An apple a day can’t always keep the doctor away, but as part of a balanced diet, it can certainly help.

With their sweet, tart flavors and crisp, juicy bite, it’s no wonder why apples are a star ingredient in classic holiday dishes like pies and tarts. Though commonly paired in sweet dishes, apples also go great in simple, healthy recipes like salads, entrees and even soup.

Apples have long been considered a superfood. One medium apple has fewer than 100 calories. Apples are fat, sodium and cholesterol free and a great source of dietary fiber. In fact, that same medium apple has 4 grams of dietary fiber, which is 17 percent of the recommended daily value.

Apples are also a source of vitamin C (14% DV) and vitamin A (2% DV), as well as a number of antioxidants that serve to help the body fight many different chronic diseases. For example, several studies have suggested that the antioxidants in apple juice may help reduce declines in cognitive functions associated with aging and Alzheimer’s disease.

 

Storage tip
Store apples in the refrigerator, away from strong-smelling foods, in order to maximize freshness. Cold temperatures keep the fruit crisp and tasty longer!

According to the most recent statistics from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the state of Washington is responsible for over 60 percent of all apple production in the United States. The top nine varieties of apples grown in Washington, according to the Washington Apple Commission, are: Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, Braeburn, Honeycrisp, Cripps Pink and Cameo.

Did you know?
There are more than 7,500 apple varieties grown worldwide!

Need a Superfood recipe? Try one of these:

Butternut squash soup

Kale and apple salad with orange-coconut yogurt dressing

Apple-carrot slaw with pistachios