If you are anything like me, you can easily let fruit get past it’s prime. I really try hard not to let that happen- I loathe wasting food. But every once in a while, something slips past me and has to be thrown out or into the compost pile. Apples are the worst in terms of waste in my house. I love apples and anything made with them. Inevitably, however, there is always one or two left in the bunch that goes soft before anyone has had a chance to eat it. So, I have discovered a few ways to utilize those destined-for-the-trash apples. I will never waste another apple again!
Freeze Apples- I’ve written a post about freezing apples in the past, and I still continue to do that. It has saved many apples that were otherwise going to waste. It is so easy, and you will always have apples ready to go for your recipes.
Dried Apples- Drying apples is very easy. You simply slice them very thinly and place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Place them in a 200 degree oven for several hours. These are very pretty and can be used for decorative purposes, or you can often re-hydrate them and use in recipes.
Make Ornaments- Once you have dried apples, they can be made into pretty ornaments for your Christmas tree. After they have cooled, string some raffia or jute string through the middle and hang on your tree. These are so pretty, especially for a rustic-style tree.
Potpourri- If you are crafty, use some of your dried apples in a potpourri mix. Even if you aren’t up to making potpourri yourself, add your dried apples to a store-bought potpourri mix. It will add such a fresh and pleasing scent to your home.
Apple Pie- One of the most obvious things to do with extra apples is to make apple pie. If you don’t have enough to make a pie, freeze them and make a pie once you have enough apples for the filling.
Apple Crisp- Apple crisp is one of my favorite apple desserts, even more so than apple pie. I think I like it so much because it doesn’t require making a crust. I use up many apples this way. Apple crisp makes for a quick dessert any night of the week. Serve it up with ice cream and you are all set.
Remove Excess Salt from a Recipe- I have done this so many times. I accidently added too much salt to a recipe. To remedy this problem, add a couple apple slices to the dish for a few minutes. They will soak up some of the salt flavor and save your recipe.
Make Applesauce- Making your own applesauce is very easy and tastes much better than store-bought. You can add your own flavors and spices, make it chunky or thin, and you can always have it on hand. Homemade applesauce is so yummy.
Apple Butter- Apple butter is something that I can remember from my childhood. I can recall my grandmother making and canning apple butter. It is so yummy on biscuits.
Soften Brown Sugar- Many times I will go to my pantry to get my brown sugar, only to find that my sugar has turned into a hard brick. Keep a couple slices of apple in with your brown sugar, and you will never have that problem again.
Apple Muffins- There’s not a thing wrong with muffins. We make muffins at least once a week. They are a great go-to breakfast or snack. Muffins are great to make if you only have one or two apples you want to use. You can add so many different ingredients to apple muffins to make them a nice, healthy treat.
Add to Oatmeal- Apples are a very healthy addition to your morning oatmeal. They add fiber and nutrients and turn your plain oatmeal into a powerhouse breakfast.
Instant Oatmeal Packets- If you dried your apples, you can add them to your make-your-own oatmeal packets. These are so yummy and an easy way to get extra fruit into your children’s diet.
Apple Cake- With Christmas approaching, nothing tastes better than apple cake. It is becoming a yearly tradition in my family to make an apple cake every holiday season. It’s also a yummy breakfast when you are in a hurry!
Apple Cider- One of my favorite fall treats is apple cider. You don’t even need a cider press. It is very easy to make, and it tastes wonderful while you’re decorating the Christmas tree or out looking at Christmas lights.
Apple Cider Vinegar- I’ll admit I’ve never tried to make apple cider vinegar, but I use it quite often. I have seen recipes for it and I plan to try this method to make it myself very soon.