In case you didn't see on my stories last week, the family and I went on our annual apple picking adventure over at Quinn Farms, and came back with WAY.TOO.MANY. APPLES! In case you still had plans to go in the next few weekends, trust me when I say: ONE bag is good enough lol
So we had to get cooking/baking/eating these apples before they went bad. And I had the brilliant idea to make a ton of applesauce. Both for us, and - spoiler alert - as thank-you favours for Damian's upcoming birthday party.
Now is this recipe quick? Unfortunately no, because you gotta peel all those apples, core them and chop them. Is it worth it? ABSOLUTELY YES! Because you get THE freshest and tastiest thing that the stores just don't provide.
Applesauce is awesome for so many reasons:
✔️you can enjoy it as a snack on its own
✔️on rice cakes with peanut butter
✔️on top of oatmeal
✔️in your yogurt bowl
✔️in baked goods as a sweetener
It is SO versatile and adds that hint of sweetness to any meal/snack. It's also a great option if your goal is weight/fat loss and you want something sweet without turning to really high calorie and overly processed store-bought desserts (which also have their own place, just saying if you want to be choosing differently, this is an excellent option!)
SO trust me when I say, it's worth the labour of love! The kiddos will love it, you will love it. And if you use them as party favours, your guests will love it too ;)
Oh and if you were wondering if we got through all the apples, I have a quick story to tell you:
I had half of the second bag left and was planning to make another apple crisp or a pie for Thanksgiving. I thought they were starting to turn during the week so I put them on the back porch.....only to find out that they all got devoured by those pesky squirrels!!!! GAH!!! 🤬 🐿 They are ravenous fiends in our neck of the woods lol
Ahh well, looks like I'll be moving onto pumpkins this month!
OK on to the recipe. If you happen to make it, let me know by leaving a comment below! Your feedback helps me fine tune my recipes to make them even better with your input. And be sure to share a pic and tag me @itscrystalelizabeth if you share it on socials :D
Happy applesauce making!
The BEST Homemade Applesauce
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Cool time: 2hr
Makes: 2 x 250ml jars
16 small Cortland apples (or 8-10 large apples), peeled, cored, and chopped small*
1/2 cup water
juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of cloves
2-3 cinnamon sticks
1/4 cup honey (optional)
Prepare your apples: peel, core and chop your apples. Place them in a medium-sized pot.
Add the remaining ingredients to the apples, stir well to combine, and turn on the stove to high.
Once the apples begin to boil, reduce heat to a low simmer, and stir occasionally. Cook until apples have softened, 10-15 minutes.
Once the apples have fully softened, remove the cinnamon sticks, and have a taste (careful not to burn your mouth!). Adjust the spices according to your preference.
Then you can either mash with a potato masher to get a slightly chunky applesauce OR transfer to a high speed blender and blend on high until smooth.
Transfer into glass mason jars (I used 250ml size mason jars) and wait until they have completely cooled to refrigerate for up to 7 days.
APPLE VARIETY: lots of apples are sweet enough to make honey an unneccessary ingredient. However if you use Granny Smith apples, which are more sour, you might want to add honey to make your applesauce. Your call!
COOK TIME: the smaller you chop your apples, the faster your applesauce will cook, so stay close by the stove to avoid burning.
COOL TIME: the smaller your mason jars the faster the applesauce will cool before you can refrigerate. If you make it early in the day you can do other things while you wait for applesauce to cool before refrigerating/freezing.
FREEZING/THAWING: once the applesauce has cooled completely, and you know you won’t consume all of it within the week, you can freeze for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to consume, thaw in the fridge overnight to reduce spoilage.
FRESHNESS: make sure you label all your jars of applesauce with the date you made them, so you know what date to consume them fresh/frozen!