Monday, November 7, 2011

Apples Galore

So for the past month I have been making some apple butter and apple pie filling to give as gifts this Christmas.  I thought you might all enjoy learning how and looking over some pictures of the process.

Also...for the apples, you need to use cooking apples such as MacIntosh or Fuiji.  My hubby asked why I wasn't using Jonagold or Honeycrisp since they are the best eating apples, but you want a soft, tart apple for your recipes.  DON'T even bother with Red Delicious!

Crockpot Apple Butter recipe (yield: 6-9 half pints)
5 1/2 lbs. of apples, peeled, cored and quartered
3 cups sugar (or splenda)
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
dash of ground allspice

Supplies Needed
large crockpot
measuring teaspoon and 1/4 tsp.
measuring bowl or cup
food processor or chopper
canning supplies: canning pot, 6-9 half pint jars, lids, rings, wide-mouthed funnel, jar lifter, & thin spatula
freezer or fridge supplies: tupperware

Step 1: Prep the apples!
5 1/2 lbs of apples washed

my personal assistant helping clean up the peels time to core them

apples are peeled, cored and
Step 2: Put the apples in a food processor or chop them as small as you can. Then, add them to your crockpot.
Put the apples into the crockpot.
She's getting ready to add the ingredients.
Step 3: Add in the other ingredients.
3 cups white sugar (or splenda or mix)

What a great helper!

2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

a dash of allspice
1/4 tsp. of salt
Step 4: Stir well.

Step 5: Put the lid on and cook on high for 1 hour. 

Step 6: Reduce heat to low (keeping lid on) and cook for 9-11 hours. It will be dark brown and like an applesauce state. Often times I cook it one day for 5 hours, cool it, and put it in the fridge to continue the process the next day.

Step 7: Remove lid and cook on low for 1 more hour. The apple butter is done when you can take a spoon full away from the heat and it will stay mounded on the spoon.

Step 8: Store it. There are 3 ways...
>You can freeze it in freezer tupperware like Gladware.
>Refridgerate for immediate use.
>Can it by putting it in a 30 min. water bath.

Don't know how to can is so simple!
1. You'll need 6-9 half pint jars or 3-5 pint jars with lids and rings. Wash jars and lids in very hot water. Dry.
2. Boil water in a large canning pot. You'll need it to be deeper than your jars.
3. Using the funnel pour the apple butter into the jars leaving about 1" from the bottom rim of the jar.
4. Using a small spatula poke down around the sides to let out any air bubbles.
5. Clean around the rim of each jar making sure there isn't any apple butter on it. This will prevent sealing.
6. Dip a lid into the boiling water and hold it there for about 3-5 sec.
7. Set the lid on top of the jar. Screw a ring on it leaving it a little loose.
8. Using a jar lifter, place your jars into the water. Make sure the water covers the top of the jars.
9. When it is boiling, leave them in for another 30 min.
10. Carefully lift the jars out onto a heat resistant pad or rack.
11. Allow them to cool 24 hours. You should hear the seal pop within minutes of removing it from the water bath.
      If not, either try resealing or put it in the fridge to eat up.

Apple Pie Filling (yield: 7 quarts)
6-6 1/2 lbs. apples, peeled, cored and sliced
4 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup cornstarch
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
10 cups water
3 Tbs. lemon juice

-Put sliced apples into quart jars leaving about 1-1 1/2" head space. Use warm jars if possible.
-Combine the all the other ingredients (except the lemon juice) in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil.
-Add lemon juice to pan. Stir well.
-Pour over apples in jar using a wide-mouthed funnel.
-Using a skinny spatula, poke down around the sides to remove extra air bubbles.
-Follow the canning process above using a 20 min. water bath.
-You can freeze the filling too.

Shelf life is about 2 years.  I would use up any open cans of pie filling within 5 days and open cans of apple butter in about 2-3 weeks.


  1. I love how you illustrated the steps with pictures of your daughter, very clever! Also, the recipee sounds amazing!

  2. I hope you are going to send me one of those apple pie fillings for my christmas present! I wish we lived near each other, because I love to can things. We make applesauce, homemade jelly, and salsa every year. This year, we only could do the jelly and salsa, with my surgery.

    Thanks for the new recipes - they look so amazing and next year I will make sure to try them with the leftover apples!