Delicious and Versatile Recipes That Showcase Fall's Finest Apples

Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions
Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Fall is without a doubt the most fun cooking time of year. With tailgates to plan and the big Thanksgiving feast right around the corner, we're always looking for ways to switch up our go-to seasonal food items. Apples galore mean a world of possibility for seasonal recipes. Go beyond your typical apple pie or apple cobbler recipe and surprise your guests with irresistible savory apple recipes for fall like an Apple, Celery and Romaine Salad at your next fall potluck.

Switch up your tailgate recipes by adding Chicken Sausage with Fennel and Apples to the menu. From salads to savory apple dinner recipes to savory apple side dish recipes, and even a few breakfast bakes tucked in, we've rounded up our best savory apple recipes for you to enjoy. There are just a couple here that lean a little sweet. Celebrate the season with these recipes.

01 of 20

Apple-Cranberry Salad

apple cranberry salad
Photographer: Isaac Nunn, Prop Stylist: Julia Bayless, Food Stylist: Ruth Blackburn

Recipe: Apple-Cranberry Salad

This mix of beautiful greens keeps company with apples and cranberries to deliver a crowd pleasing side. Honeycrisp apples bring the sweetness, feta cheese adds a tangy bite, and pistachios offer a satisfying crunch.

The vinaigrette—made with Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, orange juice, and a bit of sorghum syrup—delivers a light, well-balanced finish. It's always so satisfying to create a vinaigrette that can be used in other salad recipes.

02 of 20

Apple Cinnamon Bread

apple cinnamon bread
Photographer: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Melissa Gray Prop Stylist: Christina Daley

Recipe: Apple Cinnamon Bread

If there is anything that fills the kitchen with a comforting aroma more than an apple and cinnamon pie, it is a loaf of fresh homemade yeast bread. Why not combine the two? This recipe makes two loaves so you can enjoy one loaf, freeze the other, or give it as a food gift.

Make sure that you microwave your apples before swirling them into the dough mixture. The microwave makes them just pliable enough to be easily incorporated into the bread. What about the savory element? Schmear on your favorite cream cheese for a savory-sweet breakfast bread.

03 of 20

Baked Oatmeal with Apple, Cranberries, and Pecans

Baked Oatmeal with Apple, Cranberries, and Pecans
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Kathleen Varner; Food Styling: Maggie Ruggiero

Recipe: Baked Oatmeal with Apple, Cranberries, and Pecans

We can't think of a better way to start a fall morning than with a seasonal oatmeal bake. Thanks to a little meal prep on Sunday afternoon, you can enjoy this nutritious breakfast all week long.

This make-ahead oatmeal loaded with spices, fruits, and nuts will make any morning sweeter. Assemble it the night before and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, pop it in the oven and breakfast is served. Choose a firm, sweet apple (such as a Fuji or Honeycrisp) that will retain its shape and a little texture after being baked.

04 of 20

Beet, Fennel, and Apple Salad

Beet, Fennel, and Apple Salad
Photo: Hector Manuel Sanchez; Prop Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller; Food Styling: William Smith

Recipe: Beet, Fennel, and Apple Salad

No matter the time of year, the best salads start with seasonal ingredients. When shopping for your bounty, look for beets that are firm with smooth skin. This bright and fresh first course will set the tone for the rest of the dinner. Red-and-white-striped Chioggia beets (also called candy cane beets) make a festive presentation, but if you can't find them, use red or golden beets. When choosing beets, whether you purchase the Chioggia or the more common red or golden ones, look for beets that are firm with smooth skins.

05 of 20

Apple and Goat Cheese Salad with Candied Pecans

Apple and Goat Cheese Salad with Candied Pecans
Sheri Giblin

Recipe: Apple and Goat Cheese Salad with Candied Pecans

This salad will take everything that you think you know about arugula or kale and turn it on its head. By the time you're done mixing the vinaigrette and incorporating the other seasonal ingredients, your winter-green base will be tender with a satisfying crunch from the apples and candied pecans.

We used Granny Smith apples, but your favorite variety will work also. Almost two full cups of creamy goat cheese makes a savory addition to this hearty salad. The greens are dressed with a vinaigrette of extra-virgin olive oil, fresh lemon juice, salt, orange zest, and ground allspice.

06 of 20

Apple Cinnamon Pancakes

apple cinnamon pancakes
Photographer: Antonis Achilleos, Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipes: Apple Cinnamon Pancakes

You could turn this recipe into a whole adventure by visiting your favorite apple orchard to pick Granny Smith apples for your Sunday batch of flapjacks too. The apple compote compliments the pancakes with cinnamon flavor and the maple syrup gives them the sticky sweetness that we already love on pancakes.

If you're expecting company, you can easily increase the measurements for this recipe, and you could even make the compote ahead of time. Just heat it right before serving. Looking to add a bit of crunch? Consider topping with toasted walnuts or pecans.

07 of 20

Roasted Chicken with Apples and Herbs

Roasted Chicken with Apples and Herbs
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Roasted Chicken with Apples and Herbs

Who says a roast chicken is just reserved for the holidays? Start celebrating early and use up those leftover apples from the apple orchard with this recipe. This golden-skinned bird is roasted with apples and shallots, which make a beautiful, no-effort garnish for the serving platter.

After stuffing the cavity, you must tuck the wings under and tie the legs together. This keeps the bird nice and compact and allows for even cooking, browning, and overall goodness of the roasted chicken. If you do not tuck and tie, you run the risk of an unevenly cooked chicken.

08 of 20

Roast Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Apples

Roast Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Apples
Iain Bagwell; Prop Stylist: Heather Chadduck; Food Stylist: Ana Kelly

Recipe: Roast Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Apples

This go-to chicken recipe will feed a crowd for a festive fall get-together. The sweet potatoes and apples pair nicely with the bird, with complementary flavors in every bite. This recipe is another example of how easy putting together a roast chicken can be.

The endless variety of what you can cook alongside a roasted bird will have you in Sunday dinners indefinitely. For a classic approach to roasting, create a rack using carrot sticks and celery ribs, then prop the chicken on top of the "vegetable rack."

09 of 20

Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions

Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions
Becky Luigart Stayner

Recipe: Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions

We love it when an impressive dish is also a one-pan-wonder. Warm up on a chilly fall evening with a plate of hearty pork chops and apples. Elegant and easy, this hearty dish comes with a side and a sauce all-in-one. Be sure to brown the chops well so they'll give the mustardy pan sauce deep flavor.

This has "comfort food" written all over it, and the presentation turns a typical weeknight dinner into a special occasion. Grab your favorite Pinot Noir and elevate your palate in your own kitchen. You'll be making this more than once.

10 of 20

Chicken Sausage with Fennel and Apples

Chicken Sausage with Fennel and Apples
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Chicken Sausage with Fennel and Apples

If your family loves peppers and onions with sausage, they'll love this delicious variation using fennel, apples and Italian chicken sausage links tossed with tangy apple cider vinegar. Fennel is crisp and slightly sweet and caramelizes beautifully when roasted in the oven.

This recipe may appear intimidating at first glance, but with a few flavorful ingredients and just one sheet pan, you'll have this on the table in 50 minutes.

11 of 20

Brussels Sprout Slaw with Apples and Pecans

Brussels Sprout Slaw with Apples and Pecans
Greg DuPree

Recipe: Brussels Sprout Slaw with Apples and Pecans

There are so many things to love in this slaw. Shaved brussels sprouts, sweet Honeycrisp apples, tangy parmesan cheese, and toasted pecans make this slaw hearty enough to enjoy on its own or try it paired with your favorite protein.

The dressing includes a touch of honey for sweetness that can be adjusted depending on the flavor of your sprouts. Brussels sprouts bought in the winter, when they are in season, may be naturally sweeter. A mandoline or very sharp knife will give you the thinnest Brussels sprouts.

12 of 20

Cinnamon Apples

Warm Cinnamon Apples
Southern Living

Recipe: Cinnamon Apples

Warm cinnamon apples make almost any meal better. There's something incredibly cozy and comforting about the fall season, and this dish certainly fits that theme. Whether it's the fresh apples, flavorful cinnamon, or sweet sugar, you won't be able to resist a second and third serving.

The heated butter adds a level of richness that only Mama could achieve. The recipe calls for Macintosh apples, but you can substitute your favorite version of the fall fruit in this recipe. Who can turn down a bowl of warm cinnamon apples? Add a bit of vanilla ice cream, and we're sold.

13 of 20

Insant Pot Applesauce

instant pot apple sauce
Jennifer Causey

Recipe: Instant Pot Applesauce

Delicious enough to be apple butter, but with the texture of applesauce, this Instant Pot Applesauce is a must in your autumn arsenal. The recipe is cinnamon-y with a well-balanced blend of sweet and tart flavors that's made to be personalized. Looking for a little less sugar or spice? Simply adjust.

The Instant Pot continuously monitors the pressure and temperature to make adjustments if necessary to ensure food is cooked perfectly every time. The use of an Instant Pot accelerates preparation time and makes this appliance a beloved addition to anyone's kitchen.

14 of 20

Apple Bread

Apple Bread
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: Apple Bread

There are few breads that are as delicious and easy to make as this one. Moderately sweet and packed with small cubes of Granny Smith apple, our apple bread is a sliceable loaf that's easy to justify with a cup of coffee for breakfast. Both brown sugar and honey are incorporated into the batter, lending a mellow sweetness that compliments the hearty texture of the bread itself. Instead of a traditional butter-sugar mixture as the base of this loaf bread, we use applesauce and eggs as a healthier alternative.

15 of 20

Chocolate Hazelnut Apple Sandwiches

Chocolate Hazelnut Apple Sandwiches
Southern Living

Recipe: Chocolate Hazelnut Apple Sandwiches

For days when you feel like switching up the kids' regular snack time routine (or even your own routine) give these chocolate hazelnut apple sandwiches a try. It relies on a substantial amount of chocolate hazelnut spread to keep the apple slices stuck together and chocolate granola. Feel free to use chocolate granola in all the sandwiches if you'd like, but we chose to do half our sandwiches with the granola and half with chopped almonds for some variety in flavor. For the apples, we chose Red Delicious and Granny Smith, two apples with a very different flavor profile.

16 of 20

Applesauce Cake

Applesauce Cake
Micah Leal

Recipe: Applesauce Cake

We love a variety of sliceable cakes and we thought we'd pass along a recipe for one of our favorite cake loaves out there (we just thought we'd call it what it really is): Applesauce Cake. This recipe is incredibly easy to make, taking only 20 minutes of hands-on time.

A bite is similar in texture to pumpkin bread, but the flavor is unmistakably a mix of cinnamon, ginger, and molasses. The warmth of the cinnamon and ginger complement the syrupy sweetness of the apple, molasses, and brown sugar, making for a loaf cake that will convince you a piece of dessert is perfectly acceptable with your morning cup of coffee.

17 of 20

Apple Chips

Apple Chips
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: Apple Chips

A guilt-free snack that requires only two ingredients? We'll take that any day. The natural sugars in the apple's flesh melt and take on a liquid state, which accounts for the softness of the warm apple rings. However, these sugars recrystallize and harden as the apple chips cool, giving them a unique sweetness and crispness, making them all the more irresistible.

Imagine your kitchen filled with the scent of apples baked for two hours at a low temperature. Well worth the effort, these serve well on a charcuterie board, or can be one of those "always in the purse" kind of snacks that won't make you feel guilty, just satisfied.

18 of 20

Applesauce Muffins

Applesauce Muffins
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: Applesauce Muffins

Applesauce and Greek yogurt are used in this recipe instead of oil or butter, so these muffins are the ideal healthy seasonal breakfast treat. Brown sugar gives the muffins the deeper sweetness that comes from molasses, and a sprinkling of turbinado sugar on top before baking results in a delightfully crunchy and sweet surface.

Whether you're wanting a healthier baked good to grab on the go or you're simply craving the spices and flavors of autumn apple, this recipe is sure to satisfy those cravings without requiring too much of your time.

19 of 20

Turkey, Apple, and Brie Sandwich

Turkey, Apple, and Brie Sandwich
Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Lindsey Lower; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Turkey, Apple and Brie Sandwich

We love the flavor combination of crisp apple and nutty brie that come together in this sandwich. If you're watching the big game at home, you can prepare this quick and easy sandwich and serve them warm during half-time. Complete the meal with a flavorful, make-ahead potato salad.

We love the versatility of this sandwich. Choose different flavored apples, and test more then one kind of brie to get yourself on a tasting journey of what is best. Take this to-go by wrapping sandwiches individually in parchment paper and add them to your picnic basket.

20 of 20

Apple Butter Cinnamon Rolls

Apple Butter Cinnamon Rolls with Apple Cider Glaze
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Mary Clayton Carl Jones; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

Recipe: Apple Butter Cinnamon Rolls

There really isn't any butter in apple butter, it is simply a highly concentrated form of apple sauce produced by slow cooking apples to the point where the natural sugars caramelize. Add chopped toasted pecans to the filling and sprinkle over the glaze for extra taste and texture.

When you are expecting overnight guests or are hosting a brunch, make ahead recipes, such as these apple butter cinnamon rolls, are the way to go. Put these rolls together up to the point of the second rise, then freeze. Before serving, let them thaw overnight in the refrigerator, let rise, and bake.

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