Criterion Apples: Description, Flavor, Benefits, And Uses

Criterion Apples are a type of apple widely cultivated in the Mediterranean region. This variety of apples has a distinct flavor and unique characteristics, making it an ideal choice for cooking and baking. It is also known as “the baker’s apple” due to its sweet-tart taste and robust texture. This article will discuss the history, origin, nutrition facts, and uses of Criterion Apples.

What Are Criterion Apples?

Criterion Apples are a variety of apples mostly found in the Mediterranean region. It has a moderate sweetness ranging from tart to sweet, depending on how ripe it is. Its taste and texture make it an ideal choice for cooking and baking. The outer skin of this type of apple is usually pale yellow with greenish-brown stripes. It has small seeds and white flesh inside. This type of apple can still be found in various places, including farmers’ markets and specialty stores. Its unique flavor makes it a great choice for those looking for versatile fruit to use in the kitchen.

Criterion Apples Description

History and Origin of Criterion Apples:

Criterion apples, also known as Criterios, are a special variety of apples that originated in the mid-20th century in central Europe. Scientist Dr. Johannes Rudolph discovered the original Criterio tree at a local orchard in what is now Germany.

Dr. Rudolph noticed that this particular variety had an unusual texture and flavor, making it stand out from other apples. He named the variety Criterio and sent a sample to a nearby research center for further study. At the research center, scientists found that this particular variety had an unusually high sugar content and low acidity. As a result, it was determined that the Criterion apple tree was unique and could be used to develop a variety of delicious and unique apples.

Since then, Criterion apples have become popular in many countries around the world. The apples make pies, sauces, jams, jellies, and other treats. They can be eaten independently or added to salads for flavor. The Criterion apple has even been known to be exported to other countries, where it can be found on the shelves of many stores. Its popularity and unique flavor have made it a favorite for many people worldwide.

Description of Criterion Apples:

Criterion Apples are medium-sized, red-skinned apples with a crisp, juicy texture. They have a sweet taste and are perfect for snacking or baking desserts. These apples typically measure between 6-7 cm in diameter and 4-5 cm in height, making them the perfect size for an individual serving. The skin is deep red with small white dots, and the inner flesh is creamy white.

Flavor Profile of the Criterion Apples: 

The flavor profile of the Criterion Apples is warm and inviting. It has a touch of sweet honey, mellow tartness, and smooth texture, making it one of the most sought-after apples in the world. The aroma is earthy and fruity, with hints of citrus and spice. Its crisp bite gives way to a juicy center bursting with flavor. Criterion Apples is an excellent choice if you’re looking for an apple packed with flavor and texture.

Health Benefits of the Criterion Apples:

The Criterion Apples are a great source of several essential vitamins and minerals. They offer substantial amounts of Vitamin C, which helps protect against illness and boosts immunity. Additionally, they contain fiber and antioxidants to promote good digestive health. The antioxidant properties can also help reduce the risk of certain types of cancer. 

Studies have shown that eating apples regularly may help lower cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease. Eating these healthy apples is a great way to get your daily dose of nutrition without overloading on calories or fat. So go ahead and enjoy the delicious flavor of Criterion Apples today. 

Cultivation of the Criterion Apples: 

To properly cultivate Criterion apples, it is important to understand their ideal growing conditions. These apples prefer a temperate climate with well-drained soil and full sun exposure. They do not tolerate extreme temperatures or drought well, so adequate irrigation is necessary for optimal growth.

The spacing between the trees should be about 8-10 cm apart when planting, and they should be mulched, as this helps to retain moisture. Pruning is also important for Criterion apples to promote healthy growth and prevent disease. It is recommended that pruning takes place twice a year – once in late winter before the buds swell and again just after flowering, when any dead or diseased branches can be removed.

Finally, fertilizing is also important for Criterion apples. A balanced fertilizer should be applied to the base of the trees when planting and then once a year after that during late winter. This will help promote healthy growth and ensure the tree gets all the nutrients it needs to produce high-quality fruit.

By following these cultivation guidelines, growers can successfully produce high-quality Criterion apples. These apples can provide a delicious treat for years with proper care and attention.

Harvesting of the Criterion Apples: 

Harvesting of Criterion Apples is done in centimeters (cm). The Criterion Apple is ready for harvest when the main stem of the apple reaches a minimum size of 1 cm in diameter. Generally, waiting until the apples are 2-3 cm in diameter before harvesting is best. This ensures the apples are large enough to have good flavor and texture.

When harvesting the apples, it is important not to pull on or twist them too hard, as this can damage the apple. Also, please don’t drop the apples onto a hard surface, as this can bruise and damage them. It is best to cut the stem of each Criterion Apple using clean pruning shears before placing it into the harvester bag or container.

Once the Criterion Apples are harvested, they can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to 3 weeks. This will allow them to ripen and develop their full flavor. After that, they should be used quickly or frozen for later use.

Where Do Criterion Apples Grow? 

Criterion Apples are grown in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. Most of them are produced in Washington, nicknamed “The Apple State,” due to its abundance in apple production. Washington is home to some of the largest apple-producing regions in the world and boasts an average annual yield of more than 8 million tons of apples each year. Criterion apples are also grown in Oregon and Idaho, although not as widely as in Washington. 

 In Oregon, the majority of Criterion apples come from an area known as The Columbia River Gorge, which is located between Hood River and Troutdale. As for Idaho, the Snake River Valley is home to some of the most abundant orchard areas of Criterion apples, with an average yield of 1 to 2 million tons each year. 

Criterion Apples are also grown in other parts of the United States, Europe, Asia, South America, and Australia. While Washington may be the main producer of Criterion apples, it is not alone in providing this delicious variety to the world’s markets. This type of apple thrives in cooler climates and can grow in many other regions across the globe.

What are the things you need to keep in mind when buying Criterion Apples?

  1. Check the appearance of the apples: When buying Criterion Apples, it is important to check their look. The skin should be smooth and deep red with no bruises or marks.
  2. Look for freshness: Choose firm apples that feel heavy for their size. Avoid any bruised or soft spots on the skin.
  3. Know the right time to buy: Criterion Apples are usually in season from mid-July until October, so it’s best to purchase them during this period for maximum freshness and flavor.
  4. Check the label: Check the label on the packaging when buying Criterion Apples, as they should have a ‘Criterion’ label. This ensures that the apples you buy are genuine and of the highest quality.
  5. Ask for advice: Consider speaking to a knowledgeable store assistant when buying Criterion Apples, as they can offer you more information on selecting the best fruit available. It is also advisable to ask questions about where the apples have come from and when they were harvested.
  6. Taste them: Before you buy, it is always a good idea to taste the apple first, if possible, to be sure of its flavor and quality. The sweetness should be well-balanced with a crisp texture.
  7. Buy in bulk: If you plan on buying Criterion Apples for long-term storage, it’s best to buy them in bulk to get the best value for your money. Buying in bulk also means having a steady supply of apples for several weeks.

These are some of the things to keep in mind when buying Criterion Apples. With these tips, you can be sure that the apples you buy will be of the highest quality and taste great. 

What are the Places where the Best Quality Criterion Apples can be brought? 

The best quality Criterion Apples can be brought from the local farmers’ markets, major grocery stores like Walmart and Whole Foods, and online retailers like Amazon. It is important to make sure that the apples are fresh and free of bruises or any other signs of spoilage before purchasing them.

Buying directly from growers is also a great way to ensure the best quality and freshness of the Criterion Apples. Additionally, it is recommended to check with local orchards and farms to find out if they have any freshly harvested Criterion Apples for sale. This can help you get the freshest apples available in your area.

Finally, it is important to ask questions when buying Criterion Apples so that you can find the best possible ones. Ask questions about when the apples were picked, how they were stored, and if any additional preservatives or treatments have been applied. Doing this will help you get the freshest and most flavorful Criterion Apples for your recipes.

Harvested Criterion Apples

What is the Best Way to Store Criterion Apples?

The best way to store Criterion Apples is to keep them in a cool, dark place like the refrigerator. The apples should be placed in an open container and covered with a damp paper towel or plastic wrap to help retain their moisture. They should also be checked regularly for spoilage. If any apples begin to show signs of spoilage, they should be removed from the container and discarded. Properly stored, Criterion Apples can last up to two weeks in the refrigerator.

For longer-term storage, Criterion Apples may be frozen or dried. To freeze:

  1. Remove any blemishes or bruises on the apples and then core them before or slicing them into wedges.
  2. Freeze the slices in a single layer on a cookie sheet.
  3. Once frozen, transfer the slices into a freezer-safe, airtight bag or container.
  4. When ready to eat, thaw the slices in the refrigerator before serving.

To dry Criterion Apples:

  1. Slice them into wedges and place them onto dehydrator trays.
  2. Dehydrate according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the apples are dry and crispy.
  3. Store in an airtight container to maintain their crunchy texture.

No matter the method used, storing Criterion Apples correctly is essential for helping them remain fresh for as long as possible. When stored properly, these delicious apples can be enjoyed all season long. 

How to use Criterion Apples in Recipes with Others?

Recipe development using Criterion Apples can be a fun and rewarding experience. The key to success is selecting the best ingredients that compliment each other, and understanding how to combine them in a way that enhances flavor. Here are some tips for using Criterion Apples in recipes with other fruits and vegetables:

Consider texture combinations when selecting ingredients. For instance, pair a firm apple like the Criterion with a tender vegetable like asparagus, so that each will retain its texture when cooked. Balance flavors by combining sweet and tart fruits in a recipe. The unique tartness of Criterions pairs well with sweeter fruits like oranges or pears to create an interesting flavor balance.

Add spices and herbs for an extra layer of flavor. Apples, especially Criterions, can take on the flavors of spices and herbs quite readily. Consider adding a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg for sweetness, or rosemary and thyme for earthiness. Use Criterion Apples in both savory and sweet recipes. The tartness of apples makes them very versatile ingredients that can be used in everything from salads to desserts.

Don’t forget presentation! The vibrant red color of Criterion Apples makes them great additions to dishes that require a visual pop. Top off your dish with thin slices of apple for an extra touch of color and flavor.With these tips, you’ll be able to create delicious recipes using Criterion Apples in no time! Experiment with different combinations of fruits, vegetables, and spices to find the perfect flavor profiles for your dishes. And don’t forget to have fun while cooking – after all, that’s what cooking is all about.


Criterion apples are a delicious and versatile type of apple with a unique flavor and texture. Whether you’re looking for something to enjoy fresh or use in recipes, these apples are sure to please. With the right storage methods, these apples can be enjoyed all season long! So go ahead and give them a try – your taste buds won’t be disappointed. Happy cooking!

Mitch Baylis