Cider Spiced Applesauce (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

I can’t even begin to calculate how much money I spend on applesauce around here. For the past few years my kids have been obsessed with  Trader Joe’s Apple Crushers, they have 4 flavors, are gluten-free, portable and according to my daughter “The yummiest snack on earth!” Although I love Trader Joe’s and the convenience of all of their delectable gluten-free goodies I still would rather have a homemade version around for when we aren’t on the run. Yesterday was my first attempt at this cider spiced applesauce and it was so yummy that we ate the entire batch before it had time to cool. Eliza liked it so much that she has requested another big batch of applesauce that will last long enough for her to take it to school in lieu of her beloved apple crusher! How about that?!

 Cider Spiced Applesauce

Makes approximately 2.5 cups

5 large Rome apples; peeled, cored, and sliced

1 cup apple cider, I used Trader Joe’s

1/8 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground ginger

In a medium saucepan combine the cider, brown sugar and spices and stir to mix well. Set heat on low to melt the sugar and warm the cider while you prep the apples.

Peel, core and slice apples into uniform slices, about 1/4 inch thick. Add the apples into the warmed cider mixture and turn the heat up to medium. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally for 20-25 minutes until the apples begin to fall apart when pressed with the back of your spoon. When cooked through you can mash with a fork or potato masher for a chunkier paste or allow to cool slightly and blend in the food processor until smooth.

We are happy to have shared this post at the Gluten-Free Friday’s link up party hosted by Vegetarian Mama, Eat.Live.Make, and Gluten Freed R.D.!  Hop on over to find more great gf recipes.


  1. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies

    Seriously, homemade applesauce is the best thing ever. Just about everything tastes better homemade, but applesauce tastes waaaaaay better. I love this!

    • Meg

      Lauren, I have not tried making the recipe with the skins left on yet. I am sure that it would be delicious though!

  2. Susan

    So excited to get to try this for our family holiday meal tonight. It was a big hit – and so much nicer than a jar of the fake stuff 😉

  3. karen

    You mentioned apple cider- is it the same as the apple cider vinegar? I would like to try this recipe to give variations for my daughter’s snacks as she really love to eat apples. Thank you.

    • Meg

      Hi Karen, You can find apple cider in the juice aisle of your grocery store. If you cannot find it regular apple juice will work or you can swap it up by using orange juice or cranberry juice. I do not suggest using apple cider vinegar. I hope your daughter loves it as much as my kids do:)

  4. lorraine

    The best applesauce is JUST apples!! Peel and core, cut into large chunks, put in slow cooker/crockpot, stick the lid on and go to bed. The next morning, stir and …. you’ve got the BEST applesauce without any other added ingredients. You don’t even need sugar!!!

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Meg van der Kruik is the writer, mother, photographer, designer, cook and creative spirit behind This Mess is Ours. After her infant son was diagnosed with a gluten allergy, she dedicated herself to learning to make meals the whole family would love. It’s a bit of a mess – cooking for a vegetarian and three meat-eaters with a range of gluten + dairy sensitivities, but she manages to bring them together every night around their little family table.