Last week I wrote about how my 5-year-old and I dedicated one week of her summer as ‘Kids Cooking Camp’. For four days, most of our activities were centered around cooking. The very first day we dove right in and made slow cooker applesauce. Applesauce is one of our kids’ favorite snacks, and using the slow cooker made it super easy, which made it the perfect way to kick off our special week.
Not only is slow cooker applesauce simple to make, it was also the perfect recipe to assess what T’s skill and maturity level was in the kitchen. We have one of those all-in-one apple peeler corer slicer tools, which the kids love to use. That tool slices the apples so thin that you probably don’t need to worry about cutting them further, but we still cut made another one or two cuts with a paring knife. In the end, T was able to do all the peeling, cutting, measuring, adding and stirring by herself. (Though let’s be honest. I helped a bit just to keep things moving along.)
We made the recipe early in the day so that it could steep and cook all day long, opening the slow cooker just once to give the apples an intermediate mashing. Then at dinnertime we were able to uncover the crockpot, mash everything up a little more, and share some of the applesauce with the whole family.
It was the perfect recipe to get started with cooking camp. Spinning the apples to peel, core and slice them was fun for her. We turned that portion into a game to see if we could peel a whole apple without the strand breaking (we couldn’t). She also loved that I let her enjoy snacking on the peel (why not?). The end result was delicious, and my daughter who always insisted she didn’t like applesauce with cinnamon, gave it a try and loved it!
Slow cooker applesauce gets a thumbs up from the whole family and is a fantastic way to safely and easily introduce cooking to young children. With the right amount of supervision, I believe even children as young as about 3 1/2 years old could probably make this recipe with you.
Slow Cooker Applesauce
(adapted from Kiwi Crate)
- 5 Honeycrisp Apples
- 5 Golden Delicious Apples
- 1 Cup Water
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- Cinnamon to taste
- Wash all apples before using.
- Peel, core, and slice apples into chunks about 1/2 inch wide
- Add the water and sugar, and stir to combine
- Sprinkle with cinnamon.
- Cook in a slow-cooker on high heat for 3 hours. Using a potato masher, crush up the apples as much as possible. For a smoother consistency, use an immersion blender to blend up the apples.
- Continue cooking on low for 2 hours or until all the apples are soft. Mash or blend up the apples until desired consistency.
- Enjoy served warm or let cool and refrigerate for cold applesauce.
Do you like cinnamon in your applesauce?
What is your favorite recipe for the kids to make?
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