I have a serious emotional connection to southern fried apples.  There is just something about them that takes me back to childhood Sunday mornings. Every Sunday my grandmother would make a fully loaded breakfast that consisted of butter grits, homemade biscuits, scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausage, bacon, and yes, some good ol southern fried apples!!

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That sweet, buttery cinnamon aroma drifted and lingered throughout the entire house and it was heavenly. Breakfast just wasn’t the same if fried apples didn’t make it in the line up.

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Living in the south all of my life, I’ve had my share of “just ok” southern fried apples. It’s easy to get fried apples wrong. Very wrong. From using water, too much brown sugar,  overcooking, over spicing and so on. This southern fried apples recipe is the BEST! And I’m not just saying that because it’s just like my grandma Barb makes hers (ok maybe that’s why a teeny tiny bit).

southern fried apples recipe

The key to a good pan of southern fried apples is to keep it simple. No need to get all fancy schmancy by adding in syrups, extracts, juices, cornstarch, etc. I use to get all elaborate with my fried apples until I saw how my grandmother made hers. Simple just works.

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These southern fried apples are pure perfection. Tart, sweet and spiced just right and not to mention easy as pie!! Get it? Apples. Pie. Get it? Ok never mind I’ve got nothing.

Use these fried apples as a side dish for breakfast or dinner, throw them on top of biscuits, cornbread or ice cream and you’ve got something special.

They are a true southern comfort food and just thinking about them makes me smile. I hope they will make you smile too : )

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  1. Use granny smith apples. They have that perfect firm yet tender texture when cooked and the tartness goes great with the sweetness of the syrup
  2. Peel the apples.
  3. Do not overcook. You want firm to the touch, yet tender to the bite with just a tiny bit of resistance. Mushy fried apples are gross and if you do accidentally overcook them never admit defeat! Turn them into country fried applesauce and pretend that you totally meant to do that.
  4. Use real, sweet cream butter. No spreads, olive oils, etc. Many folks down south swear by using lard. I prefer the taste of butter but hey, whatever floats your boat.


Watch me make these southern fried apples from start to finish!

Get the Recipe: Best Southern Fried Apples

4.87 from 38 ratings


  • 2 large granny smith apples
  • 4 tablespoons real butter, chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon


  • Peel, core and cut apples into even slices.
  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Add apples and drizzle them with lemon juice.
  • Let apples simmer until most of butter is absorbed and apples are tender. (do not overcook. Apples should be firm to the touch, yet tender with a little give to the bite.)
  • Stir together sugars and sprinkle them over apples.
  • Toss to combine.
  • Lower heat if needed.
  • Let apples cook until sugars are completely dissolved and syrupy.
  • Remove from heat and sprinkle apples with cinnamon.
  • Toss to distribute cinnamon.
  • Plate apples and serve piping hot!


Cooking time will vary based on apples used and thickness of apples.
Granny smith makes the best apples for fried apples.
Author: Divas Can Cook
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