A rapid, simple and economical method using a limited amount of organic solvent is described for the determination of patulin in apple juice. The sample was extracted with ethyl acetate and the extract was cleaned up by extraction with sodium carbonate solution. Patulin was then determined by reversed-phase liquid chromatography using a MicroPak C-18 column and a variable-wavelength UV-Vis detector set at 276 nm. Patulin and 5-hydroxymethylfurfural were completely resolved by using water-acetonitrile (99:1, v/v) as the mobile phase at a how-rate of 1.0 ml/min. The detection limit was <5 mu g/l and the recovery was 98%.