Snacking on sweet, crisp fresh apples, or baking them into a delicious dessert is one of the best ways to fully enjoy this juicy fruit. However, when you’re slicing and dicing them, it’s only a matter of time before they start turning brown after you’ve served them.

Next time you decide to prepare a summer fruit salad or want to pair apple slices with a dip, there is a great way to keep your apples white and wonderful for a few hours. What’s the secret? All you need is five minutes, tap water, and something you definitely already h1ave in your pantry: table salt!

After slicing each apple, place the slices in a bowl filled with cold, salted water. A good rule of thumb is to use half a teaspoon of salt per cup of water. Then let the slices soak for five to 10 minutes and drain. If you are serving the apples later on, be sure to store them in an airtight container or plastic baggie until you’re ready to serve them. Before serving the apples, give the apples a quick rinse under the tap to wash away any slight salt flavor that might remain on the slices. Even after rinsing the apples, the short soak in the saltwater will still keep them from browning right away.

Oxidation is the main reason why apples, and most fruits, turn brown. The process of a cold saltwater bath prevents the oxygen from reaching the fruit’s surface and turning it brown. There are also various tried-and-true methods to avoid the browning of apples. Here are a few more tricks to keep in mind that can help keep your slices fresh.

  • Mix half a teaspoon of honey with one cup of water. Add apple slices and soak for five minutes. Rinse and store until ready to serve.
  • Soak apple slices in lemon-lime soda for five minutes. Rinse and serve.
  • Add a tablespoon of lemon juice per cup of water and soak apple slices for five minutes. Rinse and serve.

Of course, you will notice some slight browning after some time, but these quick and easy tricks are the best way to keep your apple slices looking crisp, fresh, and tasty on fruit platters this summer.

Related: 18 Foods You Don’t Need to Refrigerate


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