I love snacks, especially crunchy ones. Because I snack so much, it was a hallelujah moment when I finally mastered the apple chip- a satisfying, healthy, one-ingredient treat. Not a single drop of oil ever touches these chips! I have also made pear chips before, and I’m sure you can apply this technique to other fruits and vegetables with similar textures (stay tuned for sweet potato chips coming later this week).
There are two pieces of equipment that are essential to making the perfect chip: a mandoline and a silicone baking mat. First, preheat your oven to 280ºF. Then, slice one apple using your mandoline. While you want your slices to have uniform thickness so they finish cooking at the same time, whatever thickness you choose affects your final chip. Thin slices make very crispy, fragile chips while thicker slices make much sturdier chips. You can also vary the direction you slice the apple in. I sliced my apple crosswise to create stars in the middle because I have nice memories of my grandmom cutting apples this way when I’d visit her house.
Then, lay your apple slices out on a silicone baking mat. The silicone baking mat is essential because nothing sticks to it and your apple slices will peel right off after they’ve cooled down. If you bake your apple slices on tin foil and don’t want to use oil to prevent them from sticking, then you have to peel the slices off as soon as they come out of the oven and set them to cool elsewhere. If the apple slices cool on the foil, then they will become too crisp to peel, and you’ll end up with very delicious crumbs.
Put your apple slices in the oven for approximately 30 or 40 minutes. As I always say, your nose should know when they’re done cooking because your kitchen will smell like caramel and applesauce. As soon as you start getting this smell, pull your apple slices out and test them for doneness. Because the slices won’t crisp up until they’re cool, you should peel one slice off and wave it around above your head. I’m not trying to make you look crazy, it’s the real way to tell (well, you can wave it at arm level if you want). If your chip still has some soft spots, put the tray back in the oven for a few more minutes.
While you’re waiting for your apple slices to cook, I encourage you to utilize/eat any extra slices. This slice found second life as a photo prop, and I had big plans to eat it when its work was done.
But happy-Stella got to it before I did. She liked the finished product too.
One not-so-great thing about these chips is that they don’t stay crisp for more than a few hours. You shouldn’t have trouble gobbling them up right away, but if you do happen to have leftovers, you can re-crisp them in the oven for a minute when you’re ready for round two.
While these chips are great on their own, they’re also good crumbled into salads or used as a decorative topper to a bowl of ice cream. If you’re willing to stray from the 1 ingredient glory of these chips, you can also add seasonings like cinnamon before baking. Happy snacking!