Instant Pot Applesauce (No Added Sugar)

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Instant Pot Applesauce is the easiest way to make homemade applesauce, without any added sugar. With the electric pressure cooker, you can press a button and walk away! 

Instant Pot applesauce in two mason jars with a spoon.Instant Pot applesauce in two mason jars with a spoon.

Applesauce is the perfect way to use up an abundance of apples in your kitchen, even the ones that look bruised. It makes a delicious snack or side dish for kids and adults, and it will leave your home smelling like Fall.

Ingredients You’ll Need

applesauce ingredients labeled on a white surface.applesauce ingredients labeled on a white surface.

The type of apple you use will determine the overall flavor of your applesauce, so make sure you use a sweet apple if you want the flavor to be sweet. Honeycrisp apples will give you some of the sweetest results (it’s seriously like dessert!) but you can also use McIntosh, Gala, Golden Delicious, or Fuji apples with similar results.

For a more tart flavor, use tart apples like Granny Smith. You can also add in any extra flavorings you love, like ground cinnamon or a squeeze of lemon juice.

How to Make Instant Pot Applesauce

If you want an applesauce with a slightly chunky texture, similar to the kind you’d buy at the store, take a moment to peel the apples. (You can skip peeling them if you plan to blend the applesauce into a smooth puree later.)

Cut the sides off of each apple so you can easily remove the core and seeds. Slice the apples into pieces about a 1/2-inch thick, or cut them into 1-inch chunks. The smaller you cut them, the easier they will be to mash later. 

peeled and sliced apples prepared for making applesauce.peeled and sliced apples prepared for making applesauce.

Add the apples to the stainless steel bowl of your Instant Pot, along with a 1/3 cup of water and a 1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Secure the lid on the pot and move the steam release valve to the Sealing position. 

Use the Manual or Pressure Cook button on your machine to cook at high pressure for 10 minutes. The machine will take roughly 8 to 10 minutes to pressurize, so the screen will read ON until then. 

When the cooking cycle is complete, move the steam release valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure. When the floating valve in the lid drops, you can safely remove the lid. 

apple slices in the Instant Pot before and after cooking.apple slices in the Instant Pot before and after cooking.

Use a potato masher or immersion blender to briefly mash the cooked apples until they reach a consistency you love. Taste the applesauce and add more spice, if you like. If the applesauce isn’t as sweet as you were hoping for, you can add a touch of brown sugar or maple syrup until it tastes right to you. 

Store applesauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. (It will thicken when chilled.) You can also freeze applesauce for up to 6 months, but be sure to leave a little extra space in the container to let it expand in the freezer.

applesauce served in a small glass bowl with a spoon.applesauce served in a small glass bowl with a spoon.

Frequently Asked Questions

What thickens applesauce?

Apples contain pectin, which is primarily found in the skin. Pectin is what makes cranberry sauce and fruit compote thicken naturally. To avoid watery applesauce, you can cook unpeeled apples, then blend until smooth for puree-style applesauce that will thicken when chilled. It’s also important to avoid adding excess water to your applesauce. For an even thicker result, add more apples to this recipe, without adding extra water. 

Can you heat applesauce?

Yes, applesauce is delicious warm, especially if you taste-test it straight out of the Instant Pot. Serve it warm as a topping for waffles, oatmeal, or pancakes. When chilled, it’s also a tasty addition to yogurt and granola.

How many apples will fit in my Instant Pot?

You should be able to fit 6 pounds of apples into a 6-quart Instant Pot when the apples are thinly sliced or cut into 1-inch chunks. They will shrink down considerably when cooked, so feel free to double this recipe. 

What does applesauce go well with?

Applesauce is a delicious snack on its own, but it also makes an easy side dish for cooked meat, like chicken or pork chops. Serve it with a side of vegan mac and cheese and mashed potatoes for a comforting meal.

Looking for more easy Instant Pot recipes? Try Instant Pot Lentil Soup, Steel Cut Oats, or Shredded Chicken.

Instant Pot applesauce in two mason jars with a spoon.Instant Pot applesauce in two mason jars with a spoon.

Instant Pot Applesauce

Instant Pot Applesauce is the easiest way to make homemade applesauce, without any added sugar. Just press a button and walk away! 

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Time to Pressurize:: 15 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds apples (see notes)
  • cup water
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

Instructions 

  • Peel the apples, then slice the sides of the apple off to remove the core and seeds. Cut the apples into 1-inch chunks, or slice them into ½-inch pieces to promote even cooking. (See the notes to skip the peeling process.)

  • Place the cut apples, water, and cinnamon in the stainless steel bowl of the Instant Pot. Secure the lid and move the steam release valve to “Sealing.” Use the Manual or Pressure Cook button to cook at high pressure for 10 minutes. It will take the pot 5 to 10 minutes to pressurize, so the screen will read ON until then.

  • When the cooking cycle is complete, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes, which means you don’t have to do anything until the screen reads L0:10. Then move the steam release valve to “Venting.” When the floating valve in the lid drops, it’s safe to remove the lid.

  • Use a potato masher or immersion blender to blend the applesauce until it’s as smooth or as chunky as you’d like it to be. Keep in mind that it will thicken when chilled. Transfer the applesauce to a large mason jar with a lid and store in the fridge until you’re ready to serve it. (It’s also delicious when served warm if you’d like to enjoy it right away.) Applesauce will keep well in the fridge for up to a week.

Notes

Nutrition information is for roughly a 1/2 cup of applesauce, assuming you get 4 cups of applesauce from this recipe. This information is automatically calculated and is just an estimate, not a guarantee.
No-Peel Applesauce: If you hate peeling apples or want to enjoy the nutrition the peels contain, you can make applesauce using unpeeled apples, instead. Cook as directed above, removing the apple core and seeds. When the apples are cooked, transfer the cooked apples and liquid to a blender and blend until the peels are pulverized. The applesauce will be more of a puree in this case, but it will thicken when chilled.

Nutrition

Calories: 88kcal, Carbohydrates: 23g, Sodium: 2mg, Potassium: 182mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 17g, Vitamin A: 90IU, Vitamin C: 7.8mg, Calcium: 10mg, Iron: 0.2mg

If you try this Instant Pot Applesauce recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like it.



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