How to Make Your Own Applesauce
Live Well Omaha Kids recently sponsored a Healthy Families nutrition class at Whole Foods Market where five different healthy recipes were offered. People of every age enjoyed the homemade applesauce the most, even more than pizza rolls! Made only with cinnamon extract, apples, and water, this applesauce has a creamy texture and an appetizing aroma. Customers were surprised to learn that the applesauce is made with the peel of the apple being left intact. A mother decided to offer this applesauce to her exclusively breastfed 6 month-old daughters as her first food, and the baby loved it! Apples are naturally sweet, so added sugar is not needed for this treat. Additionally, various fruits such as bananas, blueberries or pears can be added to create a variety of flavored applesauce.
Apple season in the northern hemisphere ranges from late summer to early winter, but apples grown in the southern hemisphere are imported year round. There are over 7,000 different varieties of apples, 2,500 of which are grown in the United States. Apples have different shapes, colors, sweetness and skin thickness depending on the type, and the sweetness or tartness of an apple depends on how much natural sugar it contains. A medium-size apple provides about 95 calories, 19 grams of natural sugar and 4 grams of fiber. The benefits of eating an apple whole by far surpass the nutrients found in apple juice, which contains no fiber and often has added sugar, which means a 4 ounce serving of juice can contain over 120 calories! Whole apples provide polyphenols, vitamin C and about 4 grams of fiber. The majority of the nutrients are found in the skin and a rich, bright or dark apple is more nutrient dense than ones that are dull or pale in color. In addition, the nutrients found in the peel interact with the nutrients in the pulp of the apple, providing more health benefits. Many people do not realize that apples can be used in recipes with the peel intact without a change to the taste or texture of the final product.
Try this recipe at home to make your very own applesauce:
½ cup Makes 8 servings
Calories 47 Fat 0g Protein 0g Carbohydrate 12g Sugar 9g Fiber 2g
½ Cup Water
2 teaspoons Cinnamon
Wash and core apples. Cut apples into small pieces with the peel. Cook apples, cinnamon
and water in a saucepan over low heat for 20 minutes. Once apples are soft, transfer entire
the mixture to a blender or food processor and puree to desired texture.
These blogs are written by members of the CHI Health Nutrition Services team.