All the flavor of apple pie in a healthy snack? Yes, it’s true! This Apple Pie Spiced Applesauce recipe is worth getting excited about.
If you go totally overboard at the apple orchard, you can come sit next to me. This recipe isn’t for those orchard visits where you fill a little paper bag with 10 apples; it’s the recipe to make when you come home with a bushel. Or two! When you just can’t eat another apple out-of-hand, it’s time to make Apple Pie Spiced Applesauce.
While pumpkin pie spice seems to be used in everything these days (guilty as charged), apple pie spice is usually limited to apple pies and pastries. I thought it was high time we change that, and that’s how this Apple Pie Spiced Applesauce recipe was born. You can enjoy that apple pie flavor without having to fuss with making a crust.
Even better, this recipe can be canned, which means you can get your apple pie fix any time of year!
What You’ll Need
If you don’t have 8 pounds of apples, you can easily make this recipe in half or even in quarters. Just note that you’ll need to reduce the cooking time, too. Here’s what you’ll need to make Apple Pie Spiced Applesauce:
- Cooking apples – Granny Smiths are the classic cooking apple, but don’t feel like you need to limit yourself to those. Braeburn, Cortland, Honeycrisp, and Jonagold work too.
- Lemon juice – This prevents your apples from turning an unappetizing brown color and also balances the flavor of your applesauce.
- Apple pie spice – Here’s how to make it.
- Sugar – You’ll want to add more sugar if you’re using tart apples, less if your apples are more of the sweet-tart variety.
How to Make Apple Pie Spiced Apple Sauce
Are you ready for your house to smell like fall? Here are step-by-step instructions for making Apple Pie Spiced Applesauce.
Cook the apples. Place the apples, water and lemon juice in a 6-quart Dutch Oven, and bring them to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to a simmer. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the apples are softened and beginning to break apart, and the liquid has reduced, about 20-30 minutes.
Puree the applesauce. Use an immersion blender to blend the apples; you can choose any texture you prefer, whether completely smooth, chunky, or something in between. (You can use a food mill or food processor if you don’t have an immersion blender.)
Finish the applesauce. After you’ve blended the applesauce, add sugar to taste, then add the apple pie spice. Start with 1 ½ teaspoons and add more if needed. Transfer the applesauce to jars or storage containers.
Tips for Success
This recipe is easy to make, but these tips will help you make sure it’s perfect!
- Chunky applesauce. If you want super chunky applesauce, you can use a potato masher to mash the potatoes a bit rather than blending them.
- Use good apple pie spice. If your apple pie spice has been sitting in your pantry for a few years, open up the jar and smell it before using it. Does it smell warm and spicy? You’re good to go. If it smells stale or like nothing at all, it’s old and needs to be replaced.
- Use good apples, too. Now, that doesn’t mean perfect apples. Applesauce is a great way to use apples that have fallen on the ground, that have small bruises or gashes, etc. But if your apples don’t taste good, they won’t magically transform into delicious applesauce!
How to Store
You can store jars of applesauce in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. For freezing, I recommend that you ladle the applesauce into freezer bags and store them flat in the freezer so you can stack them.
Can Applesauce Be Canned?
Yes, applesauce can be canned for long-term storage. Heat clean pint jars in a boiling water bath. Drain them well, then fill them with the applesauce, leaving ½ inch headspace. Wipe the rims of the jars clean and place the lids and rings on the jars to finger tight. Place the filled jars into a boiling water bath and process for 15 minutes for pints. Carefully remove the jars from the hot water and place them on a wire rack to seal and cool.
In addition to grabbing a spoon and a bowl and digging in, you can use applesauce in the following ways:
- Stir it into oatmeal. It adds so much flavor to steel-cut oats!
- Use applesauce as a substitute for oil in baking. Here’s how to use applesauce in baking.
- Layer it with granola and yogurt. Instant parfait!
- Use it as baby food. You can freeze it in an ice cube tray, then pop the cubes in a freezer bag for little ones who are just starting solids.