Crockpot Apple Butter is smooth, spiced, and tastes like apple pie! You would never guess just how easy it is to make and that it's actually healthy too!
Crockpot Apple Butter
I love making crockpot apple butter, especially in the fall, because it makes my whole house smell like warm cinnamon apples. Basically the very essence of fall!
Crockpot apple butter is made of simple ingredients. It actually has no butter or dairy components to it at all, despite its misleading name.
Apple butter is actually more similar to applesauce than butter. Both apple butter and applesauce are made by slow cooking apples, often with spices and sugar. Apple butter is cooked for longer so that the apples break down more, creating a smoother, richer, almost caramelized sauce.
What are the Best Apples for Crockpot Apple Butter?
You can really make apple butter with any apples. Some may need to be cooked a little longer, especially the firm baking-type apples like Granny Smith.
The very best apples to use for apple butter is actually a combination of sweet soft apples and tart baking apples. I usually use half of each.
Sweet and soft apples include
- Red delicious
Tart baking varieties include
- Granny smith
To make the best apple butter, pick an apple or two from each list to combine the sweet and tart. This will help the apple butter keep its apple flavor and not be overpowered by spices or sweetness.
Can You Make Apple Butter with No Sugar?
Yes! I frequently make apple butter with no sugar. Just simply omit the brown sugar from the recipe.
I usually opt for using only sweeter variety apples when omitting the sugar, such as Gala, Red Delicious, or McIntosh.
You could also consider adding a sugar free sweetener such as a couple drops of stevia.
Can You Make Apple Butter on the Stovetop?
Yes, absolutely! I like to make apple butter in the slow cooker simply because it require less attention from me. But it will be done a little faster if you make it on the stovetop.
To make apple butter on the stovetop, place all ingredients in the recipe below plus one cup apple juice in a large heavy bottom pot. Bring mixture to a boil. Then reduce heat, cover, and simmer on low until apples are soft and broken down, about 2 hours.
To finish, turn off heat, remove lid, and allow apples to cool for about an hour before continuing to puree in a food processor, blender, or immersion blender.
What to Do with Apple Butter
Our favorite thing to do with apple butter is to slather it on toast with a little butter. It's so simple, but so yummy.
It's also delicious on bagels, English muffins, muffins, and especially cinnamon raisin bread.
Get creative with it, too. Add it to oatmeal or yogurt for an apple flavor, or as an ice cream topping topped with a few pecans or walnuts.
More Apple Recipes You'll Love
- Slow Cooker Applesauce - even easier than apple butter and just as delicious!
- Apple Brown Betty - one of the easiest apple desserts on the planet! And so good!
- Homemade Taffy Apples - my grandma's recipe! A fall-time MUST!
- Crockpot Apple Oatmeal - perfect for busy school mornings!
- The BEST Classic Apple Pie - seriously the best. We make it every holiday!
Homemade Crockpot Apple Butter
- 6 pounds apples
- ½ cup brown sugar (optional)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- a pinch or 2 of ground cloves
- Peel, core, and slice all 6 pounds of apples.
- Place prepared apples in slow cooker with remaining ingredients. Toss apples gently to incorporate all ingredients.
- Cook on low for 4-6 hours or until apples are very soft.
- When apples are soft, turn off crockpot, remove lid and allow to cool slightly before pureeing (about an hour).
- Puree apples in a blender or food processor, or using an immersion blender (as seen in the video). Depending on the size of your processor, you may need to puree in several batches.
- Then just put it all in a container with a lid (such as a mason jar), and put in the refrigerator or freezer. Or immediately slather generously on toast.
- Crockpot apple butter is naturally gluten free, dairy free, and vegan.
- You can reduce the amount of sugar by omitting the brown sugar. If you do omit the sugar, consider using a sweeter variety of apple, such as Gala or Red Delicious, as Granny Smith apples will make pretty sour apple butter without the sugar.
- Typically, I will use half Granny Smith apples, and half of a sweeter variety, usually Gala or Red Delicious. Fuji or Golden apples will also work. You can also choose to use all of one kind.
- Allow to cool with the slow cooker lid off for at least an hour or until cool enough to handle before pureeing to prevent burns.
- To make your apple butter silky smooth, make sure they are cooked long enough to be broken down. They should be so soft that they fall apart when you stir them. Then puree them thoroughly using your food processor, blender, or immersion blender.
- To store, place in a container with a lid (I use mason jars.) in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
- To freeze, place in a freezer safe container, covered for up to 3-6 months.
- Stovetop directions: Place all ingredients plus 1 cup apple juice in a large heavy bottom pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 2 hours until apples are soft and broken down. Then follow steps 4-6 of the recipe to finish your apple butter.
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I leave the peels on and process in my ninja. When using the gala's if omit the sugar (DH) is diabetic.
So do you cook the apples at all or just process and go?
I have been looking for an apple butter recipe, and this looks and sounds perfect! Thanks!
Karen edwards says
Crockpot Apple-butter can not wait to try.
Beth Carroll says
If you are using applesauce to make this, how much do you use ?
About 8 cups
Hi! Any idea if this can be pressure canned?
I'm so sad to admit that I haven't ever tried canning 🙁 (It's on my bucket list though!) So I'm honestly not sure. We usually put ours in canning jars and store in the freezer.
I have your recipe in the crock pot, and my house smells like snow whites kitchen. have you tried canning this recipe yet? im really wanting to can this to use for later in the season.
I haven't tried canning it. But I do keep it in jars in my freezer, and it keeps really well.
Apple butter can be canned. Also, to eliminate sugar just add 2 very tipe pears. It does not change the flavor.
Linda Leclair says
What kinds of apples do you use?
I've used all types of apples and it always turns out great! My favorite to use are probably Gala, and I'll sometimes throw in a couple Granny Smith with that to give it a little extra tang. If you decide to use very sweet apples you can reduce the sugar, or if you're using sour apples, you can add some. Apple texture doesn't matter too much since you're pureeing it at the end.
How long does this keep in the fridge?
About 2 weeks.
How long do you keep yours in the freezer?? 😀
You can keep it in the freezer attached to your refrigerator for 6 weeks to 3 months, and you can keep it in a deep freezer for up to 6 months.
Can this apple butter to be canned? So it will last longer in shelf?
Barbara Anderson says
Ball has instructions for water bath canning apple butter. I have canned applesauce and the process seems to be the same. I have a batch of your apple butter in my crock pot and plan to process them.
Do you know of anything that can be used as a substitution for sugar?
You can use stevia or xylitol. Or sometimes depending on the apples you buy you can just skip it all together for this recipe.
Eliminate sugar or sweetners and add 2 very ripe pears.
Janet McDonald says
If using applesauce how long do you cook it? Is the only difference between sauce and butter the puree?
Scarlett Taylor says
What size crockpot do you use? Or about how much apple butter does this make?
Is the brown sugar packed..
Jessica Formicola says
I could seriously eat apple butter by the spoonful! This recipe looks incredible and I can't wait to go apple picking so that I can make this!
A delicious easy recipe and great for gifting too!
Does it get any easier than apple butter made in the crock pot? I have bought apple butter in the past, but will be making it from now on since this recipe looks so easy!
Yum! Can't wait to try it out!
Yum!! I love this recipe and just how smooth and creamy it is - and how easy it is to make. Perfect for toast and so much more.
Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry says
You just can't beat some apple butter! I will definitely be giving it a go in the crockpot!
Shadi Hasanzadenemati says
Love how easy and delicious this recipe is. It's perfect for a gathering or a party.
Yum, apple butter is the best and so easy to do! I can imagine spreading this on everything in site, perfect as a breakfast spread too, cheers!
This looks so smooth and lovely! I can’t wait to try it on some toast.
Helen of Fuss Free Flavours says
Applebutter is such a classic Autumn/Fall recipe. Perfect if you have a big haul of apples. And so good for making Applebutter cake with. Great way of making it in the Crockpot and so easy too.
I'm still seeing plenty of apples in the market. Gotta get the last of them before running out and start making plenty of homemade apple butter. 🙂
This turned out AMAZING!!
Super easy to make and delicious
So glad to hear! It's definitely one of our family favorites.
Shadi Hasanzadenemati says
Love how easy this recipe is. It’s perfect for our family!
My mouth is watering just thinking about this. Can't wait to try it!
Patty at Spoonabilities says
I know this will be such a hit in our house! Such a perfect recipe to add to my collection of fall goodies! Yum!
Great recipe and I know it would be the perfect gift for my mother in law who is an apple fan.
Kathryn Donangelo says
I could eat this by the spoonful!! SO good and easy to make too. I'm making a double batch next time 🙂
Cindi M Bauer says
This is an easy homemade crockpot apple butter to make.
My husband and I truly enjoyed this apple butter! 💗🍎😋
I give this recipe 5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This apple butter looks so good! This is perfect for the fall and I can't wait to try it!
Alice | SkinnySpatula says
This is a fantastic idea, I love that it keeps for up to two weeks in the fridge, too.
I'm so happy to have found this recipe. I made it in the crockpot this morning and it smells like apple heaven in my house! Can't wait to try it on a warm piece of toast tomorrow morning.
This looks so delicious! My family is going to love this recipe! I can't wait to make this!
Just in time for apple season! This is so good! Love how tasty it is on toast!
Tani P says
Easy to make and it's very delicious! Thanks for sharing
We went apple picking yesterday and I can't wait to make apple butter for my first time!
If I half the recipe, is the cooking time still the same in the crock pot?
Yes, I always cook them for quite a while to let them marinate in the spices.