Baked apples are a homey favorite for weekend breakfasts or as a side with pork chops or roast chicken. Our lightly sweet version relies on a delicate interplay of flavor and aroma — warming spices from the Garam Masala, a touch of richness from the butter and maple syrup, and a bright note from a little lemon zest. Try topping still-warm baked apples with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a simple autumn (or winter) dessert!
Choose sweet-tart apple varieties that hold their shape during baking, such as Honey Crisp, Russets, Winesap, or Mutsu. Left-over baked apples keep well in the fridge for several days, reheat them at half-power in a microwave oven.
2 large apples, washed
2 teaspoons unsalted butter, divided + more for greasing the baking dish
1 tablespoon maple syrup
¼ teaspoon Garam Masala
Lemon zest (from half a lemon)
Pinch of sea salt
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Butter the inside of a 9-inch glass pie plate or casserole dish and set aside.
Cut the apples in half from top to bottom. Cut a very thin slice off the outer ‘cheek’ of each apple half, so that it will sit level in the baking dish. Use a spoon or melon-baller to scoop out the core. Arrange the apples in the baking dish with the interior cut side up.
Place ½ teaspoon of butter into the cavity where the core was. Drizzle the maple syrup evenly over the apples, letting some pool around the butter. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt (just a little, perhaps ⅛ teaspoon), lemon zest, and Garam Masala.
Bake until the apples are tender (but not mushy) and there are caramelized bits around their edges. Check on the apples after 20 minutes, but baking can take between 25-35 minutes depending on the apples. Remove the baking dish from the oven and let the apples cool for 5–10 minutes before serving.