Old-Fashioned Apple Sauce Recipe

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Saturday, September 2, 1911: Had to pick apples today. Almost a whole wagon load it was. Was rather hard on my hands for they were just about as sore as I cared to have them by the time I got through with the dreaded thing.Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Whew, a wagon load is a lot of apples. Early varieties aren’t generally very good for long-term storage. Maybe they made cider or sold some of them.  Perhaps Grandma used a few of the apples to made apple sauce.

Here’s how I make apple sauce:

Apple Sauce

Cut any bad sections from the apples, then quarter and core. Do not peel (The peels of red-skinned apples give the sauce a nice pinkish color).

Place the quartered apples in a medium sauce pan. Use as many apples as needed to fill pan about two-thirds full. Add a small amount of water to keep apples from scorching.Place on medium heat. Stir occasionally.  If needed, add additional water. Reduce heat after it begins to boil.  Cook until apples are soft and mushy (about 15 minutes).

Press the cooked apples through a sieve or strainer. I use a Foley Mill—though they would not have existed a hundred years ago. (Foley Mills were invented in 1933.)If desired, stir cinnamon and sugar into the sauce. For each cup of apple sauce, I usually use about 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and (depending upon how tart the apples were) approximately 1/8 – 1/4 cup sugar. Chill and serve.

17 thoughts on “Old-Fashioned Apple Sauce Recipe

  1. This is a delicious applesauce recipe! I made it just as written, except I didn’t add any sugar. It was very easy. Thanks!

  2. I don’t like to add the skins although I know a great deal of nutrients are in the skins, but I have to be careful of pesticides… and since I don’t grow my own apples I have no way of knowing what was used. Some pesticides today are pretty rough stuff.

    1. Yes, I agree that I won’t use the skins if I was worried about pesticides. But, in general, I like the way the skins give the apple sauce a nice color–and that I don’t need to peel the apples. I consider it the lazy person’s way to make applesauce.

  3. old recipes show that a dab or two of butter and a sprinkling of salt along with sugar to taste depending on the apples. I made gravenstein applesauce and it was delicious.

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