Homemade apple pie filling makes fall pie baking a snap! Impress your friends and family with a freshly baked pie without all the fuss.

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

This year I have really caught the canning bug. I can’t stop, I won’t stop. I intend to enjoy the freshness of summer long into the dreariness of winter.

When my fellow canning compatriot (and a huge reason for my new obsession) Kelly of Mountain Mama Cooks and I planned another day of preserving, we’d already covered jam, pickles, peaches, and tomatoes. We wanted to try something new and fun.

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

Kelley suggested an apple pie filling and I eagerly agreed. Peeling and slicing the apples was a little tedious (especially since we made a large batch), but otherwise the entire process of making the pie filling was very simple.

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

And this last weekend when I hosted a dinner party, this apple pie filling was my saving grace. I was able to make some pie crust ahead of time, so all I had to do the day of was roll it out, open a jar of filling and pour it in. It baked up beautifully and no one was the wiser!

Not interested in baking a pie? Try this apple pie filling on top of ice cream, pancakes, oatmeal, etc.

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

Using Clear Jel in canned pie filling

From the USDA (via PickYourOwn.org): “It can be used for canned fruit pie fillings because it does not break down in the acid food mixtures and does not thicken enough during heat processing to interfere with the intended effect of the heat on killing bacteria during canning. It is preferred for thickening canned pie fillings as well as other foods over other corn starches because it has less or no aftertaste, the thickened juices are smooth and clear, and foods thickened with ClearJel® may be frozen…There is no substitution for ClearJel® that can be made in these recipes. This means do not use other cornstarch  flour, tapioca, or other thickener in our recipes.”

Find Clear Jel online through Amazon.

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning


Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

Yield: 2 quarts

Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

Homemade apple pie filling makes fall pie baking a snap!

Ingredients

  • 7 cups (800 grams) apples, peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 3/4 cup (350 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (113 grams) Clear Jel starch
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
  • 1 cup (237 ml) cold water
  • 1 1/2 cup (355 ml) apple juice
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) bottled lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Blanch apple slices by dipping them in a large pot of boiling water for 1 minutes. Drain and keep fruit warm in a covered bowl or pot.
  2. Combine sugar, clear jel, cinnamon, and nutmeg (if using) in a large pot with the cold water and apple juice. Stir and cook over medium high heat until mixture thickens and begins to boil. Add the bottled lemon juice and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add the blanched apples to the mixture and immediately ladle into hot jars, leaving 1 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles with a long knife or thin spatula. Wipe rims and cover with lids and ring bands.
  4. Process in a water bath for 25 minutes (see notes for high altitude processing time). Let cool and ensure lids have sealed. Store any unsealed jars in the fridge and use within a few weeks.
  5. To bake a pie, simply pour it into a prepared pie shell. Bake at 425 degrees F until filling is bubbling.

Notes: Store sliced apples in a solution of water and lemon juice (2 tablespoons lemon juice per large bowl of water) to prevent browning until ready to proceed with recipe.

Increase processing time for high altitude as needed: 1,001-3,000 ft 30 minutes, 3,001-6,000 ft 35 minutes, 6,001+ ft 40 minutes.

New to canning? See my post on Home Canning Tips and Resources.

Recipe from USDA Home Canning Guide.

http://www.completelydelicious.com/2013/09/homemade-apple-pie-filling-for-canning.html

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26 Responses to Homemade Apple Pie Filling for Canning

  1. Carrian says:

    Nothing like a nice warm pie to make the cold weather seem better! Yum!

  2. It looks delicious. I haven’t broke into my jars yet but this pie is tempting me!!

  3. Just beautiful, Annalise! Cannot wait to try your recipe. This is the way to preserve Fall…to enjoy thru the winter. Thanks ever so much for sharing, girl. Pinning!

  4. Erin R. says:

    Nice! I’ve always liked chunky apples in pies better than the little, thin slices. This looks lovely. Apples are so readily available this time of year, too. Anyone who has an apple tree in their yard is always more than happy to give the apples away as we have found out in the last few years. We notice rotting apples all over the sidewalk when we’re walking our dog, and the next time my husband sees the owner out in their driveway he’ll just go right up and ask. Try it some time if you can work up the nerve (I haven’t yet). You’ll be up to your eyeballs in free apples instantly. I’ll have to buy a package of ClearJel and try canning some pie filling soon. Thanks!

    • Annalise says:

      What a fabulous idea, there are fruit trees all over my city and most of them just seem to fall to the ground unused. :( Time to get up the nerve to turn them into something yummy!

    • Kimberly says:

      I was about to say the same thing about just asking for apples! This time of year they’re usually a pretty good price, but even $.69/lb. is not as good as free! I live in Washington State and there are always thousands of trees that go unharvested all over the place. Just drive around for a little bit, see one from the road and ask the owners if you can pick. I’ve never had anyone say no and I also trade my own fruit for other fruit too since I have plums and walnuts.

  5. Janet Wilson says:

    Is clear jel the same as sure jel? I`ve always used corn starch.

    • Chef Roger says:

      No, clear jel is not the same. When I couldn’t find clear jel except online I remembered a nearby Mennonite store and sure enough, they had plenty on hand.

  6. Patty says:

    It would be nice if you’ve gotten free fruit to bring the donor a jar of the processed food whether applesauce or this apple pie filling.

  7. You have definitely inspired me to get crackin’ and can some apple pie filling! :) It looks wonderful!

  8. Deborah says:

    I cannot wait until we move so that I can try this!!

  9. Kathy says:

    How many quarts does this recipe make?

    • Annalise says:

      2 quarts, it’s listed in the recipe!

      • Theresa says:

        Why do you blanch the apples? I’ve always just used raw apples and the filling comes out great! I also juice the core and peels of the apples to use instead of water, or use apple juice. Adds a lot of flavor. I love having the apple pie filling on hand!!!

  10. Rebecca says:

    Am I supposed to use both quarts for a single pie? Since I am starting with only 7 cups of apples and my normal apple pie calls for 6 cups of apples. Also, that seems like a lot of liquid – but then again – I have never done any canning like this before. Thanks!

    • Annalise says:

      It will be enough to fit a small 8-inch pie. If you plan to make a larger pie, plan on using 2 quarts. And it didn’t end up being too much liquid! The pie I baked turned out great!

  11. Ann-Marie says:

    can i use any type of apple? and is clear jel easy to find?

    • Annalise says:

      It’s best to use a good baking apple, like granny smith, gala, honey crisp or pink lady. And clear jel may be difficult to find, you may have the best luck shopping online.

  12. Kristen says:

    I’m thinking of giving these as little Christmas gifts for family! How long is the filling good for once it’s canned & how should I store it?

    • Annalise says:

      I recommend consuming all home-canned foods within one year, though some may last even longer. They’re best stored in a cool dark place, like a pantry or cupboard.

  13. Lanah says:

    If you are fortunate enough to live anywhere near a Cash and Carry, I bought a 25lb bag of ClearJel at ours for $51. That’s $2.00 per pound vs $10 or so per pound on Amazon!!! Take a road trip with some friends and split it up. :-)

    • Missy says:

      If you find apples are too expensive, try looking to friend in the northern states, a fresh bushel in November is $8 for 48lbs. I am glad to find a good pie filling recipe i can can!!!! soooo many apples@.@

  14. Kristina says:

    I have an apple/peeler/corer/slicer that makes this process a lot quicker! Also, I just canned 32 quarts of applesauce yesterday. I have used my Back to Basics applesauce machine for many, many years and that makes canning applesauce a cinch! I also have been canning, canning, canning. I garden did fantastic this year. I canned salsa, tomatoes, carrots, green beans and froze corn. I have also roasted sunflower seeds. Ready to can pumpkin and Hubbard squash. Love, love, love my garden!

  15. Jan Liebsch says:

    Wondering how to use the pie filling when making a pie. Do you still need to add the other ingredients to the apples—or just dump in a pie crust and bake?

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