Cider Baked Apples

cider baked apples

This post is sponsored by Weight Watchers Canada. Find out more about the WW Freestyle program, which encourages the freedom to eat the foods you love while nudging you towards healthier choices using the SmartPoints system. As always, all ideas and opinions expressed here are my own.

Apple season is in full swing here. We’ve gone picking once already, and I suspect we’ll find our way to the orchards at least once more in the next couple of weeks to get our fill of Northern Spy, Ambrosia, Honeycrisp, Mutsu…you name it! Pulling a wagon through rows of trees and searching for perfectly crisp apples is truly one of my favorite annual activities.

While there’s always room for apple pies, galettes, cakes, and butters after these orchard runs, sometimes I crave something a little simpler but no less cozy. Enter these cider-baked apples. They make a lovely light dessert, but are healthful enough for breakfast — perhaps with a bit of yogurt and honey. You can also make them ahead of time, refrigerate, and gently rewarm in the microwave or low oven before serving.

hannah with apples

cider baked apples before bake

cider baked apples on plate

Cider Baked Apples

Serves 6-8 as a side

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs baking apples, washed (about 8 small apples)
  • 2 c apple cider
  • 1 cinnamon stick (feel free to add other favorite mulling spices!)

For the filling:

  • 60g raisins, finely chopped
  • 60g pecans, finely chopped
  • 60g unsalted butter, cubed at room temperature
  • 45g brown sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Juice of half a lemon

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 375F with a rack in the middle.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the cider and cinnamon stick to a simmer over medium heat. Turn off the heat, cover, and allow to steep while you prepare the apples.
  3. Combine the raisins, pecans, brown sugar, and salt in a small bowl. Add the cubed butter and rub it into the mixture to incorporate.
  4. Juice the lemon into a small bowl.
  5. Cut the tops off the apples and place the top into the lemon juice to keep from browning (keep track of which top goes with which apple for best presentation). Using a small spoon or knife, scoop out the core of the apples, leaving the bottoms intact so the filling won’t seep out. Stuff the apples with the filling mixture and place the tops back on.
  6. Place the stuffed apples into a baking pan just large enough to fit them snugly — an 8×8 pan worked for me, but will depend on the number and size of your apples. Pour the cider and cinnamon stick into the bottom of the pan.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven until apples are tender but not falling apart. The time can vary wildly depending on the size of your apples, but I’d start checking around the 30 minute mark (my smallish ones took about 40). If you’d like, baste the apples with the cider a couple of times during baking.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature. You can also make these ahead and refrigerate them, and reheat before serving.

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