Return to the Harvest Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Apple Butter: To Sieve or Not To Sieve

Posted by gardengrl Northern Virginia (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 27, 11 at 10:40

When making my apple butter in the past, I've usually just peeled and cored my apples, cooked them, and then processed them in a food processor to break them down into applesauce (not too thin). Then I cook, add sugar/spices, etc...

I've read that sieving (sp?) the cooked apples makes a bigger difference in the flavor; is this true? To me, I've never really noticed a difference.

Do you use a sieve for your applebutter and applesauce?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Apple Butter: To Sieve or Not To Sieve

I have always run mine through a food mill, never done any chunky or any other way since the smooth texture is very important to us. Same goes for any 'sauce' be it apple, tomato, pear etc. I can't picture a food processor sauce being nearly as smooth as a milled (sieved) sauce would be.

I suppose I could argue that sieved sauce would taste better than chunky since the smaller particles could better absorb and distribute the added flavors of the sugar and spices. But I have no basis for comparison.

All you can do is do some of both and see which you prefer.


RE: Apple Butter: To Sieve or Not To Sieve

I do the same as you Dave. Another plus to using a food mill is that I don't have to peel and core everything like,apples, tomatoes, pears etc. I just wash, check for bad spots, and throw them in the handy crock pot.

When they get soft I run them through the food mill and return them to the crock pot! I love my food mill better than any kitchen gadget that I have ever had!

RE: Apple Butter: To Sieve or Not To Sieve

I don't sieve and we prefer the apples that way, though the variety we use breaks down into a mainly smooth sauce on its own.

However, I usually use windfalls for applesauce, so I'm peeling, coring and cutting out bruised spots before cooking.

I never add spices unless I'm making apple butter. In that case, of course I do sieve.


RE: Apple Butter: To Sieve or Not To Sieve

Here is the way I do mine but I agree with what Dave says - try it and taste.

IMO apple butter should be as smooth as, well, butter. I cook the 4 or 5 varieties together (peeled and cored with a little water added) until just soft, then put them in the food mill for a better mixture and smaller "lumpiness". After spices, sugar and more cooking down to about 1/2, I put cups of the mixture into the blender on puree then back into the pot for final heating before canning (with a screen over it because it tends to volcano at the end). The food processor may or may not give you a consistently smooth butter.

Applesauce is cooked the same but since I don't put in any sugar or spices, it goes through the food mill and back to the pot for heating before canning. A little more lumpiness here is nice for applesauce. IMHO


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Harvest Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here