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Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe – A Classic Fall Recipe Made Easy!

Now that apple season is among us, it is time to share my favorite Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe. It is a great way to take advantage of all those fresh picked apples from your local orchard.

For those that have never had apple butter, don’t be fooled by its name because it isn’t butter at all. It is a spiced apple puree that is used primarily as a spread on bread and crackers.

It is popular this time of the year when apples are ripe and plentiful. However, you can often find the spread in stores and Farmer’s markets year around.

instant pot apple butter in jar

But don’t think of just spreading it on bread or rolls as a before dinner treat. You can add it on toast for a sweet treat with your morning coffee.

And if you want to take full advantage of the delicious spread you could use it as a filling in pastries or as a topping for thumbprint cookies. The options are endless!

The Difference Between Applesauce and Apple Butter

One quick look at the ingredient list below, you may be wondering what the difference is between cinnamon flavored applesauce and apple butter.

Although there are many of the same ingredients used when cooking down the apples, that is where the similarities end. Apple butter may seem similar to applesauce, but it is actually has a thicker and denser consistency.

Not to mention it has a more complex and deep flavor when compared to cinnamon applesauce. The traditionally long, slow cooking of the apples combined with apple cider or water and spices allows the sugar in the apples to caramelize.

This is what allows the apples to turn that deep brown color and become nice and thick. The consistency that is achieved when cooking traditional or Instant Pot Apple Butter is one that is perfect to spread.

Applesauce on the other hand is meant for eating as a side dish or snack with a spoon. It requires a much shorter cooking time and you can choose to keep it as a No Sugar Added Applesauce recipe or add spices to make a Cinnamon Applesauce.

seasonings over apple pieces
Although the seasonings in apple butter are very similar to that in cinnamon applesauce, the taste and texture is much different.

Different Cooking Methods To Make Apple Butter

Kettle Method:

The old fashioned, traditional method to cook down the apples is in a cooper kettle that is most often placed over an open fire. This method takes several hours and requires someone to constantly stir the pot so that it doesn’t burn on the bottom of the kettle.

Although this is a terrific method that produces great flavor, not many of us actually own a copper kettle. And not everyone can cook it over an open fire.

Fortunately there are other, more modern day options.

Stove Top:

Replace the open fire with the stove and you can make apple butter right in your own kitchen. However be sure to use a non-reactive pot so that the the flavor doesn’t become altered.

Because of the long cook time required, stainless steel, ceramic, glass, and metal cookware with enamel coating are the preferred pot to use.

Although this method is one that just about anyone can do, it still requires constant attention so that the apples don’t burn on the bottom of the pot.

So let’s look at two easier ways of making this delicious spread.

cooked appples
No matter what cooking method you use, the apples need to cook down so that the sugars caramelize and then the apple butter will become that iconic brown color.

Slow Cooker:

For years my preferred method for making apple butter has been in a slow cooker. I would prepare the Crock Pot Apple Butter in the evening and when I woke up in the morning it was ready to be pureed.

Not to mention that the house would smell wonderful! The only downfall to this cooking method that again, it still took several hours for the apples to cook down.

Which isn’t a bad thing when time isn’t an issue. However, there are times when I want to get a lot of apples processed in a short amount of time.

And that is when I turned to my pressure cooker to do the work in a fraction of the time.

Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker:

I now use my 6 quart Instant Pot to make Apple Butter and it only takes 8 minutes of actual cook time!

Of course just like with any pressure cooker recipe, additional time is required for the pot to come to pressure before the actual cook time begins. And in order for the mixture to thicken at the end, an additional 15-30 minutes is required.

However, what used to take me 12 hours to make now takes under one hour!!!!!

This means that I no longer have to make a large batch and can it in mason jars for use throughout the year. Any time that I run out, have a craving for it, or want to give it as a gift, I can make it fresh in under an hour!

Should I Peel The Apples When Making Instant Pot Apple Butter?

Before I get to the actual recipe that I use, you must first decide whether or not to peel the apples. Because the apples will become pureed with an immersion blender after they have cooked down, the peels, if left on, will disappear right into the smooth spread so the choice is up to you.

It will actually save you a lot of time if you decide not to peel the apples before they go into the Instant Pot. Another benefit of keeping the apple peels on is that they are full of vitamins and minerals.

apple wedger cutting an apple
If you choose to leave your apple peels on, use an apple corer/wedger to cut your apples in seconds!

Although I am not saying that this apple butter recipe is a healthy recipe, but every little bit of added nutritional value helps!

Finally, another reason that you might want to consider keeping the peels on is that they contain pectin which will help the apple butter thicken as it cooks.

However it truly is a personal choice. I typically peel and cut my apples using an Apple Peeler Corer Slicer.

This way I have small slivers of apples that will cook down quickly. Although if you want to keep the peel on, use an Apple Corer/Slicer to core and cut your apple into small wedges.

Instant Pot Apple Butter Recipe

*Specific measurements and complete recipe instructions are located in a printable recipe card at the bottom of this article. However, be sure to continue to read the tips and tricks to making this recipe below.


  • 6 sweet apples (Fuji, Kiku, Gala, Honeycrisp varieties are best to use)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider or pure apple juice
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar*
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

*The recipe provides a guideline for the amount of sugar required. You can decrease or increase depending on your taste.

I like to use sweet apples, so I use between 1/4-1/2 cup of brown sugar. However, you can eliminate the sugar all together or use a sugar substitute.


Core and slice each apple into 8-16 slices. *Peel your apples if you prefer to do so.

Place all the ingredients into the Instant Pot and stir to coat the apples. Lock the lid in place and move the valve to the sealing position.

Cook Time

Press Manual or Pressure Cooker (depending on the model that you have) and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes.

*Remember, before the cook time begins, the pot will need additional time to come to pressure. This could take anywhere from 8-15 minutes.

immersion blender puree apple butter in an Instant Pot
Use an immersion blender to puree your apple butter.

When the cook time has run out, turn the Instant Pot off and allow the apple butter to naturally release the pressure.

Once the pin drops carefully take off the lid and remove the cinnamon stick. Then use an immersion blender until the mixture becomes smooth.

You could also use a food processor or a blender filled to no more than half full to puree the mixture. If you do so, return the apple butter to the pot once it is smooth.

Turn the Instant Pot to sauté and push the adjust button to LESS if you have a model that can do so. Simmer the mixture until thickened to desired consistency.

This will take approximately 15-30 minutes to thicken. Turn the pot off and let apple butter cool completely.

Store in an air tight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 weeks or freeze up to 6 months.

Enjoy! Mary

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Yield: 2 cups

Amish Apple Butter Recipe

instant pot apple butter

Amish country style apple butter than can be used as a delicious spread for toast and crackers and can also be used as a marinade and as a filling for cookies and tarts.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Inactive Time 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 6 sweet apples (Fuji, Gala, Kiku, Honeycrisp)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider or pure apple juice
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Peel, core and slice each apple into 8 slices.
  2. Place all the ingredients into the Instant Pot and stir to coat apples.
  3. Using the manual setting (pressure cook) set at high pressure for 8 minutes with the valve sealed. When the time has run out, turn off and allow for natural pressure release.
  4. Take off the lid and remove cinnamon stick.
  5. Use an immersion blender until mixture becomes smooth. You could also use a food processor or a blender filled to no more than half full.
  6. Turn Instant Pot to sauté and push the adjust button to LESS. Simmer until thickened to desired consistency – approximately 15-30 minutes.
  7. Turn off and let apple butter cool completely.
  8. Store in an air tight container.
  9. Refrigerate for up to 3 weeks or freeze up to 6 months.


Recipe provided by Make Your Meals

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 grams

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 34Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 35mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 7gProtein: 0g

Nutritional Information is to be used as a general guideline only . Nutritional calculations will vary from the types and brands of the products used.

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