I was recently a guest blogger for a fantastic website called Canning Crafts. This project was first posted on their site. Please check Canning Crafts out for all of their lovely canning recipes, custom-made canning labels, and more.

Making Apple Pie in a Jar is a fun canning project to do when the season begins to change and fresh, sweet apples are at their very best. These little jars are perfect hostess gifts, teacher appreciation, stocking stuffers or squirreling away for the colder months. Apple Pie in a Jar tastes like the very best apple filling and can also be topped on morning oats, waffles, pancakes, or Dutch babies. Drop into thumbprint cookies or stuff into hand pies. There are many sweet things you can do with this treat.

Finish your jars with beautiful labels from Canning Crafts. They really add the festive final touch to jars.

For the recipe, I use mainly Granny Smith apples along with a few other apples for a more complex flavor profile. Good apples to use include: Jonagold, Pink Lady, or Honey Crisp.

Preservation method: Waterbath canning

Difficulty level: Easy to medium

Yield: About six 8-oz jars

You will need clean jars and closures, a boiling-water canner, rack, jar lifter, canning funnel, and wooden skewer

Apple Pie in a Jar

3/4 cup roughly chopped dried cranberries

5 or 6 whole apples (six cups) Granny Smith along with optional one or two different apples peeled and cored see apple variations above

The juice and zest of one lemon

1 cup unsweetened apple juice

1 package regular powdered fruit pectin

9 cups sugar (measured out and ready in a bowl next to stove)

2 tsp apple pie spice (I like Penzey’s)

1 tsp butter (to reduce foam)

Place rack in the bottom of a boiling water canner, then place empty jars on the rack. Add water to the jars and the canner until the jars are about two-thirds full. Cover the canner and bring the water to a simmer over medium heat. Place lids in a small saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Do not boil. Keep lids hot until ready to use.

Place apples in batches in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Chop apples and place in large bowl until all apples are chopped. It is fine if they are roughly chopped as they will soften into the consistency of chunky applesauce when cooked.

In a Dutch oven, combine apples, lemon zest and juice. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring occasionally, until apples begin to soften (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat and whisk in powdered pectin until dissolved. Stir in cranberries. Return to heat and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add sugar all at once along with butter and return to a full, rolling boil, stirring constantly. Boil hard, stirring constantly for one minute. Remove from heat and stir in apple pie spice. Skim foam.

Ladle into hot jars, leaving 1/4″ headspace.

Remove air bubbles with wooden skewer and readjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with damp cloth and ensure there is no fruit or gel on the rims of the jars (or the jars may not seal). Apply lids and bands and adjust until fingertip tight. Place jars in boiling water canner.

When all jars are in the canner, adjust the water level in the canner so that it covers the jars by at least one inch. Cover the canner with a lid and bring water to a full rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling hard and continuously, begin counting the processing time of 10 minutes.

Once full time is complete, turn off heat and let jars sit in canner an additional five minutes (this standing time allows the pressure inside the jars to stabilize and reduces the likelihood of liquid loss that could otherwise occur when the jars are removed.)

Remove jars and place on a kitchen towel-lined space. The towel will help reduce the chance of jar breakage. Do not dry the lids or jars at this point. You do not want to disturb the lids while the seals are being formed. Allow jars to cool for 24 hours before removing bands and wiping down jars. Date jars and store in a cool dry place for up to one year.

Perfect for hostess gifts, stocking stuffers, or teachers
Perfect for hostess gifts, stocking stuffers, or teachers

Recipe modified from “The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving”