Small Batch Apple Butter with Maple Syrup

small batch apple butter in small bowl next to apple and cinnamon sticks

This small batch apple butter sweetened with maple syrup is a healthier, low commitment take on the fall classic. I often wish that apple butter recipes had less added sugar and required fewer apples — this is just that. The recipe calls for just five apples — no peeling pounds of apples or running out of jar space to keep a massive yield of apple butter. This recipe yields a little under two cups — perfect to keep in the fridge for a couple weeks for stirring into yogurt or spreading on toast. Plus, the treat is sweetened with just a dash of maple syrup. The apples are sweet enough on their own, and a mix of spices helps bring out even more of their sweetness.

How to make this small batch apple butter

This small batch apple butter with maple syrup comes together with very little active work.

  • First, you’ll roughly peel and chop your apples. Keep the cores — we’ll cook those down, too.
  • Next, you’ll bring the apples and some water to a simmer.
  • Then the apples get a quick processing with an immersion blender before cooking down with cozy spices and maple syrup for about an hour.
  • Voila! Small batch apple butter in no time.

How to use this apple butter

bowl of yogurt with apples, apple butter, and sunflower seeds

I love apple butter because it straddles the line between sweet and savory. You can mix it into a bowl of fruit and yogurt for breakfast or spread it on a turkey sandwich with melted cheese for dinner. I sometimes even mix a little into mayo for a quick aioli that’s great on burgers and panini. The possibilities are endless! If you make this apple butter with maple syrup, please let me know in the comments below how it turned out — and what you used it on!

If you’re in the mood for other fall recipes, be sure to check out my Favorite Autumn Salad with Maple Viniagrette. It’s on repeat for me this month!

Many thanks to Lindsay and Taylor at Love and Olive Oil for inspiring me to make my own small batch recipe. I borrowed heavily from their recipe, adjusting it to have less sugar and more spices.


Small Batch Apple Butter with Maple Syrup

This small batch apple butter with maple syrup is the perfect fall treat, and a great way to use up a few apples you may have lying around during this time of year.

  • Author: A Tavola Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hr 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hr 35 minutes
  • Yield: about 2 cups, or 16 2 tbsp servings 1x
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


  • 5 medium apples (about 2.5 pounds apples) 
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves 
  • 1/8 tsp all spice 
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup


  1. Roughly peel and chop apples. Remove any remaining seeds from cores.
  2. Add apples (cores included) and water to a large pot and cover. Bring to a very gentle simmer over medium or medium-low flame and cook, stirring occasionally, until apples are beginning to fall apart, about 25 minutes.
  3. Kill the heat and remove and discard apple cores. Use an immersion blender to process the apples until they resemble apple sauce. (If you don’t have an immersion blender, you could transfer the apples to a blender or food processor and pulse a couple times.) 
  4. Add maple syrup and spices to apple mixture and return to a medium flame. Allow to cook uncovered and stir occasionally for about an hour or until the apples reach your desired consistency. (The apple butter should hold its shape on a spoon once ready.) 
  5. Allow to cool before transferring to an airtight container. 


  • I recommend using a larger pot than you think is necessary. The apples may splatter during step 4, and a high-walled pot helps contain any mess. 

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