Instant Pot Apple Butter from Applesauce in One Batch

One of our fall family traditions is picking apples and making applesauce.  This year we learned to make Instant Pot Apple Butter and Applesauce in One Batch with Honeycrisp apples. 

The applesauce and apple butter are both very sweet with very little added sugar which makes it a great snack or side dish.  The apple butter is the BEST I’ve ever eaten which makes the time commitment totally worth it!

instant pot applesauce in a bowl and apple butter in a jar

Instant Pot Apple Butter and Applesauce in One

Apple butter is condensed applesauce with a few more spices added, so if you just want one jar this all in one recipe is the way to go!  While the process does take some time it is not difficult to do.

Applesauce is a favorite snack and side dish in our house and apple butter is one of those special treats that we crave.  I had no idea how easy it is to make apple butter at home until a friend recommended that I try this combination of applesauce and apple butter in the same batch.

This year we made Instant Pot Applesauce and then kept cooking half of the batch to make Apple Butter in one pot.  Doing this was so easy and the apple butter is such a wonderful treat that I’m confident we’ll be making this recipe many more times!

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My favorite way to eat apple butter is on homemade bread that is warm or toasted and buttered.  I would rather have a slice of toast with this apple butter than dessert, so we really love this recipe!

Instant Pot Apple Butter and Applesauce in One

Instant Pot Applesauce

We go through a lot of applesauce in our house.  Ever since applesauce pouches came out it is such a convenient snack to pack and eat outside the house while getting more fruit in the kid’s diets.  I’m comfortable buying food at the grocery store, but I enjoy making homemade applesauce at times too.

As farmers, we are very connected to our food, but we don’t grow apples and we still like our kids to understand how other crops and farms work.  So, picking apples and making homemade applesauce is a tradition and hobby.  When time is limited we may just make a couple of batches and eat the applesauce fairly quickly.  When we have more time we will make more applesauce and freeze some to use throughout the year.

My kids prefer smooth applesauce, so we peel our apples before making them into a sauce.  If you don’t mind the potential for some lumps and bumps in your mouth then skipping peeling may save some time.

bowl of Instant pot applesauce

Best Apples for Applesauce

The most important ingredient in homemade applesauce is, of course, the apples.  Before going to the work of making applesauce I always make sure that our family enjoys the flavors of the apples that we use.   If we like the initial flavor, we will like the flavor when it is condensed and made stronger.  Honeycrisp apples are our favorite apples to use when making applesauce.

Another deciding factor is cost.  This year I actually found a bushel box of Honeycrisp apples marked down significantly, so that’s what we used.  When paying full price I like to find a blend of 2 or 3 different varieties of apples that we like.  At least half of the apples should be a flavor we really enjoy and then we can mix other good apples in for variety too.

How to Make Instant Pot Applesauce

  • Peel and quarter apples, fill Instant Pot to 2/3 full or max fill line
  • Add 1/2 cup apple juice OR water if you really want to minimize added sugar
  • Add 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks, I prefer using 2 sticks
  • Seal pressure cooker and cook for 10 minutes on high pressure
  • Allow the pot to natural release
  • When the pressure has been released remove half of the applesauce into a separate container to continue making apple butter.

Tips for Making Instant Pot Applesauce

  • Apples must be cored.  To ensure a very smooth applesauce we like to peel our apples.
  • Cinnamon is our favorite spice to make applesauce better.  I like using cinnamon sticks to flavor Instant Pot applesauce.
  • When making a full pot of applesauce 1 cinnamon stick will offer a light flavor and 2 sticks will offer a stronger flavor and give the applesauce a bit darker, cinnamon color.
  • Allow the electric pressure cooker to natural release – using the quick release will like sputter apple juice all over if the pot is full
  • Depending on the moisture content in the apples there may be extra liquid, feel free to spoon some off or leave it and stir into applesauce, this is simply a personal preference
  • All cooking appliances and conditions are different, so you should test these times and guidelines first in your own appliance to determine what adjustments may be needed!
Jar of Apple Butter made in instant pot from applesauce

How to Make Apple Butter From Applesauce

Since apple butter is a more condensed applesauce with additional spices, simply remove the amount of applesauce desired from the instant pot and reseal.

  1. When making Instant Pot applesauce remove the desired amount of applesauce and place in a separate container.
  2. Be sure to leave cinnamon sticks in the portion of the applesauce that is being made into apple butter.
  3. Cook applesauce on high pressure for 15 additional minutes and then allow to naturally release again.
  4. Turn on saute setting in Instant Pot and add desired spices.
  5. Stir often while extra moisture boils off.
  6. During the process sample a bit of apple butter, add spices if desired.
  7. When very few bubbles remain from boiling and only a small amount of excess liquid remains apple butter is almost done.  To prevent burning do not leave apple butter unattended at this point and stir often.  Will likely take 30 to 50 minutes on saute setting to carmelize apple sauce into apple butter.
  8. When apple butter reaches desired consistency turn off Instant Pot and stir in one teaspoon of all-natural vanilla.

Can Homemade Applesauce or Apple Butter Be Frozen?

Yes!  We like to make extra applesauce with fresh apples in the fall to enjoy throughout the year.  Using freezer containers that are thicker and won’t crack when cold and brittle work best for us.  Be sure to let applesauce and apple butter cool before freezing.  When time allows, I try to cool products on the counter before moving to the refrigerator or freezer.

Sometimes we make applesauce at night, dish into smaller containers and store spread out in the refrigerator overnight before freezing.  You don’t want to stack up a bunch of containers full of hot applesauce in the freezer as they won’t freeze evenly or quickly.

Quality decreases over time in the freezer, so the sooner the products can be used the better!

How Long is Homemade Apple Butter or Applesauce Good in the Refrigerator?

Food safety is a high priority in our house, so we err on the side of caution.  Products are always refrigerated and use homemade applesauce or apple butter within one to two weeks.  I think there is a good chance the apple products would be fine for longer, but it’s a chance.  Food safety protocol varies a lot in different homes, which dramatically impacts shelf life.

If we have extra applesauce or apple butter freezing is my preferred preserving method because I do not can.

photos showing steps to make instant pot applebutter from applesauce and fresh apples

Easy & Delicious Recipes That Use Applesauce

Printable Recipe for Farmhouse Apple Butter in the Instant Pot

Jar of Apple Butter made in instant pot from applesauce

Instant Pot Apple Butter from Applesauce

Servings 1 jar
Jennifer @ Plowing Through Life
Apple butter is condensed applesauce with a few more spices added, so if you just want one jar this all in one recipe is the way to go!  While the process does take some time it is not difficult to do.
Applesauce is a favorite snack and side dish in our house and apple butter is one of those special treats that we crave.  I had no idea how easy it is to make apple butter at home until a friend recommended that I try this combination of applesauce and apple butter in the same batch.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Pressurizing & Natural Release Time 40 minutes
Total Time 2 hours

Equipment

  • Electric Pressure Cooker

Ingredients
  

  • 4 to 6 cups applesauce warm & freshly made in Instant Pot
  • 2 sticks cinnamon cooked in during applesauce process and should remain for apple butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • dash allspice
  • 1 teaspoon all-natural vanilla

Instructions
 

  • When making Instant Pot applesauce remove the desired amount of applesauce and place in a separate container. Leave at least 4 to 6 cups of applesauce to be made into apple butter. Be sure to leave cinnamon sticks in the portion being made into apple butter.
  • Cook applesauce on high pressure for 15 additional minutes and then allow to naturally release again. 
  • Turn on saute setting in Instant Pot and add desired spices, do NOT add vanilla at this time.  Stir often while extra moisture boils off. During the process sample a bit of apple butter, add spices if desired. Will likely take 30 to 50 minutes on saute setting to carmelize apple sauce into apple butter
  • When very few bubbles remain from boiling and only a small amount of excess liquid remains apple butter is almost done.  To prevent burning do not leave apple butter unattended at this point and stir often.  When apple butter reaches desired consistency turn off Instant Pot and stir in one teaspoon of all-natural vanilla.

Nutrition

Calories: 439kcalCarbohydrates: 116gProtein: 2gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 602mgPotassium: 722mgFiber: 14gSugar: 92gVitamin A: 283IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 109mgIron: 3mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Plowing Through Life” is not a dietitian or nutrition professional. Any nutritional information shared is an estimate and can vary greatly depending on specific products are used. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator of your choice.

Tried this recipe?Mention @PlowingThroughLife or tag #PlowingThroughLife!

Printable Recipe for Farmhouse Applesauce in the Instant Pot

instant pot apple butter and applesauce

Farmhouse Applesauce in the Instant Pot

Servings 6 cups
Jennifer @ Plowing Through Life
One of our fall family traditions is picking apples and making applesauce.  This year we learned to make Instant Pot Apple Butter an Applesauce in One Batch with Honeycrisp apples.  The applesauce and apple butter are both very sweet with very little added sugar which makes it a great snack or side dish.  The apple butter is the BEST I've ever eaten which makes the time commitment totally worth it!  
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
natural release 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients
  

  • 10 – 15 large apples peeled, quartered and cored
  • 1/2 cup apple juice or water
  • 2 sticks cinnamon

Instructions
 

  • Peel and quarter apples, fill 8 quart Instant Pot to 2/3 full or max fill line.
  • Add 1/2 cup apple juice OR water if you really want to minimize added sugar. Add 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks, I prefer using 2 sticks.
  • Seal pressure cooker and cook for 10 minutes on high pressure.
  • Allow the pot to natural release.
  • When the pressure has been released remove half of the applesauce into a separate container to continue making apple butter.

Nutrition

Calories: 496kcalCarbohydrates: 132gProtein: 2gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 10mgPotassium: 1015mgFiber: 23gSugar: 99gVitamin A: 502IUVitamin C: 43mgCalcium: 67mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Plowing Through Life” is not a dietitian or nutrition professional. Any nutritional information shared is an estimate and can vary greatly depending on specific products are used. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator of your choice.

Tried this recipe?Mention @PlowingThroughLife or tag #PlowingThroughLife!

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