Instant Pot Apple Butter

Instant Pot apple butter is sweet and versatile and easy to whip up using pressure cooking. Say goodbye to store-bought versions laden with preservatives. This homemade butter is not only healthier but also showcases the rich flavors of apples, warm spices, and a hint of vanilla. In this recipe, we’ll guide you through each step, ensuring your kitchen is filled with the irresistible aroma of apple goodness, and we share tips and ideas for how to use apple butter.



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And if you like this recipe, make sure to check out our Instant Pot Stewed Apples In Mulled Wine and our roundup of more Instant Pot recipes with apples.


Recipe Overview

Apple butter is a luscious, concentrated spread made from slow-cooked apples, sugar, and spices. It’s thicker and richer than applesauce, with a deeper flavor profile and is much darker in color.

Our Instant Pot apple butter recipe is a tribute to the simplicity and nostalgia of homemade apple butter. It captures the essence of fall in every bite.

Expect a lovely blend of sweet and slightly tangy notes, coupled with a silky, spreadable texture that’s perfect for toast, pancakes, or as a filling for pastries.

Ingredients

Here are the ingredients you will need to make apple butter.

  • Apples: Gala or Fuji are recommended but honestly any apples can be used; the color and flavor will depend on the variety.
  • Water or apple juice for liquid (the juice will add extra apple punch)
  • Sugar: white is the main sweetener but we’re also using brown sugar for adding depth of flavor and color
  • Salt: to balance out the sweetness
  • Spices: Cinnamon is earthy and fragrant, cloves for spice and warmth, a little nutmeg for extra depth (optional.
  • Vanilla extract: for a subtle, sweet aroma, perfect in any dessert.
  • Lemon juice: for a hint of tang and balance out the sweetness.
ingredients for apple butter

How to Make Apple Butter In Instant Pot

You will find the full recipe with ingredients and nutritional breakdown in the recipe card below. Here are step-by-step photos and a video to guide you along.

  • Step 1. Core and slice the apples, peeling is optional.
  • Step 2. Add water or apple juice to the Instant Pot, followed by the apples.
  • Step 3. Sprinkle both sugars, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg evenly. Drizzle in vanilla and lemon juice. Gently mix.
  • Step 4. Pressure cook on high for 20 minutes. Allow for a 10-minute natural release.
  • Step 5. Use an immersion blender to puree the cooked apples until smooth.
  • Step 6. It’s time to thicken the sauce. Switch to Saute mode (Normal) and cook for about 30 minutes, stirring frequently (every 5 minutes), until it thickens. Be careful, the puree can spat and splatter a little as it cooks so you might want to use a splash guard. Don’t use the More setting as it can burn and split the puree. 
  • Thickening the sauce method 2: Instead of using the Saute setting, turn the Instant Pot to Slow Cook mode and cook on high for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally, with the lid propped on about halfway to allow steam to release.
  • Step 7. Spoon into sterile containers, refrigerate for up to two weeks, or freeze.

Watch How To Make It


Recipe Tips

  • Choose fresh, crisp apples for the best flavor.
  • Adjust sugar to your preference for sweetness.
  • Stir frequently during the Saute phase after cooking to prevent sticking and burning. If it’s bubbling away too quickly, change to Less mode by pressing the Saute button a few times. 
  • Be patient during the thickening process; it’s worth the wait!

Variations

  • Add a pinch of cardamom for an exotic twist.
  • Incorporate diced pears for a unique flavor blend.
  • Add a pinch of chili power or cayenne pepper to add a little heat.
  • Use orange juice instead of apple juice and add some zest for a citrus note.
  • Other ingredients to experiment with: coconut milk, almond extract, strawberries, blackcurrants.

How To Use Apple Butter

  • Spread it on toast or English muffins, especially lovely over smooth ricotta.
  • Dollop on pancakes, waffles, or oatmeal.
  • Use as a filling for pastries or thumbprint cookies.
  • Mix into yogurt or ice cream for a delightful twist.
  • Serve with cheese and crackers.
  • Here is a post on how to can apple butter from Sustainable Cooks.
apple butter spread on toast with ricotta

Storage Tips

  • To store: Keep in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
  • To freeze: Divide into freezer-safe containers, leaving room for expansion, and freeze for up to six months.
  • To reheat: Microwave gently or warm on the stovetop, stirring until the desired consistency is reached.
apple butter on a spoon

Full Recipe

Find the full list of ingredients, instructions, and a nutritional breakdown below. If you have questions or cook this recipe, please let us know in the comments, and make sure to rate this recipe so it’s easy for others to find.

instant pot apple butter recipe feature

Rate This Recipe

5 from 7 votes

Instant Pot Apple Butter

Indulge in the rich flavors of our Instant Pot apple butter—a luscious blend of apples, spices, and sweetness. Perfect for spreading, filling, or topping your favorite dishes. Try it today and savor the taste of homemade goodness!
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Thickening Sauce30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 15 servings
Calories: 172kcal
Author: Instant Pot Eats

Ingredients

  • 5 1/2 – 6 lbs apples any variety (I recommend Gala or Fuji or a mix)
  • 1/2 cup water or apple juice
  • 1 cup brown sugar tightly packed
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg ground (optional)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice 1/2 lemon

Instructions

  • Core and slice each apple into 8 slices or large cubes. You can peel the apples if you desire, but it is not necessary.
  • Add 1/2 cup of water or apple juice to the Instant Pot and then add the apples.
  • Evenly sprinkle with both sugars, salt, cinnamon, ground cloves and nutmeg. Drizzle in the vanilla and lemon juice. Mix briefly to let the sugar and spice spread between apples but no need to mix well as it will all incorporate during cooking.
  • Turn the Instant Pot to Pressure Cook/Manual and set to HIGH for “Manual” and pressure cook on high pressure for 20 minutes. Allow to natural release for 10 minutes before releasing any remaining pressure.
  • Use an immersion blender to puree the cooked apples until smooth.
  • Thickening the sauce method 1: Turn the Instant Pot to Saute and cook for about 30-35 minutes, stirring frequently, or until the mixture reduces and thickens to the desired consistency. It should be almost spreadable. If it starts cooking off too quickly, change the Saute setting from Normal to Less. Be careful, the puree can spat and splatter a little as it cooks so you might want to use a splash guard. Don't use the More setting as it can burn and split the puree.
  • Thickening the sauce method 2: Instead of using the Saute setting, turn the Instant Pot to Slow Cook mode and cook on high for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally, with the lid propped on about halfway to allow steam to release.
  • Spoon the mixture into sterile containers, cover and refrigerate for up to two weeks or freeze.

Nutrition

Serving: 25grams | Calories: 172kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 0.5g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 84mg | Potassium: 202mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 90IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 0.3mg
CourseDessert
CuisineAmerican
KeywordDesserts, Apple, Apple Butter, Toast, Breakfast, Apple Desserts
Made this recipe?Mention @instantpoteats or tag #instantpoteats!

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By Instant Pot Eats

About Instant Pot Eats: Published by a seasoned food blogger and cookbook author, Irena Macri, and a team of cooking experts and enthusiasts, this blog is dedicated to delicious Instant Pot recipes. We love sharing all food including our favorite stovetop and oven dishes.
 

More about us here »

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Comments

6 Comments
  1. Wonderful recipe! Made it with Gala apples the other day, and we have already tried it on toast, with pancakes and with a cheeseboard last night! Sooooo good.

  2. The combination of apples, spices, and sweetness creates a delightful spread that is perfect for toast, pancakes, or even just enjoying by the spoonful. I highly recommend trying it!

  3. I loved using my Instant Pot to make apple butter. Won’t be doing it over the stove ever again. We use it as jam to spread it on toast in the morning. Perfection!

  4. I had no idea it was this easy to make apple butter. I love that it’s fresh, with no preservatives. I will be making this for my family ASAP.

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