Good pie apples for mid Atlantic


I used the weather channel info and also my thermometer that is in the shade of my ash trees. It did get even hotter with the heat index. I also wonder what is difference between 98 and 100 degrees with the apples being in the direct sun?
I am not sure what the exact dates were because I do not keep a daily log of the temps.


arkansas black tasted good once it was cooked. dried apple flavor but with more water content than a dried apple, this apple was purchased and given to me, not grown personally

i’ve heard it needs pollinator so you might want to check on viable apples to do the trick if you do plan on growing it

good luck.


we canned about ninty qts of Honeycrisp and Macoun sauce mixed in 2015 and they are great, we’re down to the last few jars of them now, taste great, no sugar or anything added. sometimes I do mix a little cinnamon in if I think of it. also canned about 60 qts of the same apples for pies. We haven’t canned any since… the apples were given to us by a truck driver who broke down in front of the place. we had no apples of our own that yr, the trees budded but a frost killed them.


I can’t make any comprehensive recommendations because I have less experience experimenting with sauces and pies rather than just sampling apples fresh out-of-hand.

This will sound silly, but my family’s favorite apple to bake into a pie has always been plain ole’ Cortland. Otherwise at risk of getting pithy or mealy— Cortland bakes into a nice pie. It holds a little bit of its shape, but also melts down some and congeals into the buttery crust (we use simple Betty Crocker pie mix— it’s what we’re used to— it tastes good to us— it’s what we like).

I have also made decent apple pies out of Gravenstein. Gravenstein grows well around here (probably better than Cortland, which is an apple better suited to the northern tier), so you should probably try Gravenstein. Problem is that Gravenstein is a summer apple. One’s appetite for baking steaming-hot pies is lessened during the dog-days of summer. Turning on the oven seems ludicrous in August.

I truly don’t know which fall-ripening/ suitable for growing in the Mid-Atlantic apple to recommend for pies. I’m kind of at a loss.

As far as apple sauce— the industry in southern Pennsylvania prefers to use the York Imperial. This is a decent apple fresh out of the orchard in Sept or Oct, but it has an austere grassy mild-sweet flavor that is middling at best. The industry likes it because it has a knack for growing in southeast PA and - for whatever reason - they claim it has superior processability. Most of the yellow-fleshed apple sauce you see in jars or cup-packs around here is made from York Imperial. I don’t much care for apple sauce, but when I eat it, I expect it to taste like York Imperial as that’s simply how it always tastes.

Some here have commented that the red-fleshed apples make a good uniquely-berry flavored apple sauce. Williams’ Pride and Grenadine in particular have been mentioned, if I’m not mistaken. WP is perfectly fine out-of-hand and probably does make a good apple sauce, for those who really dig apple sauce.


I’ll second the Cortlands for great pies and crisps. Our favorite here.


Doesn’t the Cortland’s get mealy quite quickly?


I freeze them, so it doesn’t matter that they aren’t long keepers.


I agree with Matt, I like Cortland as well. When I’m eating a fresh apple, texture is super high on my list of importance. But when I eat apple pie I do not like apples that stay too firm or have any crunch at all. I like apples that hold their shape but soften nicely. Almost melting as Matt said. To each their own I guess. Since my moms passing, my dad has been making her apple pie recipe with golden delicious and it’s always steller.


I will take taste over most anything else. Unless the apple is really mealy. That is just not a trait I want to have in an apple. Those mealy ones my be okay as sauces IMO. But as far as eating one, I prefer something different.
I may have to try some Cortland’s from an orchard if they still have some. The ones in the grocery stores do not impress me at all.


Here in northern California, they are really wonderful for pie - one of the best. They’re also one of our favorite sauce apples.