Check out these 7 popular apple types and their shelf life. You will also learn a little bit of history pertaining to their different names and origin.
This tart, green skinned apple has its roots in Australia. It was an accidental discovery by one Marie Ann Smith, who was cooking with another type of apple. She threw away leftovers in a compost pit near her home. New types of apples emanated and came to be known as Granny Smith.
This apple stands out in the apple family due to its tart, acidic taste. Granny smith apple is highly popular, both for cooking and eating by hand.
Out of all the 7 popular apple types and their shelf life, Granny Smith holds shape best. Hence, you can use it in all types of cooking – pies, cobblers, crumbles, cakes and stewing.
Gala apples came into being in 1934, thanks to an orchardist from New Zealand. They are cultivars from two varieties – golden delicious and orange red apples.
They were introduced in the U.S in the 70s and are extensively grown there up to date. Gala apples have a mild, vanilla like taste and a tough peel. The hue can be described as pale yellow with red streaks.
Gala apples are great in baking or just eaten as snacks.
This cultivar was developed at the University of Minnesota in 1960. Commercial cultivation gained momentum in the 90s. Nowadays, it is one of the most popular apple cultivars.
It is commonly known as honey crunch in Europe. Honeycrisp apples are sweet with a hint of tartness and like the name, have a crispy and juicy texture.
They make a wonderful snack and can be incorporated in numerous recipes like tarts, crumbles, apple sauces or salads.
This is a Canadian native and is named after the founder who discovered it in 1800s. McIntosh is simply known as Mac and is a darling among apple diehards.
McIntosh has a ruby-red hue and bursts with juiciness. It has a sweet, spicy aroma and is popularly used in apple cider recipes, baking or apple sauces. It is also a filling snack to munch on.
These cultivars are named after the place of origin – Fujisaki, Japan. They were developed in late 1930s. Fuji apples were propagated from two apple varieties from the U.S., where cultivation of these apples soared.
Nowadays, Fuji cultivation is widespread across the U.S. and they produce more than Japan itself.
Fuji apples have a combination of red and yellow stripes, dense flesh and give off a sweet flavor.
This type is synonymous for their yellow hue with spots. It has a crispy texture with firm, white flesh.
It is not known exactly how this variety was propagated, but its discovery dates back to the late 1890s. Apart from that, golden delicious boasts of being a parent apple to several varieties.
Besides being commercially produces, golden delicious is a simple cultivar to grow in your own backyard. It is popular for its honey-like taste with slight tartness.
Use it in making apple butter, baking, salads and savory dishes as well.
Whenever you mention apples, this variety never fails to pop up. Red delicious is one of the most popular, especially across the U.S. It was first introduced around 1880 in the state of Iowa.
Despite sharing names, red and golden delicious are polar opposite varieties. Its dark-red hue gives it a unique selling point commercially.
However, red delicious cannot be voted as the most flavorful. Mild, subtle flavor betrays the quintessential properties it boasts of.
The most important use is in breeding purposes due to the crimson hue.
Nutritional value of apples
You’ve probably heard of the phrase ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’. But, are apples that nutritious? Besides being popular, apples are actually healthy for you.
Here is a breakdown of nutritional components found in apples:
Apples contain high levels of fiber that contribute to about 17% of your daily value. They have high levels of soluble fibers called pectin, which are normally associated with various health benefits. Fiber creates satiety which minimizes constant eating. Soluble fiber also eases digestion, keeping constipation at bay. In apples, half of the fiber is found in the skin, therefore always eat them with the skin on.
High water content
Apples contain more than 80% water content. This helps to keep your body well hydrated. Additionally, high water content foods promote healthy cell and organ function thus enhancing your energy levels.
Like most fruits, apples are rich in simple fruit sugars like sucrose, fructose as well as glucose. The good thing with apples is that they hardly raise blood sugar levels in your body. This is due to their low levels of glycemic index.
Apples are loaded with essential vitamin C. This is responsible for healthy body tissues and absorption of iron in the body.
Potassium is abundantly found in apples. This mineral is crucial in regulating various body functions such as fluid balance, blood pressure, nervous system as well as protecting the heart.
Shelf Life of Apples
Apples are some of the most popular fruits that you can enjoy all year round. Varieties with firm, crispy flesh and tougher peel tend to last longer than softer ones. Other than that, apples are available in numerous forms – Fresh, dried, apple sauce, apple butter or apple juice.
Commercially produced fresh apples are usually stored under controlled cold rooms. Here, they can last up to 1 year as they are being distributed to stores.
You can store fresh apples in the pantry or refrigerator. In the pantry, fresh apples can last from 1 week to 3 weeks, depending on the variety. Refrigerated ones keep well for up to 2 months.
Apple sauce and butter have a fairly short shelf life. Therefore, refrigerate opened cans to maximize on shelf life. Unopened apple sauce lasts for 2 months and can be stored in the pantry. Opened cans should be consumed within 5 days.
Dried apple slices or chips make a wonderful snack or can be added on both sweet and savory dishes. They have a long shelf life as they lack moisture. Dried apples can last up to 1 year.
Tell-tale signs of spoilage
Be on the lookout for any of the following indicators. You can discard the apples or use in compost manure.
- Pungent smell
- Sunken flesh
- Moldy growth on skin
- Discolored skin
Apples serve us all year round. Not only are they nutritious, but fill our space with fragrant vibes. I hope these 7 popular apple types and their shelf life leave you craving for some apples.