Delicious Ideas for Canning Apples with 2 Easy Recipes

I love canning apples. With the help of a Peeler, Corer, Slicer, it is one of the easiest things to do. From applesauce (the easiest), to pie fillings, and all the jams and jellies you can think of, apples are a very versatile fruit to can.

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The Best Apples to Use When Canning Apples

When we talk about ‘apples’, not all are alike. Some are better for eating fresh, and some are better for canning.

Apples for fresh eating tend to be softer, and somewhat ‘mealy’. Although delicious when eating fresh, this texture isn’t ideal for canning.

When you are canning apples, you want to use those that are firm, crisp, with a tart flavor. On occasion, these are also called ‘cooking’ apples.  These are some of the better apples for canning:

  • Fuji
  • Granny Smith
  • Braeburn
  • Cortland
  • Honey Crisp
  • Arkansas Black
  • Gala

Mix It Up when Canning Apples

Each apple you eat will have a different flavor. Some are sweeter, some more tart. Even the texture can be slightly different. When you are canning apples, to bring out the best flavor for your product, consider using different varieties.

Although I have to travel to Arkansas to get Arkansas Black apples (they will not grow here in Louisiana, as we don’t get near the chill time they need to make), it is well worth the effort. I love the flavor they add to my applesauce and other canned apple products.

Put Your Frugal Hat On when Canning Apples

Did you know that you can use all the parts of the apples? Well, kinda. For instance, when canning an apple product, you are usually told to peel and core the apple, right?  Most of us will toss those cores and peels either in our compost bin or in the trash can.

Instead, place them in a large pot. Once you have peeled and cored all your apples, cover the peels and cores with water, and place the pot on a back burner. Turn it on low, cover it, and allow the pot to simmer for a couple of hours.

Once it has simmered, turn it off and allow to cool. Strain the juice into a large container (clean plastic milk jugs work well for this). Place the jugs in the refrigerator if you plan to use the juice within the next two days. If not, the juice can be placed in the freezer until ready to use.

You can also be frugal with your time. Using a Peeler, Corer, Slicer makes the preparation process for canning apples quicker and easier!

Canning Apples

To me, just about anything you create with apples is delicious. For those who are new to canning, once you have learned the basics of canning, apples are a great place to start.

There are so many recipes for canning apples, including dehydrating the slices for snacks and to use in fried pies. For canning, consider these ideas:

  • Applesauce
  • Apple Peel Jelly
  • Apple Pie Jam
  • Apple Butter
  • Canned Apple Slices
  • Apple Pie Filling
  • Apple Chutney

The Recipes for Canning Apples

canning apples


As we all know, there is a big difference between store bought products and homemade.  To me, nothing screams this concept louder than with Applesauce.  The kind you get in the store tends to be thin, watery and without much flavor. 

Homemade is thick and full of apple flavor.  The beauty of making it at home is that you can add as much or as little sugar as you want.  You can enjoy it as a side dish to any meal, but it is also delicious baked into breads, muffins and cookies.  I know you might claim to not like applesauce, but see if your tastes don’t change after you try this!

  • 6 lbs. apples, cored, peeled and chopped
  • Sugar – anywhere from a Tablespoon to 1-1/2 cups
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice

Place apples in a large pot with just enough water to keep them from sticking.  Bring to a boil over medium to high heat.  Reduce the heat and cook until tender – approximately 5 to 20 minutes or so, depending on their size and type.  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

Working with a few cups at a time, put apples through a food mill or in a food processor, and process until you reach the consistency you desire (I prefer a slightly chunky sauce).  Return to pot and add sugar and lemon juice.  Return to a boil over medium to high heat, stirring constantly.

Ladle sauce into clean, sterilized pint jars, leaving 1/2” headspace.  Wipe rims and add flat and ring.  Process jars in a water bath canner (making sure the water is at least 1/2” over the top of the jars) for 20 minutes (using proper canning procedures).  Remove from canner and place on a rack or towel and allow to cool completely.  Be sure to check that jars are sealed properly.  If not, just place the cooled jar in the refrigerator, and use within three to five days.

canning apples

Apple Peel Jelly

Now it’s time to let your frugal side shine! Use up all the ‘waste’ from the apples to make the most delicious Apple Peel Jelly. And just so you know, depending on the type of apples you use, the color of your jelly will change. It can be anywhere from pale yellow to a deep coral red!

  • 5 cups Juice
  • 1 box Pectin
  • 6 cups sugar

Place juice in a large pot.  Whisk in pectin.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.  Boil hard for 1 minute.  Add sugar and return to a boil, stirring frequently.  Boil hard for 1 minute.  Skim foam and pour into hot sterilized jars.  Wipe rim and secure flat and ring.  Process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes, using proper canning procedures.  Remove and check for seal.

Ready for More Fun with Canning?

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Julie Murphree is a blogger, newspaper columnist, and speaker on all things ‘Living a Simple Life on the Farm’. She is the author of \\\'The Farm Wife – Living a Simple Life on the Farm. She and her husband have 60 acres in NW Louisiana where they actively work on living as sustainable as possible.

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