Whenever I think of homemade apple butter, I think of my grandma. My mom grew up on an orchard in the St. Louis area, and, even though it was sold long before I was born, my grandma would still get fresh fruit from a neighbor and make homemade jams and preserves. When we saw her, we would often get to bring home a couple jars of goodies – normally her peach jelly and apple butter.
My grandma hasn’t been in good health for many years now, so I took it upon myself to try to recreate her apple butter. When I told that I made homemade crock pot apple butter, she was amazed! She has always made it the long way with the oven and stove top, so using the crock pot was a genius idea to her!
Her apple butter was normally made from a red apple which is traditional, so the recipe down below is made from red Galas. Occasionally though, she would make apple butter out of Granny Smith apples for me and my sister Debbie; we LOVE Granny Smiths! I am hoping to try out a Granny Smith apple butter soon, too, to share with you all.
Every time I take a bite of apple butter, I really do think of Grandma. She is the best Grandma – always supportive of dreams, constantly sending newspaper articles, singing to you on your birthday, and making amazing homemade goods to share!
If you need to be sold on giving the recipe a try, my oldest sister Stacy says it tastes like Cracker Barrell’s apple butter – which you should know is VERY high praise from her. I mean, she stops at Cracker Barrel every trip down to St. Louis so she can order apple butter and biscuits at Cracker Barrel!
Like my sister, I love having this on warm biscuits as shown! It is also great on pork though, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things!
- 6 lbs. apples - peeled, cored, and sliced (I used Gala)
- 1.5 cups water
- 1.5 cups sugar
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- ¾ tsp. ground cloves
- 1 tsp. nutmeg
- ½ tsp allspice
- Peel. core and chop your apples.
- Place all ingredients in the crock pot and mix well, making sure all the apples are coated with the spices.
- When making this large of a batch, I recommend cooking on the high setting for at least 12 hours with the lid on, stirring periodically. If the mixture starts to scorch at all, turn down to low (your cooking time might need to increase). Most of the water should evaporate, and the mixture will thicken slightly. If the water hasn't evaporated, cook with the lid on near the end.
- I don't like overcooking my apples, so at this point I use an immersion blender or a regular blender to give my apple butter a smooth consistency.
- REFRIGERATE or use proper canning methods. This batch made about 3 pints.