These Copycat Cracker Barrel’s Fried Apples are the most delicious dessert ever! This easy southern recipe combines juicy apples with cinnamon, apple juice, nutmeg and a hint of sugar for the perfect copycat recipe. This is comfort food at its best!
Why You Will Love Cracker Barrel’s Fried Apples
- EASY – With just a couple of easy, pantry staples, you can whip up this delicious dessert in no time! Now you don’t have to drive all the way to the restaurant every time you have a craving.
- A GREAT WAY TO USE APPLES – We always have some spare apples laying around, especially during the Fall. This is a great (and tasty) way to use them up!
- FULL OF FALL FLAVORS – Apples, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice combine to make your kitchen smell like absolute heaven!
How To Make Cracker Barrel’s Fried Apples
I love Cracker Barrel fried apples. I think it is my favorite thing on the entire menu. They have mastered this southern staple over the years and I just had to make my own recipe to enjoy at home. Fried apples are the perfect thing to make in the fall after apple picking with the family or for a delicious Thanksgiving side dish. It has become somewhat of a tradition in our home. My kids love helping me cut the apples and stirring the mixture together.
For step-by-step instructions, check out the printable recipe card below. But here is what you’ll need to get started:
- APPLES – Cores removed and sliced into 1/2″ -3/4 inch wedges. For info on what the best apples are, read below! You can peel them or leave the skin on, it’s all your preference. I leave mine on. Most of the health benefits of apples are in their skin. It also helps them hold their shape while cooking. I simply wash my apples and then use an apple corer/slicer. I will then cut each of those slices 2-3 times to make the perfect sized apple slices for this recipe.
- APPLE JUICE – To reduce some sugar, you can use Light Apple Juice if you’d like. This gives the dish a boost of apple flavor. And, just like lemon juice, the juice helps to keep the apples from browning. You an also substitute for apple cider if you’d like!
- WHITE SUGAR – We use 4 tablespoon of sugar. If you’d like, you can do 2 tbsp of white sugar and 2 tbsp of brown sugar.
- CORNSTARCH – Helps to thicken up the sauce.
- SPICES – We use a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. If you don’t have any or all of these, you can just use Apple Pie Spice or Pumpkin Pie Spice too!
What Type of Apples Work Best for Fried Apples?
You could use a variety of different types of apples in this dish but Cracker Barrel has used Golden Delicious apples in its recipe for years so that is what we use too. If you don’t have Gold Delicious you could try a Granny Smith, Gala or any variety that will keep its shape when cooked for awhile.
I have also been asked if I keep the peel on my apples, I sure do!
Can You Make Fried Apples In A Slow Cooker?
While we do love making these in a really large skillet, it is really simple to make this fried apple recipe in your slow cooker. Just add your apples, sprinkle with the cornstarch and stir. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the apples. Mix well and then cook on high for 2 hours.
Can You Make Fried Apples In A Pressure Cooker?
For pressure cookers, I would recommend the pot-in-pot method of cooking. Place a cup of water in your pot, place your trivet, and then use a pressure cooker-friendly dish. Combine all ingredients in a medium sized bowl and place in your dish. Cover with foil and place on the trivet. Cook over high pressure for 5 minutes allowing for a natural release before enjoying.
How to Can Fried Apples
So there is a little debate about canning fried apples. Our recipe doesn’t include oil and we leave the apple peel intact, so while I haven’t personally tried canning these fried apples, I think it would be safe to do so. It has been advised not to completely cook the apples slices through when you are canning and add more apple juice to the recipe to make extra liquid.
For a full tutorial on how to can apple slices, I enjoy this one from Healthy Canning.
Storage And Freezing
It’s best to keep them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay good for up to 5 days. There are TONS of things you can do with your leftover Fried Apples, from putting them on a pork chop to adding a fun topping for pancakes.
Let them cool after cooking and, again put them in an airtight container. They should be good in your freezer for 3-5 months. Thaw out in your fridge and warm up on your stovetop in a saucepan.
Notes, Tips and FAQs
- HOW TO SERVE FRIED APPLES – This dish is best served fresh and hot. It can be served as a side dish or a dessert. As a side dish, you may want to slightly reduce the sugar you add. As a dessert, we recommend that you top them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
- OTHER TOPPINGS – Top with whipped cream, walnuts, pecans, caramel sauce or cinnamon.
- WHY ARE MY FRIED APPLES TO RUNNY? – If the sauce of your Fried Apples is too thin, you can thicken it up with a Cornstarch Slurry (equal parts water and cornstarch). Just mix it in until you achieve the desired thickness.
We hope you enjoy this Copycat Cracker Barrel’s Fried Apple Recipe. We’d love to hear how it turned out in the comment section! Happy Eating!
FOR MORE EASY APPLE DESSERT RECIPES, CHECK OUT:
- CARAMEL APPLE SALAD
- CROCKPOT APPLE DUMP CAKE
- APPLE OATMEAL COOKIES
- APPLE CINNAMON CUPCAKES WITH BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
- BISQUICK APPLE COBBLER
- APPLE PIE COOKIES
- BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP
- APPLE PIE CAKE
- APPLE PIE COOKIES
- APPLE CINNAMON PANCAKES
- APPLE DAPPLE CAKE
- APPLE BANANA BREAD
Cracker Barrel Fried Apples
- 4 large golden delicious apples core removed and sliced
- 2-1/2 cups apple juice divided
- 4 tablespoons white sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- Core and cut apple into slices about an inch thick.
- Add apples and 2 cups juice into a skillet. Heat on medium high for 20-25 minutes or until apples are tender but not mushy. Remove apples from pan and set aside.
- In a separate bowl, add remaining 1/2 cup apple juice, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
- Whisk well and pour into skilled. Heat on medium high until bubbling and thick, whisking frequently.
- Return apples to pan and mix well. Serve immediately
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Comments & Reviews
I made this and was I supposed to drain the apple juice that was left in the skillet before I add the mixture of spices?
No, the juice becomes part of the sauce.
Can you canned after they are cooked?
I haven’t tried, we always eat them up, but I don’t see why not!
if you know how to can, then yes. Don’t try to can if you aren’t knowledgeable because food poisoning and wasted foods is terrible. If you know how, I bet that would turn out great. If nothing else you might end up with a delicious applesauce in there eventually.
I think I would like to add a tiny bit of cloves to mine. I like cloves but I know not everyone does, though in the past cloves were a very very popular flavor in candy and everything.
Randy A says
Actually this was really good. Even at a 1/4 tsp, the allspice nearly over powered the dish so I would recommend unless you really like it, use it sparingly. The family commented on it so it wasn’t just me. I almost made the same mistake of draining the apple juice but mentioned in a comment above, but knew instinctively a half cup would not be nearly enough and would be a gooey mess. I was completely out, so good thing I hesitated. Even still water would have worked too for getting the right consistency. Overall, this is a really great copycat side dish. Thank you for sharing!
Thank you for sharing your experience. I am so happy your family enjoyed it!
Connie Reed says
Love this. I used less cornstarch the 2nd time.
Seemed too pasty. Also just used apple pie spice, 2 teaspoons. Yummy.
I’m so glad you enjoyed it, that you for sharing!
Vickie Brown says
How long would you water bath these if you can them?
Hello. I’m sorry, but I know absolutely NOTHING about canning, and wouldn’t feel comfortable giving advice on that!
Grammy Ruth says
My daughter made this and it was like being at the Cracker Barrel. I just got thru making 3 x’s the amount to give and keep for a dinner party.