & Satisfying Side Dish

fall inspired cooked apples 2

As the leaves change color and the air turns crisp, it’s the perfect time to indulge in fall flavors.

Today, I have a special recipe to capture the essence of this beautiful season—Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples.

This classic dish is perfect for those cozy autumn evenings or whenever you crave a comforting dessert.

In this recipe, I’ll guide you through making these luscious cooked apples, infusing your kitchen with the scents and flavors of fall.

About This Recipe

Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples is a versatile recipe suitable for everyone, especially those who appreciate the delightful tastes of autumn.

Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe is beginner-friendly and requires minimal effort.

If you’re looking for a quick and delicious dessert to celebrate the fall season, Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples is an ideal choice.

It’s also an excellent option for families, as it’s a wholesome treat that can be enjoyed by both children and adults alike.

Kitchen Equipment

Before we dive into the recipe, let’s make sure you have all the necessary kitchen equipment at hand:


To create the delectable Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 10 cooking apples, peeled and sliced (about 4 to 5 pounds)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed and undiluted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Recipe Tips & Variations

  • Apple Selection: Fall is the time to celebrate the richness of apple varieties. Choose apples with firm flesh and distinct flavors like McIntosh, Rome Beauty, Jonathan, Granny Smith, Winesap, or Golden Delicious. These apples will add depth and complexity to your dish, embodying the spirit of the fall season. I enjoy fall apple picking in Ellijay, Georgia, but that’s just me!
  • Cooking Time: The cooking time should be short enough for the apples to retain their shape and flavors while becoming tender. Aim for a simmering time of about 15 minutes, but adjust as needed based on the apple varieties and thickness of the slices. The goal is to achieve that perfect balance between texture and tenderness.
  • Shortcut: If you’re pressed for time, consider using pre-sliced apples available in the produce section of your local grocery store. This will save you some prep time while still allowing you to enjoy the delightful flavors of fall.
  • Recipe Swap: To add a cozy twist to your Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples, consider substituting the frozen orange juice concentrate with apple cider or apple juice. This variation will further enhance the autumn flavors of the dish.
  • Leftover Storage: If you have any leftovers, store the cooked apples in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They can be enjoyed for up to 3 days. To reheat, gently warm them in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally.

Food & Drink Pairings

To elevate your fall culinary experience, consider pairing your Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples with the following:

  • Pork Chops: These cooked apples go perfectly alongside our Parmesan Pork Chops with Apples recipe.
  • Hot Apple Cider: Sip on a warm mug of apple cider alongside your cooked apples to fully immerse yourself in the cozy flavors of fall.
  • Vanilla Ice Cream: Serve the cooked apples with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream for a contrasting temperature and texture. The ice cream pairs perfectly with the warm apples, creating a delightful harmony.
  • Caramel Sauce Drizzle: Drizzle some rich caramel sauce over the cooked apples for an indulgent twist. Combining sweet, tender apples and decadent caramel will satisfy your autumn cravings.

Recipe Directions

  1. Prepare the Apples: Start peeling and slicing the cooking apples, embracing the beautiful fall colors. Choose apple varieties such as McIntosh, Rome Beauty, Jonathan, Granny Smith, Winesap, or Golden Delicious to infuse your dish with their distinct flavors and textures. Slice the apples to a similar thickness for even cooking.
  2. Create the Syrup: In a 4-quart Dutch oven, combine the sugar, water, frozen orange juice concentrate, and lemon juice. Place the Dutch oven on the stove over medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir until the sugar dissolves completely, filling your kitchen with delightful fall scents.
  3. Simmer: Once the mixture reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer and add the sliced apples to the Dutch oven. Allow the apples to simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. The cooking time may vary slightly depending on the apple varieties you use. The goal is to cook the apples until they are tender but still hold their shape and flavors, reminiscent of the autumn harvest.
  4. Serve and Enjoy: Once the apples are perfect, remove the Dutch oven from the heat and let it cool slightly. Revel in the warm aromas filling your kitchen as you transfer the Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples to serving bowls. The apples can be enjoyed warm or at room temperature, allowing you to savor fall flavors. To enhance the experience, consider topping the apples with a whipped cream dollop or a cinnamon sprinkle.

Now that you have the secret to creating delicious Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples, it’s time to bring the enchantment of autumn to your table.

Share this recipe with your friends and family, allowing them to experience the season’s flavors.

Let’s celebrate the magic of fall together!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use regular eating apples instead of cooking apples?

While cooking apples are generally recommended for this recipe, you can use eating apples. Just remember that cooking apples tend to hold their shape better during cooking. McIntosh, Rome Beauty, Jonathan, Granny Smith, Winesap, and Golden Delicious are good cooking apples.

Can I make this recipe in advance for a dinner party?

Absolutely! Fall-Inspired Cooked Apples can be made in advance and reheated when needed. Store them in the refrigerator and gently reheat them in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally.

Can I freeze the cooked apples?

Yes, you can freeze the cooked apples. Allow them to cool completely, then transfer to freezer-safe containers or bags. They can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

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