Quick Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe - Adventures of Mel (2024)

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by Mel Lockcuff

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Save time with this quick Instant Pot apple butter recipe you can make fast. There's no peeling or stirring necessary, and it's easy to make in less than an hour. This homemade fall favorite is perfect with biscuits, pancakes, and toast!

This apple butter Instant Pot recipe is so easy to make, that I'll never buy store bought again. It's one of my favorite fall recipes.

this recipe

I remember years ago making apple butter, and it was quite the chore, standing over the sink working up all the apples for the recipe. Not anymore, though, thanks to my Johnny apple peeler, which cores, peels, and slices all at once.

This kitchen tool is our best thrift store find ever because it does it all the work for me. I'm able to throw this Instant Pot apple butter recipe together in minutes.

What is Apple Butter?

According to Wikipedia, “Apple butter is a highly concentrated form of apple sauce produced by long, slow cooking of apples with cider or water to a point where the sugar in the apples caramelizes, turning the apple butter a deep brown.”

Well, yes, but you can make apple butter in your electric pressure cooker, and it's not a long, slow, painful process. It's actually pretty painless.

My apple butter is a mixture of apples and spices, with a texture that's very similar toInstant Pot applesauceandInstant Pot cinnamon applesauce; but the taste is a little sweeter, a little darker, and filled with cinnamon spice flavors.

Why You'll Love This Recipe

You'll love making pressure cooker apple butter, possibly even more than my stovetop apple butter recipe, because it…

  • It's even easier to make, if you can imagine that, no stirring necessary. Simply put your ingredients into your electric pressure cooker, put the lid on, set it, and forget it while it cooks. And if you're thinking the apples will be a chore… Coring, peeling (if you choose to peel the apples), and slicing the apples is a job made much easier and quicker with aJohnny apple peeler.
  • It smells and tastes heavenly; it really does. I mean, would it really be fall without the scent of homemade apple butter wafting through the house? Better than any candle out there! It makes our home smell heavenly, and it tastes dreamy too.
  • It's budget-friendly. Depending where you buy your apples and your spices, you can make a batch of 5-6 half-pints or 3-4 pints for less than $10. A bit of advice… I'm very partial to canning apple butter in thefall because it's usually pretty easy to find apple secondsat a local orchard or farmer’s market. Buying seconds just means you can buy a bushel or half-bushel of less-than-perfect apples for a lot less than normal cost, which is going to save you a ton of money. I also like to buy spices in bulk at our local grocery discount store and sometimes thru Amazon; I especially loveBadia spices and seasonings. When you compare the cost of making homemade to store bought apple butter, you save a little bit of money. But even more importantly, homemade is just better all 'round. Plus, if you're like me, you love the satisfaction of having your own jars of home canned food lining your pantry shelves.
  • You can can it or freeze it for storage purposes.
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Ingredients and Substitutions Notes:

When I developed this Instapot apple butter, I knew I wanted it to taste similar to Cracker Barrel apple butter. Not a copycat recipe really, but similar.

  • Fresh apples –When it comes to picking the kind of apples to use, I recommend apples that are both sweet and tart to really give it a flavor kick. Some of the best apples for making apple butter include Jonathan, Jonagold, Braeburn, McIntosh Red, Winesap, Cortland, Fuji, and Gala. Jonathan and Jonagold are two of my favorites; I've also combined Fuji with Gala to make a really delicious apple butter.
  • MolassesI prefer to use just regular molasses over blackstrap molasses.
  • Spices – I use nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and cinnamon to really give this apple butter a kick of flavor.
  • Lemon juice –I prefer to use a fresh lemon juice, either straight from a lemon or my favorite shortcut,Minute Maid lemon juiceyou can find in the freezer section of some grocery stores; I've been able to find it at my local Walmart. There are multiple reasons for adding lemon juice to apple butter, but it's usually to help preserve or protect the color of your apples over time (making your apple butter stay pretty), and/or to make the apple butter more acidic for home canning. Wind fallen apples (including seconds) can have a lower acidity and a higher mold/bacteria count than umblemished apples.
  • Vanilla extractThis is my secret ingredient, and you'll understand why I add it when you take your first bite. It's so good!

How to Make Quick Instant Pot Apple Butter Fast

Before starting anything, it's important to wash your apples. I always soak mine in avinegar/water bath for at least 10 minutes, then rinse. You'll need about 4 pounds of apples.

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It's also important to prep your jars for canning or freezing. That means washing, sterilizing, etc.

Keep in mind, you can make this recipe in any brand of electric pressure cooker you have, including theInstant Pot,Ninja Foodi, orPower Pressure Cooker XL.

Just Follow These Steps…

  1. Core, peel, and slice the apples; again, anapple peeler for apple buttermakes this step so easy. Cut out any worm holes or bad spots, as well.Note:While I do leave the peeling on when makingapplesauce, and you can do that for apple butter too, I usually choose not to for this recipe.
  1. Put the sliced apples in your Instant Pot.
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  1. Add water, molasses, sugar, brown sugar, spices, lemon juice, and vanilla extract to the Instant Pot. If you want to mix everything together, you can; but there's no need to until after it all cooks.
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  1. Put the lid in place on the Instant Pot.Press Manual or Pressure Cook for 15 minutes; when it's finished cooking, allow the pressure cooker to do a natural release.
  2. Then using animmersion blender, blend the apples into smooth apple butter, or 'til you reach the consistency/texture you want.
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How to Freeze Apple Butter:

I stored apple butter in the freezer quite a bit before I learned how to can it, so it works just fine without any worries. And frozen apple butter should keep for at least a year.

  1. When your apple butter has cooked, allow it to cool to room temperature.
  2. Then just ladle or pour it intofreezer safe containersthat seal; leave 1/2 inch headroom at the top, to allow for expansion as it freezes.
  3. Label the containers, and place them in the freezer.

How to Can Apple Butter:

I prefer water bath canning apple butter. Canned apple butter should keep for 1-2 years in the pantry.

  1. While your apple butter is cooking, washhalf-pint jars (jelly jars)orpint jarsin hot soapy water, rinse, and keep warm. We like to place ours on a baking sheet in a lower temp oven to stay hot.
  2. Once you've mashed up the apples, promptly ladle or pour the resulting apple butter mixture into the hot jars you prepared ahead of time. This is where afunnel pitchercomes in super handy. Be sure to leave about a 1/2-inch gap at the top of each jar.
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  1. Wipe the rim of each jar with a wet towel or rag, place the lid on, and tighten the band.
  2. Then place the hot jars down in a boilinghot water bath cannerwith 1-2 inches of water over the jars, and process those jars in the hot water bath for about 20 minutes.
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  1. Allow your jars to rest for at least 24 hours, but be sure to check every lid to make sure it's sealed shortly after canning.
  2. Before moving to the pantry, write what it is and the year on the lid, so you know when you made it. There are plenty of options forpretty jar labelsfor apple butter, and you can even turn your home canned apple butter into holiday gifts or hostess gifts.

If you choose to can it, Ball has wonderfulCanning Guidesto guide you through the process. You can also consult theBall Blue Book Guide to Preserving.

Expert Tips and Recipe FAQ's

How do you thicken apple butter?

After blending the apples into apple butter,you can place the apple butter back on low heat on the stove, and cook uncovered for 30 minutes to 1 hour if you want it to thicken up more. While I have never had to do this, it's a good way to make homemade apple butter thicker. Keep in mind, your apple butter will also thicken as it cools.

What's the best way to store it?

If you're not freezing or canning your apple butter, you should keep it in the refrigerator. It should keep in the fridge for about 2-3 months.

How can I best use apple butter?

I really enjoy apple butter on my toast in the mornings with breakfast. It's also really delicious onGrandma's biscuits, on drop biscuits,and onhomemade dinner rolls. I especially love making mysoda scones recipeand adding a dollop of apple butter on my buttered scone. So good!My friend Kelly makes a Dutch Baby apple puffed pancake that would pair so well with apple butter. And my friend Heather actually adds apple butter to the meatloaf in hermeatloaf sandwich recipe; I want to try making this too because it sounds so delicious.

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More Apple Recipes:

If you love this apple butter recipe, you'll love these too…

  • CrockPot apple butter recipe
  • Apple jelly recipe without pectin
  • How to make apple juice without a juicer
  • Apple crumb pie
  • Easy slow cooker mulled cider
  • Apple crumble recipe
  • Baked cinnamon apples
  • 50 mouthwatering apple recipes

You can also learnhow to use your Instant Potwith ourInstant Pot Quick Start Guide, filled withpractical tips,Instant Pot recipes, accessory ideas, and more!

You'll find a short video tutorial in the recipe card below.Wanna see a longer recipe video with a little bit of farm life too?Be sure towatch the full video over on YouTube.

If you try this recipe, why not leave a star rating in the recipe card right below and/or a reviewin the comment sectionfurther down the page? I always appreciate your feedback. You can also follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. And subscribe to my email list too!

Quick Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe - Adventures of Mel (11)

Instant Pot Apple Butter

Save time with this quick Instant Pot apple butter recipe. No peeling or stirring, easy to make in less than an hour. Homemade fall favorite!

4.15 from 149 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Canning & Freezing, Condiments

Cuisine: American

Prep Time: 25 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes minutes

Servings: 3 pints

Calories: 673kcal

Author: Mel Lockcuff

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Before starting anything, it's important to wash your apples. I always soak mine in avinegar/water bath for at least 10 minutes, then rinse.

  • Core, peel, and slice the apples; again, anapple peeler for apple buttermakes this step so easy. Cut out any worm holes or bad spots, as well.

  • Put the sliced apples in your Instant Pot.

  • Add water, molasses, pure cane sugar, brown sugar, spices, lemon juice, and vanilla extract to the Instant Pot. If you want to mix everything together, you can; but there's no need to until after it all cooks.

  • Put the lid in place on the Instant Pot.Press Manual or Pressure Cook for 15 minutes; when it's finished cooking, allow the pressure cooker to do a natural release.

  • Purée the mixture with an immersion blender, standing blender, or food mill; or if you want a chunky applesauce, you can mash the apples with a potato masher. It’s up to you how you prefer the texture and consistency.

How to Freeze Apple Butter:

  • When your apple butter has cooked, allow it to cool to room temperature.

  • Then just ladle or pour it into freezer safe containersthat seal; leave 1/2 inch headroom at the top, to allow for expansion as it freezes.

  • Label the containers, and place them in the freezer.

How to Can Apple Butter:

  • While your apple butter is cooking, wash half-pint jars (jelly jars) or pint jars in hot soapy water, rinse, and keep warm. We like to place ours on a baking sheet in a lower temp oven to stay hot.

  • Once you've mashed up the apples, promptly ladle or pour the resulting apple butter mixture into the hot jars you prepared ahead of time. This is where afunnel pitchercomes in super handy. Be sure to leave about a 1/2-inch gap at the top of each jar.

  • Wipe the rim of each jar with a wet towel or rag, place the lid on, and tighten the band.

  • Then place the hot jars down in a boiling hot water bath canner with 1-2 inches of water over the jars, and process those jars in the hot water bath for about 20 minutes.

  • Allow your jars to rest for at least 24 hours, but be sure to check every lid to make sure it's sealed shortly after canning.

  • Before moving to the pantry, write what it is and the year on the lid, so you know when you made it.

Notes

* While I do leave the peeling on when makingapplesauce, and you can do that for apple butter too, I usually choose not to for this recipe.

How do you make homemade apple butter thicker?

After blending the apples into apple butter,you can place the apple butter back on low heat on the stove, and cook uncovered for 30 minutes to 1 hour if you want it to thicken up more. While I have never had to do this, it's a good way to make homemade apple butter thicker.

How should I store it, and how long will it last?

  • Cannedapple butter will last about 2 years on the shelf.
  • Frozenapple butter will last about 1 year in the freezer.
  • In the fridge, apple butter will last about 2-3 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 673kcal | Carbohydrates: 175g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 29mg | Potassium: 1121mg | Fiber: 15g | Sugar: 153g | Vitamin A: 330IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 2mg

Tried this Recipe? Tag us Today!Mention @mellockcuff or tag #aomrecipes!

Quick Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe - Adventures of Mel (2024)
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