Apple Trees By Purpose
Apples for Baking
When choosing apples for baking, you’ll want to be somewhat selective. A good baking apple should be able to withstand your oven, remaining slightly “crunchy” without losing its form. It should also have a perfect balance of sweetness and tartness. If you’ve ever had a really good apple pie, you know exactly what we’re talking about!
Below are three of our favorite baking apples. While there are many others, we love these for their crispness and flavor!
Malus domestica ‘Minnewasheta’
We love Zestar!® for its flavor as much as we love it for its crunch. When you bite into it, you’ll detect just a hint of brown sugar, which perfectly complements any apple-based dessert!
Malus domestica ‘Empire’
Empire is a cross between Red Delicious and McIntosh—two extremely popular baking varieties. Its firm flesh holds up well in pies and cobblers, and it has a juicy sweet-tart flavor.
Granny Smith Apple
Malus domestica ‘Granny Smith’
Inarguably, Granny Smith is America’s favorite tart apple—and it’s a favored baking apple, too. While it is known for its tartness, it’s easy to sweeten it up with sugar and spices!
Apples for Fresh Eating
The best apples for fresh eating are juicy, crisp, and sweet. They taste their best right when they’re plucked from the tree or when snacked on with sharp cheeses. Find three of our favorites below!
Malus domestica ‘Honeycrisp’
Honeycrisp is aptly named—it’s juicy, crisp, and oh so sweet. While it’s great in desserts, we prefer eating it fresh! Interestingly enough, Honeycrisp’s parentage is a bit of a mystery, so we’re not quite sure where it gets its delicious sweetness from.
Malus domestica ‘Fuji’
Fuji is giving Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, and other favorites a run for their money. It is a fairly versatile apple, but it is especially delicious when eaten fresh. It’s also great in salads!
Malus domestica ‘Rubinette’
Rubinette has been called the best-tasting apple in the entire world. Is it true? You’ll have to find out for yourself! This beauty is a cross between Golden Delicious and Cox’s Orange Pippin, and it’s good for almost anything—juicing, baking, drying, or eating fresh.
Apples for Juice or Cider
There’s no wrong way to make juice or cider. Some people prefer it tart while others prefer it on the sweeter side. Regardless of how you like yours, there’s a perfect apple—or combination of apples! Below are a few of our favorites. Again, there’s no right or wrong choice!
Malus domestica ‘Cortland’
Cortland has a variety of uses thanks to its sweet-tart flavor, which also makes it perfect in juices and ciders. Blend Cortland with similar varieties for a deliciously well-rounded taste!
Malus domestica ‘McIntosh’
If you like your cider more on the tart side, McIntosh is the apple for you. This apple even has slight hints of grape that are only detectable when McIntosh apples are at their freshest.
Malus domestica ‘Macoun’
Macoun has notes of spice, berry, and grape, making it the perfect apple for cider. Since it doesn’t do well in storage, you’ll want to make as much as you can!
Apples for Applesauce
When it comes to making applesauce, you can use any apple varieties you want (but softer apples may make the process easier). As with juices and ciders, you can blend different varieties for a sauce that’s more sweet or more sour. It all depends on your preferences! Below are a few apples we love for sauces.
Malus domestica ‘Cortland’
Cortland again! It’s just so popular. It really is good for just about anything, and its sweet-tart flavor makes a perfectly balanced sauce. Mix it with other sweet-tart apples if you’d like.
Malus domestica ‘Gravenstein’
Gravenstein is a delicate heirloom apple that doesn’t do well in transit. This makes it ideal in your garden, as you’ll be able to pick the apples as they ripen and enjoy them when they’re freshest! They’re also incredibly aromatic, requiring very little seasoning when used in sauces.
Yellow Transparent Apple
Malus domestica ‘White Transparent’
It’s been said that Yellow Transparent makes the ultimate applesauce. Its yellow flesh is super sweet and juicy. You probably won’t even need to sweeten it up!