The Empire Apple

Here are a few clues... 

  • It has a crunchy texture, sweet-tart taste and a creamy white flesh
  • It is versatile, good for just about everything; salads, baking, eating fresh, pies and freezing
  • It was derived from a seed grown in 1945 at the New York State Agriculture Experiment Station of Cornell University

And finally in 1966... the Empire apple was born!

After harvesting thousands of seeds from that first one back in 1945, the Geneva team from Cornell released the final selection in 1966 at the New York Fruit Testing Association meeting. 

According to the US Apple Association, the Empire cultivar is now one of the top 15 most popular apples in the United States!


Unraveling the Mystery of the Empire Apple Variety

Imagine a crisp red fruit that embodies the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness, with a crisp texture that leaves a delightful crunch with every bite. This apple is not just any ordinary fruit; it's the Empire apple, a creation that emerged from a single seed in 1945 at the New York State Agriculture Experiment Station of Cornell University. Let's dive into the fascinating story behind this beloved apple variety.

  • Crunchy Texture, Sweet-Tart Taste: The Empire apple boasts a crunchy texture, a sweet-tart taste, and a creamy white flesh that makes it a versatile and delicious choice for a wide range of culinary creations.
  • Versatile Culinary Uses: Whether you're looking for a fresh snack, a tangy addition to salads, a juicy ingredient for baking, or a star player in pies, the Empire apple delivers exceptional flavor and texture.
  • A Cross of McIntosh and Red Delicious: The Empire apple is the result of a cross between the McIntosh and Red Delicious apple varieties. This unique combination contributes to its distinct taste profile and widespread popularity.

The Birth of Empire: The Empire apple's journey began with a single seed that showed remarkable promise. Harvested in 1945, this seed was a cross between the McIntosh and Red Delicious apples, setting the stage for a new apple variety with exceptional qualities.

Versatility Personified: What sets the Empire apple apart is its incredible versatility. Whether you're craving a red, fresh, crisp snack, a tangy addition to your salad, a juicy ingredient for baking, or a star player in a flavorful pie, the Empire apple delivers on all fronts. Its creamy white flesh adds a delightful texture to dishes, making it a favorite among chefs and home cooks alike.

Rising to Popularity: Thanks to its exceptional taste, texture, and adaptability, the Empire cultivar quickly captured the hearts and palates of apple enthusiasts across the United States. Today, it proudly holds its place among the top 15 most popular apples in the country, according to the US Apple Association. Its enduring popularity is a testament to its superior quality and widespread appeal.

From Orchard to Your Doorstep: At, we celebrate the legacy and deliciousness of the Empire apple by offering them directly from our orchards to your doorstep. Each Empire apple you receive is a testament to decades of dedication, innovation, and passion for creating exceptional fruit varieties. Whether enjoyed fresh, baked into a pie, or incorporated into your favorite recipes, the Empire apple promises a delightful culinary experience every time.

In Conclusion: The Empire apple's journey from a humble seed to a beloved cultivar is a testament to the artistry and science of apple breeding. With its crunchy texture, sweet-tart taste, and creamy white flesh, the Empire apple continues to captivate apple lovers worldwide. So, next time you bite into an Empire apple, remember the remarkable story behind this iconic fruit and savor the flavors of tradition, innovation, and excellence.Click Here for Our Empire Apples!

updated 04-08-24

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