Granny Smith apples are one of the most deliciously versatile apples the world have ever known! Kids love them fresh out of hand (Not to mention covered in caramel candy) while chefs and bakers love their citrus tart flavor, which is ideal for a wide variety of recipes. They are not only tasty but they are quite the social apple. According to our research, there are more people tweeting about Granny Smiths than any other variety!
Granny Smith apples were discovered as a chance seedling by Maria Ann Smith in the 1860s. Smith discovered the seedling in a compost pile on her orchard in Australia. The exact parentage of Granny Smith apples is unknown, but it is believed to be a relative of the French crab apple––the variety that Smith was growing in the area where she found the seedling. The seedling bore apples that she eventually took to market. Granny Smith apples were first introduced commercially to the United Kingdom in the 1930s, but they weren’t introduced to the United States market until Washington growers began commercially selling them in the 1960s. Our partner Superfresh Growers produces their Granny Smiths in the Wenatchee and Yakima regions of eastern Washington.
This medium to large-sized variety is green when growing and transforms to shades of red, pink, and yellow, along with their vibrant green hue when ripe. The round, thick-skinned apples are often speckled with faint white lenticels. Their flesh is bright white with a tart, acidic, yet sweet flavor and a crisp texture. Granny Smith apples are firm, with strong tartness resembling a lemon. Many believe they even flaunt lime and grapefruit elements.
The juicy variety with bold sweet and sour bursts is an all-purpose apple. They are slow to brown when cut, making them great for eating fresh, crisp, and cold. You can add diced Granny Smith apples to salads and salsas, or slice them up and serve them on a cheese board or fruit platter. Slice Granny Smith to layer with ham and brie in a sandwich on crusty baguette bread. Their high acidity and ability to hold their shape and zesty flavor when cooked makes them a perfect choice for baking into sweet or savory pies, tarts, or meat pastries. Here is a great recipe for a delicious fruit and grain breakfast salad. They can also be poached or frozen. Their sweet-tart flavor is a great addition to soups, smoothies and sauces.
Sprinkle chopped Granny Smith apple over a bowl of cheddar soup, or incorporate the apples into the base of the soup by making this cheddar soup with Granny Smith apples. The mouth-watering apple, with its crisp, tangy flavors can be added to savory bread stuffing, risotto or potato pancakes, and can even be made into applesauce.
The tang of this apple contrasts well with slightly sweet foods such as winter squash or honey-baked ham. The tartness of this apple pairs well with rich seafood, such as crabmeat or shrimp. Another way to prepare Granny Apples is to cube the apples and toss them with cubed acorn squash and olive oil, then roast them and serve as a side dish to pork chops or roasted chicken.
Health and Nutrition
Granny Smiths just like all other apple varieties are good for you heart, teeth and overall health. According to a recent study eating an apple or two a day may reduce heart disease risk factors. The study showed a 40% reduction in blood oxidation of low density lipoprotein LDL otherwise known as “bad cholesterol” and a reduction in the amount of plaque and inflammation in artery walls. Other health benefits of apples includes aiding in the reduction of blood sugars, appetite control, protection against cancers and safeguarding of the lungs.
Granny Smith Kale Smoothie
This lovely bright green smoothie is super nutritious thanks to the Granny Smith apple and kale. It’s also super sweet tasting without any refined sugar. It’s a win-win! And did we mention it is the perfect recipe for your Healthy St. Patrick’s Day celebrations! Throw a banana in the freezer the night before for a dreamy cool breakfast treat.
- ¾ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 Granny Smith Apple (unpeeled) cored and quartered
- 2 large Lacinato (aka Dino) kale leaves with stems removed
- 1 frozen banana – If you don’t have time to freeze a banana, toss a few ice cubes in with a fresh banana.
- A few shakes of cinnamon
- Garnish with fresh pomegranate seeds
- In a powerful blender combine almond milk, banana, apple, kale, and a few shake of cinnamon. Blend at high speed until super smooth. Pour into glasses and garnish with pomegranate seeds.
Granny Smith Snickers Salad Recipe
Ok let’s get one thing straight. We are not recommending you replace your breakfast cereal with this delicious treat. We know it’s tempting, but trust us, your spin class instructor will smell the Snickers on your breath and punish you with extra hills!
So when is this recipe approved for use? How about any time after 12 p.m.? (Not enforced during holidays and Sunday brunch)
- 6 Snickers® Candy Bars
- 4 Granny Smith Apples
- 1 16oz Cool Whip tub (room temp)
- ½ cup milk
- 1 Packet Instant Pudding Mix
- Caramel Topping (usually found in the ice cream aisle)
- Add ½ cup milk, Instant pudding mix and cool whip then whisk until powder is combined
- Core and dice apples into bite size pieces
- Chop Snickers to the same size as apples pieces
- Add apples and Snicker chunks to pudding mixture
- (put some Snickers pieces aside for topping)
- Refrigerate for at least 1 hour
- Drizzle caramel topping and sprinkle remaining Snicker on top before serving
Apples truly live up to their famous adage about keeping the doctor away!