I hope you were able to read my blog post yesterday on the Ten Reasons to Get Your Apple a Day, which provides research and information on the multitude of health benefits of apples. For the first time since launching this blog, I’m following up with a two-part series on apples because they are so healthy, delicious and versatile. You already know why you should eat apples, but I’m going to show you five fun ways to eat an apple a day without getting bored!
It was fun for me to come up with these apple recipes, because I had 12 pounds of apples at my disposal. I took the kids to Windy Hill Apple Orchard on Sunday to pick our own apples and they had so much fun my son even said “This is the best day of my life!” Um….We just got back from a trip to Disney, so I was a little surprised by his enthusiasm. I’m glad he had fun, but I could have saved a lot of money on Disney and just taken him to the orchard instead.
It was fun for the kids because they got to pick their own apples off of the tree, feed the chickens, drink homemade apple cider and even play with baby pigs running around the orchard. Picking your own fruit not only is a great learning experience for kids to understand where their food really comes from, but it also helps support local farms. You also know that your fruit is fresh and hasn’t been sitting in a shipment truck for weeks. Which I guess makes me a locavore, which basically just means that I try to eat locally grown fruits and vegetables as much as possible. If you are interested in how others are embracing the locavore lifestyle, check out the Diary of a Locavore blog.
To find a local apple orchard, visit Pick Your Own. This site not only lists pick your own farms across the country, but also tells you when fruits are in season, provides tips on home canning and great recipes.
Speaking of recipes, I’ve got five great apple recipes for you. This weekend go out and pick your own apples at your local orchard and give one of these recipes a try. Let me know how you like it and share your recipes and tips here. I look forward to hearing from you!
Not very creative, I know, but delicious! I made this apple crisp yesterday, using an old family favorite, but lightened up. You will see that there is no butter or oil in this recipe. With healthy apples, fiber filled oats and heart-healthy walnuts, this dessert can actually be enjoyed as a healthy breakfast also!
Stacy’s light apple crisp
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp whole wheat flour
- ½ cup old fashioned oats
- 2 Tbsp sugar-free applesauce
- 5 apples (peeled, cored and sliced)
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon (divided)
- ½ tsp nutmeg (divided)
Mix the first 4 ingredients and 1 tsp of cinnamon and ¼ tsp nutmeg in a small bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl toss the apple slices with the sugar, lemon juice, 1 tsp cinnamon and ¼ tsp nutmeg. Spray non-fat cooking spray in a 2-qt. baking dish and add the apples. Top with oat mixture. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.
- 1 1/3 cups peeled, cored, and diced apple
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoons brown sugar Splenda
- 2 teaspoons apricot preserves (sugar-free will also work)
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
- 5 (6-inch) flour tortillas
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- Combine all the dip ingredients in a bowl, then cover and refrigerate the mixture until chilled.
- Brush the tortillas with butter, then cut them into wedges.
- Arrange the wedges on a greased baking sheet, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, and bake at 350º F until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Let them cool before serving. Serves 4 to 6.
- 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup sugar or Splenda
- 1 cup peeled, shredded apple
- 1/4 cup sugar-free applesauce
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup skim milk
- 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans
Mix the first 6 ingredients together in a bowl, then add all the other ingredients and stir unil combined. Spoon batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
- Peanut Butter
Cut the apple into slices and simply make little apple “sandwiches” by spreading peanut butter on an apple slice and top with another apple. Place the carrot strip down the middle and the apple slices on either side of the carrot to form a butterfly shape. Voila! A healthy and cute afterschool snack!
Healthy Waldorf Salad
- 2 Apples (chopped)
- 1 Tbsp raisins
- ½ cup walnuts
- ½ cup cubed celery
- 1 Tbsp orange juice
- 2/3 cup nonfat greek yogurt
- 1 Tbsp honey
Combine apples, raisins, walnuts and celery then drizzle with the orange juice. Toss with the greek yogurt and honey to add sweetness. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.