Slow Cooker Cracker Barrel Fried Apples

Cracker Barrel’s fried apples, a dish that has become synonymous with comfort and nostalgia, offer a taste that transports many to a place of warmth and homeliness. This recipe, a perfect blend of sweetness and spice, encapsulates the essence of autumn but is undeniably irresistible any day of the year. The slow cooker method, highlighted in this guide, simplifies the process, making it accessible for anyone to recreate this beloved dish at home. Whether served as a dessert, a side, or a topping, these fried apples are a testament to the simple joy that good food can bring into our lives.

Preparation Phase & Tools To Use

Embarking on the journey to create the perfect batch of Cracker Barrel fried apples begins with the selection of the right apples. Opting for either Granny Smith or Golden Delicious varieties ensures the ideal balance of tartness and sweetness. The preparation phase is straightforward yet crucial, involving peeling, coring, and slicing the apples into wedges. A quality apple peeler and corer can significantly ease this process, turning what might seem like a chore into a simple, swift task.

The slow cooker, the centerpiece of this recipe, allows the apples to cook gently, absorbing the rich blend of spices and sugars, resulting in a tender, flavorful dish. Alongside, measuring spoons, a mixing bowl, and a wooden spoon for stirring are essential tools to have on hand. Ensuring all ingredients are well combined before cooking is key to achieving the perfect consistency and flavor profile of the fried apples.

Ingredients List

  • 3-4 lbs apples (peeled and sliced into wedges) – The star of the dish, providing a sweet and tart base.
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch – Helps thicken the sauce, giving it a glossy, appealing texture.
  • ¼ cup brown sugar – Adds a deep, caramel-like sweetness.
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar – Enhances the sweetness while balancing the flavors.
  • 1 tsp cinnamon – Offers a warm, spicy note that is quintessential to the dish.
  • ¼ cup butter (melted) – Contributes to the richness and velvety texture of the sauce.
  • 2 tsp lemon juice – A touch of acidity to brighten the flavors.
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract – Adds a layer of aromatic sweetness.

Step-By-Step Instructions

  1. Begin by adding the peeled and sliced apples to the slow cooker. Sprinkle the cornstarch over the apples and stir to ensure they are evenly coated.
  2. Next, add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and cinnamon to the slow cooker. Stir the mixture well to combine the ingredients thoroughly.
  3. Pour the melted butter over the apple mixture, followed by the lemon juice and vanilla extract. Stir everything together, making sure the apples are well coated with all the ingredients.
  4. Cover the slow cooker and set it to cook on high for 2 hours. This slow cooking process allows the apples to become tender and the flavors to meld beautifully.
  5. Once the cooking time is complete, stir the apples once more. They should be tender, with a thick, glossy sauce enveloping them.

For another cozy and simple autumn treat, check out our baked apples recipe, perfect for those chilly evenings.

Nutritional Information & Health Benefits

Cracker Barrel fried apples not only delight the palate but also offer a range of nutritional benefits. Apples, the main ingredient, are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and various antioxidants. These nutrients contribute to improved digestion, a healthier immune system, and reduced risk of chronic diseases.

The addition of cinnamon in the recipe further enhances its health benefits. Cinnamon is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to lower blood sugar levels. When combined with the natural sweetness of apples and the richness of butter, this dish becomes a balanced blend of flavors and nutrients.

While this recipe does include sugars and butter, moderation is key. Serving these fried apples as part of a balanced diet allows one to enjoy their delightful taste while still reaping the health benefits. Incorporating them as a topping for oatmeal or yogurt can also be a great way to enjoy a healthier version of this dish.

Looking for a savory complement to these sweet fried apples? Try our turkey legs in a slow cooker for a hearty and delicious meal.

Common Mistakes To Avoid & How to Perfect the Recipe

Creating the perfect batch of Cracker Barrel fried apples is within reach if you sidestep a few common pitfalls:

  • Choosing the Wrong Apple Variety: Not all apples are created equal when it comes to cooking. Opt for Granny Smith or Golden Delicious for their ability to maintain texture and their perfect balance of sweetness and tartness.
  • Overcooking the Apples: Keep a close eye on the cooking time. Overcooking can lead to mushy apples, while undercooking will leave them too firm. The goal is tender yet slightly firm apples that hold their shape.
  • Skimping on Spices: The cinnamon in this recipe is not just a suggestion; it’s a requirement for achieving that authentic Cracker Barrel flavor. Don’t be afraid to adjust it to taste, but remember it’s a key ingredient.
  • Not Stirring Enough: Ensure all ingredients are well mixed before and during cooking. This prevents the apples from sticking to the bottom and ensures an even distribution of flavors.

To perfect this recipe, consider the following tips:

  • Taste as You Go: Adjust the sweetness and spices according to your preference. Some may prefer a sweeter dish, while others might enjoy the tanginess of the apples.
  • Thickness of the Sauce: If you find the sauce too thin after cooking, you can remove the apples and reduce the sauce further on the stovetop until it reaches your desired consistency.
  • Serving Suggestions: Experiment with serving these fried apples over pancakes, or waffles for a delightful twist.

Tips, Notes, Storing And Reheating

Tips and Notes:

  • Substitutions: If you’re out of brown sugar, you can use all granulated sugar, though you’ll miss some depth of flavor.
  • Variety is Key: Feel free to mix apple varieties for a more complex flavor profile.
  • Peeling: While peeling is recommended for texture, leaving the skin on adds nutritional value and color.


  • Store leftover fried apples in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. They can also be frozen for up to 3 months, though the texture may be slightly altered upon thawing.


  • Reheat in a saucepan over medium heat, adding a little water or apple juice if the sauce has thickened too much in the fridge. Alternatively, microwave in short bursts, stirring in between to ensure even heating.

For a delightful finish to your meal, consider our no-bake pumpkin cheesecake, an easy and delicious dessert that pairs wonderfully with the richness of fried apples.

FAQs about Slow Cooker Cracker Barrel Fried Apples

Can I make this recipe on the stovetop?
Yes, you can easily adapt this recipe for the stovetop. Simply cook the apples over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until they reach your desired tenderness.

Can I use a different type of sweetener?
Absolutely. While granulated and brown sugars are traditional, you can use alternatives like honey, maple syrup, or even sugar substitutes. Keep in mind that liquid sweeteners will slightly alter the sauce’s consistency.

How do I know when the apples are done?
The apples should be tender but not mushy. A fork should easily pierce through an apple piece without it falling apart.

For a unique twist on chicken that complements the sweet and savory theme, explore Ina Garten’s chicken recipes, offering a range of flavors that pair beautifully with fried apples.


This Cracker Barrel fried apples recipe is more than just a dish; it’s a journey back to fond memories and simple pleasures. With its rich flavors and comforting aroma, it’s a testament to the joy that good, straightforward cooking can bring. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe is sure to impress, bringing a piece of Cracker Barrel right into your home. Enjoy the process, savor the flavors, and share the warmth with those you love.


Slow Cooker Cracker Barrel Fried Apples

Indulge in the comforting taste of Cracker Barrel with this easy-fried apple recipe. Perfect for a cozy dessert or side, made simply in your slow cooker. Ready in just 2 hours, these tender, spice-infused apples are a testament to the simple joy that good food can bring into our lives. Whether served as a dessert, a side, or a topping, these fried apples encapsulate the essence of autumn but are undeniably irresistible any day of the year.

3-4 lbs apples, peeled and sliced into wedges
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ cup butter, melted
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1️⃣ Add apples and cornstarch to the slow cooker. Stir to coat apples.
2️⃣ Pour in the brown sugar, sugar, and cinnamon, stirring to mix well.
3️⃣ Add butter, lemon juice, and vanilla. Stir to mix well.
4️⃣ Cover and cook on high for 2 hours.
5️⃣ When cooking time is complete, stir and serve.
Notes :
◻️ Granny Smith or Golden Delicious apples are great for making fried apples.
◻️ The toughest part is coring, peeling, and slicing your apples, but an apple slicer and corer can make it quick and easy.
◻️ Enjoy them on their own, or pour them over a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a real treat.

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