Pumpkin spice lattes and hot chocolate are tasty treats that all fall-lovers can’t get enough of, but it’s apple cider that has the perfect combination of sweet, tart, and fresh flavors. Whether you love drinking it fresh from the container or mulling it with cinnamon and spices, apple cider is a fantastic fall beverage. Because the quality of apple cider depends on its freshness, it’s only available during a few months out of the year, so it’s time to act fast and get the cider while it’s still around. Here are a few ways you can incorporate apple cider into everyday dishes for that sweet fall flavor we all know and love.
1. Crockpot Apple Cider Spiced Ham
This savory dish screams autumn, and because you can make it in a crockpot, it’s super simple to prep and cook. This crockpot ham from Seduction In The Kitchen incorporates sweet apple cider with nutmeg, cinnamon, and brown sugar to create a delectable glaze for the ham. Your average holiday ham is no match for this cider-infused dish, so prepare to take your taste buds to a new dimension.
- 1 (8-pound) ham
- ½ gallon sweet apple cider
- ¼ cup golden raisins
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Directions: Start by placing your ham in your crockpot. Take your apple cider and pour half of the container over and around the ham so that the ham is thoroughly covered. Then, add the raisins.
In a separate bowl, combine your brown sugar, mustard, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg, and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Add 2 tablespoons of cider to this mix and stir to make a paste.
Add the brown sugar glaze on top of your ham, and cover the dish. Allow it to cook for 6 to 8 hours on the low setting, or until the ham is hot and nicely glazed.
2. Apple Cider Doughnuts
We couldn’t have a lineup of the best apple cider recipes without incorporating the ultimate fall treat: the apple cider doughnut. These treats from Taste of Home pair that fresh apple cider flavor with cardamom, nutmeg, and cinnamon for a burst of spice in each bite. Whether you’re eating them for breakfast or saving them for dessert, every single one of your friends and family will absolutely love these doughnuts.
- 2 cups apple cider
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- 2 large eggs
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
- Oil for deep-frying
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 to 3 tablespoons ground ginger
Directions: Pour your cider into a small saucepan, and bring it to a rapid boil over high heat. Cook the cider for about 12 minutes, or until the liquid has been reduced in half. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
In a medium bowl, combine flours, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and spices, and whisk until combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, melted butter, and cooled cider. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until a sticky dough begins to form. Refrigerate dough for 1 hour, covered, or until the dough is firm enough to shape.
Flour the surface you will be working on to prevent sticking. Cut dough in half and pat portions of dough until they are ½ inch in thickness. Cut into doughnuts with a 3-inch cutter. If desired cut out centers with a very small cutter and use to make doughnut holes.
Using an electric skillet or deep fryer, preheat your oil to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Add a few doughnuts at a time without overcrowding your pan or fryer, and fry the doughnuts for about 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until golden. If you’ve created doughnut holes, fry a few of those for a minute at a time, or until golden brown and fully cooked through. Drain your doughnuts on paper towels and cool slightly.
For an optional ginger-sugar topping, mix sugar and ginger. Toss warm doughnuts in the topping.
3. Garden Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette
This garden salad with apple cider vinaigrette from Robert Irvine of Food Network couldn’t be simpler. The other ingredients in the salad, like the blue cheese, apples, and greens, pair perfectly with the dressing for a fall salad you’ll wish you could make all year long. Once you see how easy it is to create this salad, you can make it for Thanksgiving and holiday parties, too.
- 2 cups apple cider
- ¼ cup cider vinegar
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cups grapeseed oil or salad oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 cups loosely packed mixed greens
- 2 cups assorted berries
- 2 Granny Smith apples, cored and sliced
- 1½ cups crumbled blue cheese
Directions: In a bowl or a jar with a lid, combine apple cider, vinegar, honey, cinnamon, oil, salt, and pepper. Shake or whisk together the dressing to combine.
In a large bowl, toss lettuce, berries, apples, and blue cheese together. Add dressing to coat all of the ingredients, and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper, and enjoy.
4. Oven-Roasted Apple Cider BBQ Chicken
There are few dishes as comforting and delectable as ones that have been slathered in a good barbecue sauce, and this dish brings that sauce to a whole new level. This oven-roasted chicken dish from How Sweet It Is is everything you want out of a stick-to-your-ribs dinner. The homemade apple cider barbecue sauce is the autumn version of your favorite summer picnic food. You’ll have to try this one.
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 1 pound chicken drumsticks
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
For the apple cider BBQ sauce
- ⅔ cup ketchup
- ⅔ cup apple cider
- ½ cup honey
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and coat a baking sheet with olive oil to prevent the chicken from sticking.
Combine all sauce ingredients in a saucepan and whisk until combined. Bring the sauce to a boil over medium heat, reduce to low, and cook for 30 60 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened. Stir the sauce occasionally as it cooks. Once it’s thick, remove it from the heat and allow it to sit at room temperature until cooled.
Pat chicken dry with a few paper towels. Apply salt and pepper to the chicken until it is evenly coated, then transfer to prepared baking sheet. You may need two trays to avoid crowding. Transfer to oven and roast for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, and brush on a layer of sauce. Return to oven and bake for an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Flip and brush once more with sauce. Bake for 5 minutes longer. Repeat until chicken is fully cooked and glazed.
Once the chicken has fully cooked, remove it from the heat and allow it to cool slightly. Serve with extra sauce on the side.
5. Apple Cider Pancakes with Caramel Apple Syrup
You’ll get a double dose of apple cider with this rich, decadent breakfast recipe. These apple cider pancakes with caramel apple syrup from Taste and Tell are easy to throw together on a lazy Sunday morning for your family or guests, and you’ll get that fall apple flavor you’re craving. There are few dishes that scream fall as much as this one, so make this recipe while the season lasts.
For the pancakes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 (5.3-ounce) containers vanilla Greek yogurt
- 1 cup apple cider
- 2 eggs, separated
For the syrup
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ to ½ cup apple cider
- 1 cup brown sugar
Directions: To make the pancake batter, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate small bowl, combine the yogurt, cider, and egg yolks. Add wet ingredients ato dry and mix to combine, being careful not to overmix.
In another bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add one-quarter of the egg whites to the pancake batter, and mix to combine. Carefully fold in remaining egg whites.
Heat a griddle over medium heat and grease with nonstick cooking spray. Scoop ¼-cup portions of your batter onto griddle. Cook the pancakes until they are golden brown on both sides, and set aside while you make your syrup.
To make the syrup, melt your butter in a small saucepan. Then, add apple cider and stir in the brown sugar. Whisk the mixture while it’s cooking until it comes to a boil. Boil for one minute before removing from the heat, whisking constantly so that your syrup is nice and smooth. Serve with pancakes.