You can use this recipe to make stuffed baked apples with my delicious cinnamon and brown sugar mixture and nuts of your choice, or you can make baked sliced apples, tossed with the same delicious brown sugar mixture. Either way, serve your baked apples warm. This recipe is vegan and gluten-free, but if you like, you can serve the cooked apples with a scoop of your favorite ice cream!
Heat the oven. Place the rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375°F.
Make the cinnamon and brown sugar mixture. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, nuts, raisins or dried fruit of your choice. Add the cinnamon and cardamom. Mix well.
Stuffed Baked Apples
Core the apples. Using an apple corer or a sharp paring knife, remove the core being careful to leave the bottom ½-inch of the apples intact. I like using a paring knife to cut around and remove the core, creating a whole that’s about 1 inch or so wide. Then, use a small spoon to scoop out the seeds and make room for the brown sugar filling.
Stuff the apples. Arrange the apples, cavity side up, in a baking dish.Spoon the brown sugar and nut mixture into the apple cavities to fill them up all the way.
Add the EVOO and hot water. Pour about 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil all over the stuffed apples. Pour ¾ cup to 1 cup of boiling water from the side of the dish.
Bake! Place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the apples are fully cooked through and tender (be careful not to over-bake them, you do not want the apples to be mushy).
Sliced Baked Apples
Peel and slice the apples. Core, peel and slice your apples into ½-inch slices. And arrange the apple slices on a baking dish or pan.
Sprinkle with the brown sugar and cinnamon mixture, and drizzle with 2 tablespoon olive oil and a little hot water (start with ¼ cup). You can also add a little orange juice in place of the water. Toss to combine.
Bake. Place the baking dish in the oven and bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, stirring the apples halfway through.
Remove the baked apples from the oven and baste them with the brown sugar sauce from the bottom of the pan. Serve as is for a vegan dessert or add your favorite vanilla ice cream (or even a dollop of labneh)!
Do not overcook the apples or they may turn too mushy. Baked apples are ready when they are tender but still have a nice bite to them. Use a fork to determine doneness, you should be able to slide the fork through easily.
This recipe will serve up to 6 people, assuming ½ apple serving per person with the cinnamon brown sugar mixture included.