Does anyone else ever have a random craving for apple pie filling or need a last minute dessert? Well here is an easy solution! Homemade apple pie filling is ready to be used – just dump, bake, and enjoy! This home canned pie filling is already thickened so your last minute dessert can be ready in no time.
My favorite way to enjoy this is by making an apple dump cake topped with a brown sugar oatmeal crumble. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do and add it to your ‘must can’ list this season.
Homemade Apple Pie Filling
[Yield: (7) Quarts]
Materials: (all materials can be found on The Necessities for reference)
- 7 quart jars (plus flat lids and bands/rings)
[Hint: As always, I recommend an extra jar or two. Also, I strongly recommend using a wide mouth jar! You’ll thank me later.]
- 1 water bath
- 1 funnel
- 1 jar lifter
- 1 stainless steel ladle
- 1 large stainless steel pot (or dutch oven)
- 1 dish towel (large enough for the jars to cool on)
- 6 qts peeled and sliced apples of your choice (roughly 12 apples)
- 5 1/2 cups granulated sugar
[Hint: for a richer flavor, swap some or all of the granulated for brown sugar]
- 1 1/2 cups Cook Type ClearJel
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
[Hint: feel free to sub or add any dried spices of your liking!]
- 2 1/2 cups cold water
- 5 cups un-sweet apple juice
- 3/4 cups bottled lemon juice
To prevent browning of fruit, place in a mixture of 4 cups of water to 1/4 cup bottled lemon juice.
- Inspect each of your jars for cracks, chips, and/or any other questionable markings before use.
- Place wire rack into bottom of water bath with ‘arms’ up to allow jars to be placed.
- Fill your water bath with enough water to cover each of the jars with 2-3″ of liquid and place on burner to warm jars (simmer but do not boil).
- Wash, peel and prepare apples to your desired thickness. To avoid browning, sliced apples can be placed in a mixture of 4 cups of water to 1/4 cup bottled lemon juice.
[Hint: Try using various sizes for a better texture! Some large apple slices to highlight the fresh fruit, and some smaller chunks to make sure there is apple in every bite!]
- Once cut, blanch your apple chunks in batches for 1 minute each.
- Place blanched apple chunks in a covered pot to keep warm. Continue this process with all apple chunks.
- Once all apple chunks are blanched, in an empty pot combine sugar, Cook Type ClearJel, spices, water, and apple juice.
- Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.
- Continue stirring the mixture until it becomes thick and well combined. This can take around 20 minutes.
- Once the mixture has turned into a thick caramel like consistency, pour in the lemon juice and stir for an additional minute.
- In batches, fold in the apple slices and mix until evenly distributed.
- Remove empty jars from water bath by lifting the wire rack and setting the arms on the rim of the water bath. Then, using jar lifter empty and remove the jar from the water.
- Using a ladle and funnel, add the apple pie filling into a hot jar keeping a 1in head space. [Note: Head space is the distance from the top of the jar to the food filling the jar.]
- Wipe the rim of each jar with a damp cloth ensuring that the rims are clean.
- Place flat lid and screw band on jar and finger tighten.
[Hint: Place the jar on a towel and using only your fingers, tighten the band until your jar spins on the towel.]
- Once finger tightened, return to warm water bath to avoid thermal shock. [Thermal shock is the cracking of jars from an extreme temperature swing such as putting hot food into a cold jar.] Lower wire rack once full.
- Place lid on canner, return to high heat and bring water to a full rolling boil.
- Once boiling, set timer for 25 minutes
[Hint: refer to Elevation Rules to see how it changes your processing time].
- After 25 minutes, turn off heat and remove the lid. Wait an additional 5 minutes.
- Once again, lifting wire rack and placing arms on canner rim, use the jar lifter to remove your filled jars and place on a towel in a cool & draft-free location.
- Wait 24 hours before touching the jars. After 24 hours, remove the bands and pick up each jar from the flat lid (this will help ensure that each jar is truly sealed). Once the seal is verified, you may wash the exterior of the jars, dry, label, and store for future use.