Friday, October 26, 2012

Crock Pot Applesauce

Last week, I received my daily e-mail from sugar free mom and there was a recipe for homemade applesauce.  I've always wanted to make applesauce so last weekend I used her recipe and gave it a shot.  I loved it!  I used to eat applesauce a lot , but it has so much added sugar I quit buying it years ago.  Then, I started buying the unsweetened kind and it's still tasty, but I only use it for baking.  This is the way to go for a delicious tasting, homemade side dish that won't cause a spike in blood sugar. 

Here's her original recipe and then I'll tell you what I did.

Nutrition Info
Servings: 5 -1/2 c. Calories per serving: 73 Fat: 0g Fiber: 3g carbs: 20g Protein: 0g

5 apples, cored, peeled and sliced
1 c. fresh cranberries, washed
1 c. water
1 cinnamon stick or 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
sweetener of your choice to taste

Combine water, apples, cranberries and cinnamon in crock pot.

Cook on high 4-5 hours until apples are soft. Discard cinnamon stick.

Place the mixture into a food processor and process until smooth or pulse slowly and leave some fruit chunks and texture in the applesauce if you like it like that.
Add your sweetener and chill.

She uses liquid stevia in almost all her recipes.  For this recipe she used sweetleaf stevia.  I've never bothered to purchase the liquid form of the natural sweetener and she's really good about giving you alternatives.  (Like honey or packets of dry stevia)  I had honey and she recommended using 1/2 cup and adding it to the apples in the crock pot while it cooks. 

I didn't see any cranberries when I was at the store :( and she said if you don't have/like fresh cranberries to add 1 more cup of apples or pears.  I added an extra cup of apples.  I read the other day that cranberry season is upon us so I'm hoping to find fresh cranberries for my next batch for two reasons.  1) How delicious does that sound? 2) It will make PINK applesauce. :)

While this tasted awesome, next time I will add just 1/4 cup of honey.  I felt 1/2 cup was much too strong and the honey flavor took away from the apples.

 This recipe is so easy!  The only tedious part is peeling all the apples.  I always peel apples and watch t.v. at the same time.  Might as well get caught up on Kelly and Michael while I peel away! 

It made the house smell delicious! This is how it looked after 4 hours.
Rather than putting it in the blender or food processor I used my immersion blender.  (Best gadget ever for homemade soups and many other things!)  I wanted to use my immersion blender because I wanted to leave a few chunks of apples and make it "chunky applesauce."  Here's a picture of it all blended up and ready to eat.  You're ready to lick the picture of my crock pot aren't you? 
She never specified any type of apple so I'm sure you can use whatever you like.  I had two Gala's so I used those to get rid of them and then used Jonathan's as well.  My only regret is that my apples were store bought.  It'd be way cooler to make this with your apples from the apple orchard!  Hope you like it!

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