I love the casualness and ease of this great finger food dessert—a plate of hot apple fritters, dusted with confectioners’ sugar and passed around the table, is a satisfying end to a meal. While these fritters are wonderful to make when seasonal apples are abundant, you can also vary the fruit, using pears instead of apples, for example. If you like, serve them with vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of honey. They’re best hot, immediately after they are fried.–Thomas Keller

A slate tray with piles of matchstick sliced apple fritters, dusted with icing sugar.

Apple Fritters

5 / 3 votes
Thomas Keller’s apple fritters are matchstick slices, deep-fried, and sprinkled with icing sugar. Crisp, full of apple flavor, and ready to be devoured by everyone within reaching distance.
David Leite
Servings6 servings
Calories270 kcal
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time45 minutes


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 3 large Fuji, Gala, or Golden Delicious apples*
  • Canola oil for deep-frying
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting


  • Whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Lightly beat the egg and milk in a small bowl. Whisk the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients just until combined. (If you need, you can cover and refrigerate the batter for up to 3 hours.)
  • Peel the apples and slice the fruit from the core. Cut the apples into matchsticks about 2 inches long and 1/4 inch thick. Gently fold the apples into the batter.
  • Heat about 1 1/2 inches of the oil to 325°F (160°C) in a wide, deep pot. Place a cooling rack over a baking sheet and line it with paper towels. Using two forks, lift up about 5 or 6 of the apple matchsticks from the batter, allowing the excess batter to drip back into the bowl. The mixture should be irregular in shape, with just a very light coating of batter enrobing the apples. Gently lower the batter-covered apples into the hot oil.
  • Repeat, adding a few more fritters to the oil without crowding the pot. Fry the fritters, turning them from time to time, until crisp and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Use a skimmer or slotted spoon to move the fritters to the paper towels. Repeat with the remaining batter.
  • Stack the fritters on a serving platter, sprinkle with the powdered sugar and serve immediately.


*What are the best apples for apple fritters?

Which apple will you use in this fritter recipe? You could use any of the common store-bought varieties noted in the ingredients list below, although those Macouns from the farmers’ market might also be nice, depending on the sort of apple smack that you seek. Actually, just about any apple from the greenmarket, we think, would work swell. Let us know which variety you choose and how it goes.
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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 270 kcalCarbohydrates: 38 gProtein: 5 gFat: 12 gSaturated Fat: 2 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3 gMonounsaturated Fat: 7 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 35 mgSodium: 226 mgPotassium: 308 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 18 gVitamin A: 171 IUVitamin C: 5 mgCalcium: 104 mgIron: 1 mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2009 Thomas Keller. Photo © 2009 Deborah Jones. All rights reserved.

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I must say—my mouth waters with your wonderful pictures. My eyes devour all of it. Hopefully my food turns out as good as your looks. Thanks again.

    Joellen Finnie

  2. I made something like this once from a recipe that called for Guinness in the batter. It was intended to be a dessert but I couldn’t resist taking it in a savory direction and I added a little fresh sage. The fritters were interesting but the combination of stout and sage was a bit much. I think a sweet version like this one would be great with rosemary, thyme or lemon thyme though.