How to Make Unsweetened Strawberry Applesauce

This unsweetened strawberry applesauce is the perfect snack for kid and adult alike. It’s simple to make and keeps well. And it needs no added sugar because the strawberries in the recipe provide natural sweetness and that gorgeous color.

Tips and tricks for making strawberry applesauce

The best apples for applesauce

The best apples for baking are usually the ones you would want to eat. Although, for this unsweetened applesauce, I would avoid using a tart apple like a Granny Smith or a Pink Lady. I first made this recipe using HunnyZ apples which are a cross between a Honeycrisp and Crimson Crisp apple.

Disclosure: I received two boxes of HunnyZ (pronounced “hunnies”) apples as a gift from the folks at Gee Whiz. About a month ago, I wrote a post about late season apples and discovered how much I loved this new apple,

a glass bowl of unsweetened strawberry applesauce surrounded by apples and strawberries.

What are the first things you do when given boxes of apples? First, you create a list of delicious things to make. And then you make applesauce.

Prepping the apples

The easiest way to prepare apples for applesauce starts with coring the apple with a corer (Panels #1 and 2, below.

four panels showing how to core, peel, and chop apples for this applesauce recipe.

Peel the apple if you like (Panel #3). Feel free to skip peeling the apples if you don’t mind some texture in your applesauce. Just be sure to wash the apples well to remove the dirt, wax, and anything else that might be lingering.

To chop the apple, I first cut it in half from top to bottom and then cut large chunks (Panel #4, above). There’s no right or wrong way here. Know that smaller apple chunks will cook in a shorter amount of time, of course.

Prepping the strawberries

The panels below show the easiest way to core and chop a strawberry with a knife. Hold the leaves and stem in one hand and pull them from the berry (Panels #2 and #3, below).

six pictures showing removal of the strawberry stem and core and chopping the strawberries.

It’s then easy to remove the core using a paring knife (Panel #4 and #5, above). Be careful and always try to cut away from yourself!

Roughly chopping the strawberries (Panel #6) is now simple.

strawberries and apples in a pot.

FAQs about unsweetened strawberry applesauce

How would you eat this unsweetened strawberry applesauce?

I would eat it with a spoon. Or it would go well with potato latkes or sweet potato latkes, over waffles, or with yogurt and granola. Or you could always bake muffins!

What else can I add to this applesauce?

You could add cinnamon or lemon juice or any variety of things. You can, of course, always add sugar if you want to increase the sweetness.

Can I freeze applesauce?

Yes. Applesauce freezes very well in air-tight containers.

Can I use frozen strawberries for this applesauce?

Yes, frozen strawberries would work, but I always prefer fresh over frozen if available.

Related recipes

Check out other apple recipes from the uglyducklingbakery archives, like this strawberry apple pie, a lemon apple curd, oven-dried apple rings, or these apple muffins.

Unsweetened Strawberry Applesauce

5 from 1 vote
Category: Snack
Cuisine: Unspecified
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 62kcal
Fresh strawberries add natural sweetness to unsweetened strawberry applesauce. Enjoy it with yogurt or waffles or just eat it with a spoon!
Print Recipe


  • 5 medium sized apples
  • 5 large strawberries
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Core, peel, and coarsely chop the apples. Put them in a medium sized pot (larger if you are scaling up the recipe), and add enough water to cover the bottom. You can turn the heat on at this point if you want.
    5 medium sized apples
  • Wash, core, and coarsely chop the strawberries and add them to the pot.
    5 large strawberries
  • Add the vanilla and any extras (see the FAQs above) and stir to mix.
    ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Cover and cook the applesauce on low (it should be bubbling but not vigorously), stirring and mashing occasionally with a spoon or potato masher, until the apples have softened so much they are falling apart and mash easily, about 45 minutes depending on your apples.
  • Remove from heat and puree in a blender or food processor, if desired.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature. Applesauce can be kept in the refrigerator for a week or so or frozen for 3 to 6 months.


Variations – add cinnamon or other spices as desired


Calories: 62kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 134mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 62IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 1mg
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a bowl of yogurt topped with unsweetened strawberry applesauce.

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