Apple butter is an easy and traditional gift you can make yourself. Just one recipe makes multiple servings of this sweet, wintry treat so that you can cross multiple people off your gift- giving list. If you want to give something to coworkers, the mailman, neighbors, or just to a lot of your friends, a homemade gift ensures that everyone feels special, without you having to spend days scouring stores or slaving away with crafts. Jars of homemade Apple Butter, decorated with pretty custom can labels, are gifts that everyone will love! With that in mind here is a delicious apple butter recipe for canning.
This Apple Butter recipe for canning makes six half-pint jars. If you love fruit butters, you may also want to try this peach butter recipe sometime. You’ll need a large pot or a slow cooker, a strainer, and a lot of patience for this one! You’ll want to start any canning recipe by sterilizing the jars and lids. Make sure the lids will seal properly, and wash the jar parts in hot, soapy water. Load the jars and lids into a large pot, and cover them with water. Let them simmer over medium heat, keeping everything hot until you’re ready to use them. You can keep the jars and the lids in their own pots, for easier access and assembly. Just don’t let the lids boil! Keep the bands at room temperature, or you’ll burn your fingers.
Apple Butter Recipe Canning
In your large pot or slow cooker, combine the following ingredients:
- 4 pounds of apples, cut into quarters
- 1 cup of apple cider, apple juice, or apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups of water
- 3 cups sugar (white sugar or brown sugar for a bit richer flavor)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 lemon, juiced
photo credit: flickr
Instructions For Canning Apple Butter
Don’t let anyone tell you that Granny Smith is the “traditional” choice, you can use any apple variety you like! The whole idea behind canning to to put away the crop that you have on hand. Even a variety of apples (from Golden Delicious to Gala apples) will work just fine.
Apple peels and cores have a lot of natural pectin and flavor so you can cook them without peeling and coring and then strain at the end or you can peel and core the apples before you cook them as you prefer.
Cook everything together over medium high heat for an hour. Now here’s the easy part: Set the heat to low and simmer for 8 hours. Stir occasionally, once an hour, until your Apple Butter is thick and dark. You can do the cooking on the stove or in a crockpot as you prefer. This low and slow cooking process is what makes it delicious apple butter, not just apple sauce.
While you wait, go online and create some custom canning labels if you want to be fancy. Or you can just use a permanent marker to label the lid and date it.
After you’ve waited patiently for eight hours, put the mix through your strainer to catch seeds and other bits. Now the apple butter recipe for canning is all ready. If it is at all chunky you can just use an immersion blender to get a smoother result.
Spoon your homemade apple butter into your sterile canning jars, leaving about a quarter inch of air at the top of each jar. Put your lids and bands on the jars, and place them in a boiling-water canner (affiliate link) for ten minutes. If you don’t need the jars to last long (as in your passel will eat them quickly), you can just store them in the fridge instead of using the water bath canning method.
Printable Recipe Card For Crock Pot Apple Butter For Canning
Canned Apple Sauce DIY Gift
Now for presentation of your DIY Gift- Once the jars have cooled, get ready to decorate them! You can print out your custom canning labels on sticker paper. If you do not have any sticker paper, glue and paper will work just as well. Tie some shiny ribbons around the tops of the jars, or bundle the entire thing in fabric to better protect them for delivery. Your friends and family will be delighted that you spent the time on a homemade custom gift, just for them. Maybe they’ll even share with you!
I hope you enjoyed this apple butter recipe for canning. I love just love a nice piece of whole wheat toast or toasted English muffins with apple butter spread over it! Do you? What other DIY gifts do you enjoy making? If you make this delicious recipe, be sure to share your photos @familyfocusblog!