You really only need 2 ingredients to make homemade applesauce in your slow cooker. Apples and water. You can sweeten it up with white or brown sugar and add some spice with ground cinnamon, apple pie spice or nutmeg.
The Best Apples For Applesauce
The best apples for applesauce are whatever you have on hand! You can use any variety that you like, or use a mix of several varieties. The apples, no matter their texture, will break down while cooking, making them easy to mash.
Tart – If you want something more tart, Granny Smith apples are a great choice.
Sweet – If you don’t want to have to add sugar, try sweet Red or Golden Delicious.
In between – I like to meet somewhere in the middle of sweet and tart with Gala and Honeycrisp apples.
How to Make Applesauce in the Slow Cooker
Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card below for the full ingredients list and instructions.
Peel, core and chop up the apples. For this recipe, I chose Gala apples, removed the peels and sliced them up.
Put the ingredients in the slow cooker. Put the apples, water cinnamon and sugar in your slow cooker and stir together so all of the apples are coated.
Cook and mash. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours. You can then serve them as is or mash them down.
Add different spices, like apple pie spice, clove and nutmeg.
Use brown sugar instead of white for a warm, molasses flavor.
Use apple juice or cider instead of water, and omit the added sugar.
Use a variety of apple for a custom taste.
How to Store
To prepare for storing, pour or spoon the sauce into containers and let cool with the lid off for 1-2 hours. Seal and store as directed below.
Storage: Applesauce will last a week in the refrigerator, so if you don’t plan to use it all up, be sure to freeze it.
Freezing applesauce: Seal and store in the freezer for up to 6 months. Be sure to leave at least an inch of space above the sauce for expansion when freezing. Thaw in the refrigerator.
I like my applesauce on the chunkier side, so the masher/ricer works perfectly for me. If you want your sauce smooth, use an immersion blender.
The sugar is optional. If you prefer a more natural, tart flavor, you can omit it.
Likewise, the cinnamon is optional. If you’re concerned about the texture of the ground cinnamon, throw in a couple of whole cinnamon sticks instead.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you can chunky Applesauce?
Yes, you can! This recipe can be canned in a water canning bath. Be sure to add a little lemon juice to the sauce and follow proper canning procedures.
Can you overcook applesauce?
Unfortunately, yes. Four hours is the perfect amount of time in the slow cooker. Any longer and you risk them losing their flavor.
Do you have to peel apples for applesauce?
It really comes down to personal preference. They will soften to the point where they are completely edible and not at all tough and they do give you some extra nutrition points. Personally I usually peel them but it’s totally up to you.
Prepare apples by peeling, coring, and chopping each one. Place chopped apple pieces in the crock pot.
Add water, sugar (if desired), and cinnamon to the crock pot; stir together with apples.
Cook apples on high for 4 hours. Smash with potato masher and serve warm or cold.
To prepare for storing, pour or spoon the sauce into containers and let cool with the lid off for 1-2 hours. Seal and store as directed below.Storage: Applesauce will last a week in the refrigerator, so if you don’t plan to use it all up, be sure to freeze it.Freezing applesauce: Seal and store in the freezer for up to 6 months. Be sure to leave at least an inch of space above the sauce for expansion when freezing. Thaw in the refrigerator.To can applesauce, add lemon juice to the sauce, and follow canning instructions. Note that this recipe has not been tested for canning.
Let us know how it was by leaving a review or sharing on Instagram with the tag #yellowblissroad
Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.