A Complete Guide to Fall Apples - everything you need to know about the different types of apples you'll find

Whether you’re at an orchard, a farmer’s market, or the grocery store, come fall, you can’t miss the abundance of apples. Apples are synonymous with cooler weather – dare we say even more so than pumpkins (please, don’t send us hate mail!)? Today’s apples have been cultivated to have appealing shape, color, and taste, and also to be resistant to pests and weather. Therefore, while you may think all apples look the same, their flavors and uses vary from type to type.

But, which apples are better for apple sauce? What types of apples are best eaten straight off the tree? Below is a comprehensive list with pictures and descriptions of the most common apples you may find at the store or your nearby farm. Try a mix of sweet and tart — like Cortlands and Fujis — in your next apple pie for a complexity of flavor, or use Granny Smith apples in savory dishes like stuffed pork chops. For more than enough ideas of what to do with all them apples, here is our list of forty-four creative apple recipes to hold you over all season long.

 

Braeburn Apple

(Image via VeganBaking.net)

Type: Braeburn

Season: Early to mid October

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), Raw (salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Firm, sweet

Cortland Apple

(Image via Mike Timberlake)

Type: Cortland

Season: Mid to late September

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Juicy, keeps well, soft, sweet, tart

Mutsu Apple (Also Known As Crispin Apple)

(Image via Bulk Natural Foods)

Type: Crispin (also known as Mutsu)

Season: Late September to early October

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Firm, sweet, rich

Empire Apple

(Image via Nancy’s Garden)

Type: Empire

Season: End of August to end of September

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts)

Characteristics: Crisp, keeps well, sweet, tart

Fuji Apple

(Image via kimubert)

Type: Fuji

Season: Mid to late October

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Crisp, intensely sweet, keeps well

Gala Apple

(Image via spablab)

Type: Gala

Season: Mid-August to early September

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Does not keep well, mild sweetness, thin-skinned

Golden Delicious Apple

(Image via Selbe B)

Type: Golden Delicious

Season: Early to late September

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Flavors: Firm, rich flavor when cooked, thin-skinned

Granny Smith Apple

(Image via arsheffield)

Type: Granny Smith

Season: Mid to late October

Best Eaten: Cooked (sweet or savory dishes), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Crisp, sweeter when cooked, very tart when raw

Macoun Apple

(Image via pamwagg)

Type: Macoun

Season: Mid to late October

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Juicy, sweet, tart

McIntosh Apple

(Image via Jon Fingas)

Type: McIntosh

Season: September

Best Eaten: Cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Mild, soft, sweet

Pink Lady Apple

(Image via Stemilt)

Type: Pink Lady

Season: Mid to late October

Best Eaten: Baked (desserts), cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (cider, salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Crisp, very sweet, tart

Red Delicious Apple

(Image via Mr. Jack’s Farm)

Type: Red Delicious

Season: Mid to late September

Best Eaten: Cooked (apple butter, apple sauce), raw (salads, sandwiches)

Characteristics: Does not keep well, juicy, mild, soft, thin-skinned