This sugar free Apple Butter made in the Instant Pot is going to be your favorite fall condiment – sweet and tart at the same time! It’s made using a blender – no peeling required. THM E
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- 6 pounds apples of your choice (I used Fuji)
Wash the apples. Do not peel. Cut off any bad spots and discard. Cut the apples as shown to remove the cores. (Find a full graphic in the blog post above.) The cores can be turned into vinegar or composted. Slice the apples.
Place the sliced apples in a 6 quart Instant Pot with 2 cups of water. Set the Instant Pot to “Sealing.” Pressure cook in the normal mode on high pressure for 10 minutes. Allow pressure to release naturally.
Pour off the excess water. Dump the apples into a colander and stir quite a bit with a spoon to break the apples down and release more liquid to drain off. A lot of juice will come off! I strained off approximately 6 cups of juice (you can save this!) and was left with about 5 cups of thick apple mash.
Let the apple mash cool a little (or a lot), then blend it completely smooth with a good blender – I use a Vitamix. Leave the vent in the lid open to prevent pressure from building up but cover the opening with a kitchen towel to avoid getting splashed in the face with hot apples. Be very careful and use common sense.
If you want to stop here for the night, that’s fine. Put the apple puree in the fridge and cook it down into apple butter in the morning. You’ll need a good 6 hours of cooking time during which you’re available to stir occasionally.
Return the apple puree to the Instant Pot. At this point it should be thicker than applesauce but not apple butter thick yet.
Whisk in the apple butter ingredients.
Cover the Instant Pot with foil, but bend a little bit of it back to let liquid escape. (see example) You’re trying to reduce the liquid in the apples to create a thick, spreadable apple butter consistency. The apples do spatter and the foil and rim of the Instant Pot will be hot, so be careful.
Slow cook on the normal mode for 6-7 hours, stirring hourly. Cook time may vary by appliance and the amount of juice you were able to take off the apples earlier. Cook until the apple butter is thick and sticks to a wooden spoon. Mine reduced to about 3 ½ cups. Adjust sweetener and seasonings to taste if needed.
This apple butter keeps well in the fridge for several weeks, but I recommend freezing it for long term storage. (Freezer containers or jam jars work well.) Leave an inch of headspace for expansion. You can probably can this recipe too, but I haven’t tried that yet. There are plenty of tutorials online if you’d like to try it!
Sweetener: Feel free to use your favorite low glycemic sweetener to taste in place of the THM Super Sweet Blend. Many people like more sweetener than I do, so adjust to taste to make sure you get a result you like.
Molasses: This is allowed on the Trim Healthy Mama plan in small amounts (1/4 teaspoon per serving) for flavor. I like Grandma’s brand molasses from Walmart or a local grocery store. Blackstrap molasses is recommended I believe, but the nutrition info isn’t that different from Grandma’s and I don’t like the taste nearly as well. Molasses IS technically a sweetener, but it’s not refined sugar and is only used in a small amount for flavor so I’m still calling this recipe sugar free. 😉
I prefer an apple that is sweet but tart. Sweeter apples will require less sweetener. Just adjust to taste.
This recipe just fits into a 6 quart Instant Pot so do not multiply the recipe or use a smaller Instant Pot. HOWEVER the size is an issue only at the beginning when you’re cooking the raw apples down, so you could get around the problem by cooking the apples on the stove in a large kettle until very soft and falling apart. Then proceed with the recipe and finish in the smaller Instant Pot. (You may have to cook larger batches longer.)
If you don’t have an Instant Pot, cook the apples on the stove in a large kettle until very soft and falling apart. Proceed with the recipe, then cook in a slow cooker instead of an Instant Pot until it looks like apple butter! Leave the slow cooker lid cracked open to allow moisture to evaporate.
CLICK HERE for an idea on how to use that juice you drained off the apples! I like to ferment it and enjoy it kind of like apple cider. In that post you’ll also find out how to make vinegar using apple cores.
I’m calling this recipe sugar free because it is free of added refined sugar, but the apples do contain plenty of natural sugars.
Allergy info: gluten free, egg free, dairy free, nut free
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 6 hrs, 10 mins
- Category: Condiment
- Method: Instant Pot
- Cuisine: THM E, low fat, sugar free
Keywords: trim healthy mama, thm, sugar free apple butter, instant pot apple butter