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+ servings
apple butter in small mason jar
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5 from 1 vote

Astounding Apple Butter

You can make easy and delicious apple butter at home with very few special tools. This recipe makes about 8 half pint jars or 4 pint jars.
Prep Time50 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 50 mins
Course: Preserving
Cuisine: American
Keyword: apple butter
Servings: 45 servings
Calories: 85kcal
Author: Loaves and Dishes
Cost: $15


  • sauce pan
  • knife
  • scale
  • food mill or blender
  • canning jars


  • 6 lbs of apples if using food processor, peel/core/quarter – if using food mill, only quarter
  • ½ Cup plus 2 Cups of apple juice or apple cider
  • 3 Cups granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground cloves


  • In a large heavy bottomed stainless steel pot, combine apples and apple juice/cider (if using food processer, use 2 Cups of apple juice only. If using food mill, use only ½ cup of apple juice/cider at this step). Bring to a boil over medium high heat (keep lid on as much as possible). Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring occasionally, until apples are soft (about 30 mins).
  • Working in batches, transfer apples (and juice) to a food mill or food processor and puree until uniform texture is achieved. Do not liquefy.
  • In a clean large stainless steel pot, combine apple puree, sugar, cinnamon and cloves (and remaining apple juice, if any). Stir until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat stirring frequently (very important to stir frequently). Reduce the heat to boil gently, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens and holds its shape on a spoon.
  • Meanwhile, prepare your canning pot, jar and lids. Heat enough water on high heat in a large stainless steel pot to cover filled jars. Place the jars into the pot to heat with the water. Place lids in a smaller saucepan and cover with water, heat on medium low – do not boil.
  • Ladel the hot apple butter into the hot jars and leave ¼ inch of head space ( space from the top of the jar). Remove air bubbles by taking the handle of a plastic knife and inserting along the edge of the jar in several places. Wipe the rim of the jar with a moist cloth. Center the lid on the jar and screw the band down until resistance is met and then increase to finger tip tight. Do not over tighten.
  • Place jars into the canning pot onto a folded towel or onto screw bands held together with bread ties (see picture). Use either the towel or the apparatus so that the jars are not touching the bottom of the pot – so as not to break the jars. Bring to a boil and allow to boil for 10 mins. Remove the canner lid and wait 5 mins, then remove jars and set in a draft free place to cool.



  • Firstly, choose good fruits.  Use fruit that you would eat right now.  Don't look at this as a way to use up bruised or old apples.  The best product will come from the best fruit. 
  • Use at least two different types of apples, but three is best.  I like a mixture of macintosh, yellow delicious and granny smith.  Make sure to get some granny smith in the mix.  The tartness of the granny smith really sets off your product. 
  • It  is done when the whole thing has changed colors.  You may be concerned that you have burned it.  It can be a little scary when it starts to turn.  No worries, just stir it and keep stirring.  You'll be fine. 


Calories: 85kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 67mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 33IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg