With just 3 simple ingredients—and no added sugars—this simple Crockpot Applesauce boasts intense apple flavor and a smooth (or chunky, depending on your preference) texture to please the preferences of your kids. It’s so easy and delish!

crockpot applesauce in jar on towel.

Crockpot Applesauce

We love eating applesauce as a simple side or stirred into plain yogurt, pancakes, granola, or even muffins. It’s a staple in our house year round, though I have the urge to make it myself come late summer and fall when we start to see local apples around town.

This method uses the Crockpot, so it’s super easy. Once you prep 6-7 apples, it practically makes itself.

Easy Applesauce Recipe

Since the Crockpot cooks this applesauce, you don’t have to worry about it boiling over, stirring the apples, or adjusting the temperature. And all the flavor is locked into the applesauce, rather than evaporating out, which means you don’t really need to add any additional ingredients.

TIP: This is a great applesauce for kids and babies since it doesn’t contain any added sugars.

Ingredients You Need

The only ingredients in this easy recipe are apples, lemon juice, cinnamon, and a little water. That’s it.

6 red apples

And I love this recipe in particular because you don’t need to go pick a bushel of apples to make it—you need just a few—which also means it doesn’t take forever and ever to prep the apples.

(You can easily double or triple it in the recipe below, of course.)

Best Apples for Applesauce

I like to use apples that you’d use to bake a pie, so ones that tend to be firmer like Granny Smith, Cortland, Jonathan, Pink Lady, or Braeburn. Honestly, you can use whichever kind of apples you have and like—even Golden Delicious and Gala—but definitely use ones that have good flavor.

TIP: If your apples are not at all sweet, you will wind up with applesauce that’s not at all sweet, so taste a bit of your apple first to make sure it tastes good.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Here’s a look at the process involved this simple crockpot applesauce. Scroll down to the bottom of this post for the full recipe.

how to make crockpot applesauce step by step.
  1. Peel the apples and dice them.
  2. Place into the crockpot and stir in the remaining ingredients. Cover and cook.
  3. Mash for a chunky applesauce.
  4. Or blend for a smoother sauce. Let cool and store.

Can I leave the peels on the apples?

You absolutely can! That said, here’s why I don’t: My kids eat very smooth applesauce at daycare and school, my homemade version with peels never passed muster for smoothness, even when I blend it as much as possible. And so, I adjusted. When you remove the peels, yes, you do remove some fiber, but in exchange you get a much smoother texture.

TIP: I put the peels into a zip top freezer bag and into the freezer and simply add a few to smoothies. No waste and it adds nutrition to another food we regularly enjoy!

Does this easy applesauce recipe have added sugar?

Nope! The natural sweetness of the apples condenses as they cook in the crockpot, so it’s plenty sweet without adding any sugar or honey. It tastes really fresh and well, like apples! And this means it’s also a perfect baby applesauce.

blended crockpot applesauce in crockpot

How long does this cinnamon applesauce last?

You can store this applesauce in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer, once fully cooled, in a freezer-safe container. Let thaw in the fridge before serving and stir if needed. I like to store about half in the fridge and half in the freezer—but that will depend on how much your kids will eat in a given week.

TIP: The recipe makes about 2 ½ pints, so not a huge amount, but you can always double it to make more.

How to Can Applesauce

To can this applesauce so you can store it safely on a shelf, ladle the hot applesauce into sterilized pint jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Seal and process for 20 minutes. You can find more information on canning applesauce here.

crockpot-applesauce-in-blue-bowls

How to Store

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer, once fully cooled, in a freezer-safe container. Let thaw in the fridge before serving.

Best Tips for Success

  • Cut the apples into mostly even pieces to ensure they cook evenly.
  • Taste your apples before you start the recipe to make sure they have good flavor. (Very occasionally you get apples that are bland.)
  • Taste the finished applesauce before serving and add more cinnamon if needed.
  • Mash or puree the applesauce to suit the texture preferences of your kids.
  • To make this in an Instant Pot, cook for 5 minutes on high and let it naturally release before removing the lid to mash or blend.
  • Double the recipe to make more.

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I’d love to hear your feedback below in the comments if you make the recipe so be sure to rate it and chime in below!

crockpot applesauce in jar on towel

Easy Crockpot Applesauce

With just a few basic ingredients and fresh apples, your crock pot can do the rest of the work of making applesauce!
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Cuisine American
Course side
Calories 72kcal
Servings 8 (Makes 2 ½ pints)

Ingredients

  • 6-7 large apples (about 4 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  • Peel the apples using a paring knife or vegetable peeler.
  • Dice the apples into even 1-1½-inch chunks.
  • Place into the crock pot.
  • Stir in the lemon juice, cinnamon, and water. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 yo 7 hours or HIGH for 2-3 hours, or until apples are very soft.
  • Mash with a potato masher for a chunky applesauce. Or blend with an immersion blender for a smoother sauce. Let cool and store in mason jars or storage containers.

Notes

  • Cut the apples into mostly even pieces to ensure that they cook evenly.
  • Taste your apples before you start the recipe to make sure they have good flavor. (Very occasionally you get apples that are bland.)
  • Taste the finished applesauce before serving and add more cinnamon if needed.
  • Mash or puree the applesauce to suit the texture preferences of your kids.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer, once fully cooled, in a freezer-safe container. Let thaw in the fridge before serving.
  • To make this in an Instant Pot, cook for 5 minutes on high and let it naturally release before removing the lid to mash or blend.
  • Double the recipe to make more.

Nutrition

Calories: 72kcal, Carbohydrates: 19g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 3mg, Potassium: 149mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 14g, Vitamin A: 75IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 12mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published August 2020.

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