This unsweetened apple sauce recipe contains no added sugar yet is such a delicious apple sauce as it is spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla extract. It is made with simple ingredients easily found at a local grocery store.
If you are lucky, you might have apple trees in your backyard or a neighbor or friend who does, which is perfect for making your own simple unsweetened applesauce when apple season is in.
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Making apple sauce reminds me of my childhood when my mom would have us peeing and slicing apples for her massive batches of homemade apple sauce. When apples were in season, apple sauce was a staple in our house as my mom would have it as a healthy snack for us kids to enjoy on hot chapatis with butter.
Best apples for making unsweetened apple sauce
When making an unsweetened apple sauce, it is best to use a sweet apple, such as ambrosia apples, that are crisp, juicy, and naturally sweet. You can use any type of apple, but I suggest using red apples, which are sweeter than granny smith apples.
For this homemade unsweetened apple sauce recipe, I used ambrosia apples. The result was a delicious apple sauce with a natural sweetness that was just right!
Other types of apples you can use include:
- Pink lady apples
- Gala apples
- Fuji apples
It depends on personal preference, what’s in season, and what is on sale when choosing your apples. A big bag of ambrosia apples was on sale, which was the best kind of apples for making this refined sugar-free apple sauce.
How to make unsweetened apple sauce sweet?
The first step to making a naturally sweet apple sauce starts with choosing sweet apples instead of tart apples. A general rule of thumb is select red apples, such as ambrosia apples, instead of a tart apple such as granny smith apples.
The second step is to spice your apple sauce with sweet dessert spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg, which I used to sweeten this apple sauce recipe naturally.
Some of the best spices for desserts include:
- Anise seed
- Pumpkin pie spice
These spices are perfect to flavor and naturally sweeten a homemade apple sauce.
I also added vanilla extract, which adds a divine sweetness and flavor. A little spice goes a long way and is the best way to add flavor to unsweetened apple sauce.
You can also sweeten the homemade unsweetened applesauce recipe with natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup. Other great sugar substitutes include stevia, monk fruit, and erythritol, which are the best sugar substitutes for people with diabetes.
How to make unsweetened apple sauce
Peeling apples with a fruit and vegetable peeler is the first step when making apple sauce. After the apples are peeled, cut them in half and again into quarters.
Cut out the core, then slice the apples into thin lengthwise slices. Place the sliced apples into a pot and add 1 cup of water, then bring the apples and water to a boil.
Once the water has come to a boil, turn the heat to low and let the apples simmer on low heat for 3o minutes with the lid on and a crack to let out the steam. Nothing is worse than a rattling lid that needs to let off some steam!
Once the apples have softened, pour out the excess water if you have any. Most of the water boils out while cooking, but you may have some leftovers in the pot. I had a little water left over that I just mixed in with the apples. Leaving water in can yield a thinner applesauce texture, so it all depends on personal preference.
Mash the cooked apples together using a potato masher or the bottom of a fork until you reach your desired consistency and texture. I like a chunkier applesauce.
You can use an immersion blender or Vitamix to make a smooth applesauce with a smooth consistency. The choice is yours.
Season the unsweetened apple sauce with a little cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla extract! Or choose your favorite sweet dessert spices to season this sugar-free apple sauce.
Store the apple sauce in an air-tight container in the fridge, which will last for at least a week. I use glass mason jars to store my apple sauce, as I avoid plastic storage containers. You can also freeze this apple sauce and defrost it later if you have extra.
Additional tips and ways to use this apple sauce
I love to serve this delicious applesauce on gluten-free toast with soft goat cheese and this apple sauce on top. It is seriously so yummy and tastes like a healthy apple pie dessert that you get to have for breakfast!
Both my toddler and I enjoyed this unsweetened apple on toast all week! Which is perfect for the cold winter days in Canada, where I want fruit in my diet but don’t want to make a cold smoothie that leaves me feeling chilled. Plus, the warming spices are perfect for winter.
You can also use the apple sauce to make an apple pie chia pudding that is delicious and healthy!
Or you can also enjoy the sugar-free apple sauce all by itself because it is that good.
It’s also the perfect baby food or healthy snack for toddlers.
Try adding some ground flax seeds for healthy omega-3 fats and fiber that will help slow down glucose absorption into the bloodstream.
Making a blended apple sauce with cashews yields the best smooth and creamy apple sauce that is dairy free yet contains healthy fats for satiety.
Unsweetened Apple Sauce – Easy and Sugar Free
- 1 pot
- 1 paring knife
- 1 fork or potato masher
- 6 Apples (ambrosia or any red appple)
- 1 cup water
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Peel, core and slice apples into a pot.
- Place 1 cup of water over the sliced apples and bring to a boil then turn heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Once the apples are cooked, mash into a chunky applesauce using a fork or potato masher.
- Spice with cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract.