Hungarian Lekvar Apricot or Prune Butter

Dried apricots
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Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 60 mins
Total: 65 mins
Servings: 16 servings
Yield: 1 pint
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
117 Calories
0g Fat
30g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16
Amount per serving
Calories 117
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 3mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 30g 11%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 28g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 16mg 1%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 330mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Hungarian lekvar is a fruit butter made of either dried apricots or prunes. This is a basic recipe that includes just water and sugar along with the fruit, but you can include flavorings such as cinnamon, lemon zest, and orange juice if you like. To soften the fruit, it is cooked along with water, then the mixture is blended until smooth; the fruit is cooked again on the stovetop with some sugar. This recipe calls for 1/2 to 1 cup of white sugar; start with the lesser amount and then taste for sweetness, adding more sugar if necessary.

The lekvar is thick and sweet and is enjoyed on breads and rolls as a jam; it is also used extensively in pastries, such as hamantaschen, Hungarian desserts, and cookies. It can be the filling for sweet pierogi and is delicious spooned onto a cracker with a bit of mild cheese. The fruit butter can simply be refrigerated or preserved in a water bath for longer storage.


  • 1 pound dried apricots, or pitted dried prunes

  • 1/2 to 1 cup sugar, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place the dried apricots or prunes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and continue to cook until the fruit is soft, adding more water as necessary.

  3. Remove from the heat and place the mixture in a food processor or blender; purée the fruit until it has a smooth texture. (You can also use an immersion blender directly in the pot.) Return it to the saucepan and add the sugar; taste for desired sweetness, and add more sugar if necessary. Cook until the lekvar is thick.

  4. To can the fruit butter, place the hot lekvar in hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace. Cover with hot sterilized lids and rings.

  5. Process in a water bath for 10 minutes. Remove to the counter and allow to cool before storing in a cool, dry, dark place.

  6. Enjoy.


If you don't process in a water bath, the lekvar can be kept refrigerated, in an airtight container, for up to three weeks or frozen for up to one year.

Recipe Variation

If you'd like to add a little more flavor to the fruit butter, use orange juice, cinnamon, and brown sugar (in place of the white). Add about 1/4 cup orange juice, adjusting the amount of water accordingly, and a dash of cinnamon to the fruit and water on the stove. Cook as instructed, blend, and then replace the white sugar with brown, tasting and adding more if needed.