My granddaughter, Ella, loves pumpkin butter. Since we’ll visit them soon, I tried to make something as close to pumpkin butter as I could to bring to her. Nanas cannot visit empty-handed. Slow-Cooker Sweet Potato Apple Butter relies on the same flavors as you find in pumpkin butter or pumpkin pie, for that matter.
Fruit butters are great to spread on toast, biscuits, waffles, and pancakes. You can use them as an ice cream topping,too. Or, you can grab a spoon and eat it straight from the jar.
The topic of canning always comes up when I show photos of things I store in canning jars. I consider the National Center for Home Food Preservation as the ultimate authority of safe food practices for home food preservation. I follow their guidelines to the letter. If they say don’t do it, I don’t. Their general recommendation for puree is that it shouldn’t be canned. You can freeze it, but not can it.
In their testing lab, they weren’t able to consistently produce an adequate heat level in puree to render it safe for canning. To proceed against this recommendation is to risk creation of an environment that favors the growth of bacteria that causes botulism. That’s a risk I’m not willing to take.
I’m sure many of you have stories about Granny and Aunt Maude’s pureed pie filling they canned for years and it was always safe. I have those kinds of stories, too. But the science is telling us we got off lucky and we shouldn’t do it.
Uh-uh. I ain’t doing it. <hat tip to Heather Land>
Anyway, my Sweet Potato Apple Butter is something I hope you try. They make great gifts, too. Just be safe and don’t give the gift of botulism.
Slow-Cooker Sweet Potato Apple Butter
yields: approx 3 pints
There’s nothing easier than making fruit butters in a slow-cooker. Once the ingredients are assembled, they cook on auto-pilot while you get a good night’s sleep. Use a variety of apples if possible. Choose both tart and sweet varieties.
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
6 apples , peeled, cored and quartered
juice of one lemon
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Add sweet potatoes and apples to a slow-cooker.
Add next five ingredients.
Cover and cook on low for 10 to 12 hours.
Remove cover and puree with an immersion blender. You may use a blender or food processor but take care transferring the hot mixture.
Taste for sweetening and season and adjust accordingly.
If mixture is too soupy for your liking, turn the slow-cooker to high, leave uncovered and cook, stirring occasionally, until it reaches the desired consistency.
Add one tablespoon of vanilla extract and stir.
Spoon into jars or storage containers.
Refrigerate or freeze.
Keeps in refrigerator for about 3 weeks.
If you love sweet potatoes, you might enjoy my cookbook: Sweet Potato Love.
Slow-Cooker Sweet Potato Apple Butter
- 2 large sweet potatoes peeled and cubed
- 6 apples peeled, cored and quartered
- juice of one lemon
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Add sweet potatoes and apples to a slow-cooker.
- Add next five ingredients.
- Cover and cook on low for 10 to 12 hours.
- Remove cover and puree with an immersion blender. You may use a blender or food processor but take care transferring the hot mixture.
- Taste for sweetening and season and adjust accordingly.
- If mixture is too soupy for your liking, turn the slow-cooker to high, leave uncovered and cook, stirring occasionally, until it reaches the desired consistency.
- Add one tablespoon of vanilla extract and stir.
- Spoon into jars or storage containers.
- Refrigerate or freeze.
- Keeps in refrigerator for about 3 weeks.