Uses for Apple Peels

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Are you making delicious apple treats and goodies with this yummy fruit? Don’t waste a bit! Here are some creative uses for apple peels.

Are you making delicious apple treats and goodies with this yummy fruit? Don't waste a bit! Here are some creative uses for apple peels. #wastenot #applerecipes #apples #frugalrecipe #useitup

There are many different uses for apple peels including using them to make tea, to make jelly, to make syrup, and much more. Instead of wasting your apple peel scraps or just giving them as a treat to the chickens, you can use them to make many delicious things for your family.

Uses for Leftover Apple Peels

We are now in the middle of apple season and that means LOTS of apple recipes! Apple Pies, Applesauce, Baked Apples, Apple Butter and anything else you can think to add apples to are such a treat this time of year! Many of those apple recipes leave behind a lot of apple peels. Even a moderate-sized batch of applesauce can leave a decent pile of apple peels.

In the past, I’ve always fed those apple scraps to my chickens, but it seems like such a waste to throw them out or just to put them in the compost pile. Especially since many of the apple’s nutrients and vitamins are stored in the peel. So I decided to try something new and find other ways to use the apple peels. Here are just some of the clever ways of things you can do with apple peels.

Apple Peels for Aromatherapy

Apple peels can be simmered on the stove to create the scent of fresh-baked apple pie. This is ideal for anytime you want to relax or are having guests over. If you don’t want to do this right now, the peels can be frozen and simmered when you are ready to enjoy their fruity scent. Simply place the peels in a saucepan with water, toss in a cinnamon stick and simmer on low. Add in water as needed to prevent burning.

Tip: Add a little more holiday spirit to your home by tossing in some Dried Orange Peel.

You can also make Apple Peel Potpourri to use for later. Dehydrate the peels, and a few apple cores and slices if you’d like. Combine them with 1 cinnamon stick (broken into several pieces), 3 ginger slivers and 1 teaspoon of whole cloves. Make sure you add enough dried peels and cores to make 1 full cup. Store in an airtight container or the freezer until you are ready to simmer. Dump the contents into a teapot and fill about two-thirds full with water.

Uses for Apple Peels

Apple Peel Jelly

You can use apple peels to make a delicious jelly to enjoy or gift to others! In a saucepan, bring 4 cups of apple peels and cores and 5 cups of water to a boil. Then, reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered for 20 minutes. Pour through a jelly bag to strain. Measure the juice and return 2 cups of juice to the saucepan. Add 1 1/2 cups of sugar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Return to a boil, stirring frequently. Take the pan off of the heat and skim the foam from the top. Pour the hot liquid into two hot, sterile 6-ounce jelly jars. Wipe the rims well and seal them. Store your jelly in the refrigerator or process in a water bath canner based on your altitude according to the USDA chart below.

Apple Peel Jelly

Tea Kettle Old Fashioned

Apple Tea with Apple Peels

Enjoy apple peelings in a delicious tea! Pour 4 cups of water into a saucepan along with the peelings from 6 apples, 1 cinnamon stick or ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Boil for 15 minutes. Strain out the peels and cinnamon stick and add 1 tablespoon of honey to sweeten.

Tip: If you enjoy a nice cup of tea, you should try this Warm Cinnamon Tea Herbal Latte.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar with Peels

Make apple vinegar with your apple peels. Pack a half-gallon mason jar tightly with apple peels and cores, leaving an inch of space at the top. Fill the jar with water, completely submerging the peels and cores. The contents must remain underwater to let fermentation do its job.

Cover with a towel or cheesecloth, held in place with a rubber band. Store somewhere warm for about a month. Pour off the liquid and store it in a glass jar. Use it anywhere you would use Apple Cider Vinegar.

Tip: Check out all of these great Uses for Apple Cider Vinegar!

Homemade Pancake Syrup

Apple Peel Syrup

Re-purpose those peels into something delicious, like a big batch of Apple Peel Syrup! You can use any type of apples to make the syrup and it’s a perfect canning project if you are already working on applesauce or something similar.

Tip: Serve this syrup on top of Homemade Pancake and Waffle Mix or this easy, Make Ahead French Toast Casserole for an extra special treat!

Apple Peels

Apple Peel Chips

This is a yummy snack that the kids will love. Toss the apple peels in a cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place all of the peels on a baking sheet and try to spread them evenly. Bake at 300 degrees F for about 30 minutes, turn the apple skins halfway through, until crispy.

You could also crumble these up and use them apple peel chips on salads.

Apple Slices

Add Apple Peel to Other Recipes

Apple peels are a nutritious and tasty ingredient for many other food recipes. Chop them up and them to coleslaw recipes, hot oatmeal and smoothies.


Non-Food Uses for Apple Peels

Many animals enjoy apple peels as a treat. Rabbits, goats and other herbivores will love any extras you might have. Apple peels can also be used to remove stains from aluminum pots and pans. Place the peels in the pot and add some water to them. Simmer for roughly 30 minutes and wipe clean.

–Looking for more uses for old foods? Here are some Uses for Banana Peels to check out!

Peeling an Apple

FAQ About Apple Peels

Can I throw apple peels in my garden?

Apple peels that are tossed directly in your garden might attract wildlife that you’d rather not have munching your veggies. It’s better to put them into your compost pile first.

Is eating apple peel good for you?

Vitamins A, C, and K are found in apple skin. It also contains important minerals such as potassium, phosphorus, and calcium. Apple peels also contain a good amount of fiber.

Is it ok to eat the apple peel?

If you are washing your apples with a good produce wash before consuming, you shouldn’t worry too much about eating the apple peels. Store bought apples do tend to have a wax film coating them, but using a produce wash will help.

If you are still concerned about eating the apple peel, buy organic apples instead. You should still always wash apples before use whether it’s organic or not.

I love finding uses for things that would otherwise be thrown away, like these apple peels. Food waste is a big no-no in our home. Once you start exploring the possibilities, you never know what frugal uses you might be able to benefit from! Don’t miss my Uses For Page with all kinds of frugal ideas on how to use things.

More Apple Recipes

Apple Danish Braid Recipe
Sweet & Tasty Apple Pie Jam Canning Recipe
Easy Sweet Potato Apple Recipe
Apple Cheddar Soup Recipe
Canning Applesauce from Tart Apples
Spiced Apple Butter Recipe
Applesauce Pancakes

Don’t forget Canned Apple Pie Filling, it can be used in so many different Apple Pie Filling Desserts!

What are some of your favorite uses for apple peels?


This post on Uses for Apple Peels was originally published on Little House Living in September 2016. It has been updated as of September 2022.

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  1. I remember when we got a peeler from the Pampered Chef when I was a kid, my mom told us to take the apple peels to the deck, and we’d watch birds attack the long string of peel. They loved it!

  2. Thanks for the great tips! I am so excited for apple season! Our “orchard” is still twiggy trees, but someday I will have our own apples! One question – do the chickens do ok with the peels loose, or should I enclose the peels in an old dishwasher caddy so they get smaller pieces? I’m thinking how they shouldn’t have potato peels, and that is similar. Thanks?

    Oh, and thanks to your post about the sauce maker, I got myself one :). My husband has justified many incidental purchases of yard equipment since moving to our hobby farm 1.5 years ago, I figured the kitchen could use a new implement, too :).

    1. I like to give all chicken scraps in some kind of shallow dish just so they don’t make a mess of them but either way will work. Yay for the new sauce maker! I hope you love it 🙂

  3. Thank you so much for sharing! I just picked 85 lbs of apples Sunday to use for canning applesauce. I wanted to make apple jelly. Now I know a way to do it!! 🙂 Do I have to use pectin?

  4. I’m able to make copious amounts of natural Apple Cider Vinegar just using apple scraps! Recently posted about it too, if you’d care to see what that looks like…

  5. Make your applesauce with peels–it makes it go a lot faster, and if you puree it in the final smoothing out step you can’t even tell.

  6. I have a recipe for apple-peel twigs from a Martha Stewart mag a couple years ago. Toss peels with cinnamon and sugar. sprinkle with water. Spread on parchment-lined baking sheet and bake in 250′ oven until peels are curled and crisp about 2 1/2 hours. Rotating halfway.

    1. My kids almost prefer these to the Apple Pies that I make. I put them in the dehydrator instead of using the oven and the whole house smells like a giant Apple Pie!

  7. What great ideas! I’m definately going to have to try some of them. When I make applesauce I always feel bad when I throw out all of the apple peels. Now I can make something else with them. I think I will try the potpourri first.

  8. Those are some really good ideas. I never would of thought of aromatherapy. Stopping in from the link up today.

  9. I have frozen apple peels before to use later, they work great! I just made some apple peel jelly last night, once I strained the juice from the peels and cores, I put the remaining scraps in my flower/strawberry bed. Its great compost! I did this last year and my strawberries and flowers went crazy this last spring!

  10. Make applesauce with your peels! After I have peeled apples for the freezer, I cook down the peels & cores and run them through my sauce maker. I am amazed at how much applesauce I am able to get from what would otherwise be considered “waste”.

  11. I just seed and quarter my apples for sauce. I never peel. Just heat then throw in my vitamix then can. Easy. The color of the peels makes it look pretty.
    Also, if I have peels from pie, then I dehydrate them and put in my granola recipe. As
    On gas they’re crunchy, they work great.

  12. Just wondering if it’s safe to use the cores with the seeds in them. In my juicing books, they mention removing the seeds from the apples before juicing because the seeds contain cyanide. I don’t really know enough about this issue. Maybe it’s only dangerous for juicing and not for boiling? Any info appreciated.

  13. I love your RV. Can I ask what kind do you have it seems extra roomy compared to the ones we have looked at.

  14. Great ideas and just in time since we’ll be going apple picking soon. I really want to try the apple tea & jelly. I know my kids have fed the chickens at 4-H apple peels recently, but had no idea there were so many other uses. Thanks for linking to the Craftastic Monday party at Sew Can Do. Would love to feature this, but can’t seem to find your link party page or a party button/link – if you have it somewhere just let me know:)

  15. These ideas are great. I am most excited to try the apple peel Jelly; we really love apples in our house. Thanks for linking up to Merry Monday. Hope you will share more great tips with us.

  16. That apple tea sounds delicious! Plus since it’s using the peel, it must be healthy, too 🙂

    I love just munching on apple peels as a snack, but true, there’s a limit to how much you can eat in one go!

  17. I use my peels and cores to make pectin for other jams and jellies. Just boil them down, like the way you said for apple peel jelly, strain and boil some more. The juice should reduce by half. I test it but putting a little into a dish of rubbing alcohol. If it’s thick enough to pick upn with a fork, it’s done.

    Then I can it in half pint jars for future use.

  18. I love the ideas on apple peelings. When I do apples, I wash them good first, then use my apple peeler, corer, slicer.. I either dry the slices, or freeze them in zip lock baggies for fried apples, apple pie, or even chunky apple sauce. I collect the peelings and cores in a big pan, and when I’m all done peeling and coring a bushel of apples, I cook those peelings and cores with just enough water to keep it from scorching. When all done cooking, I put them through the fruit and vegetable strainer on my mixer. I get about 5 quarts of smooth apple sauce. There isn’t much left after this, and what is left, goes onto the compost pile. I like putting the applesauce I get into small containers, like about a half cup, to be used in recipes, along with containers to just eat. If after a year in the freezer, the apple sauce isn’t gone, I recycle it into apple butter, cooking that in a crock pot.

  19. Thanks for this, Merissa. Some great recipes, many lost to today’s cooks, especially the apple cider vinegar!

  20. I just made your apple peel pancake syrup and it was a HUGE hit with my family! Thank you for posting it.

  21. I just keep most of the peels with the apples when I make apple sauce & it turn out yummy. Thanks for the great suggestions!

  22. Thanks, Merissa! I dislike wasting anything of our produce and appreciate your wisdom here. Am making Apple Peel Jelly right now as I make Crock Pot Applesauce with some of our apples. Keep up the good work! -Dave

  23. Such great ideas! Thank you so much for sharing with us at Dishing It & Digging It! Hope to see you back this week 🙂

  24. When making applesauce I just wash and quarter my apples and then cook 20 minutes in my pressure cooker with just enough water to cover. The resulting apples are strained out and put into a food mill. The juice left is wonderful apple cider. The sieved applesauce needs almost no sugar. There is almost no waste at all and that little bit goes into the compost pile

  25. Hi! I just tried your apple peel jelly, but it remains in a liquid state. It didn’t gel. What are your suggestions? Is there anything I can do with it in the liquid state? Mary S.

  26. A humble thank you for sharing your knowledge. I love and aspire to live by your motto, Making the most of what you have.

  27. When I have a glut of apple peels, I like to dry them and eat them instead of junk when I need a quick snack. But I must admit that I especially like the idea of giving the long peels to the birds–that would be so fun to watch!