7 Apple Cider Recipes Delivering Amazing Autumnal Flavors

Nothing beats a glass of apple cider on a crisp autumn day. But there’s no need to only enjoy this quintessential fall flavor in liquid form. You can use this popular apple beverage to create sweet, savory, and tangy breakfasts, dinners, and desserts. When infused with sensational cider flavors, you’ll find that donuts, waffles, meatballs, and pork chops taste even better. Keep reading to discover 7 amazing apple cider recipes.

Source: Thinkstock

1. Apple Cider Waffles

There’s no better way to start a beautiful autumn day than by indulging in Add a Pinch’s wondrous waffles. Apple cider, cinnamon, and nutmeg create a morning meal that’s spiced to perfection. If you want to add another fall element to this dish, consider pairing it with About.com’s recipe for apple cider syrup.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup apple cider

Directions: Preheat waffle iron and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Whisk all dry ingredients together and add egg and apple cider. Whisk until well-combined. Pour into waffle iron and prepare according to waffle iron instructions. Remove from waffle iron when baked throughout and serve warm.

Source: iStock

2. Vermont Apple Cider Donuts

Adding apple cider to your batter will create decadent donuts that are satisfyingly sweet and slightly tangy. Yankee’s recipe yields 18 donuts, which are perfect for breakfast, a sweet snack, or a toothsome treat. Note: you can purchase boiled cider or prepare your own by simmering 1½ cups of fresh apple cider down to ⅓ cup.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 3½ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
  • 1¼ teaspoons table salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ cup low-fat buttermilk
  • ⅓ cup boiled apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Canola or safflower oil (for frying)
  • Cinnamon sugar (1½ cups sugar mixed with 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon) or confectioners’ sugar

Directions: In a large bowl using a hand-held or standing mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together sugar and butter until mixture is pale and fluffy, 4-6 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating a minute after each. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside. Pour buttermilk, boiled cider, and vanilla into the sugar, butter, and egg mixture. Mix well. Add flour mixture and combine gently just until fully moistened. Line two baking sheets with waxed paper or parchment paper and dust generously with flour.

Turn dough out onto one baking sheet and pat gently into ¾-inch-thickness. Sprinkle dough with additional flour, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the freezer for 10 minutes to firm up. Remove dough from the freezer; use a lightly floured 3-inch doughnut cutter to cut out about 18 doughnuts with holes. Place cut doughnuts on the other baking sheet as you go; then transfer to the freezer for 5 minutes to firm up again. Line a plate with a few layers of paper towels and set it nearby.

In a Dutch oven or large pot, heat 3 inches of oil to 370 degrees Fahrenheit. Drop 3 or 4 doughnuts into the oil, being careful not to crowd the pan. Cook until browned on one side, about 1 minute; then flip and cook until browned on the other side, about 1 minute longer. Repeat with the remaining dough. If you find that it’s getting too soft as you work your way through the batches, pop it into the freezer again for 10 minutes. When doughnuts are cool enough to handle but still warm, sprinkle all over with cinnamon sugar or confectioners’ sugar. Serve immediately.

Source: iStock

3. Pork Chops With Apples and Cider Pan Sauce

Turn a plain pork chop into a sensational fall supper by throwing fresh apples and cider into the mix. Woman’s Day’s recipe yields 4 servings and calls for crisp red apples, sage leaves, pork chops, seasonings, hard cider, and spinach.

Ingredients:

  • 4 crisp red apples, cored and cut into ¾-inch-thick wedges
  • ¼ cup fresh sage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 bone-in pork chops, each about 1 inch thick
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper
  • ¾ cup hard cider or dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 bunch spinach, thick stems discarded

Directions: Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the apples and sage with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Roast for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the pork chops with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the skillet from the heat.

Transfer the chops to the baking sheet, placing them among the apples, and roast until the chops are just cooked through and the apples are tender, 5 to 6 minutes. While the apples and pork are roasting, return the skillet to medium heat. Add the cider and ginger and simmer, scraping up any brown bits, for 2 minutes. Transfer the pork chops to plates and toss the apples with the spinach. Serve with the pork chops and pan sauce.

Source: iStock

4. Apple Cider Chicken

Food Network’s recipe transforms a boring chicken breast into an amazing autumn dinner using apples, cider, onion, and zesty seasonings. This easy-to-prepare dish yields 4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ Vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and sliced into ¼-inch wedges
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups apple cider

Directions: Heat oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, add to pan, and sear until golden, about 4 minutes each side. Remove chicken from pan and set aside. Add remaining butter and onion, apple, garlic, thyme, and bay leaves. Sauté until apple begins to get color and onions soften, about 6 minutes. Add flour and stir 2 to 3 minutes. Place chicken back into pan, add cider, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook until chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes.

Source: iStock

5. Apple Cider-Glazed Meatballs

The Messy Baker’s recipe creates mouth-watering meatballs that are sweet, savory, and spicy. You’ll mix ground turkey with garlic, cayenne, and apples, then toss them in a sensational cider glaze. These magnificent meatballs are great as an appetizer or pair perfectly with a ravishing rice recipe. You can easily prepare an elegant entrée by making Cooking Light’s browned butter-pecan rice.

Ingredients:

Meatballs

  • 1½ pounds ground turkey
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ⅓ cup shredded apple
  • 3 tablespoons onion, finely diced
  • ⅓ cup bread crumbs
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper

Glaze

  • 1 cup apple cider
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon apple butter
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1½ teaspoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, add all of the ingredients. Mix to combine. Roll into 1-inch balls. Place the meatballs on a cookie grate on top of an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. To prepare the glaze, add all of the ingredients, except the scallions, in a small bowl. Whisk to combine. Add the mixture to a large sauté pan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil and let simmer for 2 minutes until the glaze thickens. Add the meatballs to the pan and let cook for 1 minute to coat. Top with chopped scallions.

Source: iStock

6. Apple Cider Pie

Tired of the usual apple pie recipes? Fine Cooking creates a rich and hearty pie that uses apples, cider, light brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg to create a fabulous fall filling that will stand out from the rest.

Ingredients:

Double Crust

  • 1 recipe Classic Pie Crust
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ¼ cup sugar cubes (about 12 small), coarsely crushed

Filling

  • 3 pounds Golden Delicious or Gala apples, peeled, cored, cut into ¾-inch slices, and then halved crosswise
  • ⅔ cup apple cider
  • ½-⅔ cup packed light brown sugar to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

Directions: In a large nonreactive pot, mix the apples, all but 2 tablespoons of the cider, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring often, until the sugar has dissolved and the apples are evenly coated. Mix the cornstarch and remaining 2 tablespoons cider into a paste; add this to the apples. Stirring constantly, boil until the liquid is thickened and clear, about 1 minute. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed. Remove from the heat and let cool.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Position racks in the low and middle spots of the oven. Set a foil-lined baking sheet on the lower rack to catch drips. Prepare a double pie crust in a 9-inch pie pan and fill the shell. Brush the heavy cream over the top crust and sprinkle with the crushed sugar cubes, pressing lightly to secure the chunks. Cut at least three vent holes. Bake on the middle rack until the crust is golden and the apples are tender when pierced with a knife, about 55 minutes. If the top starts browning too quickly, tent the pie with foil.

Source: Thinkstock

7. Soft Apple Cider Caramels

Food & Wine’s soft apple cider caramels are filled with tangy, sweet, and buttery flavors. You can also personalize this delicious dessert by using a flavored cider or different spices.The recipe yields 150 caramels.

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts apple cider
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 cups sugar
  • ¾ cup light corn syrup
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 stick cold unsalted butter, diced
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of ground allspice
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • Neutral oil, such as canola or grapeseed, for brushing

Directions: In a large saucepan, simmer the apple cider over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 1 cup, about 1 hour. Pour the reduced cider into a bowl. Line a 9-by-13-inch rimmed pan with foil and coat the foil with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream and condensed milk and bring to a simmer over moderate heat; keep the mixture warm over low heat. In another large saucepan, combine the sugar with the reduced apple cider, corn syrup, water, and salt and bring to a boil.

Simmer over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Carefully whisk in the butter until melted. Gradually whisk in the warm cream mixture until incorporated. Cook over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until a golden caramel forms and the temperature reaches 245 degrees Fahrenheit on a candy thermometer, about 45 minutes. Stir in the cinnamon, allspice, and cloves and scrape the caramel into the prepared pan. Let cool completely, then refrigerate the caramel overnight.

Lightly brush a sheet of parchment paper with oil. Invert the caramel onto the parchment and peel off the foil. Using a sharp knife, cut the caramel into 1-inch-wide strips, then cut the block crosswise into ½-inch rectangles. Wrap each caramel in a square of parchment paper or a candy wrapper and twist the ends to seal. Serve or pack the caramels into boxes.

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