With autumn in full swing, you might have noticed fruit butters appearing at your local farmers market. Have you tried them before? They are a delightful spread to dip fruits and veggies in or slather onto toast. And one of my favorite types of fruit butters — especially this time of year — is slow cooker apple butter made from nutrition-rich apples.
Apple Butter vs. Apple Jam
Now, you might confuse apple butter with jam, but they aren’t the same. See, jams are made from crushed or chopped fruit that are combined with sugar, pectin to thicken the mix and sometimes lemon juice. It’s all puréed together to eliminate any chunks of fruit.
Fruit butters combine the entire fruit, including the peel, with spices and sugar. Because there is no pectin, the fruit takes longer to cook down. But the added amount of time actually works to your benefit; it’s what puts the “butter” in “apple butter,” as it becomes super spreadable. Yum!
Why Use A Slow Cooker?
That’s why the slow cooker comes in handy for this Crockpot Apple Butter recipe. Instead of having to remain vigilant over a pot on the stove, you can add all the ingredients into the slow cooker and go. And trust me, the smell that will be coming from your slow cooker is better than any scented candle you could burn!
So what makes a great homemade apple butter? And what are the best apples for a crockpot apple butter? Like most recipes with few ingredients, the quality of apple is important here. When possible, opt for local, organic varieties. Often a mix a few different kinds provides the best flavor. Softer varieties of apples such as Fuji, Golden Delicious, Jonathan or Jonagold can work well because they cook down faster.
One of the underrated parts of apple butter is the fact that it uses cinnamon and apple cider vinegar, two ingredients that come with a ton of benefits.
The health benefits of cinnamon are impressive. The spice is packed with antioxidants, which help reduce free radical damage and can slow down aging. Cinnamon also contains powerful anti-inflammatory effects, protects heart health and fights infections and viruses. As little as 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon can really make a difference in your body.
Apple cider vinegar is another natural ingredient that’s beneficial to our bodies. When ingested, apple cider vinegar detoxes your body by balancing pH levels, stimulating the cardiovascular system, bowel mobility and lymphatic drainage. It’s also an effective treatment for acid reflux and heartburn while killing off excess yeast.
That means this apple butter isn’t just tasty, it’s great for your body, too.
How to Make Apple Butter
It’s time to get this slow cooker apple butter going! Start by adding all the ingredients into the slow cooker and let the apple butter recipe cook for the next six hours. Stir every two hours.
Once the slow cooker apple butter is ready, use an immersion blender to blend the apples. No immersion blender? Then blend in batches in a high-powered blender.
Then do a taste test. Add a little maple sugar to sweeten to your liking and stir in. (I prefer mine without any added maple sugar). Then store the apple butter recipe in a mason jar.
This slow cooker apple butter will keep for up to three months in the refrigerator, but I doubt it will last that long!Print
With autumn in full swing, you might have noticed fruit butters appearing at your local farmers market. Have you tried making one yourself? It’s surprisingly easy and this apple butter recipe will delight.
- 10 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
- 1 cup organic apple juice
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- ½ tablespoon ground clove
- 2–3 cinnamon sticks
- maple sugar, optional
- Place all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on medium heat for 6 hours. Stir every couple of hours.
- Turn off the slow cooker and using an immersion blender, blend the apple mixture until smooth. If you don’t have an immersion blender, blend in two batches in a high-powered blender.
- Optionally sweeten with maple sugar, to taste.
- Store in a mason jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Apple butter is great on toast, mixed with yogurt, and awesome on a scone.
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cook Time: 6 hrs
- Category: Sauces
- Method: Slow Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
- Calories: 37
- Sugar: 7.3g
- Sodium: 1mg
- Fat: 0.1g
- Carbohydrates: 9.8g
- Fiber: 1.7g
- Protein: 0.2g
Keywords: apple butter recipe, slow cooker apple butter, crockpot apple butter