How to Can Applesauce

I have made applesauce every year for the last 6 years.  I can’t believe I have never blogged about how to do it.  After living in the Pacific Northwest (Portland area) for 5 years I became spoiled by all the produce plunder.  One particular house we lived in had two large apple trees and I became accustomed to pillaging the trees every fall to make apple butter, sauce, and filling along with several pies, cobblers and muffins.  So when I moved to Indiana I was super bummed to have to now pay for apples. Boo! But since apples have a near and dear place in my heart and I was spoiled by homemade applesauce for years I still take time to can every year. 

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Now I will tell you about the secret gadget for making quick and easy homemade applesauce.  The Fruit & Vegetable Strainer Kitchen Aid Attachment.  At $59 retail it is not a cheap toy but I got it from Kohl’s a few years back and I think I got it right around $35 after rebates, a great sale and some Kohl’s cash back. 

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Supplies:

Kitchen Aid

The Fruit & Vegetable Strainer Kitchen Aid Attachment

One bushel of apples (I use a variety)

Sugar

Lemon Juice

Quart sized canning jars

canning rings and lids

Large spoon

Knife

Ladle

Large pot

Optional: cinnamon

Note: I do this process three times for one bushel so I would separate your bushel of apples into three parts before you begin.

1.  Wash your apples really well and then cut them into quarters.  There is no need to peel them or cut out the seeds.  Place them in a large pot with hot water and let them boil until soft (about 30 minutes).

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2.  Then all you have to do is attach the fruit strainer attachment to your Kitchen Aid and add the strained apples to it.  This thing is awesome…is separates the skin and seeds from the applesauce.

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3.  I scoop the warm apples into the top and my little helpers use the push stick to push them through the grinder.

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You are left with sauce in one bowl and the peels and seeds in another.

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4.  Pour all of your sauce in a large stockpot.  Add  1 1/2 cups of lemon juice and 1-2 cups of sugar depending on your preference.  Here is where you can add cinnamon to it if you wish as well.  YUM!

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5.  After you get the sauce to your liking boil it.  I also heat the oven up to about 200 degrees and set the clean quart jars in there to sterilize them.  Stir constantly until boiling.  Remove from heat and ladle the sauce into the hot jars.

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6.  Add the cap and ring onto the top of the jar leaving about 1/4” headspace.  Turn the hot jars upside down to seal.

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Now many a canner will tell you to water bath them at this point.  But in my opinion, if a jar seals it is sealed. Since I sterilize my jars and boil my applesauce I feel this way is good enough. I have done it this way for at least 4 years and I have only had one bad jar. However, I have also water bathed them and lost two jars from cracking during the bath. But you are more than welcome to water bath them if you wish and according to the experts – Ball Blue Book you should.

7.  Let them cool completely and then turn them right side up.  Make sure all the jars have sealed by making sure there is no give in the lid.  If one didn’t seal then pop it in the refrigerator and let that be your first jar of sauce that you eat.

Homemade applesauce is like dessert for me.  I warn you not to give it is gifts because people will give you the empty jar back begging for a refill!

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For more canning posts:

Strawberry Jam Labels

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Filling

How to Make Apple Butter

How to Make Pumpkin Butter





Comments

  1. Ahh I’ve been wanting to can forEVER. Thanks so much for this post!

  2. i canned applesauce this year too but i didn’t have an attachment for my kitchen aid. i’m going to have to look into that because i peeled and seeded all of my apples.

    i always do the waterbath when i can them because one time i didn’t. the jars sealed but ended up getting moldy and i had to throw them out. i add cinnamon to mine too but i also add a little allspice. it’s like eating apple pie out of a jar…..yum!!

    cindy

  3. Ah, the same mechanism I use! It’s wonderful isn’t it? A couple tips: you can add your spices and a 1/4 C water to each pan of apples (assuming dutch-oven size-ish), which lets you bottle up right away. Of course, you would probably need to waterbath then – so anyone planning to do that step anyway can season in advance and save recooking the sauce. Also – run your peels/waste back through a second time. You’ll be amazed how much more pulp you almost threw away.

  4. Our friend Dee told my hubby to buy me that attachment for Christmas one year! Best thing evah!!!! I made blackberry syrup in like 10 minutes this year :)

    And friend, here’s the thing about the sealing. The water bath isn’t just for sealing. You’re using an old method that will seal almost anything. The water bath is for heating everything up to kill all the bugs. In case your ladle, funnel, etc aren’t sterile. So friend to friend, you really should throw them in the bath :)

    • Ummm I have major blackberry envy right now!

      • Agree! It isn’t about the sealing, it is about food safety. Always follow modern canning recomendations and remember water bath times need to be adjusted for your elevation (higher elevation = longer time, to compensate for the temperature water boils at).

  5. I have been eyeballin’ that kitchen aid strainer attachement and wondered how well it worked. Thanks for showing it off.

  6. That looks like quite the attachment to have! Of course I’ll need a kitchen aid mixer first…

  7. I didn’t realize you were Portland. I just recently moved to Bend from The Dalles – I live on the sunny side! :) I wish I saw this post a few weeks ago since I just did a ton of applesauce and my freezer is FULL. I had an EXTRA 100# of apples this year because the annual family apple pressing near Eugene got cancelled, so I’ve been busy. I don’t have the attachment, but I have a manual crank that does the same thing.

  8. How funny, we just canned a batch of applesauce this morning. I don’t have the Kitchenaid, so I just use a potato masher or my immersion blender. One tip I do have is to call your local orchard or farmer’s market and ask if they will sell you seconds (the ones that are a little too soft or might have a bruise or two) Seconds are perfect for canning and usually really cheap. I bought about 80 lbs of peaches to can this year for about $25.

  9. This is the way that we have canned tomatoes all of my life. We’ve maybe had one or two bad jars, but not that many. We have also never gotten sick. We also boil the lids in water in addition to putting the jars in the oven. Works great!

  10. Hello, I was wondering if I make my applesauce in a slow cooker can I still follow the canning directions? I feel like it is a stupid question, but I had to ask. I actually really would like to give my applesauce to some people as a gift.

  11. Yummy… I made some this week and your tutorial was super helpful!

  12. That attachment is AMAZING! I’ll be buying one- I can’t wait!

  13. Your blog looks great! I am excited to try your applesauce and apple butter with a water bath added, too. What does a bushel of apples weigh?

  14. Abigail Jones says:

    Why do you add lemon juice? Is it necessary?

    • I believe it adds acidity and preserves the color. You could certainly try it without. I always use it though, so I can’t say for surw what the difference is.

    • Meaghan Poole says:

      I believe it keeps the applesauce from turning a brownish color over time. We eat ours so fast that we don’t need to do this.

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  1. [...] three things, I still have to come up with some stuff to either make, freeze, or can. I will likely can some applesauce (there is an easy method here that even claims you don’t need to water bath them, but [...]

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