homemade honeycrisp applesauce in glass bowl with purple flower next to it

Honeycrisp Homemade Applesauce: Easy Slow Cooker Recipe

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Here’s an easy recipe for making homemade applesauce with Honeycrisp apples and no added sugar. It’s very easy to make in the slow cooker or Instant Pot. I love fall when Honeycrisp apples are in season. These juicy, sweet apples are versatile and delicious to enjoy fresh or cook.

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I will show you how to make homemade applesauce with Honeycrisp (or other) apples so you can enjoy the goodness of your favorite apples at any time of year. Here is some more information about Honeycrisp apples, AKA “honeycrunch” apples.

This is natural applesauce without any added sweeteners. So many processed foods like applesauce have added sugar in them, but it is really not needed. I could see if a food is bitter or sour, but not apples. This homemade applesauce definitely a healthier version than the typical jarred applesauce.

Picking Your Own Apples

Honeycrisp apples in basket

Honeycrisps are my favorite apple, favorite, fruit, favorite snack, and possible favorite food!!! Here in Pennsylvania, this variety is fresh from local farms for just a few months. We love to visit Solebury Orchards where we can pick apples (and blackberries, raspberries, cherry tomatoes, plus gorgeous flowers!).

Last time we visited they even had some frozen apple cider as a natural slushy – perfect for a hot August day! But the Honeycrisps ripen later in the season, usually in late September or October depending on the weather.

Invariably I’m at the farm in August for blackberries and cherry tomatoes and am sad that it’s not quite prime apple season yet. I have had Honeycrisps from other areas and other times of the year, and they simply don’t compare to eating them fresh in season.

How to Use Applesauce in Cooking

homemade honeycrisp applesauce in glass bowl with purple flower next to it
Honeycrisp applesauce

You may know that you can use applesauce to replace butter or oil in recipes. But it also can be a substitute for eggs. This can help you “veganize” recipes.

Applesauce is tasty in muffins, quick breads, cake, cookies, waffles, and pancakes. I have used it in these recipes for orange cranberry muffins and in amazing spiced carrot raisin muffins. The mild flavor makes it very versatile for baking as a way to replace eggs or some fat in a recipe. It is also great to eat as is! This recipe is so easy to make that you may never buy premade applesauce again.

carrot raisin muffins in basket
Amazing Spiced Carrot Raisin Muffins

How to Prepare the Apples for Homemade Applesauce

First, peel, core, and chop the apples. You can use a vegetable peeler or a corer/slicer/peeler. If you don’t have Honeycrisp apples, try Granny Smith, Galas, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, or Fuji apples.

I don’t love my peeler attachment because it takes off too much fruit under the peel. I just didn’t use it and ran a knife around the sliced apple to take off the peel. This is the most time-consuming step. Don’t let it deter you: listen to some good music or a podcast and get peeling!

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Cooking: Slow or Fast?

Next, I placed the sliced apples with the water, lemon, and cinnamon into the slow cooker. It may take 3 – 5 hours until the applesauce is soft and cooked well. Keep an eye on your slow cooker in case you need more water or to give the apples a stir. One of mine cooks very fast, whereas I have a larger one that always takes longer.

Homemade honeycrisp applesauce pin

I just got an Instant Pot and tried this recipe in it. Wow: super fast – which as you know, is the wonderful thing about Instant Pots! I cooked it on high pressure for 8 minutes and turned off the keep it warm button. I allowed for a natural pressure release (really just because I was busy). Then I mushed the applesauce with a potato masher. This was a 6-quart Instant Pot. I highly recommend this method

After the applesauce is done, let it cool somewhat before eating or placing it into containers for storage. You can store it in the refrigerator for a few days, or in the freezer for a few months.

Related Recipes You May Enjoy

homemade honeycrisp applesauce in glass bowl with purple flower next to it

Honeycrisp Homemade Applesauce: Easy Slow Cooker Recipe

Melissa Altman-Traub
Super easy homemade applesauce with juicy Honeycrisp apples and cinnamon made in the slow cooker, without added sugar.
5 from 13 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 20 mins
Course Breakfast, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 5
Calories 135 kcal


  • Slow cooker
  • paring knife
  • Vegetable peeler


  • 6 Honeycrisp apples peeled and chopped
  • cup water
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon


  • Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker and mix together. Cover with the lid.
  • Cook on high for 3-5 hours or until soft.


Watch in case of burning: slow cookers may run at different temperatures.
You could also add powdered ginger to the applesauce.
This recipe makes 2.5 cups of applesauce, or 5 – half-cup servings.
Alternate Cooking Method: Instant Pot. Cook for 8 minutes at high pressure. Turn off the Keep it Warm button. Allow for natural pressure release. Mash apples with a potato masher. Tested with full recipe and half recipe: not recommended to make less than half of the recipe.
The nutrition estimate is from VeryWell Fit
Keyword Apples, Easy, No Added Sugar, Slow Cooker
peeled sliced honeycrisp apples with cinnamon inside slow cooker
Sliced apples with cinnamon in the slow cooker

And that’s it! You can relax while enjoying the delicious aroma filling your home. There is no need for added sugar, which is a big plus as compared to store-bought varieties.

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Have you tried this recipe? If so, please let me know how you liked it in the comments below.

Revised 11/12/20

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