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This easy maple syrup apple sauce has just a few simple ingredients and no refined sugar. It can be made up and canned when apples are in season for a healthy snack or dessert any time of year.
Applesauce is a favorite in our home. We have a few great no spray orchards near by and we visit at least once every fall. With a toddler and two other kids, it’s a go to snack and dessert for our family.
I used to buy organic applesauce at the store. But, it still contained refined sugar and it was expensive. I’ve found it is much cheaper (and easier to control the ingredients) when we make it at home. So, even if we run out, I’ll pick up some organic apples at the store and make more. It’s fun to make with the girls and it’s really pretty easy to throw together.
How many pints of applesauce does a bushel of apples make?
A lot of this will depend on the variety of apples. But, a bushel will typically yield around 15 pints of applesauce when all is said and done.
I usually can up right around 13 pints with the bushel we purchase. But, with 3 kids and a desire to eat healthily, we go through them really fast. Then, it’s back to get more apples. Usually from the store by this point. I think this year I’ll purchase at least two bushels and make a day of it. We really like applesauce and winter is a long time…. I don’t always use it all for canning up applesauce, either and not all of the jars will fit in the water bath canner at one time. So, I can up around 9 pints per batch when I can it up. The rest are used for apple pie ice cream, eating fresh, or homemade apple pie.
What are the best apples to use?
Every single apple will make applesauce, but their texture, taste, and their response to heat are all different. Which variety you choose depends a lot on personal taste. I usually grab whatever is available from the local orchard in large quantities. Depending on when we get to the orchard dictates what’s readily available for the picking.
The apples that are best are going to be soft, not firm like baking apples. So, when given the choice opt for the soft apples. They simply cook down quicker and puree more easily than a firmer baking apple like Granny Smith.
We tend to use:
- Golden Delicious
Sometimes we mix and match, depending on what we picked up and what was available at the time. Sometimes we make the entire batch out of one variety. There are several soft apple varieties, most orchards (and even stores) have them labeled if they’re best for baking or what have you. So, go for the ones that aren’t labeled baking apples for the best variety and find your own favorite.
Do you have to sweeten applesauce?
I like to keep things simple and as healthy as possible. My kids, on the other hand, prefer things be sweet. I’m not a huge fan of refined sugars and we are trying very hard to ditch them from our regular diets. That means I’ve been trying out other ways to sweeten things with natural sweeteners. If they’re readily available locally, even better.
I sweeten this with maple syrup. And it’s fantastic. Maple syrup is sweet, but not too sweet and adds a great flavor to the applesauce. Do you have to add it? Of course not. But, I implore you to try it. It adds a great flavor in combination with the cinnamon and nutmeg.
Equipment Needed to Make This Applesauce Recipe
- Large Saucepan
- Paring Knife
- Cutting Board
- Immersion Blender
- Water Bath Canner & Canning Tools
- Pint Canning Jars
- Canning Lids & Rings
Nothing super fancy or specialized. You can use a food mill in place of the immersion blender and paring knife if you have one. We don’t, so I use those two items instead because they’re already in the kitchen. If you do have a food mill, you will not have to peel or remove the seeds, the food mill will do that work for you. The directions do change a little bit, so you can read the notes at the bottom of the recipe if you’re lucky enough to have one.
- 2 1/2 Lbs Apples (peeled, cored, and diced)
- 1/2 Cup Water
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 2 T Maple Syrup
- 12 1/2 Lbs Apples (peeled, cored, and diced)
- 2 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
- 2 1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
- Begin by peeling, coring, and dicing the apples into small chunks. Add them to a large pan.
- Add the apples, water, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and maple syrup to your saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium, cover, and continue to simmer for around 30 minutes.
- Once apples are soft, remove from heat and use an immersion blender to puree the applesauce to desired consistency.
- While apples are cooking down, prepare your canner, jars, and lids by washing in warm, soapy water. Place jars in canner with some water and allow to boil for about 10 minutes to sterilize jars. Keep the jars warm while you wait on the applesauce to finish.
- Once applesauce is ready and pureed, return to low heat and maintain a gentle boil.
- Carefully ladle applesauce into hot jars, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace. Using a plastic spatula, work out any bubbles. Check headspace again adding if necessary.
- Wipe the jar rim, center the lid, finger tighten the ring and place it back into the canner.
- Continue until all of the jars are filled and mixture used up.
- Once they're all filled, adjust the water in the canner to ensure that the tops are covered by about 2" to 3" of water.
- Place lid on canner and allow the water to return to a boil over high heat.
- Once water is boiling, process the jars for 20 minutes, adjusting for altitude if necessary.
- Remove jars to a towel lined surface and leave undisturbed for 24 hours before checking the seal.
If you're using a food mill, you will add the chunked, cored, unpeeled apples to a saucepan and cover with water. Allow to boil and wait until apples are soft. Once they're soft, allow to cool for about 5 minutes before putting through the mill. Add the apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and maple syrup back to the pan and allow it to come to a gentle boil. Enjoy fresh or process normally.
Serving Size:1/2 Cup
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 114 Total Fat: 0g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 165mg Carbohydrates: 30g Fiber: 5g Sugar: 23g Protein: 1g
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