Instant Pot | November 3, 2017

No Peel Instant Pot Apple Butter

No Peel Instant Pot Apple Butter is so easy to make you will never, ever buy apple butter at the store again! The Instant Pot cooks apples in a fraction of the time of the slow cooker and is perfect for making homemade apple butter in less than an hour.

Instant Pot Apple Butter

A few years ago, my friend Melanie gave me a jar of homemade apple butter she had cooked up in the slow cooker. It was SO GOOD. As in,  I wanted to ask for another jar, but you know how that goes. Homemade canned goods are like GOLD.

Instant Pot Apple Butter

One of the reasons I’m not a huge fan of canning is it takes so much time. The Instant Pot has revolutionized this process. Recipes that once took hours, now take less than an hour! Minutes, my friends, minutes.  When the Instant Pot entered my life,  I knew I had to try to duplicate Mel’s yummy apple butter.

Instant Pot Apple Butter

After a few experiments and I had the perfect blend of  sweet, without using too much sugar. I knew if I didn’t add a lot of sugar, adjustments needed to be made.  This is where my trusty hand immersion blender (aka favorite kitchen tool) became a key player in making the apple butter thick.

Leaving the apple peel on is essential to  Instant Pot Apple Butter.  Once the peel is soft and blended into the apples, it serves as a natural thickener, similar to my favorite One Pot Butternut Squash Soup!

Instant Pot Apple Butter

Five easy steps to make Instant Pot Apple Butter at home!

  1. Wash and cut the apples.
  2. Throw apples and a few other ingredients into the Instant Pot.
  3. Cook
  4. Blend the cooked apples.
  5. Place in jars and enjoy!

Instant Pot Apple Butter

Still not convinced? A few reasons you want to make this at home:

I promise, you’re not going to find anything that tastes like homemade in the grocery store!

You’ll know exactly what ingredients are in your apple butter.

It’s easy to freeze and take a jar out when needed, which is Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday.

If you have boxes of apples sitting around and you need to use them up, this is your ticket!

Instant Pot Apple Butter is perfect on pancakes, waffles, toast, bagels, as a dip, and  in recipes that call for applesauce or apple butter.

Instant Pot Apple Butter

If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can also make this in a slow cooker, place all ingredients into a slow cooker and turn on low for about 6-8 hours( notes on recipe as well)!

Instant Pot Apple Butter

4.48 from 19 votes
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Instant Pot Apple Butter

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 3 -4 pints
Author Si Foster, A Bountiful Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 4 lbs apples any type of sweet apple do not remove peel
  • 1/2 cup water * see recipe notes about this amount of water
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • dash salt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • For a family-sized batch or to share with friends:
  • 8-10 apples or about 5 lbs apples before cutting
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 dashes salt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice same as with small batch

Instructions

  1. Wash apples, remove any stickers and cut the apples into fourths.
  2. Place apple on a cutting board and cut each side (4 cuts) until just the core is left in the middle (see photo). Discard core.
  3. Place the apples into the Instant Pot and add water, spice, brown sugar and salt.
  4. Make sure rubber seal is in place inside the Instant Pot lid. Close and secure the lid to the locked position. Check to make sure the vent is turned to SEAL.
  5. Push MANUAL setting, and set the timer for 15 minutes, adjust time using the up or down arrow. START or push MANUAL again to begin cooking.
  6. When timer is finished, let pressure in pot release naturally for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the dial to the VENT position and let remaining steam release, if any remains.
  7. Let the apples cook on the Saute setting or Slow Cooker setting, while stirring in lemon juice. Place the immersion blender into the Instant Pot and pulse until smooth, moving the blender around the pan as you bend up bits of apple until completely smooth. If you don't have an immersion blender, let the apple butter cool for about 30 minutes, then place the apple mixture in blender in small batches until smooth.
  8. Spoon apple butter into jars or other containers. Use with in 10 days, store in refrigerator or freeze until ready to use.
  9. Makes about 3-4 pints for large batch, depending on how much you sample before placing in jars 🙂

Recipe Notes

  • Initially, the recipe called for 2 tablespoons of water added to the apples. A few readers have said their Instant Pot has given an error message "burn" . To eliminate this issue, we have amended the recipe from 2 tablespoons of water to 1/2 cup to insure there is enough water in the pot to bring it to proper pressure and not trigger a "burn" message. I have made this recipe using 2 tablespoons of water, but want to avoid any problems for readers while in the middle of cooking the apples! I suspect the juiciness of the apples has something to do with how they cook up and if they do or do not produce a burn message.
  • If after the apple butter is cooked and blended it seems not quite thick enough, you may cook with lid off in Instant Pot for additional time on Sauté setting. Make sure to stir pot to prevent scorching!

78 thoughts on “No Peel Instant Pot Apple Butter

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  1. Thank you for posting ideas to use in the Instant Pot. Do you have a recommendation for a cookbook that utilizes this wonderful appliance? I am having a difficult time locating good recipes and savvy instructions how to use it.

  2. I just made this and the taste is wonderful … but there are little white stringy things throughout … about a quarter inch long … not pleasant in the mouth. They were organic apples with no wax coating. Are they just fibers from the skin? Have you experienced this?

  3. What would you think about actually water processing these cans? Would you not recommend it? I want to give away as gifts and I want to make it as shelf stable as possible/seal the jars.

    1. Melissa,
      Manual is the same as high pressure. I know it’s a bit confusing but they changed the name in the newer model.
      Let me know how you like this recipe!
      Thanks for reading ABK!
      xo,
      Si

    2. I made the apple butter in the IP and the end result is quite runny but so tasty. Will it thicken up after it cools I hope. I canned the apple butter so we shall see.

  4. 5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe – I’ve made it twice now and it is delicious. Fiber, too, with the apple peels in it – but tastes so good you don’t even know it is there!

    1. Xina,
      Thank you for your positive feedback. I love the simplicity and healthy benefits of not peeling the apples – love that Instant Pot!
      Thanks for reading ABK!
      xo,
      Si

  5. 5 stars
    I’m making this for the second time, today. My husband and I love it and we gave it as gifts to friends and family for Christmas. Thank you for sharing your recipe.

    1. Kimberly,
      I bet your neighbors loved getting something delicious and home-made for Christmas. I’m glad you like this recipe.
      And no peeling!
      xo,
      Si

  6. 5 stars
    Hi,
    I made this last night and it’s so yummy. For thickness, my preference, I added Chia Seeds to the blender. I have a Vitamix so it pulverized the seeds.

    Turned out very nice.

    Thank you
    Awilda Caberto

  7. Hi, using this small amount of water my Instant Pot Duo Plus would not come to pressure and instead displayed “burn”. I added more water (like..a lot more, sorry didn’t measure) and scraped up the caramelized bits and tried again. I then just used the sauté function for longer to evaporate the addl water and thicken the apple butter. I also had thin stringy bits throughout (used organic honey crisp), I don’t think it will affect the mouthfeel though. I’m thinking this is due to leaving the skins on.

    1. Kat,
      Thank you for explaining how you managed your Instant Pot situation. I haven’t had issues with the “burn” mode or stringy bits. How did the Apple Butter taste? Thank you for reading ABK!
      xo,
      Si

  8. 4 stars
    Thank you for this yummy recipe! I gathered up my last 12 small Fugi apples and made a batch. I had no idea it was that easy with the Instant Pot! Instead of using an immersion blender, I dumped the cooked apples and sauce into my Ninja and it made a wonderful puree, although the flavor tasted a bit weak and the color wasn’t that rich, dark brown we love. So, I added more cloves and cinnamon and adjusted the sweetness by adding a wee bit more brown sugar. Then I dumped the puree back into the Instant Pot to saute on medium for about 15-20 minutes. That’s the trick to the deep color! I stirred non-stop while it was boiling until it darkened and thickened. Thanks again. I only wish I made this when my Daddy was alive. It’s his favorite.

    1. Thanks for your feedback Keri! I’m guessing the color of the apple peel will also effect the finished product. And yes, boiling (or sautéing in the IP) will thicken the sauce up nicely. Thanks so much!
      xo
      Si

    1. Leslie,
      Yes, you can make this recipe without the skin on, but I love this fact that I don’t have to peel the apples! Huge time saver! If the recipe isn’t as thick as you would like, you can leave the pot on simmer with the lid off and cook some of the water out. Delicious!
      xo,
      Si

  9. Just to let folks know, you don’t need to use any sugar in this or any applesauce/butter recipe. You might have to cook it down longer to get the same result, but it’s worth it. In fact, I don’t even use spices. Just apples and a 1/4 cup water in the IP and you’re good to go. People always assume my applesauce/butter has sugar and cinnamon in it. That’s how good and complex the flavor profile is.

    1. Hi Terri, for this apple butter recipe, it’s best to use it up within 10 days of making. You can also pressure seal or freeze it if you’d like to keep it for a while longer. Hope this helps and thanks for reading ABK!

      xo,
      Si

    1. Hi Sherry, you should pressure cook the apples for about 15 minutes and then let them vent for at least 15 more minutes or until all of the steam is released. Hope this helps and thanks for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si

  10. Taste is delicious but the texture is a little gritty—really fine grit. Has anyone dealt with that? It’s just not as smooth/buttery as I want it!

  11. Hi – I am yet another person who experienced these small white fibrous filaments in the pureed mixture (after cooking). I used 11 apples (Gala), skin on, and had to use a fine mesh strainer to press the puree through to remove it (I removed a 1/3 of a cup, at least, if not more). Keeping this fibrous mass would have made the final mixture inedible/unpleasant. I used a hand blender as opposed to my Vitamix to puree. I am wondering if this is the issue. I have to say, I wasn’t pleased to have to go through the extra long tedious step, especially since I used 11 apples and had a huge amount to sieve :-/

    I also used more water (like 1.5 c!) to be on the safe side as I have the 6QT IP Duo which tends to give ‘burn’ notice if there is too little liquid. This worked fine especially as I had reached the max line with the amount of apples I added.

    I let the strained pureed mixture reduce on low saute setting for about 2.5 hrs, stirring a lot near the end the get the right consistency. Definitely use a splatter guard if you have it to avoid having it fly everywhere.

    The end result came out great. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Hi Stefan, that’s so strange how you had those white bits, I haven’t had that experience with this recipe. But I’m so glad you found a way that worked for you. Thanks for sharing, it’s really helpful for readers who had a similar problem. And thanks for reading ABK!
      Si

  12. 3 stars
    Thought this would be a great idea to can and give as gifts at holidays. Got everything measured and in the pot, but is having a hard time coming up to pressure and keeps saying “burn”. I don’t think the 2 Tbs of water in enough and that’s why it keeps saying it. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Erika, try using 1/2 cup of water, I’m going to make that adjustment on the recipe as well. I didn’t have this problem, but a few others have. It may require a little sauté time at the end after the apple butter is cooked to thicken it. Thanks for asking!
      xo
      Si

  13. Dang it! I added the lemon juice to the apples and seasonings in the crockpot. Will it ruin my batch? Do I need to add more lemon juice now?

    1. Sorry Mary, just seeing your message. Hope this was a success for you.The recipe should have worked even if adding the juice early!
      thanks,
      Si

  14. I made this tonight with apples from an apple tree. This recipe is very simple and delicious. I am glad I found this.

  15. 5 stars
    I just made this and it is delicious! I didn’t have the stringy problem that I read about but I used an immersion blender so I’m wondering if that is why. But absolutely recommend this recipe!

    1. Hi Tiffany, I’m glad you enjoyed this recipe. I haven’t had any issues when using the immersion blender as well, so that may be the problem for some. Thanks so much for sharing!
      xo
      Si

      1. Hey there, I also had the fibrous issues, I think its all in how you cut up the apples. I was lazy and had plenty of times where it got cut too close to the core, i’m guessing thats where the fibers are coming from as I used am immersion blender and still have fibers. Just tell people to be cautious of how they slice up the apples and all should be fine.

  16. I wonder if the people that had tiny bits in their butter are cutting out the cores. This would do it, I think. My mother used to make an apple butter and stirred in a box of Jello in the batch before putting in containers. What ever flavor fits your taste. Delicious. I am going to try this with some apricot Jello, but leave out the spices if you don’t like that taste with the other flavors of the Jello.

  17. 5 stars
    Thanks so much for the recipe! I found a great deal on organizer gala apples and bought 12 lbs. just to make organic apple butter. I’ve made apple butter in a slow cooker and in a turkey roaster, but now I have an instant pot, so I needed these directions. Yay! Off to put apples in the pot!

  18. 4 stars
    Thanks for the guidance on apple sauce in the Instant Pot. I had the same issue as others with the white stringy things. They do mess up the texture (I’ll still eat it, but strained the rest of the sauce I had). Guess I’ll have to get back to peeling. Still, having apple sauce in 30 min is awesome. I added a big cinnamon stick and a vanilla pod to mine and omitted the sugar. So good.

    1. Heidi, I’m sorry to hear your having issues with the stringy stuff. I’m still trying to figure that one out. Great variation to using sugar! Thanks for sharing,
      xo
      Si

  19. Can i can this recipe as in a boiling water bath? Anbd if so, how long in the water before i can take them out of the water? Thanks for any help.

    1. Hi Cheryl,
      I have not used a water bath to process the apple butter. Im guessing if you look up how to process apple butter, you will be able to find information to direct on this process safely. I think you’ll love this IP recipe!
      xo
      Si

  20. 5 stars
    There is such a difference in the sizes of these pots, mine is the Ultra Mini 3 QT. But the pots go up to 8 QT’s! Can you tell me how big your pot is so I can gauge my prep? Or can I just gauge it by your photos and keep track of how many apples it takes to fill my little pot? The folks with the white stringy fibers left after blending in the issues above,, I plan on using my Ninja but if I see those I also have my colander with stand and the wooden pin we used to can tomato juice and other fruit canning with. I will pour it out of the Ninja and run it through the colander with the pin. It has served that very purpose for myself and my Mother for over 50 years. Thanks for all these Instant Pot recipes.

    1. Hi Tammy,
      I have a 6 and an 8 quart, but test all of my recipes using the 6 quart. I should update the recipes to say so! Thanks for pointing this out. I also live at about 4600ft in altitude at the present time. I believe the altitude also effects time on the Instant Pot! Thanks for reading Abk and for your review!
      xo
      Si

  21. 3 stars
    Do NOT! I repeat do NOT sauté this after it’s done venting. It’s just too hot. It ended up exploding hot lava apple butter all over my hands and counter while I was immersion blending. Have my hand wrapped in ice and my kitchen destroyed. This is a bland version of apple sauce. Don’t bother

  22. 4 stars
    I made this today with our own Gravenstein apples 🍎 and I did get the white “threads” in my sauce which other posters mentioned getting. They have the consistency of fish bone, and will not all blend into the mix. Based on the texture, I think they are from slicing the apples too close to the core. Will likely sieve them out. *if you use gravenstein apples the result is bright and lemony- so I’d suggest only using 1tbsp of lemon.

    1. Hi Tory,
      Sometimes, the apple butter turns out a little runny. This will depend on the juiciness of the apples. If yours is on the runny side, just turn the IP to Saute mode and continue to cook the mixture until it thickens up a bit. Make sure to stir the mixture so it doesn’t scorch. And of course, this needs to be done with the lid off! Hope this helps,
      Si

  23. I want to make apple cider doughnuts and my recipe wants apple butter. I couldn’t find it at the grocery store so I googled, and voila! I landed here. What a lovely post! I love my IP and use it almost every day. I read the fibrous problem, but I’m going to trust you and not peel my apples. I have an immersion blender AND a Vitamix so I’ll use one (or both of those). What a lovely post and thank you!

  24. If your IP has a “keep warm” feature and it’s in use while natural releasing the pressure, don’t bother with the sauté method afterwords while blending. Mine started to boil and I got lucky with a single drop on my arm, but it was basically lava. Either turn the keep warm function off or skip the sauté entirely.

  25. 5 stars
    I really appreciate the guidance here for cooking in the instant pot. Worked great.
    I used crab apple from a public tree (haha free!)

    6lbs crab apple meat (sans cores)
    2c maple syrup
    1/2tsp all spice
    1tsp cinnamon
    1/2 lemon juice

    2c maple syrup made for pretty sweet but the can came in a 2c batch 🤷‍♀️

    Will def use your instructions as a guide again! (Sorry for not following your recipe. I’m a wing it kind of gal)

  26. 5 stars
    I made regular apple sauce and canned it. It was wonderful.

    Then I repeated the process. Instead of having apple sauce I went for the apple butter.

    I put a splatter guard over my instant pot and set to sear for two minutes. Then left it on warm until it stopped boiling, I stirred it. I continued this multiple times until it was the thickness I wanted it. I strongly suggest using a splash guard like you would when cooking bacon so there is no mess.

    I then canned the apple butter as well.

    Thank you for the recipe.

  27. 5 stars
    Love this super simple recipe! I made the larger size and added a bit of extra spice. Also as mentioned if the butter is too runny you can use sauté to cook off some of it and make it thicker.

    1. I’m so glad you added your own variations to this recipe to make it more like your mother’s, Elaine! Thanks for sharing and for reading ABK,
      xo
      Si

  28. 5 stars
    I must admit I thought the recipe sounded too good to be true.
    It turned out amazingly well!!
    I plan on making apple butter for holiday gifts 🙂
    Thank you