Applesauce may be one of those foods that you think to yourself, “Why would I ever make that from scratch? It costs like 2 cents at the store!” Well, I assure you that once you try the homemade kind, the store bought stuff will always taste like something is missing. And, when you make it yourself you can adjust each ingredient for your specific preference. For example, I like mine chunky and only slightly sweet. It’s also surprisingly easy to make!
I found some recipes online to use as a starting point and then changed it up a bit. Here’s what I ended up with:
8 cups diced apples, peeling optional (I used 6 Gala apples)
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a large pot, add apples, water, and cinnamon. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add in brown sugar. Simmer for another 20-30 minutes or until apples are broken down to your desired consistency — shorter for chunkier, longer for smoother . If you get impatient or want a really smooth sauce, you can use an immersion blender to help break up the pieces. I had never used one be for this and they’re so fun! But it really got the job done quickly, so I’d recommend only blending for a few short pulses. Once the apples are done cooking, stir in the vanilla extract and transfer to serving bowl or storage container. Serve hot or cold.
I made these as little Thanksgiving presents/hostess gifts for my soon-to-be mother and sister-in-law and my mama too. Next time I’ll make enough to keep some for myself!