There’s nothing quite like the warm aroma of homemade Apple Butter. It will make your entire house smell like Autumn! This Instant Pot Apple Butter has a fresh apple flavor, deep spicy undertones, and an ultra-silky texture. So, whether it’s just for yourself or you’re giving some away, making your own homemade Apple Butter will leave you feeling rather nostalgic during the holiday season.
Smooth Apple Butter made easy!
I remember my mom trying to hide her apple butter in the back of the fridge so none of us kids could eat up. One of her happy places was on the couch snuggled under a blanket with cinnamon raisin toast slathered in apple butter.
She would have a fit if she found out we snuck it. She always knew because we were ornery and left crumb remnants in the jar. And if no one fessed up to the crime, we all got in trouble.
But even as a kid, I knew how special apple butter was, and I was always willing to risk my life to get a spoonful. It’s one of my favorite recipes to make and gift in the fall. My version’s deep color means rich flavor, warmly spiced, with the smoooooothest texture. The best part is that recipe time is cut in half by using an instant pot.
Apple Butter Ingredients
To bring this sweet treat to life, you will need the following key ingredients:
- Apples. I love using a combination of gala apples and honey crisp apples to make this apple butter. However, feel free to use whichever kind you prefer. Fuji and granny smith apples also work great for this recipe.
- Sugar. You will need both granulated sugar and brown sugar. If you like more of a caramel flavor, use dark brown sugar. Otherwise, use light brown sugar.
- Spices. You’re going to need salt, cinnamon, and either apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice. If you can’t find either spice blend, salt and cinnamon will work totally fine on their own.
- Lemon juice. Fresh lemon juice freshens up the dish and enhances all the delicious apple flavors.
- Vanilla extract. Like the lemon juice, vanilla extract is great for enhancing flavor in sweet recipes like this one.
How to make Instant Pot Apple Butter?
To make this delicious homemade apple butter, follow these simple steps:
- Peel, core, and dice your apples. Add them to a large bowl filled with lemon water as you dice them to prevent browning.
- Drain the apples and dry them, then transfer them to a large dry bowl. Add the sugar, spices, lemon juice, apple cider, and vanilla extract, then toss to coat.
- Transfer the apple mixture to a 6-quart pressure cooker, seal the valve, and set it to high pressure for 15 minutes.
- Once the timer goes off, flip the valve to release the pressure immediately. Remove the lid and use an immersion blender or standard blender to purée the cooked apple mixture until smooth.
- Reset the pressure cooker and set it to sauté on medium. Cook the apple butter, stirring every few minutes, until it’s reduced to your desired consistency. This typically takes about 35 minutes. Reduce the heat if needed to avoid burning yourself when stirring.
- Let the apple butter cool for about 1 hour, then transfer it to a 16-ounce glass jar and continue cooling to room temperature. Then, refrigerate until ready to use.
Best apples for Apple Butter?
There are more than 7,500 varieties of apples in the world—from Gala and Granny Smith to Fuji and Honeycrisp. Different types of apples have different flavors and levels of sweetness, so I always recommend using a mix of apples for the best Instant Pot Apple Butter.
You really can’t go wrong with any combination, but some of my favorite apples to use for apple butter are gala, honey crisp, and fuji. It may take a bit of experimenting to figure out the combination that you like the best, so have fun with it and keep trying it out!
How to store Apple Butter?
Once you’ve made your apple butter, it’s important to let it cool down before storing it. I have found the best long-term results when storing apple butter in a tightly sealed glass jar, but any airtight container will do in a pinch. After transferring the apple butter to an airtight jar or container, you can store it in one of two ways:
- In the fridge for up to 3-4 weeks.
- In the freezer for up to 3 months.
If you freeze your apple butter, let it thaw in the fridge overnight before enjoying it again.
Ways to use Apple Butter
By now, you may be wondering, what is apple butter used for? The answer is that you can use it in or on just about anything you want! Seriously, the options are pretty much endless. I have enjoyed this homemade apple butter in everything from cocktails to ice cream. If you need some ideas, here are some of the best ways to use apple butter:
- Spread onto toast
- Spooned over biscuits
- Mixed into ice cream
- As the base for homemade cocktails
- Stirred into oatmeal
- Used as a yogurt topping
- Spread onto grilled cheese sandwiches
- As a dip on a charcuterie board
- Dolloped onto pancakes and waffles
Now it’s your turn!
Apple butter is a delicious, homemade treat that can be made in an Instant Pot; it’s easy to make and tastes great on toast, pancakes, biscuits, or even in a cocktail! So, whether you’re making it for yourself, sharing with friends and family, or it’s a stocking stuffer for your co-workers, apple butter is a great way to share the warm flavors of Autumn.
If you enjoy the recipe, please share it with your friends and family. And don’t forget to give me some five-star love down below. And if you have any comments or questions, leave them below too, and I’ll be sure to get back to you as soon as possible.
- 2 lb gala apple
- 2 lb honey crisp apple
- water for soaking apples
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice plus more for soaking apples
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons apple cider optional
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Peel, core, and dice the gala and honey crisp apples, adding them to a large bowl filled with lemon water while you go to prevent browning.
- Drain the apples well, then transfer to a dry large bowl and add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, apple pie spice, salt, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, apple cider, if using, and vanilla and toss to coat well.
- Transfer the apple mixture to a 6-quart (or larger) pressure cooker, seal the valve, and set to manual high-pressure cook for 15 minutes.
- Once the cycle is complete, allow for immediate release. Remove the lid and use an immersion blender or standard blender to purée the apple mixture until smooth.
- Reset the pressure cooker, then set to sear/sauté on medium. Cook the apple butter, stirring every 5 minutes or so, until reduced to your desired consistency, about 35 minutes total. If the apple butter gets very hot and starts to splatter, cover the pot with the lid, keeping slightly ajar to allow steam to escape. Reduce the heat if needed while stirring to avoid burning yourself.
- Let the apple butter cool for about 1 hour, then transfer to a 16-ounce glass jar (or several smaller jars) and continue cooling to room temperature, then refrigerate until ready to use. The apple butter will keep in the refrigerator for 3–4 weeks.
- If your Instant Pot model is giving a burn warning, you can add 1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice to the pot.
- I use a combination of granny smith, and honey crisp apples for this recipe.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.
**The equipment section above contains affiliate links to products I use and love. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.