Delicious Apple Butter Recipe for Cozy Mornings

Welcome to my Apple Butter Recipe! As a chef, I’ve always been fascinated by the versatility of apples in cooking. Apples are not only delicious on their own, but they can be transformed into wonderful creations like apple pie, apple sauce, and of course, apple butter!

Apple butter is a classic American spread that is perfect for toast, biscuits, or even as a condiment for roasted meats. It’s a thick, caramelized spread made by cooking down apples with sugar and spices until it reaches a deep brown color.

This recipe is super easy to make and can be done in a slow cooker or an instant pot. You’ll only need a few simple ingredients that you can easily find at your local grocery store. Plus, the aroma of the apples, cinnamon, and spices will fill your home with warmth and comfort.

I guarantee that once you try this homemade apple butter recipe, you’ll never want to go back to the store-bought version again. So, let’s get started!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Apple Butter
Apple Butter

If you are a fan of apple butter, you will absolutely love this homemade apple butter recipe. Not only is it super easy to make, but it is also incredibly delicious. The combination of sweet and tart apples, warm spices, and brown sugar create a rich and caramel-like flavor that is irresistible.

This recipe is incredibly versatile and can be made in a slow cooker or instant pot. It requires only a handful of simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. You can use any type of apple, but I recommend using a mix of sweet and tart apples, such as Granny Smith and Honeycrisp, for the best flavor.

One of the best things about this apple butter recipe is that it is completely sugar-free. Instead of using refined sugar, we use maple syrup and apple juice to sweeten the apple butter. This makes it a healthier alternative to traditional apple butter recipes that are loaded with sugar.

Not only is this recipe delicious and healthy, but it is also incredibly versatile. You can spread it on toast or biscuits, use it as a topping for oatmeal or yogurt, or even use it as a filling for pies and cakes. The possibilities are endless!

In addition to being delicious and versatile, this apple butter recipe is also incredibly easy to make. All you need to do is peel, core, and chop the apples, add them to the slow cooker or instant pot with the rest of the ingredients, and let it cook low and slow until the apples are tender and the mixture is thick and caramelized. Then, simply use an immersion blender to blend the mixture until it is smooth and creamy.

Overall, this homemade apple butter recipe is a must-try for anyone who loves apples, caramel, and warm spices. It is easy to make, healthy, and incredibly versatile. Once you try it, you will never go back to store-bought apple butter again!

Ingredient List

Here are the ingredients you will need for this delicious Apple Butter recipe:


  • 2 pounds of apples, peeled and cored
  • Use any type of apples you like, but Granny Smith apples are a great choice because they are tart and hold their shape well when cooked.


  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of light brown sugar


  • 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice

Other ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup of apple cider or apple juice
  • 2 tablespoons of bottled lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup of maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup of butter

You can easily adjust the amount of sugar and spices according to your taste preference. If you want to make sugar-free apple butter, you can use a sugar substitute like stevia or erythritol.

The Recipe How-To

Now that we have gathered all the ingredients, it’s time to get cooking! Follow these simple steps to make your delicious homemade apple butter.

Step 1: Preparing the Apples

First, we need to prepare the apples. For this recipe, we will need 2 pounds of apples. I like to use Granny Smith apples because they are tart and hold their shape well after cooking.

  • Peel and core the apples, then cut them into small chunks.

Step 2: Cooking the Apples

In a slow cooker or instant pot, add the chopped apples, 1 cup of apple cider, ½ cup of apple juice, 1 cup of granulated sugar, 1 cup of light brown sugar, 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of ground cloves, 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg, and 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. Stir everything together until the apples are coated in the sugar and spice mixture.

  • Slow cooker: Cook on low for 10-12 hours or high for 4 hours.
  • Instant pot: Cook on high pressure for 10 minutes, then use the natural release method for 10 minutes.

Step 3: Blending the Apples

Once the apples are cooked, use an immersion blender to blend the mixture until it is smooth. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a regular blender, but be careful not to overfill it with hot liquid.

Step 4: Finishing Touches

After blending, add 2 tablespoons of bottled lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to the mixture. Stir well to combine.

Step 5: Canning (Optional)

If you want to can your apple butter for later use, follow proper canning procedures. Otherwise, transfer the apple butter to a jar or container and store it in the refrigerator.

Now that your homemade apple butter is ready, it’s time to enjoy it! Spread it on toast, biscuits, or pancakes, or pair it with cheese for a delicious snack. This recipe is easy, delicious, and healthy, making it perfect for anyone who loves traditional flavors in a modern, sugar-free way.

Substitutions and Variations

Apple butter is a versatile recipe that can be adapted to your taste preferences. Here are some substitutions and variations you can try:

– Apples: For the best taste and texture, use a combination of sweet and tart apples, such as Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Jonathan, or Rome. However, you can use any type of apples you have on hand. If you prefer a smoother apple butter, peel and core the apples before cooking. If you like a chunkier apple butter, leave the peels and cores on and use an immersion blender to puree the mixture after cooking.

– Sugar: You can adjust the amount and type of sugar to your liking. For a traditional, old-fashioned flavor, use a mix of brown sugar and granulated sugar. For a healthier option, use maple syrup or honey instead of sugar. For a sugar-free option, use a low-calorie sweetener, such as stevia or erythritol.

– Spices: The combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves is a classic choice for apple butter, but you can experiment with other spices, such as ginger, cardamom, allspice, or pumpkin pie spice. Just be careful not to overpower the apple flavor.

– Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar adds a tangy note to the apple butter, but you can use any type of vinegar you like, such as white wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, or lemon juice.

– Cooking method: Although this recipe is designed for a slow cooker or Instant Pot, you can also make apple butter on the stovetop or in the oven. Just adjust the cooking time and temperature accordingly.

– Texture: If you prefer a smoother apple butter, use a food processor or blender instead of an immersion blender to puree the mixture. If you like a chunkier apple butter, leave some apple pieces intact or add chopped nuts or raisins for extra texture.

– Serving suggestions: Apple butter is a versatile condiment that can be used in many ways. Spread it on toast, biscuits, or pancakes, stir it into oatmeal or yogurt, use it as a filling for cakes or muffins, or serve it alongside cheese or charcuterie.

Serving and Pairing

Apple butter is a versatile spread that can be used in a variety of ways. It’s perfect for spreading on toast or biscuits in the morning, or as a condiment for pork chops or roasted chicken. The sweet and tangy flavor of apple butter also pairs well with cheese, making it an excellent addition to a charcuterie board.

For a sweet treat, try drizzling apple butter over vanilla ice cream or using it as a filling for pies and pastries. You can even use it as a substitute for oil or butter in baking recipes, like muffins or bread.

When it comes to pairing apple butter with beverages, it’s a great addition to a cup of tea or coffee. It can also be used as a mixer in cocktails, like an Old Fashioned or a spiced apple cider.

No matter how you choose to serve it, apple butter is sure to add a delicious twist to your favorite dishes and drinks.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

One of the best things about this apple butter recipe is that it can be made ahead of time and stored for later use. Once you have cooked the apple butter to perfection, let it cool down to room temperature. Then, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in your fridge for up to two weeks.

If you’re planning to make a larger batch of apple butter, you can also store it in jars and preserve it using traditional canning methods. This will allow you to enjoy your homemade apple butter for months to come.

When it’s time to reheat your apple butter, take it out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for a while. Once it has reached room temperature, you can reheat it in the microwave or on the stove. Simply place the apple butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heat it up for 30 seconds at a time until it’s warmed to your liking. Alternatively, you can place the apple butter in a saucepan and heat it up on low heat, stirring frequently until it’s heated through.

If you find that your apple butter is too thick or chunky, you can use an immersion blender to blend it to a smoother consistency. This will give your apple butter a velvety texture that’s perfect for spreading on toast or biscuits.

Overall, this apple butter recipe is super easy to make, easy to store, and easy to reheat. Whether you’re making it for yourself or to give as a gift, this homemade apple butter is sure to be a hit!

Tips for Perfect Results

Now that you have all the ingredients and know how to make apple butter, let’s talk about some tips to ensure perfect results every time. Here are some tips that I’ve learned over the years to make the best apple butter recipe.

1. Use a mix of apples: The best apple butter is made with a mix of sweet and tart apples. I recommend using Granny Smith apples for their tartness, and Honeycrisp apples for their sweetness. Using a mix of apples will give your apple butter a more complex flavor.

2. Be patient: Making apple butter is a slow process, so be patient. You want to cook it low and slow to allow the flavors to develop. If you rush the process, you risk burning the apple butter or ending up with a lumpy texture.

3. Use an immersion blender: If you want a smooth apple butter, use an immersion blender to blend the mixture once it’s finished cooking. This will give it a silky smooth texture that is perfect for spreading on toast or biscuits.

4. Add spices gradually: When adding spices, start with a little and taste as you go. You can always add more if needed, but you can’t take them out once they’re added. So, it’s better to add them gradually to achieve the perfect balance of flavors.

5. Store in glass jars: When storing your apple butter, use glass jars instead of plastic containers. Glass jars are more durable and won’t absorb any flavors or odors, which could affect the taste of your apple butter.

6. Experiment with flavor variations: While the classic apple butter recipe is delicious, don’t be afraid to experiment with different flavor variations. You can add pumpkin pie spice, caramel, or even maple syrup to give your apple butter a unique twist.

By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to making the perfect apple butter every time. Enjoy experimenting with different variations and finding your own perfect recipe.


As with any recipe, you may have questions or concerns about making apple butter. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers to help guide you through the process.

Why do you put a penny in apple butter?

Did you know that copper pennies are commonly used to prevent apple butter from burning? They act as a scraping tool for the bottom of the kettle during the cooking process. This interesting fact is just one of the many tips and tricks that can help elevate your apple butter-making skills. Read on for my personal recipe and recommendations for creating a delicious batch of homemade apple butter.

Is apple butter like applesauce?

Apple butter is a heavenly spread that boasts a rich and intense apple flavor. This concentrate is created by cooking down applesauce until it transforms into a dark brown, caramelized delight.

What is apple butter good for?

Apple butter is a versatile ingredient that can be utilized in a variety of ways to enhance the flavor of your meals. From topping your breakfast favorites like pancakes and waffles to adding it to cake batter or muffins, there are endless possibilities. For the daring and adventurous, apple butter can be incorporated into unconventional dishes like fruit bars or even used to glaze chicken breasts. You can also enjoy it as a spread on your ham sandwich or simply swirl it into your morning oatmeal for a sweet and savory twist. With apple butter, the culinary possibilities are endless!

How long does homemade apple butter last?

This recipe boasts a long shelf life – it can be stored in the refrigerator for as long as 3 months, or in the freezer for up to one year.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this apple butter recipe is super easy and delicious. It is a perfect spread to be used on toast, biscuits, or even as a topping for pancakes or waffles. I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy the amazing flavors of fall. With the use of simple ingredients and minimal effort, you can make apple butter that is sweet, tangy, and full of flavor. Whether you are making it in an instant pot or a slow cooker, this recipe is sure to impress your family and friends. So go ahead and make apple butter the old fashioned way, or try out some of the variations and substitutions mentioned in this article for a unique twist. Get creative with the spices and enjoy the spiced pumpkin pie flavors in this apple butter recipe. You won’t regret it!

Apple Butter Recipe

I got this recipe from Oregon Heritage Farms. They sell several varieties of apples. I used Jonagold, Honey Crisp, and Braeburn in equal parts.

  • 6 cups apples, puree (use use at least 2 varieties)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice (or fresh)
  1. Mix apple puree, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin pie spice and lemon juice in a large, heavy saucepan. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat and when it begins to boil, turn down heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally.
  2. Place a couple of small saucers in the refrigerator. As mixture gets thicker, stir more often so it does not scorch. Total cooking time can take 1 to 2 hours.
  3. Cook until a spoonful dropped onto a cold plate does not weep. Let the mixture sit on plate about 5 minutes to check the consistency.
  4. Meanwhile, wash 6 half-pint jars. Keep hot until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs.
  5. Ladle the hot apple butter into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/4 inch head space.
  6. Wipe jar rim with a clean, damp cloth. Attach lid.
  7. Fill and close remaining jars.
  8. Process in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes.
  9. Note: To make the puree, wash, peel, core and quarter apples. Place in saucepan with just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. Cover and cook on medium heat until apples are soft. Put cooked apples through a sieve or food mill.
Side Dish
< 4 Hours, Apple, Fruit, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein

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