12 of the Best Apple Varieties and How to Use Them

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Did you ever think of all the apple varieties available in today’s market? This helpful guide will reveal 12 of the best apple varieties and how to use them.

red apple in a reuseable bag
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Apples hold much value in our culture today.  The fruit serves as a symbol of healthy eating, the autumn season, and the start of school. “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is an adage that is familiar to many Americans. 

When people think about healthy eating, it is not uncommon for an apple to come to mind. Apples are a good source of fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and antioxidants. In 2017, the United States’ fresh apple consumption amounted to 10lbs per person (source).

Apples don’t fall too far from their tree, Malus domestica (source)

There are 7,500 apple varieties grown around the world today (source).

Coming in many different shades, shapes, colors, and sizes, apples are amongst  the most diverse fruits. They are typically found in shades of red, green, and yellow or some combination of the three. Apples also vary in aroma, acidity, sugar content, and texture (source). See the list of twelve apple varieties below.

Apple Varieties

Top 12 Apple Varieties and How to Use Them

apple varieties guide to cooking it

Cooking with Apples

As a general rule of thumb, soft apples are best for making applesauce and firm apples are best for baking pies (source).

slice of apple pie on plate

Applesauce apples: Gravenstein, Gala, McIntosh, Fuji, Cortland, Pippin, Elstar (source)

Pie apples: Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Golden Delicious, Rhode Island Greening (source).

Food Made with Apples


Applesauce is made by cooking cored and peeled or unpeeled apples.   McIntosh, Fuji, and Gala apple varieties make good applesauce (source)

applesauce in a jar

You can add spices, sugar, pure maple syrup and many other ingredients you may already have at home.

Apple Powder

Apple powder comes from pulverizing dried apples. 

Rich in fiber, antioxidants, Vitamin C, and potassium, the powder can easily add nutrition to your foods (source).

It goes well in smoothies, drinks, hot cereals, and baked goods(source).

Apple powder is stored long-term without refrigeration. Some varieties can last for up to 2 years (source). This would be an important item to have for emergency food storage.

Apple Chips

Made by roasting thin slices of apples at a low temperature for several hours. They can also be made quickly in an air fryer.

apple chips cooked in an airfyer

Apple chips make a crunchy, nutritious snack, or a salad topping. 

Freeze-Dried Apples

Sliced apples are frozen and placed into a vacuum (source). The frozen water in the apples turns to vapor, and the apples are freeze-dried (source).

Some brands have a shelf life of up to 25 years, making these quick snacks good for long-term food storage.

Apple Wine

Apples can be crushed or chopped (cores included) and fermented with yeast to make apple wine or vinegar (source).

glass of apple wine

Bottom Line:

Apples are one of the most popular fruits in the world today. They are full of good nutrition and can accompany a wide variety of recipes.  You can bite into almost any apple variety and appreciate the diversity of its texture and flavor.

 Whether they are fresh, powdered, or dried, apples can be incorporated into many dishes while keeping good nutrition. This also allows them to work well for long-term food storage.

apple varieties blog graphic with apple oatmeal and apple pie


  • Dr. Lisa Hugh DHA MSHS RD LDN CLT

    Dr. Lisa Hugh is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Leap Therapist. She is a Doctor of Healthcare Administration and has a Master's of Science in Healthcare Administration. As a Food Sensitivity Expert, her passion is helping people with complex medical and nutrition needs find food and groceries that are safe and enjoyable. Lisa enjoys helping clients in her private practice.

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