apple butter in the oven?

bluejean(z6 OH)September 6, 2006

My husband's grandmother grew up with a recipe for apple butter made in the oven. Ever time I give her a jar of my homemade jam she goes on and on about this apple butter. My mother-in-law asked me if I could track down the recipe and make some for hubby's gram. "It would mean so much to her". I guess when her mom passed away the recipe must have been lost. She is in her 80's and doesn't think that any of her surviving family members have a copy.

Anyone have a recipe for a traditional apple butter made in the oven??

I will forever be indebted!

Thanks so much and happy harvesting,

bluejean in ohio

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karen_b(6a s.c. PA)

Found this on the internet: (do a google search using apple butter oven as the criteria, there were several other recipes)


Apple butter is one of the sweets in the traditional Pennsylvania Dutch "sweets and sours" commonly served with large dinners. There are several good store-bought apple butters, specifically those that are low in sugar. And where I lived in PA, you could buy it homemade from many orchards. However, there is nothing like making your own. If you are into canning, double the recipe and place in jars as indicated below. This amount can be made and stored in the refrigerator for at least one month.


8 cups cored, peeled and sliced apples (about 8 medium)
About 4-1/2 cups water, added intermittently
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
Dash of salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
Place apples and about 3/4 cup of water into heavy oven-proof saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and cook until apples are soft. Mash until fairly smooth. Stir in brown sugar, salt and spices. Place in 300° F oven and continue to cook until dark brown. Add water as needed when mixture dries out. Cook until thick and spreadable. The entire process will take about 6 hours. Check the apple butter about every hour and stir well. Taste for seasoning and sweetness. If canning, place the apple butter in a pot on top of the stove and heat well. Fill sterilized half-pint or pint jars with hot apple butter, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Adjust lids and process in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes at an altitude up to 1,000 feet, 10 minutes from 1,000 - 6,000 feet. Add 5 minutes processing time at each altitude for quart jars. (Processing times are based on guidelines provided by the USDA National Food Safety Database.)

Notes: Many people cook the apple butter on top of the stove rather than in the oven. Although the flavor will not benefit from the long, slow cooking process in the oven, it is still very good. I use a variety of apples, including tart, such as Granny Smith, and sweet, such as Red Delicious. The amount of sugar and spices is approximate and dependent on the sweetness and flavor of the apples. It's best to start with a little less and add more after the mixture has cooked for several hours. Apple cider can be substituted for the water, but cut down on the amount of brown sugar. Serve apple butter with cottage cheese or as a bread spread. Some Dutchman like it on scrapple, pancakes, waffles, even french toast. I particularly like it spread on rye bread with a pork and sauerkraut meal.

Have you ever made it in a crockpot, that's how I make it. But you are limited to the size of your crockpot.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2006 at 12:03PM
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gran2(z5 INDIANA)

Apple butter with cottage cheese !!!???!

    Bookmark   September 12, 2006 at 3:30PM
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dgkritch(Z8 OR)

Why not?
I put a variety of things on cottage cheese....
Peaches (mom always served it this way)
Strawberry jam
Salt & pepper
Lawry's seasoning
Use as a dip for cucumbers/other veggies

I guess whatever tastes good.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2006 at 7:07PM
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Nope, no cottage cheese in my apple butter, but I always do mine in the oven. Keep the heat low when it starts to thicken so it doesn't "caramelize", I start at 350, when it begins to thicken I turn it down to about 250 and let it cook until it's "thick enough". That's a relative term, and depends on how thick you like it.

Here is the recipe my own Grandmother used, and the one that I used to win a Blue Ribbon at the County Fair the year I was 12.


6 lbs.
1-2 quarts sweet cider (Grandma used 2, I use 1 because I can cook a shorter time. Grandma thought longer was better)
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves

Cook the apples in the cider and press through a food mill or sieve. Mix in sugar and spices to taste. Pour pulp into a non-reactive pan (I use an old enameled roaster) and bake at 250, stirring every hour or so, until "thick enough". If I'm in a hurry, I start at 350, then turn it down after a couple of hours. I usually double or triple the amount, so mine takes a long time to cook down. This amount will still take several hours.

When it's "thick enough", pour into hot jars and BWB 10 minutes for half pints or pints, 15 minutes for quarts.


    Bookmark   September 12, 2006 at 7:27PM
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That first line should be 6 lbs. of apples, LOL.


    Bookmark   September 13, 2006 at 1:17AM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

The recipe that I used only had 2 cups of cider. Alot of the buggy apples were not quite ripe and I guess that they weren't very juicy. I really didn't have to cook mine after I strained the apple solids. I just got it hot. It was already thick. As a matter of fact it was so thick I added more cider. I put a teaspoon of fruit fresh and a couple of cinnamon sticks in with the cider when I cooked them and ended up with pale butter the shade of applesauce. My intention was for it not to be quite so dark, but it looks a little funny being so light. Even though I had the stick cinnamon in there, I still added ground. I don't really like cloves that much so I only used 1/8 teaspoon but I added a 1/4 teaspoon of allspice and nutmeg. Yum!

    Bookmark   September 13, 2006 at 2:43AM
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gran2(z5 INDIANA)

I ran across the absolute easiest apple butter recipe I have ever used. And it tastes good, too. It's similar to the oven kind Karen posted, but the method is just so great!

Wash, peel and chunk enough apples to fill a four-quart crockpot.
Mix together:
3 cups sugar
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 Tbsp cinnamon
Spread this over the apples. Let stand with the lid on overnight. Then cook in the crockpot for four hours. Cool and run through blender. Here's the best part: NEVER PEEK, ADD WATER OR EVEN STIR UNTIL YOU'RE READY TO RUN THROGH THE BLENDER. Ladle into jars and water bath for 15 minutes. Try this one. For busy people, it's a keeper.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2006 at 10:53PM
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I just found this recipe for oven apple butter in a vintage church cookbook. Not your conventional apple butter but it sure sounds easy. Enjoy:)

14 cups applesauce
3/4 cup vinegar
7-1/2 cups white sugar

Put in oven in large roaster; cook 3 hours at 300 degrees. Stir now and then. Add spices and put into jars and seal.

Hope this helps. I have never tried this recipe. I would LOVE to know if someone does. Enjoy, Louise

Here is a link that might be useful: Months of Edible Celebrations

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 2:43PM
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