There is something about the cozy aroma of warm apples and cinnamon filling your kitchen. Then, when you taste that first spoonful of sweet homemade applesauce, you question why you ever purchased store-bought applesauce in the first place. Fortunately, this Easy Instant Pot Applesauce requires only 4 ingredients and will transform fresh apples into the most delectable treat in no time.
I used to think making homemade applesauce was a difficult process. It turns out it's pretty simple, and the Instant Pot makes it ridiculously easy – no need to spend hours stewing apples on the stove. Just toss in those freshly peeled and chopped apples, a dash of sugar, a couple of cinnamon sticks, and let the magic happen. It's a minimalist's dream, utilizing basic ingredients for maximum flavor.
But it's not just about simplicity; it's about making a healthier choice too. Homemade applesauce is a fantastic way to sneak in some extra fruit goodness into your meals. It's a guilt-free treat that doesn't compromise on taste. I love how versatile it is – pair it with your morning oatmeal, spread it on toast, or serve it alongside savory dishes at dinner. The natural sweetness elevates the overall dining experience. Plus, it doubles as a dessert option that's not only satisfying but also wholesome. Homemade applesauce has truly become my go-to, adding that perfect touch of freshness to every meal.
- Apples – Choose a mix of sweet and tart apples for a balanced flavor. Varieties like Honeycrisp, Fuji, or Granny Smith work well. Substitutions could include other apple varieties available or a combination of what you have on hand.
- Cinnamon Sticks – I love how whole cinnamon sticks add a warm, aromatic flavor. If you don't have cinnamon sticks, you can substitute with 1-2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon. Adjust according to your taste preference.
- Cane Sugar – The amount of sugar can be adjusted based on your sweetness preference and the natural sweetness of the apples and you can feel free to omit it altogether. Use brown sugar or maple syrup for a different flavor profile.
- Water – Just a bit to help the instant pot do its thing.
See recipe card for quantities.
- Peel the apples, remove the core, and chop into pieces.
2. Add the chopped apples, water, sugar and cinnamon sticks to the instant pot and mix well.
3. Set the instant pot to pressure cook on high and make sure the vent is sealed. Cook for 8 minutes, and then do a quick release.
4. Remove the cinnamon sticks. Using an immersion blender, blend until it has reached the desired consistency.
Hint: Leave the apple sauce chunky if you prefer. It you don't have an immersion blender, use a potato masher or allow it to cool slightly and transfer the mixture to a blender.
Best Apples for Homemade Apple Sauce
Selecting the right kind of apples is key to achieving the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness in your homemade applesauce. Opt for a mix of apple varieties to enhance the flavor profile. Honeycrisp or Fuji bring a natural sweetness, while tart varieties like Granny Smith add a delightful zing. The combination of both creates a well-rounded taste. Consider the texture as well – some apples break down more easily, contributing to a smoother sauce, while others retain a bit of bite for added texture. Don't be afraid to experiment with what's available or in-season; each apple variety brings its unique character to the table. The beauty of making homemade applesauce is the ability to tailor it to your preferences.
- Spiced - Add a pinch of nutmeg or cloves for extra warmth and complexity.
- Berries - Toss in a handful or twp of fresh berries. Blueberries, raspberries, or even cranberries can complement the apples and add vibrant color.
- Citrus - Grate some orange or lemon zest into the mix for a citrusy twist.
- Vanilla Bean – For a touch of sophistication, scrape the seeds from a vanilla bean and stir them into the applesauce. This elevates the flavor with a subtle vanilla essence.
Having the right equipment at your fingertips makes this recipe simple and straightforward.
- The Instant Pot takes center stage, transforming the process into a breeze with its efficient pressure cooking.
- A vegetable peeler or an apple peeler/corer will help you quickly prep the apples.
- An immersion blender will blend the cooked apples into a velvety texture but you can also use a potato masher or a blender.
Applesauce can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. For longer storage, transfer to the freezer. Just be sure to leave some room in your container for expansion as the sauce freezes.
If you're into canning, consider preserving your applesauce in sterilized jars following proper canning procedures.
- Choose a mix of sweet and tart apple varieties for a well-balanced flavor profile. Experiment with different types to find your preferred combination.
- While a vegetable peeler works, an apple peeler can save time. Ensure to remove both the peel and core for a smoother texture.
- Play around with spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or cloves to enhance the flavor. Adjust quantities based on your taste preference.
- Tailor the sweetness to your liking by adjusting the sugar quantity. You can also experiment with alternative sweeteners like honey or maple syrup.
- Use an immersion blender to achieve your desired texture. Blend less for a chunkier applesauce or more for a smoother consistency.
- Enjoy your applesauce with breakfast, as a side for savory dishes, or as a dessert. It's incredibly versatile!
Homemade applesauce is a kitchen MVP. Whether swirled into overnight oats, spread on toast, or served alongside savory dishes like slow cooker pork chops, its natural sweetness enhances every meal. Not only that, applesauce works wonders in baking, adding moisture and flavor to applesauce muffins, healthier waffles, and more.
Instant pot applesauce can last for about 2 weeks in the fridge and can be frozen for several months.
A mix of sweet and tart apples like Honeycrisp, Fuji, or Granny Smith works well. Experiment with different varieties to find your preferred flavor balance.
The natural sweetness of applesauce will depend on the apple varieties used. Add smaller amounts of sugar and adjust to taste.
Looking for more apple recipes? Try these:
These are my favorite dishes to serve with [this recipe]:
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Instant Pot Applesauce
- 4 pounds apples
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2-4 tablespoons cane sugar
- ¾ cup water
- Peel the apples, remove the core, and chop into pieces.
- Add the chopped apples, water, sugar and cinnamon sticks to the instant pot and mix well.
- Set the instant pot to pressure cook on high and make sure the vent is sealed. Cook for 8 minutes, and then do a quick release.
- Using a immersion blender, blend until it has reached the desired consistency.
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