Apple Butter


The pics below show a doubling of the basic recipe.  Click any pic to see the full size pic.




#1)  Apples and apple cider go into the saucepot.
#2)  Apples and apple cider have been simmering for about 10 minutes.
#3)  Apples and apple cider are ready to process.



#4)  I'm using the Kitchen Aid Fruit strainer to process the apples into pulp.  It worked great!
#5)  After many hours of simmering,  we have apple butter.  Note the straight edged spatula.
#6)  While the apple pulp was simmering,  preparation for canning the apple butter is under way.


#7)  Canning the apple butter in a boiling hot water bath.
#8)  Finally....all done!

Recipe, Notes and Variations
Basic Recipe The basic recipe will make about 9 jelly jars(8 ounce) or 5 pint jars of apple butter.

6 lbs of apples
4 cups apple cider/apple juice
3 cups white sugar
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves

Wash the apples and remove stems.  Slice the apples into same size slices as much as possible.  Do not peel, core or seed the apples.

Dump the apple slices and apple cider into a heavy 6 quart stock pot.  Cover the stock pot and heat to just boiling then reduce heat to keep a nice simmer.  Simmer for 20 minutes or so until apples are very tender.  Turn off the heat.

Process the apples/apple cider mixture through a sieve, food mill or vegetable/fruit strainer into a large bowl.

Return the apple pulp to the stock pot and turn heat up to about medium high.  Add the spices then stir  Add the sugar, a cup at a time.  Stir the sugar into the apple pulp before adding the next cup of sugar.  When the apple pulp begins to bubble, reduce heat slightly and cover the stock pot.

Important!  At first, stir the apple pulp frequently or the sugar will settle to the bottom and burn.

Continue to cook until the mixture darkens and mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon.
Notes Apples:
I prefer tart apples.  A tart apple balances the sugar so that the apple butter isn't overly sweet.  The Stayman variety is common in the Virginia region so that is what I use.  When Staymans aren't available then I use the semi tart apple varieties.
Apple Cider/Juice:
Use an unfiltered, unsweetened apple cider for maximum apple flavor and no sugar.
Use a straight edged spatula to stir the apple pulp.  See picture #5.  A straight edged spatula will scrape the sugar off the bottom of the stock pot better than a rounded spoon.  Prevents the sugar sitting on the bottom of the stock pot from burning.
Sieve, food mill, vegetable/fruit strainer
I have used all three devices to process the apple mixture.  The vegetable/fruit strainer attachment that came with my Kitchen Aid was by far the easiest.
Apple Links Virginia Apple Growers Association

Top of Page Home