Monday, October 1, 2012

Adventures in Homemade Applesauce

Every now and again, I decide to tackle a new project just to keep my creativity alive. Generally, I combine my new project with an attempt at saving money too.

Our CSA (community supported agriculture) sent us apples in a couple of our recent produce bags. Lots and lots of apples. So many apples that we couldn't eat through all of them before they went bad.

So I decided that this was a good opportunity to learn how to make applesauce!

Our friends, Sarah and Wendell, make applesauce every year, so I asked Sarah for a few pointers prior to getting started. She gave me the run down on how to do it and offered to let me use her applesauce maker thingy (my name for it, not hers.)

It actually turned out to be super easy and fun! I think this will be a great project to involve the kids in in the future!

Lots of fresh apples, all rinsed and ready to go!

Any variety and combination of apples can be used. For this batch, I used 9 lbs of Jonathan apples and 3 lbs of Golden Delicious apples.

Cut each apple into quarters. No need to core or peel them!

And dump them all into a big roasting pan...skins, seeds, and all!

At this point, you can cook them until soft one of two ways:

I baked mine on the bottom rack in the oven for several hours. I didn't add any extra water because apples have quite a bit of water content on their own. I was doing some other baking at the time, so it didn't require extra energy to do it this way. I gave the apples a quick stir a few times just to make sure that they were cooking evenly. Once they were mushy, I knew that they were done.

Another option is to boil them for 20 minutes or so until they are soft. If you add water to your roasting pan and turn on both burners underneath it, you can boil them that way. Or if you have a large stockpot, that will work as well. Next time, I'll probably go this route since it's quicker.

Soft, mushy apples.

Once they have cooled a bit, you are ready to turn them into applesauce!

This is the nifty applesauce maker thingy that I borrowed. It's the most fun I've had with a kitchen gadget since Sean gave me my Kitchen Aid Mixer last Christmas!

Check this out!

The mushy apples go in the top container.

And then all you have to do is turn the crank! The apples funnel down into a cylinder that separates the apple skins, seeds, and stems from the apple flesh.

All of the apple guts come out and dump into a bowl...

And all of the strained and pureed apples pour into another bowl!

I added about 1/4 cup of sugar to the entire batch of applesauce, and it really didn't even need that! That's all there is to it! I really thought it would be so much more complicated, but it was pleasantly easy. I divided the batch up into quart size bags and put them in the freezer for easy grabbing. Thaw a baggy in some hot water for a few minutes, cut off the corner of the baggy, and squeeze into a bowl. Voila!

Ellie doesn't like store bought applesauce (the rest are okay with it), but I was happy to find that she really does like the homemade stuff! It's probably because the homemade version has far more flavor than what you can find on a store shelf. We have breakfast for dinner once a week (easy and cheap!), and the applesauce is a really nice addition. Sean even uses it in place of syrup on his waffles!


  1. I love applesauce! Wonder if I can convince Mike that it would be fun to make some? ;) I have heard you can cook the apples in the crock pot too, which would be easy to set up before I leave for work in the morning.

    1. I've heard the same thing about cooking them in a crockpot. It makes sense that it would work that way too.

      Maybe we should just have SIL night out at home and make applesauce together! I know Aly would love it!

  2. We use our Pampered Chef Apple Peeler, Corer, Slicer on the apples first, then dump them in the crock pot with some cinnamon. When they mush up, we add a little sugar, stir and done. Then I use the peels and cores to make apple cider vinegar. Easy peasy. :)

    1. I have one of those too! I typically use mine to make apple pie. I haven't made one of those in forever! Maybe I better dig it out and get to baking!

      Love the crockpot idea! That's a great way to have a perfectly fresh batch for a potluck or family dinner! Thanks for passing on that idea!

  3. Replies
    1. I know! I was surprised it was so easy! And it's so goooooood!!!

  4. Sounds delish!! Although the pic of the apple guts is pretty gross, ha!

    1. I know, right? I don't garden, but I imagine that would be a nice bowl of scraps for the compost pile. It is really neat to watch the gadget separate the guts from the flesh. And since the gadget is a hand crank, the motor wearing out isn't an issue!

  5. Hey Rebecca...can you get a REAL name for the gaget so we can look up how to get one of those nifty things??? What a money saver!!

    1. The name and link are actually in the caption on the picture! But it isn't obvious now that I look at it. Thanks for drawing it to my attention. I'll go back and embed it into the text a little better.

      I hope your kiddos...and you!...enjoy making applesauce!

      B2B Food Strainer and Sauce Maker:

  6. I LOVE making applesauce! I made several gallons of it last month!

    I am stopping over via the blog hop at Our Everyday Harvest.

    Blue Eyed Beauty Blog
    Exercise Encouragement Group blog

  7. I love applesauce, and this looks way easier than imagined it to be. I'll have to give it a try!

    I'm stopping by from the everyday harvest blog hop. Have a great weekend!

    1. Thanks for stopping by! Making applesauce is super easy! I hope you take a minute to try it!

  8. I want to try this one day. I'm scared I'm going to mess something up, I don't want to waste them. I'd love if you stopped by my blog & linked up this gem? I hope your having a great weekend.


    1. I think you'd have to try pretty hard to mess this one up. :)

      Thank you for the invite to link up!

  9. That looks delicious. It was interesting to learn how to make it. You were able to cook a lot of apples in one pan which I never would have thought possible. That is a time saver. I will have to try that some time.

    1. Definitely give it a try! I bet your babies would love it! :)


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