Slow Cooker Apple Butter

Slow Cooker Apple Butter will make your entire house smell like Autumn. It also makes a great gift for the holidays, or a hostess gift at Thanksgiving. YUMMO!

Slow Cooker Apple Butter will give you the most delicious apple butter in the easiest way possible. You'll love this!

Autumn is my favorite season of the year. I am a lover of all things fall – the leaves and pumpkins, cozy sweaters and Ugg boots, a roaring fire with a good book and a plate of my No Bake Cookies, I adore it all – especially apple season.

A neighboring city hosts an Apple Butter Festival every October. It’s full of holiday crafts, historical reenactments, and of course, amazing food.

Although I love meandering through the aisles of vendors, I really go for two very important reasons: caramel slathered apples and homemade apple butter.

Slow Cooker Apple Butter will be your favorite "set it and forget it" recipe of the season. So easy!

Unfortunately, I’ve missed this festival two years in a row – last year because I was in San Francisco and this year because I simply forgot about it. I sulked for a hot minute, but decided that I’d get my yearly apple butter fix by making my own in the slow cooker.

At first I was little bit intimidated by the whole homemade fruit butter thing, but really it could not have been easier thanks to my apple peeler and slow cooker.

The peeler allowed me to peel, core, and slice 6 1/2 pounds of apples in a matter of minutes. I tossed everything into the slow cooker, set the timer for 10 hours and went about my day.

Slow Cooker Apple Butter gives you amazing apple butter for bread, biscusits, and just about anything else. Fantastic!

The autumnal scents of apples, cinnamon and vanilla wafted around the whole place for an entire day, which improved my mood immensely. I’ll tell you – if you’re having a rough day, just make some slow cooker apple butter.

It’s impossible not to feel at ease with the entire world and people in it when you’ve got these scents enveloping you each time you walk in and out of your kitchen.

I let the apples simmer away for the allotted 10 hours, and in the meantime made chili, cornbread, and even prepped my jars for gift giving. It really is the perfect way to spend a fall Saturday, I’ll tell you that for free.

Slow Cooker Apple Butter couldn't be easier. The slow cooker does all the work!

The result was a delicious, velvety smooth apple butter that definitely rivals any of the jars that I’ve purchased at the Apple Butter Festival and the best part is – I made it myself!

You can customize this apple butter by using different types of apples (a mix would be glorious!), apple pie spice or even pumpkin pie spice instead of the blend I have here, and you could even try Mexican vanilla instead of Madagascar.

It’s really easy to make it your own, and I know your family will love slathering it on toast all year long.

I’ve been told you can preserve this recipe through canning, though I haven’t tried it myself. I’d love to know if you’ve tried!

I hope you enjoy this slow cooker apple butter as much as we do.

What are your favorite fruit butter recipes? What should I try next?

Slow Cooker Apple Butter

Yield: 4 pints

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 12 hours

Ingredients:

  • 6 1/2 pounds apples - peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Place the apples in a slow cooker. In a medium bowl, combine sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg cloves and salt. Pour the mixture over the apples and mix well.
  2. Cook in slow cooker on low for about 10 hours, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thickened and dark brown.
  3. Uncover, stir in vanilla and continue cooking uncovered on low for about 2 hours.
  4. Use an immersion blender to puree the apple butter until smooth.
  5. Spoon the mixture into sterile containers, cover and refrigerate for up to two weeks or freeze.
  6. Serve on breads, muffins, pork chops or just eat it with a spoon.

Notes:

  • I used a combination of Granny Smith, Fuji and Honey Crisp apples for this recipe.
  • The sweetness of your apples will depend on how much sugar you will need to add. Adjust according to your apples and preferences.
  • I have not canned this recipe.
My Baking Addiction adapted from allrecipes

Slow Cooker Apple Butter will make your entire house smell like Autumn. It also makes a great gift for the holidays, or a hostess gift at Thanksgiving.

339 Responses to “Slow Cooker Apple Butter”

  1. Caren — November 1, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    Why don’t you just say how many cups of peeled and sliced apples you use.  It would make for an easier recipe to follow.  Thank you.  

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 2, 2016 at 1:06 pm

      Hi, Caren! I’ve found that when I’m at the grocery store buying apples it’s easier for me to weigh the apples then and there and bring them home. Since the apples are cooked down, the weight is more important at the beginning stages than how many many cups of apples you have after peeling and slicing. Does this make sense? Let me know if I can help with anything else!

  2. Chandra Boggs — November 4, 2016 at 6:37 pm

    Made this recipe last night. Turned out delicious and you are right. The warm smells emitting through the house were very comforting and inviting. One problem I had though was when I blended the apples it got very thin. Certainly not the thickness that I know Apple butter to be. Thought maybe when it cooled it would thicken but it didn’t. Any suggestions for future endeavor?

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:14 am

      Hi, Chandra! Maybe try cooking it a bit longer after you puree it to get rid of some of the extra juice? Let me know if you give it another try! Good luck!

  3. Maggie — November 6, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    How long will the jars keep in the frig tiil holiday gift giving time ?

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:13 am

      Hi, Maggie! I think the apple butter will last about two weeks in the refrigerator. I hope everyone enjoys their gift!

  4. Suzanne Duffey — November 6, 2016 at 2:27 pm

    I have made this 3 times.  The first time was great.  The next two were too runny.  Any idea what I am doing wrong?  The taste is wonderful.

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:12 am

      Hi, Suzanne! Did you use the same kind of apples each time? I’m wondering if some of the apples had more juice than others. I’m glad the first time worked out! I hope you give it another go!

  5. Marge — November 6, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    I want to try thisn I love apple butter.

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:11 am

      I hope you enjoy it, Marge!

  6. MollieS — November 8, 2016 at 6:42 am

    Can I get you to post the exact recipe for this? 
    Thank you
    Mollie

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:09 am

      Hi, Mollie! If you scroll to the bottom of the post, the exact recipe will be there. Let me know if I can help with anything else!

  7. MollieS — November 8, 2016 at 6:49 am

    And can it be canned instead of being frozen?

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 8, 2016 at 11:10 am

      I have not tried canning this recipe, but I think it would probably work successfully. I hope you enjoy it, Mollie!

  8. Brent — November 8, 2016 at 3:54 pm

    Just wondering if this can be canned and then put on the shelf and how long it would last for then

    Reply

    • Jamie — November 16, 2016 at 7:21 am

      Hi, Brent! I would eat the apple butter within the year. I hope you enjoy it!

    • Joanne — August 29, 2017 at 6:17 pm

      I want to try to make this and can it. It should work using the water bath method without any problems .

  9. Jocelyn — December 9, 2016 at 9:39 am

    About how many cups does this make? I’m wanting to make and can this for gifts this year and need to know if I need to double the recipe or not

    Reply

    • Jamie — December 12, 2016 at 2:37 pm

      Hi, Jocelyn! The recipe makes about eight cups of apple butter. I hope everyone enjoys the gifts!

  10. Sara — December 22, 2016 at 9:51 am

    I do not have an immersion blender, is there another way to blend this recipe so it comes out just as smooth?

    Reply

    • Jamie — December 22, 2016 at 10:36 am

      Hi, Sara! A regular blender should work just fine. Be careful not to put hot liquid in a blender as it may splash and burn you. I hope you enjoy the apple butter!

  11. Sarah-Marie — December 22, 2016 at 11:03 am

    I just made this exactly to the recipe (although I did misread the part about adding the vanilla later and added it at the same time as everything else) and it is delicious!!! Just exactly what I hoped for. It’s just a little sweeter than Cracker Barrel’s apple butter and I can’t wait to surprise my family with it for stocking stuffers this year!
    One note: It didn’t make 4 pints. It filled 6 half-pint jars perfectly, so it yielded 3 pints.

    Reply

    • Jamie — December 25, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Sarah-Marie! It does make a great gift!

  12. Teri M — December 22, 2016 at 4:39 pm

    We don’t exchange Christmas gifts with my parents so I made this for them and I know they are going to love it!! It is so delicious!! I used my blender and I think that worked better then the immersion blender because I could pour it into the glass jars, less mess. 

    Reply

    • Jamie — December 25, 2016 at 2:53 pm

      I’m so glad to hear that, Teri!

  13. Jaimie — December 22, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    Help!! Mine has been cooking for a little over 8 hours and is still somewhat soupy and very light in color. Any suggestions.

    Reply

    • Jamie — December 25, 2016 at 2:53 pm

      How did it turn out, Jaimie? Did it firm up a bit? Maybe just keep cooking to let the liquid evaporate more. Let me know how everything come out!

  14. Kendra — January 21, 2017 at 12:16 am

    This recipe is delicious! First time making apple butter and it seems to be a fool proof recipe. IIt is really easy and so good!

    Reply

    • Jamie — January 23, 2017 at 12:01 pm

      I’m so glad you like it, Kendra!

  15. Ruth Jones — March 2, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    Other recipes seem to say not to peel or core the apples as the pectin from them is required to make the right texture. I was wondering if you put the peels and cores in a cheesecloth bag for the first hour or so then removed it if that would help thicken it? I have just picked 262 apples from our tree and am ready to go!!

    Reply

    • Jamie — March 3, 2017 at 7:00 am

      Hi, Ruth! I’ve never tried the method you suggested, but I’m curious as to the result. If you give it a go, let me know how you like it!

  16. Daniel Q — April 1, 2017 at 11:21 am

    Ran across this post, and yes this recipe can be canned using the water bath method. Fill clean jars and leave a 1/4 inch head space. Wipe the rims of the jars and put on your warm soaked lids. Put band on till finger tight, it just needs to hold the lid in place.
    Use a jar lifter or tongs and carefully lower in to hot water so that there is at least an inch of water over the top of the jars. Bring water to a boil, put lid on pot and boil for 10 minutes for Pint or 8 oz jars, and 15 minutes for Quart jars. Process times are for sea level up to 1,000 feet. If you live at higher elevations find the time adjustment chart and add additional time as needed. Hope this helps anyone that is interested in caning this item. Will be best if used with in a year from putting in jar, but have eaten this for up to 3 years after I have canned it myself.

    Reply

    • Jamie — April 4, 2017 at 7:27 am

      Thank you, Daniel!

    • Jeri — September 3, 2017 at 11:09 pm

      So if I plan on canning it do I need to add pectin to the mixture

  17. Joyce GUM — April 6, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    I make crock pot apple butter every year. I do not use all the spices you use. I cook it until it is smooth, and as thick as I want it. So I don’t have to puree it. I also can it – by water bathing it after it is put in the jars – this assures it is sealed and air tight. Put it on the shelf, only has to be refrigerated after it is opened.

    Reply

    • Jamie — April 7, 2017 at 11:17 am

      Thank you for the suggestions, Joyce!

  18. Stephanie Stoudt — April 6, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    OMG, I don’t even use sugar when I make this. no need. Apples are sweet enough.

    Reply

    • Jamie — April 7, 2017 at 11:19 am

      Hi, Stephanie! What I love about this recipe is you can make it to your own individual tastes. And use it on so many things!

  19. Hailey — April 6, 2017 at 9:30 pm

    So I want to make this but I was wondering with it not being apple season if it would turn out good? Should I wait until the fall or are their apples available at the grocery store that would be good? If so which ones would you suggest? 

    Reply

    • Jamie — April 7, 2017 at 11:26 am

      Hi, Hailey! I enjoy making this in the fall when the apples are at their peak. I find McIntosh work very well. I hope you enjoy it!

  20. Tammy — August 12, 2017 at 8:54 am

    I made a very similar recipe this summer and canned mine. They will be Christmas gifts this year.

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 12, 2017 at 10:48 am

      Sounds like the perfect gift, Tammy!

  21. Carol Robinson — August 14, 2017 at 11:01 pm

    I am wondering, if you put it in the jars hot, turn them upside down and let cool a little, then flip them back right side up, they should seal. Then no need to water bathe them or refrigerate, unless they didn’t seal.

    Reply

  22. Carol Robinson — August 14, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    I think if you put it hot into the jars, turn them upside down to cool for a little while, then flip them right side up, the jars should seal. Then, no need to do anything else to them. Refrigerate them when opened.

    Reply

  23. Lisa — August 16, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    What are the best applesto use for making apple butter?

    Thanks.

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 24, 2017 at 4:06 pm

      Lisa-
      I honestly use whatever apples I have on hand, but softer apples such as Fuji or McIntosh are typically recommended for apple butter. Thanks for stopping by.
      -Jamie

  24. Michelle — August 23, 2017 at 4:17 am

    I have canned this before in water bath canner!

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 24, 2017 at 2:35 pm

      Thanks for your feedback, Michelle!

  25. Kenya — August 23, 2017 at 10:52 pm

    Really wanting to try this recipe and freeze some. How long would it be good for in the freezer?

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 24, 2017 at 2:34 pm

      Kenya-
      Hello! You can definitely freeze the apple butter although it does lose a bit of texture in doing so. It ends up a tad thinner. I would say it would be totally fine for up to 6 months. I hope this helps.
      -Jamie

  26. Mallorie Thompson — August 27, 2017 at 12:34 pm

    My Mother can I made this. It turned out Great! A 20 minute hot water bath will can it nicely for use in later months!

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 28, 2017 at 11:07 am

      So happy to hear you enjoyed it, Mallorie! Have a great day and happy baking!
      -Jamie

  27. Carrier Filtz — August 27, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    I just found your recipe. Can’t wait to try it. I plan to give loaves of fresh baked bread for christmas, and I can’t think of anything better to top it with than homemade apple butter.

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 28, 2017 at 11:06 am

      Such a great idea, Carrier! Enjoy!

  28. Stephanie H — August 28, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    Could this be left in the crock pot to cook over night?

    Reply

    • Jamie — August 28, 2017 at 8:05 pm

      Stephanie-
      Hello! That’s how I typically do it, but I know some people get a little concerned about an appliance running overnight. I’ve never had any issues.
      -Jamie

  29. Lori — August 28, 2017 at 11:34 pm

    The reason your apple butter is thin is because you are peeling and coring your apples. Most of the natural pectin in apples is in the peels and cores. I grew up making it in the oven with my Grandma ~ now I use my crock pot. But, I start with just quartered apples and run it through a foley (food mill) after the apples have softened. If you don’t have one, you can use cheesecloth and a colander (messy, but it will work).

    Reply

    • Jerry — September 7, 2017 at 2:10 pm

      I have a hand operated machine to skin tomatoes and remove the seeds not sure of the name will try it when I get home and post results 

  30. Linda — September 1, 2017 at 12:13 am

    I make this but with peaches! And, I can it. Delicious!

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 1, 2017 at 10:19 am

      That sounds delicious, Linda! Thanks so much!
      -Jamie

  31. Sami — September 1, 2017 at 8:47 am

    If u core and peel your apples can u add pectin  for it to thicken,  like u would use to make jellies  or other stuff.    If so what kind?  And does that change flavor or just helps to thicken?

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 1, 2017 at 10:20 am

      Sami-
      I don’t have much experience with pectin, but hopefully someone that does will chime in.
      -Jamie

  32. Sherri — September 2, 2017 at 9:35 am

    I love this recipe! ❤️  I canned my apple butter and it turned out perfect!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 4, 2017 at 1:27 pm

      So glad to hear you enjoyed it, Sherri! I love that you canned it – so awesome!
      -Jamie

  33. Eileen — September 4, 2017 at 10:07 pm

    How long to cook using unsweetened applesauce?

    Reply

  34. Amber — September 6, 2017 at 11:28 am

    How many apples woulmd you say you use?

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 7, 2017 at 3:12 pm

      Amber-
      It varies quite a bit depending on the size of the apples, so I typically just weight them at the grocery store or orchard. Thanks for stopping by!
      -Jamie

  35. Mia — September 9, 2017 at 7:51 am

    Do you have a file for those adorable labels that say home made apple butter or remember the fonts you used? Thanks! 

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 2:06 pm

      Mia-
      Hello! I just spent about 15 minute searching for the font names, but I am coming up empty handed, sorry! Thanks for stopping by!
      -Jamie

  36. Jamie W. — September 10, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    Just made this and it’s wonderful!

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 1:47 pm

      So happy to hear you enjoyed it, Jamie! Thanks for stopping by and leaving your feedback!

  37. Betty blanken — September 10, 2017 at 9:06 pm

    My mother and grandmother always made apple butter outside in a large brass kettle. When it reached desired thickness they put in jars straight from the kettle, put on lids and it seals without water bath. I have some that II bought 3 years ago and it is as good as when I bought it. It can also be made with unsweetened applesauce instead of fresh apples.

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 1:47 pm

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Betty! I love the idea of using applesauce!

  38. Jo Ellen Haj — September 10, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    If you put this in jars hot and then seal them in a water bath will they be considered canned and be good up to a year unopened?

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 1:46 pm

      I am not much of a canner or resource for canning, but there are a ton of great comments on this post that discuss canning. Thanks for stopping by!
      -Jamie

  39. Elaine I — September 12, 2017 at 12:46 am

    Hello! I saw several comments asking if this recipe for apple butter could be canned. It’s my understanding (from having canned apple butter before) that you must use vinegar in order for the acidity to be right for preserving. I have never used a recipe that doesn’t include vinegar (5% acidity vinegar). I admit that I didn’t read every single comment as there are a lot to go through, but I did read quite a few! If you’re in doubt and would like to preserve it in jars that will last a year or more, please call your county extension office and ask their advice. Chances are, they’ll have some great info for you. I can a lot of jams and pickles primarily and most call for at least some lemon juice even in the jams. Be safe! Canning is wonderful, but please be informed!.

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Thanks, Elaine!

  40. Elaine I — September 12, 2017 at 12:51 am

    Regarding the use of pectin: It shouldn’t be necessary as apples are loaded with pectin. You do reduce it somewhat by peeling the apples before you cook them, but they should cook down just fine without the peels. When I make mine, I wash the apples, cut and core them and cook them with the skin on. Then I use a food mill to remove the skins. The slow cooker is a great idea! As applesauce/apple butter thickens, it can create a huge mess unless you watch it closely, because it tends to form large bubbles that explode all over the place if you don’t. “The voice of experience!” … Been there.

    Reply

    • Jamie — September 12, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Thanks so much for your input, Elaine!

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