Apples are a fall staple. Many love slicing them up and pairing them with peanut butter or dipping them in sweet and sticky caramel, and some enjoy apples best when they're pureed into classic applesauce. The simple snack has so many benefits and purposes. This guide will break down everything you need to know about applesauce from methods and tips for making your own to its uses in everyday cooking.
Unsweetened applesauce is relatively low in calories with one cup of applesauce containing around 120 calories. Like plain apples, applesauce contains no fat, making it great for those on a weight loss program. Also, the sugar in unsweetened applesauce is all natural. Steer clear from commercial varieties of applesauce for they contain tons of added sugar.
Applesauce is high in fiber thanks to its pectin content. Fiber is known to keep your digestive system functioning properly. In addition, since it takes a long time to digest fiber, you stay full longer. Therefore, applesauce makes for a great afternoon snack.
Applesauce is packed with many vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, C, E, K, B1, B2, and B6, along with potassium, copper, and manganese. These vitamins have been associated with improved energy, bone density, and the immune system. Specifically, a study found that women who ate a meal with apples lost less calcium from their bodies than those who did not.
Apples also contain polyphenols which have antioxidant properties. One of these polyphenols is the flavonoid epicatechin, which helps to lower blood pressure. A study found that high consumption of flavonoids was associated with a lower risk of stroke. Flavonoid can also help prevent heart disease by reducing LDL oxidation.
Making your own applesauce from scratch is easier than you think, as all you need is a couple of ingredients. Whipping up homemade applesauce is even easier if you have a slower cooker. We will show you the many ways to craft your own delicious applesauce.
The best type of apples to use for applesauce are older, softer apples. These apples will cook down faster and cut down on the time you're in the kitchen. While there are no specific variety of apples you should use, it's best to use a medley of apples for the best flavor. Some like to use both sweet and tart apples. Tart apples with a hint of sweetness include McIntosh, Gravenstein, and Jonomac. Super sweet varieties include Cortland, Crispin, Fuji, and Golden Delicious. Lastly, some crisp and tangy varieties include Granny Smith, Liberty, and Ida Red.
Peeling and coring apples are probably the most daunting part about making applesauce. However, there is a simple and easy way:
The size of your apple slices greatly impacts how they are cooked down. Therefore, you want to dice them up in small pieces for smaller slices will cook faster and break down more than larger pieces. It is recommended that you chop up the apple into one-inch chunks. This will result in a smooth and less chunky applesauce.
For classic applesauce, all you will need is a couple of pounds of apples, water, and a dash of lemon juice. Since apples are already sweet and contain natural fructose, you don't need to add sugar. However, if you wish, you can add extra sugar, cinnamon, and other ingredients. Later, we'll discuss the many variations of applesauce you can make.
You can preserve store applesauce by refrigerating it or freezing it. When storing in the fridge, applesauce remains fresh for up to one to two months and when storing it properly in the freezer, it keeps fresh for up to two years.
You don't have to stick with the usual ingredients, you are free to spruce up your applesauce any way you see fit. Here are some fall-inspired applesauce recipes to try.
Nothing says for like pumpkin spice. Put a spin on regular applesauce with this recipe. Just combine the following ingredients using any one of the aforementioned cooking methods. The variety of spices and the pumpkin puree make for a truly delicious treat with many flavors.
Caramel apples are a fall favorite for many. Why not enjoy it in the form of applesauce? This caramel applesauce recipe will yield a sweet, mouth-watering applesauce that serves as a great snack or a dip for vegetables, as well as pairing well with various dessert dishes.
Pears are another fruit that is harvested in the Fall. By adding pears to the mix, you can create a wonderful pear applesauce that's loaded with diverse flavors, without adding tons of sugar or other spices.
Many don't know that applesauce can be used as an ingredient in many dishes. In fact, is oftentimes serves as a substitute for butter when combined with oil using a 1:1 ratio of applesauce to butter. This combination is commonly used in vegan cooking for the applesauce adds moisture and the oil richness and texture. Now that you know this hack using applesauce, try crafting a perfectly moist applesauce cake or fluffy applesauce pancakes.