Apple Varieties and Uses in Saratoga

Saratoga Springs may be known first and foremost for the horses, but the locally grown apples are a close second. Before you go apple picking or head to the farmers market for fresh Saratoga apples, you should know the apple basics. With so many varieties on the trees and in the market, you might want to check out what type of apple you need and which ones are in season.

three different colored apples

Please note that our selections below are not definitive, but rather represent general impressions of the apple varieties, flavors, and uses. You may certainly snack on a baking apple and vice-versa. Experiment with your favorites and discover just how versatile this fruit really is!

Apple Guide Key

Flavors

smiley= Sweet
asterisk icon= Tart
sweet tart= Sweet/Tart
star = Mild

Uses

snack= Snack
fire icon= Baking
drink icon= Cider
applesauce icon= Applesauce

Apple Variety

Season Ripe

Flavor

Best Use

Tips and Tricks

Acey Mac
Sept-June
smiley
snack
The "Mac" in the name indicates that these apples are related to McIntosh!
Autumn Crisp
Sept-Dec
asterisk
snack
These apples have tons of Vitamin C, so one a day really might keep the doctor away!
Braeburn
Oct-April
sweet tart
applesauce icon
These apples have a unique bi-colored skin.
Cameo
Late Oct-April
asterisk
snack
Cameo apples are more popular on the West Coast, but are gaining recognition in NY too!
Cortland
Sept-April
smiley
drink icon
Cortlands don't brown as quickly as other varieties, so they are great sliced.
Crispin
Oct-Sept
asterisk
fire icon
This apple is known to be extra juicy and refreshing.
Empire
Sept-Aug
sweet tart
applesauce icon
Despite their big sounding name, Empire apples are quite small, making them great for kids.
Fortune
Oct-June
star
fire icon
Fortune apples bake well, especially when mixed with sugary sweet varieties.
Fuji
Oct-June
smiley
applesauce icon
When baking or making applesauce, you don't need to add much sugar because Fujis are very sweet.
Gala
Sept-June
star
snack
Gala apples have a super mellow taste, great for picky eaters but bad for baking.
Ginger Gold
Aug-Nov
smiley
snack
Ginger Golds are a great snack because the skin and flesh are soft and they aren't overly juicy.
Golden Delicious
Sept-June
smiley
fire icon
Golden Delicious apples actually are not closely related to Red Delicious apples.
Granny Smith
All Year
asterisk
fire icon
These super sour apples are great for baking because their flesh holds up in the heat. Just be sure to mix them with a sweet variety to add a complexity of flavor to your goods.
Honeycrisp
Sept-Feb
smiley
fire icon
Honeycrisp apples are fairly young; farmers have been growing them for just about 20 years.
Idared
Oct-Aug
sweet tart
applesauce icon
If you leave Idared skins on while you make applesauce, your final result will be a lovely pink sauce.
Jonagold
Oct-May
smiley
fire icon
Jonagold, as indicated by its name, is a cross between the Golden Delicious and Jonathan varieties.
Macoun
Oct-Nov
smiley
drink icon
You have to get Macouns quick! They're only good for 2 months.
McIntosh
Sept-June
smiley
snack
Apple employee Jef Raskin named his computer after the McIntosh, his favorite apple variety.
Paula Red
Late Aug-Oct
asterisk
applesauce icon
Paula Reds are great for applesauce, but they make a terrible pie. The flesh of a Paula Red is too soft and mealy to hold up in the heat of the oven.
Red Delicious
Oct-Sept
star
snack
Red Delicious apples have a long shelf life, making them ideal for decoration. Just beware, this variety looks beautiful even after its flavor has diminished.
Red Rome
Oct-Sept
star
fire icon
When baking, try mixing this tart apple with a sweeter variety, like Jonagolds, to get a balance of sour and sweet.

Check out the Saratoga Farmers Market this fall »

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