This healthy, simple, and delicious apple puree makes a great snack for kids to school or baby food, but grown-ups love it too.
This easy apple puree transforms fresh apples and a few simple ingredients into a smooth or chunky puree with multiple uses.
Like many great recipes, apple puree is a rich sauce perfect for the autumn season when you have an abundance of apples and are searching for ideas on how to preserve them. You can even use apples that are not perfect in taste when eaten fresh, but in puree, with the festive spices and sweetener, they transform into a delicious and healthy snack.
What is apple purée?
Apple puree is a smooth fruit spread made from slowly cooked and pureed apples and spices. Apple puree should be smooth, but some people like it with chunks. You can also add a sweetener or other spices. However, if you intend to use it as a baby food, avoid that. Whether spread on toast, filled in the pastries, or swirled into porridge, this apple puree is a great way to enjoy apples.
Apple purée or apple sauce? What is the difference?
Apple purée is a fruit blend, and one of the forms of using it is as a sauce; when you make an apple puree and use it as a sauce, it becomes an apple sauce. While some sites claim that apple sauce has chunks while apple puree is smooth, it does not differentiate them. Puree is about form, while sauce is about function.
Reasons to love this recipe
Healthy Option: The apple puree is an excellent source of fibre, vitamins and minerals without added preservatives or artificial ingredients.
Easy to make: This recipe is easy to follow, with just few ingredients you may already have in your pantry.
Versatility: The puree can be used in various ways, from a quick snack for kids to a base for sauces or fillings.
Balanced Flavors: The recipe combines fresh apples and spices and makes delicious and well-balanced flavors.
Freezer friendly: make them in larger batches and place them in ice cube trays.
Seasonal: it is a great way to preserve apples when in season.
Ingredients for homemade apple puree
Best Apples for apple puree recipe.
Every apple variety has its unique color, texture, and flavor profile, and each responds differently to heat. The best apples to make apple puree are sweet apples with flesh that easily breaks down. However, the choice differs and depends also on your use intention.
We like to use Golden Delicious or Jazz, but you may prefer Fuji, Pink Lady, Royal Gala, or Brmaleys, which are easy to puree into a smooth mixture.
Also, don’t hesitate to use apples or pears that you don’t like eating fresh; transforming them into apple puree enhances their taste.
If you use whole spices, remove them before pureeing the applesauce to achieve a smooth texture.
Other spices that can enhance the overall taste are star anise, cloves, nutmeg, or ground ginger.
While many recipes call for sweeteners, no extra sweeteners are needed if you choose sweet apples. I didn’t add any. If making Apple Baby Food Puree, skip sweeteners. For other uses, taste it before adding honey, maple syrup, or date syrup to suit your preference.
You can also use lemon juice or apple juice to balance the sweet flavor of apples.
Step-by-step Instructions on How To Make Apple Puree
First step – Prepare the apples.
Roughly chop, core, and peel apples. I kept the skin on a side and added them to a cooking mixture for additional flavor. You better remove it before pureeing to get a completely smooth texture.
You can also go for skin-on apples. You may have it slightly chunky but the skin contains natural pectin that helps normalize bowel motions and relieve both constipation and diarrhea.
Second step – Add spices to the mixture.
Transfer the apples to either a large pan, instant pot, or slow cooker. Add a little water to help them steam, and add cinnamon sticks and vanilla beans. Give the apples a good stir.
Third step – cook the apples.
Cook the mixture until the apples soften. The time differs if you are using an instant pot, slow cooker, or simmering the apples on the stove. The instructions are below.
In instant pot
Check if the lid is closed tightly and set the vent to the sealed position. Choose a cooking time of 20 minutes on high pressure. Once the cooking time has elapsed, perform a quick pressure release to release the steam.
in slow cooker
Place the lid and cook on low heat for 8 to 10 hours or until the apples are soft and easily mashed with a fork or potato masher.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and let the pears simmer for about 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally. The pears will soften and break down, creating a thick and smooth consistency.
Fourth step: Blend it
Take out the spices and apple skin from the mixture. Use a blender or stick blender to blend the apples until they’re smooth.
Alternatively, push the apples through a sieve or use a potato masher to get the desired consistency.
You can sweeten it with honey or fermented honey at this stage; I didn’t use any.
Also, check the consistency. If it appears too thin or runny, simmer the mixture without the lid until it reaches your desired thickness.
How To Use Apple Sauce And Apple Purée
Makes a great Baby Food – This homemade apple puree is an excellent first food for babies, but it is also a tasty snack for children of all ages.
I love to swirl apple sauce or purée into overnight oats or porridge
Combine apple purée or apple sauce with natural yogurt and granola for a delicious and healthy breakfast that kids love.
Make homemade apple puree to make topping for ice cream or pancakes.
It’s used to accompany savoury dishes: Apple puree pairs perfectly with pork or sausages or vegan sausage.
Apple sauce and purée are often used to replace fat in baking recipes such as apple cakes, muffins and cookies.
Use unsweetened apple sauce as an egg substitute. Sixty grams (¼ cup) equates to one large egg.
Add apple sauce or purée to smoothies for a natural sweetener and fruity flavor
Use it as a nutritious dip for snacks like pretzels or apple slices.
Top tips for storing
Store your homemade apple puree or apple sauce in an airtight container or sterilized jar in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Freezing is a great method to store it for longer. I like to use these silicone ice cube trays to freeze it in small amounts and take it out as needed.
Pour the puree into ice-cube trays and freeze until solid. Then quickly pop them out, put them in the freezer bag and return them to the freezer.
How to make apple puree for a baby?
Apple puree baby food are my favorite early baby food because it is nutritious and easy to digest. Cooked apples can be enjoyed by itself or mixed with an other puree like potatoes or vegetable puree.