It’s almost a rite of passage as a city parent to make the trek to a suburban farm in September with the kids in tow and snap a quintessential fall photo frolicking in the apple orchard.  (Check out our amazing time at Lookout Farm!) But when you return home with a staggering haul of Macoun, Honeycrisp, Pink Lady and others, homemade applesauce is the easiest way to feed the whole family – and I mean everyone.

Applesauce is one of those great early baby foods that adults enjoy, too.  Making it at home is super simple, there is no added sugar and maybe the best part – kids can help cook.

Making the applesauce

This illustrated recipe for making Applesauce shows you just how easy it is:  Peel and chop a bunch of apples plus one pear and cook them in about a half inch of water until mushy.  Then let the kids use a potato masher to smash it up.  Serving it warm is the best – and if you ladle it over vanilla ice cream with a sprinkle of cinnamon it doubles as a pretty incredible dessert.  Plus, use the leftover applesauce (if there is any!) in the kids’ lunches for school.  

Like mother, like daughter

My own mom used to make me a version of this applesauce using a food mill.  Now I make it for my kids.  In fact, feeding my daughter, who is now four, inspired me to write an entire cookbook with illustrated recipes like this – everyday eating for the whole family.  All the ingredients and steps are integrated right into the art so kids can “read” the recipes, too.  The drawings are whimsical and make food fun – kids can use it as a picture book even before they are ready to help in the kitchen.  

Mommy and me bonding 

These days, my daughter is regularly in the kitchen with me and my young son gobbles up anything we make – burrito scrambles, egg avocado toast, granola with Macadamia nuts and coconut, to name a few.   All of these have become family staples and can be found in my cookbook, Fresh Made Simple.  Happy apple picking and happy cooking!

Credit for Illustration: Excerpted from Fresh Made Simple (c) Lauren K. Stein. Illustrations by (c) Katie Eberts. Used with permission of Storey Publishing

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