Charred Apples: A Delicious Twist on Thick Slices

Apples are one of the best fruits for grilling. The signature char from this cooking method sets it apart from baking, frying, sauteing, or eating the fruit as is. It adds a unique smoky flavor that contrasts beautifully with the sweet and tart notes of the apple. But in order to get perfectly charred apples, begin by cutting your fruit into thick even slices.

This simple tip can make a big difference in your finished dish. One clear impact is on the texture. Slices with a bigger girth provide enough room for both a slightly crispy charred exterior and an interior that remains soft and juicy. This contrasting texture is the secret behind the delightful bites of grilled apple slices. On the flip side, if you cut the apples too thinly there’s a high chance the slices will cook too fast and turn mushy all through or, even worse, get burnt.

So what’s the ideal thickness? Aim for a quarter to half-inch thick slices. And remember that these should be even slices, not apple halves, and preferably not the slices at the curved edge of the fruit. The evenness of the pieces ensures every part of the fruit cooks through equally while also providing a flat surface area on both sides for maximum contact with the grill gates, which creates those beautiful grill marks.

More tips for perfectly grilled apples

Cooking apple slices on grill

Beyond the apple slice thickness, there are other tips you’ll need when grilling this fruit. First, use the right type of apples. Firm varieties hold up better to the direct heat on the grill without turning too mushy and so are preferred over the softer varieties. Therefore, if you’re purchasing your apples, go for Honeycrisp, Granny Smith, Gala, Pink Lady, or Fuji, and avoid Red Delicious or McIntosh. That said, in case you’re unsure of the type you already have on hand, just grill them and if they get too soft, you can easily repurpose by mushing them into applesauce.

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Another crucial factor is how you prep your grill. Before placing the apple slices on the grill, ensure the grates are clean and well-oiled to prevent sticking. Next, preheat the grill to medium-high. This ensures the slices get that initial caramelization as soon as they land on the grill without the risk of burning before the inside is cooked. Finally, for added flavor, you can top the fruit slices with cinnamon and sugar or a drizzle of honey after removing them from the grill. With that, your delicious charred apples are ready to serve. Enjoy.

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