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Roasted Applesauce

The apples and sugar caramelize on the bottom of the pan as they roast, giving the finished applesauce a marvelous depth of flavor. If you don't have a food mill, core the apples before roasting; after they're cooked, puree the apples in a food processor, and strain before adding spices.

  • servings: 8
Photography: Laura Moss

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Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 6 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 pounds small assorted apples, such as Gala, McIntosh, or Fuji (about 10)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground cloves

Cook's Note

If you don't have a food mill, core the apples before roasting; after they’re cooked, puree the apples in a food processor, and strain before adding spices.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine water, sugar, lemon juice, and salt in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

  2. Step 2

    Scatter butter pieces over mixture, and top with apples. Roast until apples are very soft, 30 to 40 minutes.

  3. Step 3

    Working in batches, pass apple mixture through the medium disk of a food mill and into a bowl. Stir in spices. Serve warm, at room temperature, or chilled. Applesauce can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, November 2007

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Reviews (13)

  • 15 Oct, 2013

    Great recipe! Roasting the apples really brings out their natural sweetness and having a food mill makes easy work--no peeling, coring, or chopping required. I modified this recipe by leaving out the sugar and butter, and it was still delicious, with flavors reminiscent of apple pie filling.

  • 27 Nov, 2011

    Scrumptious and dessert-worthy. No peeling or cutting - just throw whole rinsed apples into the pan and roast. Major flavor for so little effort!

  • 3 Oct, 2011

    do you peel the apples?

  • 17 Nov, 2010

    This has to be both the easiest and tastiest applesauce recipe ever! My kids love it and my husband says that it tastes like grandma's!

  • 15 Oct, 2010

    This quickly became a family favorite. It is easy to make and absolutely delicious. It goes great with a little vanilla ice cream if you want to serve it as a dessert to guest or just a fun family treat!

  • 6 Sep, 2010

    My family went apple picking yesterday and I used 10 assorted apples (I'm not even sure what types of apples I used) and it came out fabulously. I packed it in little lock and lock containers so I can throw them into lunchboxes this week.

  • 11 Aug, 2010

    Applesauce cans very well. Process in a waterbath 15 mins for pint jars and 20 for quarts. As long as the lids seal (aka no flex to the lid), they are shelf stable for a couple of years.

  • 3 Oct, 2009

    This is such a great recipe but I would like to know if anyone has tried canning it so it can be stored on the self. I would like to make a large batch and keep it on hand for the holidays. Would a waterbath work here. I am new to canning but have done some jams and fruits.

  • 27 Jan, 2009

    The taste of this applesauce is brilliant. The first time I made this I did not own a food mill (which I have since purchased- a very worthwhile investment as gadgets go) and used the food processer/strain method. While the flavor was there, the consistancy was baby-food like and not terribly appealing. Simple mashing or the food mill are definitely the way to go. Just beautiful.

  • 4 Jan, 2009

    Wow! I used 10 assorted apples that were languishing in my fridge (honeycrisp, macs, granny smith, empire...) and reduced the sugar to 4 T. (loose, not packed) and butter to 1.5 T. and still got a very rich flavor. Also, since I don't have a food mill, I just peeled and quartered the apples before cooking, then just mashed them in the baking pan with a potato masher when they were done for a more rustic sauce. Perfect! This is a serious winner--I doubt I'll ever make applesauce any other way!

  • 8 Jan, 2008

    This is both easy and delicious. The technique makes a small amount of butter taste like a lot. I've given is applesauce as gifts and always get requests for the recipe.

  • 13 Dec, 2007

    This is wonderful, especially warmed. I served it to guests at a simple luncheon and they raved. My spouse, who can be hard to please, also loves it. I use Gala apples.

  • 2 Dec, 2007

    Delicious! Have made this now for the second time and love it. I used Gala apples the first time, and Jonagold the second time. I love the earthiness of the roasted apples along with the sweetness of the brown sugar caramel. Great with some Greek yogurt as a snack. Yum!