Making your own apple juice is a fun and rewarding project. It’s your opportunity to make juice taste exactly how you like it. When you’re juicing apples, it’s essential to pick the right apple. Here you’ll learn everything you need to know to choose the best apples for juicing.
Types of Apple Juice
There are several different types of apple juice. The main types of apple juice that people seek after are sweet juice, tart juice, and balanced juice. There’s an apple variety that is perfect for each one of these types of juice.
Each variety of apple also provides slightly different nutritional benefits and sugar or acid content. These factors will influence the taste and color of the juice. Apples with higher sugar content will yield a sweeter beverage, and apples with more acid will be tart. If you peel the apples and cut out the core before juicing, it will be less bitter and likely come across as more sweet.
Sweet juice is the classic fruit juice that you would get at most grocery stores. It is full of apple flavor, slightly floral, and sweet over tart. However, there’s still a comfortable balance to the flavor. Many sweet juices have notes of vanilla, citrus, flowers, or melon. Gala apples and Golden Delicious apples are often used for this type of juice.
Tart juice is very crisp and refreshing. It tastes very natural and zippy. There’s a range of tart juices from those with a more sour green apple flavor to those with more of a bright tang. Tart juice is perfect to pair with your favorite dessert or savory meal because it will set off other flavors without overpowering them. Granny Smith apples are the classic variety for tart juice.
Balanced juice is both sweet and tart. It’s what many juice makers strive for in an everyday sort of juice. It will please a wide variety of palates. Balanced juice tastes full and fruity. Apple varieties used for balanced juice commonly have tropical or spice notes. A mix of sweet and tart apples – Gala apples and Sweet Tango, for example – are great for this type of juice. Other apples that are naturally balanced between sweet and tangy, such as Red Delicious, are a popular option for balanced juice.
Best Apples for Sweet Apple Juice
Sweet juice is the classic, old-fashioned juice box type of beverage. While some varieties of sweet apples are said to be bland, there are plenty of apples with high sugar content and full flavors. You can always add a bit of cinnamon or orange peel to add some depth or brightness to the juice.
. They’re dense apples that are high in sugar and not very tart. Sweetness is the dominant flavor of the apple. It was originally a cross between Red Delicious apples and an old Virginian heirloom variety. It’s incredibly juicy but somewhat bland. , straightforward juice. .
Gala is a mellow apple that’s just slightly acidic and very sweet. It’s a cross between Golden Delicious and the Orange Red variety. It’s an aromatic variety and has a floral, fruity punch like a pear. Gala apples will likely be most flavorful if purchased from a local farmer or orchard. Gala apples are the right choice for a mellow and fruity sweet juice.
Golden Delicious has an aromatic honey flavor and is incredibly rich. It is a fantastic juicing apple. It is mild and sweet with a hint of acid. It is one of the best apples for juicing if you want a rich, sweet juice. Just a touch of orange peel or lime in the juice will balance out some of the richness and make it a fantastic multi-purpose beverage. Yellow Delicious is a similar variety that may be substituted.
Best Apples for Tart Apple Juice
Tart juice is a bright and tangy beverage. It’s fantastic chilled with some creamy cheese and crackers. Tart juice usually comes from apples with lower sugar content or higher acid content. Green apples are good varieties to choose for the sour apple taste. Mixing some tart apple juice and some juice with more spice notes will make a juice with a unique caramel apple flavor to it.
Granny Smith apples are the epitome of the sour green apple. They are lower in sugar and have a sour, acidic tang. Granny Smith apples end up creating a very and sharp juice that can end up almost metallic. To avoid an overly sharp juice, add a few Red Delicious apples or a sprinkle of cinnamon to balance the sour and sharp flavor of a Granny Smith. However, Granny Smith is still the best apple for juicing if you love the sour apple taste.
Pink Lady is known for its tart flavor and high sugar content. This brand of apples can lean toward a more balanced juice, but the tart flavor is pronounced enough to make a deliciously tangy juice. Try blending this apple up with its skin and then straining it well to get a pretty pink tint to the juice.
Braeburn apples are a juicing favorite because of their balanced tartness and spicy nutmeg notes. Braeburn keeps very well and yields quite a bit of juice per apple. It features strong apple flavors that come across very well in juice. Braeburn is one of the best apples for juicing if you’re looking for a tart juice that still has that incredible apple flavor.
Best Apples for Balanced Apple Juice
You can achieve a balanced apple juice by juicing several varieties of apples that are both sweet and tart. However, there are a few varieties of apples that are known for being naturally well balanced. These are the best apples for juicing if you want an easy, balanced juice.
Red Delicious is a balanced apple that is sweet, tart, and melony. Some call Red Delicious apples bland, but they make an excellent, straightforward apple juice. The most flavorful balanced juice comes from juicing Red Delicious and something with pronounced flavor such as Braeburn together. However, Red Delicious provides a tasty balanced juice on its own as well.
Honeycrisp is a newer variety that is sweet, tangy, and incredibly aromatic. Honeycrisp leads to a delicious, well-balanced, and flavorful juice that will please a wide variety of juicers. It’s one of the best apple varieties for juicing if you want a balanced juice for any purpose. Also, it is an excellent option to balance out a more tart variety, such as a Granny Smith.
Pacific Rose is a refreshing and direct variety from New Zealand. It’s known for the red blush of its skin and its slightly floral, sweet, and crisp flavor. Pacific Rose is a delicious apple for juicing if you’re looking for a crowd-pleasing option.
Best Apples for Flavorful Juice
Some apples just have more apple flavor than others. While there’s enough variety in flavor that any fruit-lover can find an apple to appreciate, nothing can beat that good old apple taste. If you want a flavorful apple for your juicing, consider one of these timeless options.
McIntosh has the classic spicy, fruity flavor that comes to mind when you think of apples. It’s mild and sweet but with very full and direct apple flavor with a hint of raisin. McIntosh is the best apple for juicing if you’re looking for the old-fashioned apple cider flavor in your juice.
The Jazz apple is a trademarked brand that’s still relatively new. However, the tart apple is so full of flavor you can’t pass it over when considering tart juice. The Jazz is a cross between Gala apples, which are known for their floral, fruity flavor, and Braeburn apples, a juicing favorite due to their balanced flavor. It’s tart, just sweet enough, and packs a punch of fruit. The Jazz apple is one of the best apples to juice if you like sweet but enjoy fizzy tang now and then.
Empire is a deep red apple with a classic, balanced flavor. It’s a cross between two old classics: Red Delicious and McIntosh. Therefore, it leads to a mild and balanced apple juice. It’s one of the best apple varieties to grow if you want to make a unique old-fashioned juice.
What to Add to Apple Juice
If you’re an apple juice lover, you won’t want to add anything that could mask the flavor of your apples. However, there are plenty of spices and flavorings that enhance the flavor of apples instead of masking them. Consider adding some new flavors next time you’re juicing for a new spin on your favorite beverage.
- Cinnamon or cardamom adds a bit of warm depth to any juice.
- Caramel or honey could be the perfect sweet balance for a tart Granny Smith juice.
- Citrus juice adds a kick of flavor to juice, and it also could prevent the fresh juice from browning.
- Ginger adds a kick to your favorite sweet juice.
- Orange peel adds some brightness and tang to any juice that’s a little blander than you were hoping.
Now you’ve learned all about what apples to choose for your next juicing project. Enjoy making new blends of flavorful juices.