Granny Smith Apple Review

"The Original Sour Apple"

Barely Worth It
Granny Smith Apple


There was a time, not so very long ago, when apples came in two varieties: “Red” and “Green.” Generally, “Red” apples corresponded to the now contemptible Red Delicious and “Green” apples referred to the famed Granny Smith. For decades, children in school cafeterias across the world sang the praises of the mouth-puckering alternative to the “Teacher’s Pet” Red Delicious. This was an apple for the cool kids, it inspired its own candy flavor, and showed how truly original its eaters were. 

How sad it is that so many unfortunate souls still cling to the stray bits of personality they gleaned from proudly declaring themselves a Granny Smith fan when they were but mere tots. It is the dawn of a new age in Appleandia and Granny Smith (an actual British ex-pat who lived in Australia) is long dead. It is time to bury her apple along with her. Admittedly, this is a superb baking apple perhaps the best, but as for munching, the Granny Smith’s densely packed flesh and insurmountable skin create a most unpleasant eating experience.

Here are the straight facts: the Granny Smith’s tough flesh and skin will quite literally make your gums bleed, it was borne from the trash of Granny Smith’s French crab apples, and science has determined that this is the most undigestible apple in the world (which, to be fair, is actually good for gut flora). To all the Granny Smith acolytes: it is time to grow up. There are now superior sour apples on the market.

BONUS POINTS: +1 Uniqueness, +1 Historical Significance, +1 Baking

Branding / Consistency
Cost / Availability




Red Apple Icon



Red Apple Icon



Red Apple Icon


French Crab Apple x Unknown








Baking, Sour Apple


Green Apple, Sour Apple

71 thoughts on “Granny Smith Apple Review”

  1. This absolutely resonates because Granny Smiths were my choice as a kid when they really were the only alternative to Red Delicious. Within a few years Galas, Braeburns, and Fujis started to appear on the scene and apple eaters everywhere breathed a sigh of relief, myself included.

    On an unrelated note I checked your bio and I recently watched Adventure Beast. Top marks! I really hope it gets renewed!

    1. Oh, and I recently bought a bag of granny smiths specifically to feed my goats because I knew I wouldn’t eat them myself like I kept doing with the others! It’s working, lol.

  2. I have never had a mealy granny smith. The tartness balances the sweetness of peanut butter perfectly. it’s still the best apple around.

    1. Agreed. Apple with peanut butter is an amazing before-bed snack and Granny Smiths are perfect for the job. While the Appleist usually has pretty solid takes, his apparently inferior gum strength prevents him from enjoying a delicious treat.

      1. They’re also great to slice up and put in sandwiches, the tartness gives the sandwich a nice spike of flavor. I’ve been using them to recreate a local coffeeshop’s sandwich at home, made with turkey, applewood bacon, pepper jack cheese, sundried tomato aioli, a bit of red onion, and granny smith slices.

  3. As a kid, I found the tartness of this apple absolutely heavenly. Now I can only eat them if they are combined with slices of sweeter apples or baked in a pie.

  4. I wont lie, the toughness of the granny smith is part of the appeal for me, because I’m a little freak. That, and it’s the most readily available sour apple to me. I have texture sensitivities that only the honeycrisp can exempt itself from, I get a “sandy” apple and I wither into dust. The granny smith has never been sandy. It never does me wrong like that.

    1. Exactly! Granny Smiths are some of the only good ones out there /because/ they’re crunchy, the squishy mush that comes from every other apple is the worst. Ever eat a mushy grape? It’s the same for apples. Granny Smiths are the best.

    2. You read my mind and put it in words. To me the thick skin isn’t a bug, it’s a feature, a challenge. Biting into a Granny Smith apple you know you will get a satisfying cartoony *cronch* and that elevates the apple-eating experience significantly to me. Cronch-less apples are my worst nightmare.

    3. I’m also a texture freak and I 100% agree about the wet sand wrapped in thick plastic people call other apples. However, I find that large chunks of apple always seem to choke me when I try to eat these, and when they don’t I get ptsd and/or bleed my gums on these.


  5. I wanted so badly to defend my beloved Granny Smith, but i have to admit – while i love it in a good apple pie, and sliced+peeled they can make a good treat, my poor gums have been shredded any time ive tried to bite into a whole one. I figured thats just how apples worked. Knowing now that i dont have to choose between a quick snack or intact gums, my whole worldview has changed. I am a different man now

  6. The consistency of this apple I think puts it into a higher tier, if I could get this same color, flavor and texture in an apple with a thinner more tender skin, it might replace the honeycrisp as my favorite. And I don’t know about anyone else but peanut butter and apples only works with a sour apple like the Granny Smith, all the red apples I’ve tried have ended up too sweet and it clashes like a bad dessert.

  7. I agree with many commenters here. Granny Smiths are commendable for their reliability. I’ve had bad Fujis, bad Galas, bad Pink Ladies, bad Opals, and nary a good Red Delicious, but I have yet to be failed by a Granny Smith. The skin may be as inedible as the foil pouch that cheez-its come in, but it serves the same function: what’s inside is preserved at a consistent texture and flavor.

  8. I think this apple should also be noted for being helpful in fighting off cancers. Apples are good for you but Smiths really help keep your health up. – Digestinator

    1. You gonna just take all that, Appleist? Ya been called out!!… Honestly, I agree ol’ Granny is past her prime. But a two point bump into the barely worth it category seems reasonable. Maybe a boost in branding on the F100? Clearly the brand is strong. Or, as you know, just a little more in taste would go a long way.

  9. The Granny Smith Apple is absolutely the best for making apple pie, and eating with other things. Just… Don’t eat the skin. It’s too thick, and slices your gums. Overall to me it’s a 6/10, would be an 8 if it weren’t for the god awful skin.

  10. Growing up I’d purely eat honeycrisp but my love for tart and sour grew with me. I changed to Granny Smith a couple of years ago and I haven’t looked back since.

  11. Always has been and continues to be my favorite kind of apple, the tough crunchiness and thick skin you criticize here is part of why I like them so much! I’m not as fond of softer apples because the texture bothers me, and even though I do admit the skin’s a little rough on the gums, it’s something I am fully willing to put up with for this delicious crunchy thing.

  12. I believe Granny Smiths deserve special consideration for the fact that they’re all grafts from the same tree; you can’t grow a granny smith tree from just a granny smith seed (though that can create a suitable root stock for a graft). Every other apple has the advantage of cultivation, development, etc. Not these mutants. Precious glitch-fruit clones.

  13. I feel as though Apple Rankings needs a “Baking” consideration, or stat ranking, or other such separate indicator.

    As a couple other commenters have mentioned: Granny Smiths (along with some other gross sour apples) are awful for eating, but make the best pies. The tartness contrasted with the sweetness of the sugar is what makes a tasty pie. (Similar to how rhubarb by itself is foul, but strawberry rhubarb pie is amazing.) Making an apple pie with good eating apples will only net you a bland saccharine wet fart of a pie, along with ruining a bunch of perfectly good eating apples.

    If Granny Smiths disappear from grocery stores it will be very difficult to make apple pies, and that would make me very sad.

  14. granny smith appreciator

    I had to check granny smiths, and now I don’t need to look at any other apple on this website. a person can not like granny smith, but a ‘definitive apple ranking’ can not put granny smith in ‘not worth eating’ tier. it’s my favorite apple and by the looks of the comments, it’s other people’s favorites too.. just not the favorite of this site builder. :thumbs down: :thumbs down:


  15. While at first (and along with many apples I’ve seen here for review) I was a bit personally offended at how this apple was ranked, perhaps I was too harsh, as your criticisms are fair and correct… I, in fact, have had my gums bleed from eating this apple.
    After reading up on your ranking system, I find many of these reviews to be quite fair despite the initial glance at that big red number. The F100 is truly the most comprehensive fruit ranking scale I’ve ever seen. Great work!

  16. I’m eating one here, diced into cubes. Yum! Tart, crisp apples are my favorites, but only the Granny Smith achieves perfection. The newer bred-for-maximum-sugar content apples on the market gross me out–kinda like a flashy, shallow person.

  17. Look, as someone from Eastwood where these apples are from and where we hold a festival every year I need you to know you’re wrong and this is a declaration of war.

  18. Yup, these criticisms are all valid, though I’m still a fan of Granny Smiths. I don’t eat them raw very often because they are rather tough, but sometimes I just want that amazing tart flavor. Their distinct taste is what makes them great, and they do make the absolute best apple pies.

  19. OK but hear me out. A very very thinly sliced Granny Smith accompanied by a couple of dark chocolate sea salt caramels. My go-to dessert.

  20. the one problem with all the alternatives other than the kanzi is that they are simply nowhere near as tart. the only alternatives should be ones that share the 5/5 on tartness. thats the whole point of the granny smith and these sad 3/5 tartness apples simply wont cut it
    also, you dont judge tart apples for being tart, nor sweet apples for being sweet. while mealy is completely unacceptable and makes my soul leave its body, a firmer apple can be a real plus when eating, as it is incredibly satisfying, so as long as it’s not impossible to bite, im not sure why you take points off for it. i dont know if the F100 scale is up for peer review, but if it is, this is a peer suggesting you should probably consider this. if it isn’t then just keep on doing ur thing dont let me stop you

  21. i just feel… disappointed. maybe it’s because my granny smith is brazilian but it tastes like slightly sour cardboard


    This is such a FLOP ass take. Granny smith is THAT GIRL. She’s tart, she’s crunchy, she’s versatile, SHE’S CONSISTENT. No other bitch in the game does it like Miss Smith. All those other untalented, flavorless, inconsistent, musty bitches you ranked higher simply cannot compare! She’s the gold standard, the industry’s favorite. All those other apples are a TREND, a PHASE, we as a society will leave them behind, but Granny Smith will continue to sit pretty at the top. Can’t no other bitch dethrone the MF QUEEN, she ain’t going NO-MUTHAFUKKIN-WHERE. She’s an ICON, she’s a LEGEND, and she will always be THE MOMENT. Put some respect on the good sis’ name… PERIOD’T

  23. I feel like one of their best features though is how consistent they are. While most other apples are either really good or inedible depending on the batch, granny smiths tend to be very consistently crisp and tasty. They’re also so lovely with sweet peanut butters!!! I do agree that they’re incredibly hard, though.

  24. As a snack, it is only enjoyable when combined with peanut butter. A mealy Granny Smith was a recent experience for me. You’ll kick yourself if you buy the gigantic GMO-sized ones, so just don’t.

  25. I have been mostly in agreement with your apple takes but you are completely wrong about granny smith. This rating is an insult.

  26. This ranking of granny sh*ts apples is too generous. For years my parents tortured me- mind, body, and soul- with these abominations in my lunch box. Every day I faced a choice between starvation and plaguing my stomach. Some days I was able to resist, others I succumbed. The bitter horrors I experienced still wake me up at night.

  27. I was so excited when my find told me about this place, and all my hopes were dashed on finding its run by a heretic who doesn’t even appreciate the greatest apple.

    Then I realised you’re in the USA and understood a little. There’s so many thick, waxy skinned Granny Smiths over here. I only buy them when from Chile. When I was in the UK, I got the ones from South Africa, which were absolutely the best. A little more fragile in the skin and flesh – while being more consistently firm, there’s so many massive mealy Granny Smiths over here and it should be a crime – while being juicier too.

  28. IMO Granny Smiths should only enter one’s piehole from the innards of a pie which is where it excels. As far as a stand-alone munchable apple…have you GS diehards never tried a Lucy Glo?

  29. Pingback: Apple Fritter Donuts | Andy's East Coast Kitchen

  30. new user here. i found out about this site about 10 minutes ago and decided to start right with the apple i had the best luck with, figuring maybe you experts have another suggestion. what a letdown tbh.

    at first, i didn’t even see the “eat these apples instead” thing on the page, it’s in such a non-prominent location. as a web dev, i’m giving you 2/5 on the ux of that, and the only reason that’s not 1/5 is because the bloody thing exists in the first place. at first i left the page, thinking you just insulted my taste in apples and provided no guidance beyond “just go like something else like an adult” (which, as someone with arfid, is a hella touchy subject). you’re lucky i came back and found the list of better apples — but at least it does exist, i can’t argue with that. but that brings us to the next problem:

    literally all three of the supposedly better options you mention are seasonal. even more so, they overlap a lot, you’re left with no apples for late spring and summer. i tried checking out your list of best sour apples and there’s not a lot there either, just more winter stuff. the pink lady is the only one that seems to be another year-rounder and it’s pretty far down the sour list, despite being allegedly quite good, which makes me think it’s not really that sour. so what can you actually offer to someone who likes the taste of granny smith?

    i’m also noticing some worrying trends in density rankings and such. one of the main reasons i like granny smith so much is because i like the high density, it makes for a really good texture. mushy stuff is a no-go for a lot of people like me. and the skin is not really an issue if you cut the thing in quarters instead of just biting into it. i’m not saying you’re wrong, mind you (i have no delusions that i’d know apples better than you), just that you seem very subjective and thereby unhelpful to someone with clearly different tastes than you.

    i’m not married to granny smith, hell, i didn’t even know it had a fandom to begin with. but what are your recs for someone who doesn’t want to deal with a whole bunch of complexity in their apple logistics, and picked granny smith out of the most commonly available options? because i presume a lot of us would be ending up right here immediately after finding out about your website. hell, granny smith is the only apple i can even name, if that gives you any indication how much i know about apples. that’s why i was hoping to find the wisdom of the nerds here. so far though, i’m disappointed.

    1. definitely try a pink lady, its not as sour/sharp as a granny smith but its very fragrant & the lack of sharpness makes it easy to smash 5 of them in one sitting its like a natural starburst and as a granny smith enjoyer i love pink ladies even more bc of their balance and character. definitely tart enough, but somewhat fruitier & not as tooth sensitizing

  31. I enjoyed these as a kid, but now these feel pretty mid for munching. And just for context, I always hated the Red Delicious apples. As an adult, I finally decided to try some other varieties of apples, and of those I’ve tried, I’d say the Kanzi is probably my favorite. As someone who enjoyed granny smith apples as a kid, I highly recommend the Kanzi apples over the granny smith (for those who like sour apples.) Hoping to try some other varieties too, thanks for the recommendations.

  32. I’m an Aussie – land of the Granny. I planted one to get cooking apples. The first year it bore fruit I was late harvesting and the apples turned yellow with a slight red blush. They were the most magnificent apples to eat, crisp, juicy and tart but not sour. I thought the plant nursery had mislabeled my tree but no – I did some research and discovered that this was what a RIPE Granny Smith apple was like. The store bought ones are picked and sold way before they are anywhere near ripe. So if you like eating green Grannies, try and find a ripe one, it will be revelation. Hell, if you can’t find any ripe ones plant a tree! PS – they will keep on the tree for months and are even better after a couple of frosts!

  33. I’m not arguing with your rankings, but you are too dismissive of children’s tastes!

    I learned that this year, when, despite all the wonderful new varieties of apples available in the year 2024, my toddler age daughter insists on granny Smith. and her friend actually through the sliced up pink lady and her dad brought on the ground to run over and grab some of my daughters granny Smith slices.

    Children eat a lot of stuff based on how it looks, & the bright green color is a real winner with them. Also, the sour flavor makes it Mother Nature’s sour patch kid.

    If you want to take this website to the next level, consider a new category for “children’s apples“ and start running the tests.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *