Is there anything that feels more like fall or winter than having your entire kitchen smell like cinnamon and spice? What else can bring on a feeling of being cozy and warm like that smell can? And all you need is a handful of ingredients to have your homemade applesauce the whole family will love.
As the name implies, there’s no added sugar, but it’s still sweet and perfect for little ones—my toddler devours it. And this recipe is quick and easy to prep. Once you have it in the Instant Pot, you don’t have to do anything else until it’s done. What could be better?
A Few Notes on Spiced Applesauce
Let’s talk about the apples. It’s best if you use a mix of sweet and sweetly-sour apples, such as Autumn Harvest or Sweet Tango and Pink Lady. And you can change the ratio depending on how sweet you want your applesauce to be. However, I wouldn’t use super sour apples like Granny Smith. And if you just need a little bit more sweetness, you can always add a pear.
Peeling the apples makes the end result easier to deal with. But it does take time. Also, if you like cooking shortcuts like me and decide to forego the peeling (added fiber!), you’ll have to run the applesauce through the blender instead of mashing it. This will make sure the skins are fully ground up.
No Instant Pot? No Problem.
Don’t have an Instant Pot? No problem! You can easily make this applesauce on the stove. It takes a little longer. And you’ll have to watch carefully to make sure the water doesn’t boil out completely, but the results are the same.
Simply simmer the apples on medium to medium-low heat for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the apples are very mushy and falling apart.
Again, watch the pot carefully. The water will at some point boil out (it can happen several times over the duration). If you don’t add more water (another cup is fine), you’ll end up with burnt apples and a scorched pot.
- 4 pounds of apples (about 12 medium-large apples)
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Peel the apples, core them (or cut around the core), chop them into large chunks, and add to the pot.
- Add the water, vanilla, spices, and salt to the pot and mix.
- Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook for 30 minutes.
- Once the apple sauce is done cooking, release the pressure, then mash the apples until you achieve the consintantcy you want.