low carb fried apples

Low Carb Faux Cracker Barrel Fried Apples (Induction)

I love fried apples. When I was little we used to eat them for breakfast, dinner, and any other time we got a chance. Sweet, tangy apples served piping hot next to bacon (in the morning) or ham (at dinner) creates some kind of magic.

Addictive magic.

For this recipe you’ll need: unsalted butter, bacon drippings, zucchini, Stevia, maple flavoring, vanilla flavoring, fresh nutmeg, cayenne or ancho powder, apple cider vinegar, bourbon, and salt.

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A Dish of Low Carb Fried Apples

How many carbs in fried apples?

These low carb fried apples are sweet, tangy, spicy, and tender. They taste an awful lot like the fried apple side dish at Cracker Barrel with one small difference. You can enjoy them on Atkins even on induction. You see, they aren’t really apples.

A Dish of Fried Apples on a Lacy Doily

It’s zucchini.

The reason I used zucchini is that one serving of Cracker Barrel Fried Apples has 28 carbs per serving.  28 !  This low carb fried apple recipe has only 1 carb per serving.  The other changes I made to make this low carb is to replace the brown sugar from the Cracker Barrel recipe to use Stevia or other sugar free substitute. Granulated sugar?  Same, use a sugar free sweetener. And of course, the Granny Smith apples gave way to the zucchini. 

Use this as a side dish, spooned over a half a cup of whipped, sweetened cream cheese for a drool worthy take on cheesecake, or keep it simple in a dish with a fluffy dollop of sweetened sour cream. Crumble pork rinds over the hot “apples” and enjoy an apple crisp. When you are further along with your keto or low carb diet efforts, and can have some low carb ice cream enjoy the faux fried apples hot over a scoop of low carb brown butter bourbon pecan ice cream. You’ll think of more things, I’m sure.

The zucchini is peeled and sliced into coins, then each coin is sliced into two crescents. I like to saute mine in a combination of butter and bacon fat. It gives the zucchini deeper flavor. You can use all butter you like. I tried an air fryer and it didn’t allow the depth of flavor to develop that you get from sautéing the zucchini in the butter. While the zucchini is sautéing you’ll add the sugar free sweetener, maple flavoring, a bit of bourbon, cinnamon, cayenne or ancho pepper for a zesty kick, and some cider vinegar to create that apple fritters tang.


You can use your favorite zero carb sweetener. It’s hard to say how much you’ll need exactly so add it to your own taste. You’ll want to cook the zucchini until it is soft but not mushy. Just taste every once in awhile until you decide that it’s perfect.

A Forkful of Low Carb Fried Apples

I know. You totally don’t believe me that this tastes like fried apples. Trust me on this, just try it one time. And to make it absolutely perfect, add a dollop of my 3 ingredient keto whipped cream.

Navigation Tip

This low carb faux Cracker Barrel Fried Apples recipe makes 2 servings but you could certainly make more than enough for the whole family. If you tap the blue number “2” after the “Servings” in the recipe, a slider will appear that you can use to increase the number of servings. The ingredients will automatically change so you don’t have to do any math. I usually make a mistake when I try to do math in recipes lol.

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Low Carb Faux Cracker Barrel Fried Apples (Induction)

Tangy, sweet, and spicy with all of the flavor of fried apples but none of the carbs. Use this as a side dish or a dessert.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American – low -carb
Keyword apple, fried apples
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Calories 273kcal
Author Katherine Peters


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons bacon drippings
  • 3/4 cup peeled zucchini cut into coins and then crescents
  • 0- carb sweetener to taste I use stevia
  • 1/4 teaspoon maple flavoring
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla flavoring
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch of cayenne or ancho or chipotle pepper to taste
  • 11/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon


  • Melt the butter into the bacon drippings.
  • Add the zucchini and saute until it is crisp tender.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and simmer until liquid is reduced and nearly gone.
  • Stir very often.
  • Taste and adjust sweetness/seasoning.


Calories: 273kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 43mg | Sodium: 27mg | Potassium: 121mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 445IU | Vitamin C: 8.3mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.2mg

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28 thoughts on “Low Carb Faux Cracker Barrel Fried Apples (Induction)”

  1. I have made a few tweaks to this recipe and have made it probably 10 times now. It is positively amazing! I have fooled several people into thinking this was apples. Had a salesman at work sit at lunch and go on and on about how he didn’t like any kind of squash. Served this for desert and he raved about how good it was. When I told him what it really was, he called me a name!!! not a nice one either. haha The only thing I do different in your recipe is I use 4 cups of zuc’s, double the rest of the ingredients, and at the end I added 1/3 cup of SF maple syrup. I made some home made cinnamon ice cream and served the apples over it warm, and it is to die for. I’m working on turning this into an apple pie too. Thanks soooooo much for sharing!

  2. You are so creative and I love zucchini! What low carb maple flavor do you use? I have been low carbing 10 months now with 40 down. Love this life! Thanks for all you do!

  3. This looks really good but it says there is 24.5 g protein. I can’t figure out where all the protein is coming from as I don’t see anything in the recipe with substantial protein

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