Homemade applesauce with a touch of cinnamon… Ohhh, so delicious! But did you know that homemade applesauce actually has magical qualities? It does!
When applesauce cooks on top of the stove, in just a few minutes (if you watch closely) you will see the sweet-spicy aroma of fresh apples and cinnamon fly out of your saucepan and surround each person who enters your kitchen. (Now keep looking!) Soon they will smile when they catch your eye. Yep, homemade applesauce is a smile-making “happy-miracle in a pot.”
And if you want to make your applesauce taste “gourmet” you can jazz up this recipe with some fun variations. Grab some apples and make this a special day!
Easy Homemade Applesauce
Homemade Applesauce is super-easy and quick to make and it’s gluten and dairy free. (yes!) It’s a perfect side dish for a family or company dinner; but it’s equally perfect at breakfast-time when served with pancakes or waffles. And then of course it’s marvelous at lunchtime, and for a simple dessert or for a snack… ohhhh this applesauce is great anytime!
3 pounds tart apples (I used green, organic Granny Smith apples)
1 cup water
1/3 cup sugar, preferably organic (See below for other sweeteners)
Dash of sea salt (about 1/16th of a teaspoon)
1 – 2 teaspoons cinnamon
1. Wash, pare, core and slice the apples; place in a saucepan. Add the water and dash of sea salt. Cover, and turn the heat to medium/high. When the lid is too hot to touch, lower the heat to low and simmer until apples are soft and tender usually about 20-25 minutes. Remove the lid after 15-20 minutes and stir the apples around to see see if they are tender. If the apples are not quite tender (they should fall apart when you stir them) just cook them a little bit more.
2. Stir in sugar and cinnamon. Taste, add a touch more sugar or cinnamon if you desire. Taste again, then stir and cook another minute. Serve warm or cold. Ohhhh… so yummy!
- Chunky Applesauce: For chunky applesauce, when your stir the apples, break them up with the back of a wooden spoon. Today I made Chunky Applesauce which you can see in the photos.
- Medium Texture Applesauce: For medium texture applesauce, crush with a potato masher.
- Smooth Applesauce: For a completely smooth applesauce, pass the cooked applesauce through a food mill or coarse sieve or whirl in a Vita-Mixer (blender).
- French Applesauce: Reduce the cinnamon to 1/2 teaspoon. Stir in two tablespoons unsalted butter (or dairy-free butter alternative) and 1/2 – 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract.
- Spicy Applesauce: In addition to the cinnamon; add 1/2 – 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon ground mace (optional) and 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg.
- Fresh Lemony Applesauce: Reduce the cinnamon to 1/8-1/4 teaspoon. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated lemon rind, one teaspoon fresh lemon juice and two tablespoons butter (or dairy-free butter alternative.)
- Nutmeg Applesauce: Instead of cinnamon add 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg to your applesauce.
- Creamy toppings: You can top your applesauce with a dollop of whipped cream, yogurt or even ice cream!
- Spice toppings for applesauce: Sprinkle each individual dish of applesauce with a wee bit of cinnamon or freshly ground nutmeg. If you want a more exotic flavor; sprinkle with anise or fennel seeds that have been toasted and crushed.
Sweetening Applesauce: You can sweeten applesauce a variety of ways according to your taste. Here are some “sweet ideas” to get you started:
- Maple Syrup
- Brown sugar
- Sucanat or Rapadura
- Turbinado or Demerara sugar
- Coconut sugar
- Stevia (follow the directions on the package or container).
Keep in mind, that your choice of sweetener will affect the flavor and color of your applesauce; so if you are experimenting with anything other than sugar, add the sweetener of your choice in small amounts and taste as you go along.
Remember ~ NEVER use artificial sugars in your homemade applesauce. (Horrors!) Artificial sugars are not happy ingredients. Keep your applesauce HAPPY! But wait… before we go…