I’m so excited to share this simple homemade applesauce recipe with you! It reminds me of fall days in New England. My grandparents and I had a tradition of going apple picking each year. My grandpa and I would spend the afternoon making enough applesauce to freeze for the winter. Those are some of my most cherished memories with my grandparents.
If you don’t know how to make applesauce, this easy homemade recipe is going to be a game-changer. Once you see how simple it is, and how much tastier it is versus the jarred stuff, you won’t buy pre-made again! The natural sweetness and fiber create a healthy, satisfying snack. If you choose good apples, your applesauce will only need a little water, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. I love enjoying it warm or cold.
How to Make Homemade Applesauce That’s Simple and Tasty
How to Get the Best Applesauce Flavor
The secret for supreme flavor is in the balance of sweet and tart apples with soft and firm textures. With my grandparents, we used the Macintosh apples we picked right off the tree. If I’m making it with store-bought apples, I prefer to use Honeycrisp, Fujis, and Golden Delicious. Honeycrisps are both sweet and tart- fitting my requirements for the best applesauce flavor. Sometimes, I’ll make a batch with only Honeycrips. Othertimes, I love blending all 3. Alternatively, if you use sweet apples, such as Red Delicious, add a few tart apples, such as Granny Smith, to balance the flavors.
Homemade Applesauce Ingredients
Apples (of course!)
Fresh Lemon Juice
The tart lemon intensifies the taste of the apples, as well as balances out the sweetness of the sauce. The result? A refreshing, delicious, gourmet-tasting applesauce.
Ground Cinnamon (optional)
Natural Sweetener (optional)
Pureeing or Blending Options to Create Your Desired Texture for Homemade Applesauce
- Run through a food mill to separate the pulp from the peel for the smoothest option. Process about 1-2 cups at a time.
- Use an immersion blender right in the pot for a semi-smooth texture. This allows for peels to remain part of the sauce- keeping the peels deepens the flavor and color.
- Place in a high-powered blender-my preferred method. It’s the best of both worlds. It yields a super smooth texture with the added benefit of keeping the peels for rich flavor and color. Even with a high powered blender, I blend in batches, only filling the container 50-75% full each time.
This homemade applesauce recipe is so simple and delicious! Once you make it, you’ll never want to buy it again. The good news? It’s really easy to double or triple this recipe and freeze it for later.
- 3 pounds unpeeled apples (about 6 large apples), with cores, seeds, and stems removed. Roughly chop or use my favorite tool- an apple slicer corer.
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- salt, a pinch
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional. In place of the ground cinnamon you can cook the apples with a stick of cinnamon, just remove it before puréeing.[tasty-recipe id="31"]
- Combine the apples, lemon juice, salt, and water (as well as cinnamon, if using) in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.
- Cover and bring to a boil.
- Periodically use a potato masher to breakdown the apples as they soften, releasing the natural liquid from the apples.
- Reduce to a simmer for a total cooking time of 20-25 minutes until the apples are soft and falling apart.
- Blending options:
- Run through a food mill to separate pulp from peel for the smoothest option. Process about a cup at a time.
- Use an immersion blender right in the pot for a smooth texture that allows for peels to remain- keeping the peels deepens the flavor and color
- Place in a high-powered blender-my preferred method. Again blending the peels deepens the flavor and color
- Once blended using preferred option, if applesauce is too watery, simmer over low heat to thicken to desired texture- 5 minutes or less.
- Serve warm, or chill in the refrigerator for several hours to serve cold.
Applesauce will keep in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to 5 days. Freezes wonderfully for up to a year in a deep freezer in a freezer-safe container. 5 months is a good guideline if you don’t have a deep freezer. If you freeze it, be sure to allow at least an inch of headroom in your jar for expansion.
Letting the natural flavors of the apples sweeten the sauce is my favorite method. However, all apples are different, even within the same variety. If your sauce is too tart, real pure maple syrup pairs wonderfully with apples and is my go-to if I need a little sweetness. Add to taste.
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