Kids like applesauce. Correction, kids love applesauce. It’s a special treat, and one of my go-to foods if my kids are sick. When I started making my own applesauce, I looked up recipes online, but I wasn’t a fan of most of the recipes I saw. Why all the sugar? Apples have plenty of sugar in them already, and cooking them makes them taste even sweeter. So I make my applesauce without any added sweetener, and my kids don’t miss it at all.
The trick here is to pick naturally sweeter and flavourful varieties of apples. Favourites around here include Jazz and Honeycrisp. I like to use up old apples that may be softening, and some stores may even sell these apples at a discount. They may not be ideal for eating, but they’re just perfect for making applesauce!
I throw my peeled, cored, and chopped apples into a big pot over medium heat. I add a bit of water so they don’t burn, then I let them simmer away over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until they start to fall apart around the edges.
Once they’re done cooking, I add the traditional cinnamon. I like to add some ground ginger too, a little bit of vanilla, and some lemon juice to brighten it up.
Applesauce is kind of like peanut butter. Some people like it smooth, others like it chunky. We like it chunky, so I mash the cooked apples with a potato masher until the applesauce is the consistency we like. If you prefer it smooth, just puree it in your food processor. Either way, as soon as you eat that first spoonful I think you’ll agree that adding sugar is unnecessary.
Pair this with a classic pork chop or stir it into your morning oatmeal. My personal favourite way to eat applesauce is warm and served over vanilla ice cream. Mmm, oh that’s heaven in a bowl right there!
- 4 pounds, about 10 medium apples
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- Wash, peel, and core apples. Cut into rough slices or pieces.
- Add sliced apples and water in a large saucepan and cook over medium until apples soften, about 20-25 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Once soft, remove apples from heat and mix in cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, and lemon juice.
- Mash or puree apples to preferred texture.
- Applesauce will keep for about a week in the fridge, or freeze for later.