apple sauce, apple slices, apple jam

Our house smells like apple pie. I can smell it in every room. What a wonderful candle scent it would be, though I’m not sure a candle company could really do justice to the spicy undertones in the air. If only we had smell-a-vision… It smells like apple pie around here because we canned about two bushels of apples.


The apples were from a tree planted by DH’s father years ago. As the story goes, he ate a Red Delicious apple, kept a seed from said apple and planted it just across the driveway outside the kitchen door. The tree produces beautiful, big, red, juicy-crisp apples that are good for eating out of hand, for baking into pies and crisps, and for canning. How can a tree that has never been sprayed or treated produce such beautiful apples?


Wednesday DH and I canned fourteen pints of applesauce (seven plain and seven spiced) and fourteen jars of spiced apple slices. DH also canned five quarts of chicken stock, but that’s another story.


To make the spiced apple slices, we cooked the peeled, cored apple slices in a large stock pan with about an inch of water in the bottom. We put cinnamon, cloves and allspice (but no sugar) on the apples as they cooked for five minutes with the lid on the pan.

cooking the apples

The slices were then loaded into quart jars and water from the cooking pot was ladeled over the sliced apples, giving them half an inch of headspace.

spiced apple slices

Jar rims were wiped clean, flats and rings were placed on the jars and they were processed in a hot water bath for twenty minutes.

spiced apple slices

For the spiced applesauce, I added ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground allspice, and freshly grated nutmeg. I didn’t measure. Just used mostly cinnamon and a little of each of the others.

spiced applesauce

Thursday I canned apple jelly. We filled two crockpots with peelings and cores, covered them with water and let them simmer for a few hours. Thursday morning, DH ran it all through our handy-dandy food mill and we had “apple jelly juice and sauce.” He put the applesauce in one crock pot and the apple juice in the other, and left them on low so they’d be ready for me to can. He left for work. I stayed to can jelly.

food mill

I canned 27 8-ounce jars of apple jam. I saw a recipe for “Apple Pie Jam” on the site That made me think it would be fine to make my apple jam with the leftover applesauce and apple juice we got from the simmered peelings. Following is what I ended up using as my recipe.

  • 7 cups of applesauce / apple juice (about half sauce, half juice)
  • 1/2 c. sugar mixed with the following pectin and spices
  • 3 T. Low Sugar or No Sugar Ball Pectin
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 c. additional sugar

I used about half applesauce and half juice for each batch until there was room to pour both together in one crock pot. The resulting jam is delicious and has far less sugar in it than the recipe using regular pectin would call for.

apple jam

I would like to try the Apple Pie Jam recipe sometime, though. It looks so pretty with the junks of apple in the jam. It would be pretty with chopped cranberries in it…I am going to have to try that!

I must say that the spiced apple slices and the applesauce we made from the whole apples did not seem to need any added sugar.

spiced apple slices

But the applesauce and juice made from the peelings and leftover bits for the spiced apple slices did need some sugar. I’m sorry I didn’t take a picture of the peelings to show you what we were using as the base for our jam. Just all the good peelings, cores and bits from preparing the apple slices. When making the applesauce that we canned on Wednesday, we didn’t peel the apples. The food mill did an excellent job of separating all that from the applesauce. Those peelings were put through the food mill a seond time and then dumped on the compost pile.

On Wednesday, we put the leftover applesauce in a slow, low temp, uncovered crock pot and made apple butter. Enough to fill five jars. I added one and a half cups of sugar to the apple butter before canning it.


And in the midst of canning jars and jars of apples, when DH got hungry, what did we have? Apple Crisp, of course. And it was delicious.

apple crisp

Just a tip regarding the apple crisp. I sprayed a Corelle serving bowl with Pam, sliced apples into it and then sprinkled about half a recipe of the topping from the above Apple Crisp recipe link over the apples. I didn’t put extra sugar and cinnamon on the apples, but if tart ones were used, I would. Then I microwaved it uncovered for six minutes. So good with vanilla ice cream! And an easy, quick recipe to make when done in the microwave. The topping could be made ahead, stored in a jar in the fridge and used for a very fast apple crisp (as large or as small as you choose to make it) any time the urge for this delicious fall dessert hit you.



  1. Hilary
    Posted October 28, 2014 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Just wondering if you use a pressure caner or a regular water bath caner?

  2. Posted October 28, 2014 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    Hilary, we used a water bath canner for all the apple products. It’s easy, if you haven’t done it before. These two sites are good resources.


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