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pint jars of home canned applesauce on a table
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5 from 5 votes

Homemade Applesauce for Canning

Do you love going apple picking in the fall? Here is a great way to preserve apples by turning them into homemade applesauce and canning it to enjoy all winter.
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Canning
Cuisine: American
Keyword: canning applesauce
Servings: 36 servings
Calories: 55kcal
Author: Grow a Good Life


  • 14 pounds apples
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice fresh or bottled (optional)
  • sugar (optional)
  • cinnamon (optional)


Prepare the Apples

  • Rinse the apples well under cold running water. Peel the apples if you are not using a strainer to puree the applesauce. Otherwise remove the cores, cut the apples into chunks, and add to your saucepan.
  • Add just enough water to the pot to prevent sticking, about 1/2 cup.
  • Cook the apples over medium-low heat to soften, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. After the apples are soft, turn off the heat and let the apples cool.

Prepare the Canning Equipment

  • Wash your jars, lids, bands, and canning tools in hot soapy water, and rinse well. Set aside to air dry on a clean kitchen towel.
  • Place the jar rack into water bath canner, place jars in the canner, and add water to cover. Bring the canner to a simmer (180˚F) for 10 minutes, and keep the jars hot until you are ready to fill them.

Strain the Apples

  • Run the cooled applesauce through a food strainer to remove skins, and to puree the sauce. Skip if you prefer a chunky applesauce.
  • Return the apple pulp to your saucepot. Taste and add sugar and other flavorings, such as cinnamon, and any other spices, if using. Start out with just a little and adjust until you are happy with the flavor. Thin with water, if the puree is too thick.
  • Bring the applesauce to a boil (212˚F) over medium-high heat while stirring to prevent sticking, and keep hot as you fill your jars.

Can the Applesauce

  • Spread a kitchen towel on the counter. Use your jar lifter to remove a jar from canner, drain, and place on the towel. Keep the remaining jars in the canner, so they stay hot.
  • Use your canning ladle and funnel and add applesauce to warm jars leaving 1/2-inch headspace.
  • Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean, damp towel. Center a lid on the jar, and screw on the band until it is fingertip tight.
  • Use the jar lifter to place the jar back into the canner, and repeat with the remaining jars. Try to leave some space in between the jars.
  • Once the jars are all in canner, adjust the water level so it is at least two inches above the jar tops.
  • Cover the canner and bring to boil over medium-high heat. Once water boils vigorously, continue boiling pints for 15 minutes at altitudes of less than 6,000 ft. Adjust processing time for your altitude if necessary (see notes).
  • When processing time is complete, turn off the heat, remove the cover, and let the canner cool down and settle for about 5 minutes.
  • Spread a dry kitchen towel on the counter, remove the jars carefully from canner, and place on the towel. Leave about 1-inch in between jars. Keep the jars upright, and don't tighten bands or check the seals yet. Let the jars sit undisturbed for 12 to 24-hours to cool completely.
  • After the jars have cooled for at least 12 hours, check to be sure jar lids have sealed by pushing on the center of the lid. The lid should not pop up. If the lid flexes up and down, it did not seal. Refrigerate the applesauce and use within a week.
  • Remove the bands and wash the jars well with warm soapy water to remove any residue. Label, date, and store in a cool, dark place, between 50 to 70 degrees F. Use within 12 to 18 months. Refrigerate the juice once opened and consume within a week. Yields about 9 pints.


This is a tested safe canning recipe from the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning. Changing the recipe may make the product unsafe for canning.
All times are at altitudes of less than 1,000 ft. Adjustments must be made for altitudes greater than 1,000 ft: Pints at altitudes of 1,001 - 6,000 ft. is 20 minutes, and above 6,000 feet is 25 minutes.
I am happy to answer any questions, but if you need immediate canning help or answers, please contact your local extension office.


Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 55kcal