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The slow cooker chef: Spiced apple butter recipe


Photo: Apples

Photo: Apples

“Why this is delicious.” Seraphina licked the spoon and examined the tasting pot. “You could add some to an ordinary apple pie and really make it special.”

After the success of the pear butter I thought I’d try my hand at apple butter. Fruit butter contains no butter. It has a spreadable saucelike consistency and is lighter than a fruit cheese. Fruit butter is a great way of preserving a glut as it seems to concentrate the flavour and a big bag of apples is turned into just a few jars – this recipe filled 5 x450ml jars. We ate some with roast pork and it was delicious.

I made this in the slow cooker to intensify the flavours.

It’s important to use cooking apples so the butter is not too sweet.

Spiced apple butter recipe


2 kilos of cooking apples
375 ml of water
250 ml of apple juice (I made this in the
steam juicer with the left over peel and cores of the apples)

1 tsp of vanilla essence
2 tsp of lemon juice
1 drop of almond essence
Half a tsp of allspice
1.5 tsp of cinnamon
400g of white granulated sugar


Peel, core and slice the apples.

Put the apples in the slow cooker with the lemon juice, vanilla essence, water and apple juice. Cook for 1 hour on high and 2 hours on low (lid on).

Puree the apples using a blender or food mill.

Return the apples to the slow cooker and add the sugar, allspice and cinnamon. Bring to simmering point and stir well. Leave to simmer for about 2-3 hours (lid off) to thicken, stirring occasionally.

Ladle into warm sterilised jars and seal immediately with hot sterile lids. If you want to go down the hot water bath route, the jars need to be processed for 10 minutes after the water has reached boiling point.

  Leave a reply


  1. Mary Dullforce


    Please could someone answer my questions about Apple Butter?

    Could I use demera sugar as a substitute? Must I peel the apples first or could I leave the peel on if I used a juicer?

    Many Thanks in advance fo your kind assistance.

  2. Louise Perrin

    Can the whole process be done in a slow cooker? This is such an ideal recipe for an aga but I don’t have one. I’m not completely happy with my annual attempts to make fruit butter but determined to persist!

  3. I just wanted to say thanks for recpie. I’d never made apple butter before but it has been a great way to deal with a glut of apples (I’ve made 4 batches this year). It had never occured to me to make preserves in the slow cooker before so this was definitely an eye opener.

    I found there was too much spice in this recipe for my taste but I’ve tweaked it several times and I love the final version. I’ve also sucessfully made one with no lemon juice in (my mum is allergic). I made sure there would be enough pectin for it to set by typing the cores and pips in a muslin and adding that for the long simmer. I’ve done that in the past with membrillo and it worked really well.

    I did find that I needed to simmer for several hours more than you recommend but that’s probably down to the size/surface area of my slow cooker and the water content of the apples I was using.

  4. ps. Judi, you might have had an answer – yes, I made apple butter around late August and gave it to people for Christmas. I even had a jar as late as July that was still good.


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