It’s apple season! The leaves are bright beautiful shades of orange, yellow, and red. The air is crisp and cool and the days are getting shorter. Fall is one of my favorite seasons and now is the perfect time for picking and baking apples!
I found this cute apple orchard only a few minutes from our home. Although they don’t allow you to pick your own apples, they do sell “seconds.” (Which are apples that are less than perfect in appearance, but oh so perfect for baking) and usually sold at a discount.
I saved my apple picking energy and put it towards apple baking, which was much needed since 50 pounds of apples came home with me! They were offering buy one, get one free and threw in an extra 5 pound bag with every purchase, making my apples a bargain .38 cents per pound!
This little one wasted no time enjoying our apple harvest!
Before we were back home I had my “baking with apples” board on Pinterest filled with yummy apple recipes! What can you make with 50 pounds of apples? Below is the breakdown of my baking blitz, with a several apples left over for eating!
Homemade Preserved Apple Sauce: 7 Quarts and 6 Pints
Homemade Preserved Apple Pie Filling: 2 Quarts and 4 Pints
Freezer Apple Crisp: 4 8×8 Pans
Apple Bread: 2 Loafs
I made my applesauce the way my Grammy did! It’s so simple and easy and tastes so good!
I would recommend purchasing an apple-peeler-corer-slicer. There are several different options similar to this one to choose from on Amazon. You can check them out here! This isn’t a daily kitchen gadget I use, but when needed, it’s a huge time saver. Anytime I need several apples peeled, cored, and sliced, it’s the way to go.
After running each apple through my apple-peeler-corer-slicer, I put them in a large pot, add a cup of water and cook on low heat. Stirring occasionally until all the apples are soften and cooked. Once the apples are cooked, I put the hot apples in a blinder or food processor and blend until smooth. I prefer smooth applesauce, but you can also reduce blending for a chunkier style. Outside of a little water during the cooking process, I don’t add anything to my applesauce. Just all natural apple goodness!
The applesauce is finished, super easy! Now it’s time to preserve. You can preserve in jars using a hot water processing method, freeze in jars or bags, or eat it all (because it’s that good)! I prefer to process my applesauce in a hot water bath to save on freezer space. After sterilizing all my jars, I fill them with the hot applesauce within an inch of the top of the jar, using a clean towel; wipe the rim to ensure the tops of the jars are clean of any splattering sauce. Place on the hot lid, gently tighten the rim, and process in a boiling hot water bath. (Quarts 20 mins, Pints for 15). If you are new to canning here is a good resource link to answer any of your questions.
For the apple crisp I used the recipe from Happy Money Saver and it was delightful! Each recipe makes two 8×8 pans. I also added a splash of vanilla to the crisp topping before covering the apples. If you don’t want to freeze your apple crisp in 8×8 pans you can also use plastic freezer bags. I tossed my sliced apples in a gallon freezer bag, added a little lemon juice and gave the apples a good shake. In a sandwich size bag I added all the dry ingredients. I stored the sandwich bag of topping inside the gallon bag with the apples and tossed in the freezer. When I need a quick dessert, Ill just mix the butter and vanilla and bake! Yum!
For the apple bread I used the recipe from The Happier Homemaker. I doubled the recipe to make two loafs. I wish I could tell you one of them made it to my freezer, but they ended up in several tummies.
For the apple pie filling I used the recipe from Frugal Farm Wife. It makes a huge batch of yummy apple pie filling just waiting for a pie crust and warm vanilla ice-cream. I reduced the recipe several times for a much smaller portion.
Apple crisp, apple pie, apple sauce, or just eating an apple right off the tree, I hope you are enjoying this tasty season as much as I am!
FYI: This post contains affiliate links. Which means I will receive a (very) small commission if you make a purchase through my links above.