This homemade fall staple is easy to make in your pressure cooker with 7 ingredients. Instant Pot Apple Butter is thick, flavorful and perfect for gifting or to use in baking. No peeling required!
When it’s apple season, I know what time is. Time to make delicious homemade apple butter! Get out apple picking and make this easy recipe.
It reminds me a little of homemade applesauce, but with a much more prevalent apple flavor with a hint of cinnamon. It’s has the perfect sweetness and smooth texture. I love making this instant pot recipe.
Another added bonus of this pressure cooker apple butter is that it makes a great gift. Can this recipe if you like to store it for longer periods of time.
Why You’ll Love This Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe
- You can leave the apple peels on
- Can for later in mason jars
- It’s delicious, sweet and perfect for apple lovers
- Makes a flavorful spread for toast, pancakes or to add to your morning oatmeal
- Can be made with soft and sweet apples of your choice
- Best way to use an abundance of fresh apples so they don’t go to waste
- Mouthwatering fall flavors in every bite
- You can change the texture up to your liking
- Simple ingredients readily available at the grocery store
- Apples: You’ll want to choose a soft and sweet variety of apples for this recipe because they’ll cook down quicker. I used Royal Gala apples in this recipe, but you could also use Fuji, Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Pink Lady, McIntosh, Cortland or Honey Crisp. Some people also use Granny Smith Apples and have had great results, too.
- Brown sugar: Light or dark brown sugar is fine.
- Granulated sugar
- Ground cloves
- Vanilla extract: I make my own homemade vanilla extract. However, pure or artificial vanilla extract is also good.
How to Make Instant Pot Apple Butter
- Step One: Core and chop the apples into small pieces. Place them in a 6-quart Instant Pot.
- Step Two: Add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, ground clove and salt to a small bowl. Stir to combine. Pour the mixture over the apples and mix well to coat the apples.
- Step Three: Place the lid on the Instant Pot and turn to manual setting and pressure cook on high pressure for 90 minutes. Allow 10 minutes natural release before manually releasing any remaining pressure.
- Step Four: Use an immersion blender to puree the apple mixture until completely smooth if you like a smooth apple butter.
- Step Five: Turn the Instant Pot to the sauté function and allow the apple mixture to reduce. Stir until it reaches desired consistency.
- Step Six: Stir in vanilla extract.
- Step Seven: Spoon the apple butter into sterile glass jars and cover with a lid.
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How to Use Apple Butter
Now that you’ve got your delicious apple butter, what do you do with it? I have several ideas for you.
- Spread on toast or rolls instead of using actual butter
- Stir into your morning oatmeal
- Use instead of maple syrup for your pancakes or waffles
- Use instead of applesauce in recipes
- Add as a glaze to roasted pork or chicken
- Add to your mashed sweet potatoes
- Add into your fall baking recipes
Variations and Substitutions
- Change up the type of apples you use to make different flavors. Softer varieties of apples are best.
- You can lessen or increase the amount of added sugar in the recipe. If you prefer a sweeter apple butter, increase the amount of sugar you use. Same applies if you prefer a less sweet version, use less sugar. Bear in mind that if you lessen the amount of sugar called for in the recipe that you may need to cook the blended apples a bit longer. It may also not be safe to can, but you can freeze it instead to store it longer.
- Use pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice instead of the cinnamon and cloves. You’ll want to pick warming spices that suit the apple flavor.
You have a couple storage options for your jars of apple butter.
After you’ve added your apple butter to mason jars, but have decided to NOT can, you can store them in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
If you are canning, they are good for 2 years if stored in a cool, dry place.
You can also freeze apple butter for up to 1 year. Note – you may have some texture changes after you thaw it out, but it should still taste yummy.
Sterilize the Jars
- Step One: Place your empty and clean mason jars right-side up on the rack of a water canner. This starter canning set has everything you’ll need.
- Step Two: Fill the water canner with hot tap water until it’s about 1 inch over the tops of the mason jars.
- Step Three: Bring the water to a boil and then boil for 10 minutes.
- Step Four: Heat a small saucepan with water on medium high heat. Add the rings and lids to the pot of simmering water until you’re ready to use them.
- Step Five: When you’re ready to fill the jars with apple butter, first remove the jars from the water using a jar lifter. Drain any excess water in the jar back into the water canner and place the sterilized jar on a clean kitchen towel.
Canning the Apple Butter
- Step One: Use a spoon or glass measuring cup with a pouring spout and a funnel to transfer the apple butter to the sterilized mason jars. Make sure to leave about 1/4 inch head space.
- Step Two: Wipe the rims dry with clean kitchen towel.
- Step Three: Screw the lids on the jars, but make sure to not tighten them too hard.
- Step Four: Return the jars to the rack of the water canner.
- Step Five: Add more hot water if you need to. You’ll want the water to cover the jars by 1 inch.
- Step Six: Bring the jars to a rolling boil. Boil for 10 minutes making sure that the water stays at a rolling boil the entire processing time.
- Step Seven: Use a jar lifter to lift the jars out of the water as straight as possible. Avoid tipping the jars.
- Step Eight: Place the hot jars on a kitchen towel to cool down.
- Step Nine: Once cooled, store the jars in a dark and cool spot for 24 hours.
- Step Ten: After the 24 hour mark, check the seals on the jars. You can do this by pressing the center of the lid and see if it moves. If it moves, then it’s not sealed and not safe to store longterm. You can freeze them instead. If the lid does not move, it means the jar is properly sealed and you can store in cool, dark place for up to 2 years.
How to Freeze Apple Butter
Apple butter can be frozen for up to 1 year.
I recommend doing all the steps above for sterilizing the jars first.
When adding the apple butter to the jars, make sure to leave 1/2 inch head space. It will expand as it freezes.
Screw the lids on tightly. Store in the freezer once the jars are at room temperature.
Do I Need to Peel the Apples to Make Apple Butter?
Nope! You can leave the apple peels on the apples. The peel will cook down completely in the Instant Pot. It also helps to thicken the apple butter.
How Do You Know When It’s Done?
It can be difficult to tell the exact consistency when the apple butter is still very hot in the Instant Pot. Also, keep in mind that it will thicken as it cools.
To check to see if it’s done to your personal preference, add a small of apple butter on a spoon. If the apple butter stays mounded, it means it’s good to go.
Another trick is to spoon some apple butter onto a plate. If no liquid forms around your mound, it should be ready.
How Many Apples Will I Need?
For this recipe, you’ll need 5 ½ pounds of apples. In terms of quantity, that’s about 15 to 16 medium sized apples.
What Do I Do If I Get a Burn Warning on my Instant Pot?
Some apples are more juicy than others. If you do get a burn warning, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water.
How Is Apple Butter Different Than Apple Sauce?
Apple butter has been said to be a more concentrated apple sauce that’s smooth and buttery. Apple sauce is more watery and is lighter in flavor and color while apple butter is more dense and rich tasting.
Try this Slow Cooker Applesauce.
- Caramel Apple Dump Cake
- Cracker Barrel Fried Apples
- Caramel Apple Pizza
- Snickers Salad
- Caramel Apple Cookies
- Apple Slab Pie
If you make the recipe, rate it on the recipe card below and tag me on Instagram and use #simplystacie. I like sharing the photos on my Instagram stories!
Instant Pot Apple Butter
- 5 ½ lb apples
- 1 cup brown sugar packed
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Core and chop the apples into small pieces. Place them in a 6-quart Instant Pot.
- Add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, ground clove and salt to a small bowl. Stir to combine. Pour the mixture over the apples and mix well to coat the apples.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot and turn to manual setting and pressure cook on high pressure for 90 minutes. Allow 10 minutes natural release before manually releasing any remaining pressure.
- Use an immersion blender to puree the apple mixture until completely smooth.
- Turn the Instant Pot to saute and allow the apple mixture to reduce. Stir until it reaches desired consistency.
- Stir in vanilla extract.
- Spoon the apple butter into sterile glass jars and cover with a lid.
- You don't need to peel the apples.
- Use soft and sweet apples like Royal Gala, McIntosh, Fuji, Pink Lady, Cortland or Honey Crisp.
- 5 ½ pounds is about 15 to 16 apples.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.