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OSU Extension

College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

November 1, 2023 - 9:00am --

Apples are plentiful now, so it’s great time to enjoy their goodness.

They are described as one of nature’s most snackable, portable, and good-for-you fruits.

I still remember the cold, crisp, juicy Red Delicious apples that came from my junior high school’s vending machine. For just a quarter, I had a tasty, healthy snack.

Recently, I gained a new appreciation for snacking on apples thanks to Rita Abboud, a registered dietitian at Wooster Community Hospital.

Rita talked about heart healthy eating during one of our programs in the Ohio State University Extension exhibit area in the Grange Rotunda at the Wayne County Fair. For her presentation she brought a generous batch of apples and small containers of peanut butter to share with the audience.

I benefitted from a few of the leftovers, and they became my lunch that day. Now I crave apples dipped in peanut butter on a regular basis.

Rita said peanut butter and apples complement each other because they offer all the major nutrients in one snack. Apples provide complex carbohydrates and fiber. Peanut butter provides protein and healthy fat.

The combo is a nutrient-packed snack that will satisfy your hunger for much longer than other healthy snacks, such as pretzels, a banana or cup of yogurt. These are low in fat, she said, but none of them provide complex carbohydrates, fiber, protein and healthy fat individually, so they tend to leave you hungry shortly thereafter.

Here’s a fun recipe for Apple Nachos that incorporates apples and peanut butter.  It is offered by the University of New Hampshire Extension and adapted from the American Heart Association.

Apple Nachos


⅓ cup dried cranberries or raisins (unsweetened)

¼ cup sliced almonds (unsalted)

2 tablespoons unsalted sunflower seeds (no shells)

3 apples, sliced

1-2 teaspoons lemon juice (optional)

2 tablespoons water

¼ cup reduced-fat peanut butter (or any nut butter)

1 tablespoon honey


In a small bowl, combine toppings: dried cranberries/raisins, almonds and sunflower seeds. Set aside. Thinly slice apples. On a large plate, layer half of the apples. Optional: sprinkle lemon juice over them to reduce browning.

Bring 2 tablespoons of water to a boil. In a small bowl, mix hot water with peanut butter and honey. Stir until mixture is smooth. Drizzle half the peanut butter mixture over the plated apple slices. Sprinkle half the toppings mixture. Layer remaining apples on top and repeat with remaining peanut butter mixture and toppings mixture.


For a new twist on French toast, this recipe from OSU Extension incorporates applesauce.

Applesauce French Toast


2 eggs

½ cup nonfat or 1 percent milk

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons white sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla

¼ cup unsweetened applesauce

6 slices whole wheat bread

In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, cinnamon, sugar, vanilla and applesauce. Soak bread one slice at a time until mixture is slightly absorbed. Lightly spray or oil a skillet or griddle. Cook over medium heat until golden brown on both sides. Serve hot. Refrigerate leftovers within two hours. Note: To use sweetened applesauce, remove the sugar from the measured amount. Top with applesauce, fresh fruit or yogurt.


If you want to make your own applesauce, you can try this OSU Extension crockpot recipe.

Cinnamon Applesauce Crockpot Recipe


3 pounds of apples, peeled, cored and sliced (about 6 medium apples)

½ cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

½ tablespoon maple syrup

½ cup water

Place the peeled, sliced apples into the bowl of your crockpot. Sprinkle the sugar, maple syrup and cinnamon over the apples and mix well. Pour the water into the crockpot and place the lid on top. Cook over high heat for four hours. When cooking time is up, remove the lid and mix the apples using a wire whisk, stirring until smooth, or until desired consistency is reached. To store, allow the applesauce to cool completely then place in a sealed container in the fridge.

If you slice up an apple for a snack, don’t peel it – the skins are nutritious with much of the fiber and heart-protective antioxidants coming from that part of the produce.

Laurie Sidle is an Ohio State University Extension Family and Consumer Sciences and 4-H program assistant and may be reached at 330-264-8722 or