Applesauce is made by cooking apples with apple cider, fresh apple juice, or water. More acidic apples will make a finer mesh such as sour Bramley apple creates a very fine mesh. For making applesauce, the apples may or may not be peeled. It is inexpensively and widely used in North America and some parts of Europe. Some people cook the applesauce rather than boil it. In this case, apples are peeled and cored before cooking.
As the saying goes, an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but what about the applesauce. Applesauce in its simplest form is packed with incredible nutrients like a whole fresh apple. A variety of applesauce is available for daily use that is made from only apples, ascorbic acid, and water, whereas, you might find ones added with other fruits and sugars.
What Is Applesauce?
You can purchase unsweetened or sweetened varieties of applesauce at the local grocery store. Also, you can make it at home with a few ingredients.
To make fresh applesauce, you need different types of apples and water. sugar can be an optional ingredient. In some recipes, apple cider is used instead of water. Also, some people add spices like nutmeg or cinnamon along with squeezing lemon juice. For fruitier applesauce, you can use other fresh fruits too.
Homemade Applesauce Recipe
- Apples – 4 Pounds (Use About 8 To 10 Apples Depending on The Size)
- Lemon Peel – 2 Strips
- Lemon Juice – 3 Tbsp (Optional)
- Apple Cider Vinegar – 3 Tbsp (Optional)
- Cinnamon – 1/2 Tsp, Ground
- White Sugar or Brown Sugar – 1/2 Cup
- Water – 1 Cup
- Salt – 1/2 Tsp
- Place the cored, peeled, and quartered apples in a large saucepan.
- Add the lemon zest strips, cinnamon, lemon juice or vinegar, water, sugar, and salt.
- Bowl the mixture on a high heat and then lower the temperature. Cover the saucepan and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until all the apples are cooked through and completely tender.
- Now remove the saucepan from the heat and remove the lemon peels.
- Use a potato masher to mash the cooked potatoes in the saucepan and make thick applesauce.
- You can run the cooked apples through a food mill to make the sauce smoother.
It pairs well with:
- Savory dishes such as pork chops.
- Cottage cheese as a snack.
- Yogurt or vanilla ice cream.
- If the applesauce is still too thick, add more water.
- You can add more sugar according to the taste. If it is too sweet, add lemon juice to balance out the sweetness.
- If you freeze it at home, it can last for at least a year. make sure that you have left plenty of headroom in the jar for expansion.
The nutrition facts of the above-mentioned recipe are calculated using an ingredient database. It is the amount per serving.
|% Daily Value
Apple Vs. Applesauce
The apple is an excellent source of dietary fiber. As compared to applesauce, the apple contains 118% more dietary fiber. The nutrition fact per 100 grams is as follows:
Total Dietary Fiber
Fiber helps you live longer. According to Harvard University Health Services, a 1/2 cup serving of applesauce contains 2 grams of dietary fiber, whereas a small whole apple contains 2.8 grams of dietary fiber. For an adult man, this amount is 5% of the recommended daily amount of 38 grams of fiber. Women, on the other hand, require 25 grams of dietary fiber to make 8% of the applesauce.
The amount of dietary fiber in applesauce in each serving is as much as:
- 1/2 cup cooked carrots
- 7 dried apricot halves
- 3 cups of popcorn
- 1 medium-sized peach
A high intake of dietary fiber through applesauce can help to reduce the health hazards such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, obesity.
The total dietary fiber in a half cup of applesauce contains 0.7 grams of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber is made up of compounds that are found inside the cells of the plants such as pectin, mucilage, and gums. When you eat applesauce, the soluble fiber absorbs the water in the digestive tract and forms a viscous, thick mass. It slows down the rate at which the body can absorb the nutrients.
Soluble fiber can prevent high cholesterol and diabetes. There is no established requirement of daily intake of soluble fiber by the Food and Nutrition Board. But the recommendation by nutritionists and dieticians is 20 to 30% of the total daily fiber should be soluble.
Insoluble fiber does not swell the water in the digestive tract like soluble fiber. Instead, it adds bulk to the stool that can help to regulate bowel movements. Each 1/2 cup of applesauce contains 1.3 grams of insoluble fiber. This amount of insoluble fiber can also be gained from 1/3 cup of rolled oats or two medium prunes.
Eating plenty of insoluble fiber sources can help to reduce the risk of digestive disorders such as duodenal ulcers, hemorrhoids, colon cancer, diverticular disease, etc.
Health Benefits of Applesauce
Applesauce contains antioxidants called phytochemicals. These antioxidants help to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Making applesauce from whole fresh apples will get you the most antioxidants while including the skin of apples.
The store-bought applesauce contains vitamin C. Additionally, the ascorbic acid in the sauce acts as a preservative but it contains a lot of health benefits. It helps to boost your immune system, absorb iron efficiently, and speed up the body’s healing process. Also, it helps to form the blood vessels, muscles, and cartilage the tough but flexible tissue at the ends of the joints of the bones.
Vitamin C is used for the production of collagen. It is the most common protein in the body that gives elasticity and strength to the skin. Vitamin C in applesauce can fight the free radicals. Free radicals are harmful substances that grow in the body. They are produced when the body converts the food into energy. Other free radicals enter your body through breath that exists in the air.
Accumulation of free radicals can increase the risk of cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Antioxidants present in apples and applesauce can help to reduce such health risks.
The key to a healthy heart is fiber. Applesauce contains about the same amount of fiber as whole apples. The fiber content in the applesauce is soluble which helps to lower the blood cholesterol levels. Like fresh apples, applesauce contains polyphenols that can lower blood pressure. As the blood pressure lowers, it reduces the risk of stroke, heart attack, or any other heart disease.
Applesauce contains soluble fiber in the form of pectin. It might help to treat digestive issues such as constipation and diarrhea. Also, it can help to neutralize the effects of irritable bowel syndrome. The pectin in applesauce acts as a prebiotic that feeds good bacteria in the gut to promote a healthy digestive system.
Apples contain phytochemicals that may help to reduce the risk of cancer. Most of the compounds like phytochemicals are in the skin of the apple, and some are in the flesh. As applesauce retains some antioxidants, it can help to prevent cancer.
Less Risk Of Asthma
The antioxidants present in the apples help to fight the oxidative damage in the lungs that can reduce the risk of asthma. Both applesauce and apples contain quercetin that reduces inflammation and boosts the immune system.
Applesauce – A Good Source Of Fiber
Applesauce made from just water and whole apples is a great source of fiber nutrition. You can use store-bought applesauce for health benefits or make it at home with basic ingredients. Nutrients in applesauce are of great health benefits such as they reduce heart disease, stroke, improve the immune and digestive system, make the bones strong, etc.
When trying to increase the fiber intake by including fiber-rich foods like applesauce in the diet, do it gradually. If you consume fiber too quickly, it can cause flatulence, bloating, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps. To lessen the side effects, incorporate the high-fiber applesauce over a period of two or three weeks in the diet. Try to drink six to eight glasses of water a day because soluble fiber will dry the stomach. If you have side effects or they get worse, consult your doctor.