Traditional Apple Butter Spread Recipe

Plate of Toast with Apple Butter
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  • Total: 2 hrs 15 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 2 hrs
  • Yield: 1 pint (32 servings)
Ratings (11)

Apple Butter is common throughout Eastern Europe. With only three ingredients in the recipe -- apples, water, and sugar -- it was an easy project for an overabundance of fruit.

Today, we have microwaves and slow cookers that take the drudgery out of keeping a watchful eye on the pot. This recipe easily can be increased. It's low in sugar, as all fruit butters are, and makes a great topping for breads, rolls, ice cream and cakes.

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound apples (washed, quartered, and cored)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 to 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves

How to Make It

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine apples and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until apples look like applesauce, stirring occasionally.
  2. Pass the puree through a sieve or food mill. Mix the strained puree with the sugar and spices and choose one of the following cooking methods.
    • Slow Cooker: Place sweetened pulp in a slow cooker with the lid partially off to let steam escape. Set at low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 to 12 hours or overnight, until thick enough so the butter doesn't run off a spoon when turned upside down.
    • Microwave: Place sweetened pulp in a microwave-safe bowl and cook for 20 minutes at a time, stirring frequently until thick enough so the butter doesn't run off a spoon when turned upside down.
    • Stovetop: Place sweetened pulp in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for 1 to 2 hours or until thick enough so the butter doesn't run off a spoon when turned upside down.
    • Oven: Heat oven to 250 F. Place sweetened pulp in a heatproof casserole dish or roaster. Bake, stirring only occasionally, for 1 to 3 hours or until thick enough so the butter doesn't run off a spoon when turned upside down.
  1. Place hot butter in hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4" headspace. Cover with hot sterilized lids and rings. Process in a water bath for 10 minutes. Remove to counter and allow to cool before storing in a cool, dry, dark place.

Note: If you don't process in a water bath, the butter can be kept refrigerated for up to three weeks or frozen for up to one year.

Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
10 Calories
0g Fat
2g Carbs
0g Protein
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)