Get (apple) saucy.
This easy recipe for chunky homemade applesauce has no added sugar, letting apple’s natural sweetness and color shine. It’s a chunky, cinnamon-kissed applesauce that will spoil you forever and doesn’t even require peeling the apples.
Why a Recipe for Chunky Applesauce Is Better Than Store-Bought Applesauce
Homemade applesauce is so easy and so many flavor leaps and bounds above anything sold in a jar that it seems unfair to even compare the two. In fact, it is easier to say what you do not need in a homemade applesauce recipe: no peeler, no list of ingredients, no length of time, no sugar, no masher, no stress.
This sweet but gently tart homemade chunky applesauce recipe cooks itself in no time. It needs only a dash of cinnamon to make it otherworldly good, no sugar necessary because you’ll chose the right apples. The apples break down naturally into thick, soft chunks, which makes for a much more satisfying result than thin, processed applesauce.
Recipe for Chunky Applesauce vs. Buying the Jarred Stuff
We all know bad applesauce: the mushy, grainy, flavorless blob that sits in the plastic container with the foil top. This applesauce is the stuff of school lunch plates, the color reminiscent of expired silly putty or industrial sand before it gets mixed into cement.
But let’s focus on this easy recipe for chunky homemade applesauce — applesauce that’s so naturally sweet and satisfying it’s closer to apple pie filling than side dish.
Making Applesauce from Scratch
Homemade chunky applesauce requires little more than the following easy recipe steps:
- Cut the apples into chunks. No need to peel. The skins will make the applesauce color beautiful and ruddy, and the skins will soften enough in the cooking process to not be tough. Exception: You’ll want to peel tough-skinned Granny Smith or Red Delicious apples.
- Add a splash of water and cinnamon, and cook in a pot, partially covered, until very soft. Stir well, add a dash of cinnamon to the top, maybe with a pat of butter, and enjoy.
If you choose the right apples, you do not even need any added sugar.
What kind of apples are best for making homemade applesauce?
Choose the right apples for your homemade applesauce. Apples very greatly in texture, skin thickness, and flavor. It’s important to choose the best apples for making applesauce.
The best and worst apples for this chunky applesauce recipe
- The worst applesauce apples: Avoid Red Delicious (the exterior is too leathery) and Granny Smith (too green and tart for applesauce, though I love Granny Smith for pie).
- The best applesauce apples: Choose a crisp, sweet-tart seasonal apple with a pretty pink skin such as Honeycrisp, Fuji, Pink Lady, McIntosh, or Macoun.
No Sugar Apple Sauce Recipe
If you choose from the apples suggested above, you should need no added sugar in this applesauce recipe. I add only a pinch of salt and some cinnamon. But if you taste it and think it could use a little sweetening, add light brown sugar one teaspoon at a time.
How long will homemade applesauce last?
Unless you go through a full canning and preserving process, this fresh chunky applesauce will keep in the refrigerator for a little over one week or so.
Love this cozy, chunky homemade applesauce recipe? You’ll also like:
- Jewish Apple Cake
- Deep-Dish Apple Crisp With Oatmeal Topping
- Herb-Roasted Pork Tenderloin
- Homemade Cranberry Sauce
- Hot Apple Cider
Homemade Chunky Applesauce (No Peel)
- 6 medium apples, such as Macintosh or Honeycrisp, washed
- 3/4 cup water
- pinch kosher salt
- 1/2 lemon, juiced (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pat of butter (optional), to finish
- Chop the apples into a medium dice and add them to a pot. Discard the cores.PRO TIP: The best apples for unsweetened applesauce are naturally sweet ones, such as the ones suggested above. Apples like Granny Smith, while great for pie, will be too tart.
- Add the splash of water, salt, lemon juice, and cinnamon and bring just to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, and cover with the lid slightly ajar. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the apples are very soft and melted, but still have a chunky appearance. The apples should cook at a steady simmer.
- Stir to emulsify everything into a thick sauce and taste. PRO TIP: If you want a less chunky applesauce texture, use a potato masher, immersion blender, or food processor to mash or blend the applesauce to your desired consistency.
- Serve your chunky applesauce warm, topped with a pinch of cinnamon and a pat of butter.