Salted Caramel Apple Butter: Thick and rich apple butter has been taken up a notch with the addition of salted caramel to the mix–you won’t believe how easy this recipe is! Recipes for both the slow-cooker and stove-top.
There is something to be said about the fall. Apple orchards, bonfires, the beautiful changes in the color of leaves, hot cider, pumpkins, football…..and the list goes on and on.
For me, I get most excited about apples. I eat apples all year-long, but when I have the opportunity to eat a fresh apple from a local orchard, I am in a bit of heaven. I bet you can picture it now too, can’t you? The crisp skin contrasted by the juicy flesh and the juice that runs down your hand from a perfectly ripe apple. PERFECTION.
And while apples this time of the year are so good unaltered, they also make dishes like Spiced Apple Bread, Old Fashioned Apple Crisp, Apple Sausage Biscuits, and Apple Pie Bars shine. And nothing beats homemade applesauce.
Yes, you heard that right, SALTED CARAMEL APPLE BUTTER. I just made your dreams come true, didn’t I?!
First of all let’s talk about apple butter. That thick, cinnamony spread that is perfect on toast, biscuits, or as a topping to sweet potato pancakes. I used to buy this stuff all the time, until I discovered how much added sugar was in my store bought brands. Then I realized just how easy it is to make your own apple butter. It is really just applesauce cooked for a bit longer, allowing it to develop its rich flavors and thicken. So simple.
But what REALLY takes this over the top is the addition of salted caramel to the mix.
We all know caramel and apples are a match made in heaven! And salted caramel is out of this world good, so you know Salted Caramel Apple Butter is going to be CRAZY good.
But did you know how EASY making salted caramel is?
Well, let me tell you.
You simply melt butter, add sugar, then milk or cream (I have used almond milk with great success) a pinch of salt and you have produced magic, pure magic. And no, you don’t need a thermometer or any fancy equipment. Oh and it takes about 5 minutes. I know, why do we buy it when it is so easy?!! Well, you can stop now!
I have discovered I like to make my caramel with a combo of maple syrup and brown sugar. I love the rich depth of flavor that maple adds to the caramel. But you can use white sugar in place of the maple.
So back to the Salted Caramel Apple Butter.
First, you need to make the apple butter–just dice up your apples and place into the slow cooker or heavy bottomed pan and let cook away. Once the apples have been cooked down, you need to blend them up. An immersion blender is a great tool for this, but you can use a food processor or blender (just be sure to let some steam escape and cover with towel or let cool before blending).
At this point you have applesauce. Which is tasty, but we want to make apple butter! And you do that by placing the blended sauce back over heat and letting cook away a bit longer.
Once done, you simply add in your 5 minute caramel sauce and let cool and then store in fridge for up to 2 weeks–it may last longer, but I have never had any left past 2 weeks, so can’t say for sure!
- 3 pounds apples (I like to use Fuji or Gala), washed, and cut into 1 inch chunks (you can leave peel on or remove)
- 1 cup apple cider or juice (100% juice, no sweeteners)
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ½ teaspoon all spice
- For the Caramel:
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon milk or cream (any variety)
- For Apple Butter:
- Stove Top Method: Place apples, juice, and spices in large heavy bottomed stock pan. Bring to a boil and reduce heat and simmer for 1-2 hours, until apples have broken down.
- Using an immersion blender, blend apples untll smooth. (Or do this in batches in your blender or food processor). Return mixture to pan. Let simmer for another hour, or until thickened and reduced by half, being sure to stir frequently. At this time, stir in warm caramel until combined. Cool, and store in fridge for 2 weeks.
- Slow Cooker Method: Place apples, juice, and spices in slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour.
- Using an immersion blender, blend apples untll smooth. (Or do this in batches in your blender or food processor). Return mixture to slow cooker and turn slow cooker low and cook and additional 6 to 8 hours, or until mixture is reduced by half. Stir in caramel. And let cool before serving.
- For caramel: Place maple syrup, butter, and brown sugar in skillet over meidum high heat.Whisk until butter is melted and mixture is bubbly and thick, whisk in salt and milk. Whisk for 1-2 minutes and turn off heat. Stir into apple butter at this time.
And now imagine: a flaky sweet potato biscuit slathered in rich, cinnamony, caramel apple butter. Or how about your morning toast being smeared with a big dollop of Salted Caramel Apple Butter? Or even vanilla ice cream or Greek yogurt topped with this decadent tasting spread? The options are ENDLESS! If you have an idea, share in the comments.
And for more great Apple Recipes, check out what Food Network’s Let Dish Team is sharing this week:
The Lemon Bowl: Tuna Salad with Apples
Creative Culinary: Boozy Snickerdoodle Cake with Apples
The Fed Up Foodie: Green Apple Butterscotch Macadamia Nut Cookies
Hey Grill Hey: Skillet Bacon Apple Crisp
A Mind “Full” Mom: Salted Caramel Apple Butter
Dishin & Dishes: Chicken with Cider Sauce and Apples
Foodtastic Mom: Ketucky Apple Skillet Cake
Healthy Eats: 6 Lighter Ways to Cook and Bake with Apples
In Jennie’s Kitchen: 9 Amazing Apple Recipes
Mom Loves Baking: Chocolate Turtle Apple Slices
Taste with the Eyes: Red Lentil Penne, Apple, Walnut, Mint, and Gorgonzola Sauce
Swing Eats: Apple Roses (gluten-free)
FN Dish: Kick Off Fall with Food Network’s Favorite 5-Star Apple Desserts