Holiday Crafts

Published on November 4th, 2009 | by Becky Striepe

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Handmade Holidays: Farm Fresh Apple Butter

The weather is getting colder, and we have a handmade holiday on our minds! Handmade gifts have heart, are better for the environment, and, if you opt to buy, it supports independent artists!

If you want to have a totally handmade holiday, now is the time to get started. Over the next couple of months, we’ll be posting about recycled gifts and giftwrap you can make yourself and great handmade finds for sale!

When my pal Jes from Cupcake Punk posted about making her own apple butter, I just new this was the perfect holiday food gift! We’re all about mason jars full of tasty treats around the holidays, and you know we’re into canning around here, so this seemed just perfect! Not only is apple butter a crowd pleaser, but since apples are in season right now, you can probably find local ones pretty easily!

Jes is what you might call an apple connoisseur:

One of the foods I’ve been loving, and eating tons of, since moving here is the apples. Some are hit-or-miss, i.e. the Arkansas Black Apple, and some are just darn delicious like the Granny Smiths and the Golden Crisps. Some make great pies, some beg to be munched whole, some make great hiking companions, and some like to hang out in bowls of oatmeal. It all depends.

When she ran across a batch of beautiful Granny Smiths, she knew it was apple butter time! If you want to make your own batch of rich, spiced apple butter, Jes has directions for cooking and canning it over on her site.

To make your gifts really special, you might print out custom labels to put on the jars or tie a little tag around the rim with some pretty twine. I’m also a fan of the old trick where you secure a pretty scrap of fabric between the mason jar’s lid and ring.

If apples aren’t local to your area, don’t fret! Paula Deen has you covered with this generic fruit butter recipe. You can use whatever fruit is local and seasonal for you! The canning instructions from Jes’ recipe would still work just fine.

Have you guys been scheming any food-based holiday gifts? Tell us all about it in the comments!



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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .



  • http://www.kellyrand.com Kelly Rand

    Mmmm apple butter. I also just got a jar of pumpkin butter and it is equally as delicious. Great idea!

  • http://mikesowden.org/feveredmutterings Mikeachim

    Wow. ‘Kay, you got me.

    So, as a super-concentrated apple sauce, does it still work with other traditional savory apple-sauced dishes (a dollop on the side of a Christmas roast dinner, for example, right next to the cranberry sauce) – or is it just too sweet as a butter?

  • TJ

    I’ve always thought of apple butter as a (substitute for? replacement for? alternative to?) jellies and jams. So if you’d put a dollop of jelly on the side of your Christmas roast, go for it. Or maybe it would replace the cranberry sauce!

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