When I first set out to make these battered apple rings, I had every intention of making them as healthy as possible. I wanted to bake them, to cook them like a pancake, to do who-knows-what with them, but I wanted to find a way to cook them without frying.
Things didn’t work out the way I wanted. Sure, you can bake the apple rings and you can cook them up like a pancake, but they just aren’t the same. They’re tasty, but really just like an apple-filled pancake. If I wanted apple pancakes, I could make them much more easily. I wanted apple rings, so I ended up frying them and they were delicious. Just don’t tell Papi Chulo…he was on duty and didn’t get to try them!
This recipe works best with hearty apples, not soft of mealy ones (I’m looking at you, red delicious!). I had success with Braeburn, gala, and granny smith apples, and I’m sure other varieties would work, as well. This batter recipe can cover about half a dozen larger apples, so you should be able to make plenty of apple rings for the whole family. I used Greek yogurt because I love it and use it whenever possible. If you use ‘regular’ yogurt, you may need decrease the amount of milk used, or even eliminate it all together. Because yogurts do vary, adjusting the amount of milk needed is a good idea, anyway – you want a batter that’s like a thick pancake batter, but no so thick you can’t work with it.
A set of biscuit/cookie cutters makes cutting the rings very easy. I used a smaller ring on the end slices and a larger one on the middle slices. If you want, you can use one of those apple/pineapple corers to core the entire apple before cutting it into slices.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt (I love Fage)
- 1 egg
- ½ cup of milk or almond milk
- Apples - you can coat about 6 large apples with this batter recipe
- Enough vegetable oil to form about a 1" layer in a 10-12" skillet
- Peel your apples. I absolutely love my Kuhn Rikon Swiss Peelers because they make quick work of peeling apples (and pretty much anything else!)
- Slice the apples across, as opposed to from pole to pole as you would to make normal apple slices. I recommend making the slices about ¼" thick, or maybe even a little less. The thicker the slice, the more likely it is to split when you cut the rings.
- Using biscuit or cookie cutters, cut the core from each piece of apple. This not only eliminates the core, but it also forms your rings!
- Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon together either in the bowl of a standing mixer using the whisk attachment, or with a whisk or handheld mixer in a medium bowl.
- Beat in the yogurt.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg vigorously and then mix it into the batter until combined.
- Mix the milk into the batter, adjusting the quantity as needed to create a thick but workable batter.
- Pour the vegetable into your heavy-bottomed skillet and heat on medium high until hot and shimmering. A small quantity of batter dropped into the oil should sizzle immediately.
- Coat the apple slices with batter and drop them into the heated oil. I tried dunking then with forks, using a spoon to dish out the batter, and holding on to them with skewers, but the honest truth is that dunking them with your hands is the best way to coat each ring.
- Fry for about 90 seconds, or until the under side is golden brown when you flip it over to peek.
- Continue frying until the new underside is golden brown, about one additional minute.
- Remove finished rings from the oil and drain them on paper towels.
- Repeat the dunking and frying until all the apple rings are cooked.
- Serve hot, topped with sugar and cinnamon, if you so desire.
When you dip the simple apple slices in batter and fry them, something magical happens. The batter puffs up, turns golden brown, and the raw apple is transformed into a cooked apple ring. Overall, it’s like eating little individual apple pies! Of course, the apple rings are even better when you top them off with sugar and cinnamon. I topped mine with refined cane sugar. It doesn’t have as strong a flavor as unrefined cane sugar, but it isn’t as refined as ‘regular’ white sugar. You can, of course, use any type of sugar you like, but the larger crystals of cane sugar provided a great taste and texture.
You’re welcome to try pan cooking the battered rings up or baking them in the oven – I made up a batch baked at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes and found the apples a little mushy and the batter not very crispy, but I’m sure they’re healthier that way. No matter how you choose to cook them, I hope you enjoy these Greek yogurt apple rings!
What’s your favorite way to cook with apples?