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How to Core and Peel Apples

By Andrea Geary Published

Prepping apples for cooking or eating isn’t hard, but a little strategy can make the work go faster and minimize waste.

Whether we core an apple before peeling or vice versa depends on whether or not we use an apple corer. And although it’s always fun to see if you can remove the peel in a single unbroken strip, we find that removing vertical swaths is more efficient—especially when prepping lots of apples for something such as applesauce.

With an Apple Corer

Removing the core with a good apple corer minimizes waste. When using this tool, we prefer to core before peeling to ensure that no bits of skin remain on the apples’ tops or bottoms. Here's the best way to do it. 

How to Core an Apple with an Apple Corer

1. Use corer to remove apple core. 

Peeling a Cored Apple

2. Peel cored apple in wide vertical strips, working from top to bottom.

Without an Apple Corer


If you don't have an apple corer, we don't recommend wasting time digging out the core with a paring knife. Here's a better way:

1. Peel apple around top and bottom, then peel remainder of apple in wide vertical strips. 

Cutting off Apple Core with a Knife

2. Cut into quarters, then cut away core from each wedge.

Recommended Equipment

Our Favorite Apple Corer

This corer’s large handle, sharp teeth, and wide two-part barrel help push through even large, crunchy apples with ease.

Our Favorite Fruit/Vegetable Peeler

Small but mighty, this Y-shaped peeler is razor-sharp and rides smoothly every time.

Try These Great Apple Recipes

Try These Great Apple Recipes

Recipe Deep-Dish Apple Pie

We wanted mounds of tender, juicy apples in our deep-dish pie, but first we had to wade through half-baked apples, soupy fillings, and sodden crusts.

Recipe Cider-Glazed Apple Bundt Cake

The unique properties of a Bundt pan can help produce an apple cake that’s wonderfully moist and not soggy. Ensuring lots of true apple flavor is another story.

Recipe Apple Strudel

Unless you’re a skilled pastry chef, wrapping ultrathin, delicate dough around a wet filling is usually a recipe for disaster. We wanted a strudel recipe for the rest of us.

Recipe French Apple Tart

Classic form and good looks are compulsory for a holiday centerpiece, but they don’t matter if the dessert falls apart when you serve it. We wanted integrity with the beauty.