Apple-Pear Butter

Sure, you've had apple butter (we included that classic recipe here, too), but with this recipe you can create more complex flavors with apple-pear or caramel-apple butters.

Apple-Pear Butter
Photo: Carson Downing
Prep Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 45 mins
5 to 6 cups


  • 2 ½ pound tart cooking apples, cored and quartered (about 7 medium)

  • 2 pound ripe pears, cored and quartered (about 4 medium)

  • 3 cup apple cider or apple juice

  • 2 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice, strained

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon


  1. In an 8- to 10-qt. heavy pot or Dutch oven combine apples, pears, and cider. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Press apple mixture through a food mill or sieve. (You should have 7 1/2 to 8 cups.) Return pulp to pot; discard skins.

  2. Stir in sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cook, uncovered, over very low heat 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours or until thick enough that mixture mounds on a spoon, stirring often.

  3. Place pot of apple butter in a sink filled with ice water; stir to cool. Ladle into clean wide-mouth half-pint freezer containers, leaving a 1/2-inch headspace. Seal and label. Store in refrigerator up to 2 weeks or freeze up to 6 months. Apple butter may darken slightly on freezing. Makes 5 to 6 half-pints.

Classic Apple Butter

Prepare as directed, except omit pears and increase apples to 4 1/2 pounds.

Caramel Apple Butter

Prepare as directed, except omit pears, increase apples to 4 1/2 pounds, decrease granulated sugar to 1/2 cup and add 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar.

Water-Bath Canning

Prepare as directed through Step 2. Ladle hot apple butter into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars, leaving a 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims with a clean cloth; adjust lids and screw bands. Process filled jars in a boiling-water canner, starting timing when water returns to boiling. Process apple butter 5 minutes. Remove jars from canner; cool on wire racks.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

28 Calories
7g Carbs
Nutrition Facts
Calories 28
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Total Sugars 7g
Vitamin C 0.6mg 3%
Calcium 10.1mg 1%
Potassium 22mg 0%

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

Related Articles