This easy applesauce recipe can be chunky or smooth. It’s also naturally sweetened with maple syrup or honey, to taste. Recipe yields about 4 cups. INGREDIENTS
1 ½ pounds Gala apples (or any other variety of sweet red apple, about 4 medium)
1 ½ pounds Granny Smith apples (or Golden Delicious, about 4 medium)
⅓ cup water
2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey, more to taste
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Peel, core and chop the apples into 2″ chunks. In a medium Dutch oven or large stainless steel saucepan, combine the apple chunks, water, maple syrup and cinnamon. Cover and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Continue simmering, stirring occasionally, until the apples are tender and falling apart, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat. For chunky applesauce, use a potato masher or the back of a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon to break it up to your desired consistency. For smooth applesauce, blend it in your food processor.
Stir in the vinegar. Adjust to taste as necessary—for sweeter applesauce, stir in more maple syrup (I usually add 2 tablespoons); for more spice, add more cinnamon; for more complexity, add another teaspoon of vinegar.
Serve warm or chilled; let it cool to room temperature before covering leftover applesauce and storing it in the fridge. Leftover applesauce will keep well in the refrigerator for about 5 days, or for months in the freezer.