When it comes to Southern Fried Apples, there's no reason to mess with a good thing. Butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon are all you need to turn sliced apples into a comfort food classic!
These skillet cinnamon apples come perfectly cooked and irresistibly cloaked in a warm and gooey, brown sugar-cinnamon syrup, and they're great for adding a sweet touch to any meal! In just 15 minutes, you've got an easy, double-duty side dish for both the breakfast and the dinner table!
You'll also love our Apple Cinnamon Muffins! Bookmark them for next time!
CRACKER BARREL'S SOUTHERN FRIED APPLES
Fried Apples have been a traditional Southern side dish for a long time, but if we're being honest, it was Cracker Barrel that introduced them to the masses.
HOW TO MAKE FRIED APPLES
This is the simplest way to make fried apples. No-fuss, no-frills, just a straight-forward deliciously easy process for getting them from the stovetop to the table fast!
- Cut the Apple Slices - The easiest way to cut uniform apple slices is to cut the apple into quarters around the core, but make sure you peel them first! Then, lay each apple quarter flat-side down and cut it into thick, ¼" slices.
- Add Butter and Apples To Pan - Melt the butter in a large frypan and add the sliced apples.
- Cook Until Fork-Tender - Cook the apples for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, just until they are fork-tender.
- Add Sugar and Cinnamon - Sprinkle in the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and stir to coat.
- Simmer - Once the sugar has melted, let it bubble, stirring occasionally. Be careful. This mixture will be very hot!
HOW DO I KNOW WHEN THE FRIED APPLES ARE READY?
Once the apples are fork-tender and the brown sugar syrup takes on a dark, amber-color the Fried Apples are ready.
Be sure you allow them to cool before digging in as the syrup will be very, very hot!
SHOULD THEY BE SOFT?
Fried Apples should be softened, but not a mushy kind of soft. They're meant to be al dente, which means the apples should still have a bit of bite to them when they come out of the skillet.
The easiest way to test for this (while they're coated in a blazing hot cinnamon-sugar mixture) is with a fork. As soon as they fork can easily pierce through the apple slices, they're done! And, keep in mind, they'll continue to soften up a bit as they cool!
- Butter | This recipe was developed with unsalted butter. However, if you only have salted butter, just omit the salt from the recipe entirely.
- Apples | Granny Smith is our number one pick for making fried apples, but there are tart, firm apples that will work as well. See below for different types of apples you can try out in this recipe!
- Brown Sugar | If you only have dark brown sugar, feel free to sub that in.
- Cinnamon and Salt
BEST APPLES FOR COOKING IN A SKILLET
Choose a crisp, tart apple variety that can take on the extra sweetness and hold its own when it comes to direct heat in the pan. Any of the following would work great in this recipe:
- Granny Smith
- Pink Lady
- Honey Crisp
WHAT TO SERVE WITH CINNAMON FRIED APPLES
In the South, Cinnamon Fried Apples are welcomed alongside any meal, any time of day, and they are no stranger to either the breakfast table or the dinner table.
If you're making Fried Apples, the sky is really the limit as to what can go alongside them...or underneath them (but we'll cover more on that below)!
You can serve a bowl of fried apples alongside pork roast, pork tenderloin, or pork chops! Note, to ensure other flavors don't muddy this classic combo, it's best to steer clear of fried or heavily seasoned pork recipes when serving fried apples.
USE CINNAMON APPLES ON TOP OF...
- Buttermilk Biscuits
- French Toast
- Ice Cream
You could also use these Fried Apples as a stuffing for crepes and top the whole shebang with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon!
CAN FRIED CINNAMON APPLES BE FROZEN?
Yes! Fried Apples will freeze and reheat wonderfully! To do this, store them sealed in an airtight, freezer-safe container. Avoid containers that are too large and allow for too much headspace between the top of the apples and the lid. This will promote freezer burn.
Use within three months for best results!
5 MORE APPLE RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE
The best recipe for Southern Fried Apples! Easy to make and ready in just 15 minutes. Serve these warm and gooey, brown sugar-cinnamon spiced apples for breakfast or dinner!
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 4 large Granny Smith apples peeled and sliced just over a ¼" thick
- ¾ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
Add the butter to a large frypan over medium heat and allow to melt. As soon as the butter has melted, add the apple slices in a single layer.
Allow to cook for about 8 minutes, stirring often, just until the apples have softened. Then, sprinkle in the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and stir to coat.
Allow the sugar to melt and bubble, about 4 minutes, stirring the apples occasionally.
Once the apples are fork-tender and the syrup has taken on a dark, amber-colored syrup-like consistency the Fried Apples are ready. Remove from the heat, allow to cool slightly, serve and enjoy!