Taste of Fall: Easy Slow-Cooker Homemade Applesauce



Aaaahhhhh...  There's nothing like fall to bring up visions of ripe, delicious, healthy apples.  I was lucky enough to score a large amount of freshly-picked apples from my aunt's backyard apple tree - she sent me home with bushels of beautiful fresh apples!  I didn't want any of them to go to waste so I sat out to get those apples preserved.

I used an apple peeler/slicer/corer to peel all those crisp apples and found I could peel, core & slice an apple in about 6 to 8 seconds!  There are many things you can do with the peels, anything from using them to make your own apple cider vinegar to just composting them. We fed them to our chickens & hogs and they loved them and nothing went to waste.


Cook Apple Slices

Now I packed all those raw apple slices in my large 6-quart slow-cooker and added about 1/2 cup water. The apples will release much of their juice as they're cooking but adding a bit of water right at first will keep the apple slices from scorching in the meantime. Then I turned my slow cooker on low and allowed those apples to cook down.  Now as long as you don't allow them to burn I'm not sure you can overcook the apples, you're  wanting to cook them until they fall apart. Depending upon your slow cooker they can usually be ready in about 5 to 6 hours, but I allowed my apples to cook overnight.

Drain Juice

Now that your apples are fully cooked there's lots of juice that the apples have released. Some people leave the juice in their applesauce and just start blending but I find that by not removing the juice my resulting applesauce is a bit watery, so I opt to strain my apples. But I don't throw that juice away, it's delicious and healthy! I like to strain the juice to remove all the apple solids and then water-bath can the juice to enjoy as spiced apple cider during those cold winter months, heated and stirred with a cinnamon stick.

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