This easy Slow Cooker Applesauce is made using just a few ingredients that you can easily customize to your liking. The final sauce is like apple pie in a jar that you can eat as a snack or topping for both sweet and savory dishes.
If you have gone apple picking recently, there’s no better time to get those apples into your slow cooker and make this delicious Slow Cooker Applesauce. The best thing about this recipe is that you can make it overnight while you’re sleeping or during the day while you’re out running errands without having to worry about it burning.
How to make Slow Cooker Applesauce
It takes about 6 hours on low to soften and turn the apples into applesauce. But with a slow cooker set on low, you don’t have to worry about burning your apple or scorching your pan while you’re doing other things. If you leave it longer, the mixture will just continue to cook and thicken slightly into almost an apple butter.
What kind of apples are best for making applesauce?
It is best to make applesauce using your favorite eating apple. Below are the popular varieties you’ll find at the grocery store and their flavor profile to help you choose.
- Red Delicious – sweet flavor with crumbly texture more often than not
- McIntosh – soft flesh, juicy, fresh, sweet and bright
- Honeycrisp – extreme juiciness and sweetness (this is my favorite kind to eat, plain or in apple tart)
- Pink Lady – mild flavor with plenty of crunch
- Golden Delicious – mild and sweet, with juicy flesh, similar in taste to Red Delicious
- Gala – crisp, juicy flesh, and fairly sweet
- Granny Smith – tart and crisp
- Fuji – dense, crisp and very sweet
- Braeburn – a balance of sweet and tart
If you’re not planning on adding any sugar to your applesauce, choose apples that are more sweet than tart like Fuji, Gala, McIntosh or Golden Delicious.
For this particular recipe, I used a mixture of apples including Honeycrisp, Granny Smith, Fuji, Golden delicious, McIntosh, similar to what I use in my classic apple pie. I added brown sugar to sweeten the sauce. Spices are optional if you want to stick with a plain but classic apple sauce. And if you’re up for it, a little bit of homemade apple pie spice can really kick things up a notch.
How to peel, core, and slice apples for applesauce
Prepare the apples for slow cooking by washing, peeling, and slicing into thin slices between 1/4” – 1/2”. Cut around the core and discard the apple core. You don’t have to worry about cutting them super even, a little bit of peel left is also okay. The slow cooker will take care of all that for you.
Cook the apples with the lid on the slow cooker the entire time to keep the liquid from evaporating, which would thicken the sauce into an apple butter. Once done, the apple pieces should be soft enough that you can just mush them with a wooden spoon and keep it just like that for a chunky applesauce. I pureed my applesauce in a food processor for a super smooth texture and an apple-butter-like sauce.
Serving Suggestions for Slow Cooker Applesauce
This Slow Cooker Applesauce is super versatile and can be served up in so many different ways with both sweet and savory dishes.
- First and foremost, you can eat this applesauce by itself as a snack.
- Stir applesauce into yogurt or oatmeal for a quick breakfast.
- Serve applesauce with biscuits and scones at tea time.
- Add applesauce to your morning or midday smoothie.
- Serve applesauce with pork chops for a delicious dinner.
**** PIN SLOW COOKER APPLESAUCE to save for later ****
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- 3 1/2 lbs apples 8 medium apples
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
- 1/4 cup brown sugar more to taste
- Wash, peel, core the apples and cut into 1/4” to 1/2” slices.
- Add sliced apple and the rest of the ingredients to the slow cooker, give it a quick mix and cook on low for 6 hours and up to 10 hours.
- At this point the apple should be very soft that you can mash it with a spoon to get a slightly chunky sauce. For a smoother consistency, transfer to a food processor and blend.
Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.