Applesauce Recipe: How to Make Homemade Applesauce With NO Special Equipment

This month's notes: December 2014: Harvested local apples are still available at farmers and farmer's markets! And of course, you can cut your own Christmas tree, get one already cut or get a libing one to plant after Christmas - see this page.  Make your own homemade ice cream including low fat, low sugar and other flavors))  Have fun, eat healthier and better tasting, and save money by picking your own locally grown fruit and vegetables, and then using our easy canning and freezing directions

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How to Make Homemade Applesauce with NO Special Equipment

OK, so you don't want to can a dozen quarts, you just want enough for a dinner meal?  Here's the quick and easy way to make applesauce with NO special equipment. If you want to can larger quantities of applesauce for later, see this page instead.  If you want to make chuncky applesauce, see this page.

The applesauce will taste MUCH better than anything you've ever had from a store, and by selecting the right apples, it will be so naturally-sweet that you won't need to add any sugar at all.

You don't need a fancy (and expensive food mill and sieve).  Here's how to do it without, complete instructions in easy steps and completely illustrated. I will forewarn you that it takes much more time to make it without a food mill, BUT it certainly can be done, and it certainly works for small batches!

If you decide to can the applesauce, the jars have a shelf life of 18 months to 2 years, and require no special attention.  And of course, you can freeze the applesauce instead (it keeps indefinitely in a good freezer).

Directions for Making Applesauce, Without a Food Mill or Food Processor

Ingredients and Equipment

 

  • Apples (see step 1)
  • Cinnamon
  • Jar grabber (to pick up the hot jars)
  • Jar funnel ($2 at mall kitchen stores and local "big box" stores, but it's usually cheaper online from our affiliates)
  • At least 1 large pot
  • Large spoons and ladles
  • Ball jars (Publix, Kroger, other grocery stores and some "big box" stores carry them - about $8 per dozen quart jars including the lids and rings)
  • Very large pot or 1 Water Bath Canner (a huge pot with a lifting rack to sanitize the jars of applesauce after filling (about $20 to $35 at mall kitchen stores and local "big box" stores, but it's usually cheaper online from our affiliates) You CAN use a large pot instead, but the canners are deeper, and have a rack top make lifting the jars out easier. If you plan on canning every year, they're worth the investment.
  • Vegetable / fruit peeler ($1.99 at the grocery store)

Recipe and Directions

Step 1 - Selecting the apples

The most important step!  You need apples that are sweet - NOT something like Granny Smith's.  Yeah, I know you like them (why do sweet women like sour apples???) and even if I did, they still wouldn't make good applesauce - you'd have to add a lot of sugar. 

Instead, choose apples that are naturally sweet, like Red Delicious, Gala, Fuji, Rome and always use a mixture - never just one type.  This year I used

  • 40% red Delicious,
  • 30% Fuji,
  • 10% Yellow Delicious,
  • 10% Gala and
  • 10% Winesap. 

This meant it was so sweet I did not need to add any sugar at all.  And the flavor is great! The Fuji's and Gala's give it an aromatic flavor!

 

 

Step 2 - How many apples and where to get them

You can pick your own, or buy them at the grocery store.  Grocery store prices for apples typically range from $1 to $2 per lb.  Of course, in larger quantities, they can be had for much less. They were available from late September at $12 to $24 per bushel (which is 42 pounds, so even at $24 per bushel, that's only 57 cents per pound).

If you're only making a small amount, figure about 3 to 4 pounds of apples per quart of applesauce you want to make.

Buying in bulk, you'll get about 12 to 14 quarts of applesauce per bushel of apples. 

Step 3 -Wash and peel the apples!

I'm sure you can figure out how to wash the apples in plain cold water.

Using a vegetable peeler or a paring knife, peel the apples.

 

Step 4 -Wash and peel and chop the apples!

Chopping them is much faster if you use one of those apple corer/segmenters - you just push it down on an apple and it cuts it into segments. 

Using a paring knife, be sure to remove any seeds, hard parts (usually the part around the seeds) and any mush or dark areas.

Yes, this picture shows skins (I forgot to take a photo of this step with peeled apples)

Step 5 - Cook the Apples

Pretty simple! Put about 1 inch of water (I used either filtered tap water or store brand apple juice) on the bottom of a huge, thick-bottomed pot. Put the lid on, and the heat on high.  When it gets really going, turn it to medium high until the apples are soft through and through. As the apples cook, they'll release more water (apples are 99% water!).

 

Step 6 - Sieve, mush or mix the cooked apples

Some varieties of apples are very watery - if you want thick applesauce, just pour or ladle off the excess water - but DO save it - it's apple juice and tastes great!  You can filter it through a coffee filter in a funnel if you want it clear!

Whether you pour off excess water or not, you can either put the soft cooked apples through a sieve, or simply stir them vigorously in the pot to mush them up! Obviously a Foley food mill or strainer helps a lot, but you can do it by hand trough a colander, metal sieve or mush mush them up with a potato masher, a whisk or even a stand mixer or hand mixer.

You can also put them into the food processor or blender to whip them into a smooth puree!

Mirro Stainless Steel Foley Food Mill 2Qt.

Features:

  • Heavy tin-plated steel
  • For applesauce, apple butter
  • Remove seeds from blackberries
  • Rice potatoes
  • Has supports for resting on top of bowl or pot
  • About $20 - click on the links at left for current pricing
 

Step 7 - Season and keep the applesauce hot

Put the applesauce into a large pot. Add cinnamon to taste.  You should not need to add any sugar.  

The applesauce does not need any further cooking; just keep it hot until you get enough made to fill the jars you will put into the canner (Canners hold seven jars at once, whether they are quart or pint size). 

Of course, if you are going to eat the applesauce fresh, freeze it, or just store it in the fridge (lasts a week or two) then you're done!

If you want to can the applesauce:

Step 8 - Wash the jars and lids

The dishwasher is fine for the jars; especially if it has a "sanitize" cycle. Otherwise put the jars in boiling water for 10 minutes. I just put the lids in a small pot of almost boiling water for 5 minutes, and use the magnetic "lid lifter wand" (available from target, other big box stores, and often grocery stores; and available online - see this page) to pull them out.

Step 9 - Fill the jars

Fill them to within ¼-inch of the top, wipe any spilled applesauce of the top, seat the lid and tighten the ring around them.  Put them in the canner and keep them cover with at least 1 inch of water and boiling. Boil them for at least 20 minutes (and no more than 30 min).

Step 10 - Done

Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight)  You can then remove the rings if you like, but if you leave them on, at least loosen them quite a bit, so they don't rust in place due to trapped moisture. Once the jars are cool, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sucked down. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. If you put the jar in the refrigerator right away, you can still use it. Some people replace the lid and reprocess the jar, then that's a bit iffy. If you heat the contents back up, re-jar them (with a new lid) and the full time in the canner, it's usually ok.

Other Equipment:

From left to right:

  1. Jar lifting tongs 
            helpful to pick up hot jars
  2. Lid lifter 
            - to remove lids from the pot 
            of hot water 
  3. Lid 
           - disposable - you may only 
           use them once
  4. Ring 
          - holds the lids on the jar until after
          the jars cool - then you don't need them
  5. Canning jar funnel
          - to fill the jars

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Do I have to use a sieve or food mill, if I peel the apples before I cook them for applesauce? I'm really one of the cheapest people ever and would rather do the extra work than go buy equipment!

A. Nope, if you peel the apples (and remove the stems, seeds, core) you can cook it and just stir it vigorously. It will never be a smooth as regular applesauce made through a sieve, but you can just call it "chunky applesauce"!

Q. Can I use a blender for making apple sauce instead of a food mill or food processor?

Certainly! Of course, you’ll need to peel, cut, core and manually remove the seeds first, before you cook the apples; unless  you want them all blended up into the applesauce. I get letters from people say they prefer it that way. I think I’ll keep using the strainer…. But sure, aside from the extra work in preparation , you can use the blender.  Some people use a juicer, too. Of course, with a juicer, you will use the juice, not the bits that are trapped in the screen.

 

* All the tools you need for hot waterbath canning - in one comprehensive set!
* Complete with 21 1/2 qt. enameled waterbath canner and "Ball Blue Book" of canning.
* Also includes canning rack, funnel, jar lifter, jar wrencher, bubble freer, tongs and lid lifter.
* A Kitchen Krafts exclusive collection.


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Home Canning Kits

Features:

  • Everything you need to get started with waterbath canning (fruits,pickles, jams, jellies, salsa, sauces and tomatoes)
  • 21-1/2 qt. enamel water bath canner
  • Funnel, jar lifter, lid lifter, bubble freer spatula
  • Ball Blue Book

This is the same type of  standard canner that my grandmother used to make everything from applesauce to jams and jellies to tomato and spaghetti sauce. This complete kit includes everything you need: the canner, jar rack, jar grabber tongs, lid lifting wand, a plastic funnel, labels, bubble freer, and the bible of canning, the Ball Blue Book. You'll never need anything else except more jars and lids!
Features:

 

Deluxe Food Strainer & Sauce Maker

See this page for more information, reviews, descriptions of other strainers and supplies or to order!

With the Deluxe Food Strainer/Sauce Maker, you can make creamy apple sauce and smooth tomato sauce without having to peel and core! This multi-use strainer forces food through a stainless steel screen, automatically separating the juice and pulp from the seeds, shins, and stems. Perfect for purees, creamed soups, baby foods, pie filling, juices, jams, and more. Save time, effort, and money by preparing your own tasty sauces to be used immediately or boiled for future use. Do bushels with ease and in a fraction of the time. Includes the tomato/apple screen with easy twist on design and instruction/recipe booklet.

The Deluxe model comes with the standard Tomato/Apple Screen; as well as the Berry Screen, Pumpkin Screen, and Grape Spiral. Note

 

Mirro Stainless Steel Foley Food Mill
3 1/2Qt size.

Features:

  • Heavy tin-plated steel
  • Makes applesauce
  • Rice potatoes
  • Has supports for resting on top of bowl or pot

 

   

     

Lids, Rings, Jars, mixes, pectin, etc.

Need lids, rings and replacement jars?  Or pectin to make jam, spaghetti sauce or salsa mix or pickle mixes?  Get them all here, and usually at lower prices than your local store!

Get them all here at the best prices on the internet!

Can't find the equipment?  We ship to all 50 states!


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Remember to ALWAYS call the farm or orchard BEFORE you go - weather, heavy picking and business conditions can always affect their hours and crops!


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Our other free, informative sites you may like:

EHSO.com - Environmental health and safety information and guidance for the home
ConsumerFraudReporting.org - Information about identity theft, frauds and scams; how to report them and how to protect your identity.
FitnessAndHealthScience.org - Practical fitness, health and diet information that works.
And our other related websites!


Care to Donate to help me keep the website going? Donate to me at Benevia here:

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Or as a last result (I reply to the forms FIRST),write me at 
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Disclaimer and Privacy Policy
Permission is given to link to any page on www.pickyourown.org Do NOT copy and republish this page in whole or part, that is a copyright violation which will be prosecuted: link to the page instead!
Looking for jobs on farms?  Farmers:
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Remember to ALWAYS call the farm or orchard BEFORE you go - weather, heavy picking and business conditions can always affect their hours and crops!


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Our other free, informative sites you may like:

EHSO.com - Environmental health and safety information and guidance for the home
ConsumerFraudReporting.org - Information about identity theft, frauds and scams; how to report them and how to protect your identity.
FitnessAndHealthScience.org - Practical fitness, health and diet information that works.
And our other related websites!


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Permission is given to link to any page on www.pickyourown.org Do NOT copy and republish this page in whole or part, that is a copyright violation which will be prosecuted: link to the page instead!
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Remember to ALWAYS call the farm or orchard BEFORE you go - weather, heavy picking and business conditions can always affect their hours and crops!


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Our other free, informative sites you may like:

EHSO.com - Environmental health and safety information and guidance for the home
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And our other related websites!


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Remember to ALWAYS call the farm or orchard BEFORE you go - weather, heavy picking and business conditions can always affect their hours and crops!


PYO Farms in Other Countries: [ Australia ] [ Canada ] [ South Africa ] [ New Zealand ] [ United Kingdom ]

Our other free, informative sites you may like:

EHSO.com - Environmental health and safety information and guidance for the home
ConsumerFraudReporting.org - Information about identity theft, frauds and scams; how to report them and how to protect your identity.
FitnessAndHealthScience.org - Practical fitness, health and diet information that works.
And our other related websites!


Care to Donate to help me keep the website going? Donate to me at Benevia here:

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